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The Dig: UTEP Miners vs. Mississippi Rebels Edition

September 1, 2012; Dallas, TX, USA; UTEP Miners cheerleader performs during the game against the Oklahoma Sooners at Sun Bowl Stadium. Oklahoma won 24-7. Mandatory Credit: Jim Cowsert-US PRESSWIRE
September 1, 2012; Dallas, TX, USA; UTEP Miners cheerleader performs during the game against the Oklahoma Sooners at Sun Bowl Stadium. Oklahoma won 24-7. Mandatory Credit: Jim Cowsert-US PRESSWIRE

The Dig returns and it's time to put the nail in the coffin of UTEP's 24-7 loss to the Oklahoma Sooners and start taking a look at the Mississippi Rebels; Billy Clyde Gillispie is up to his old tricks; and Houston's offensive coordinator has ALREADY RESIGNED..... Just another day in the C-USA.....

S-E-C, S-E-C

I envy all Miner fans who are making the trip to Oxford for UTEP's battle with the Mississippi Rebels. It is one of the great atmospheres in college football. Here is ESPN's ten second preview

UTEP (0-1) at Ole Miss (1-0), 7 p.m. ET, FSN: It was a solid opening night for coach Hugh Freeze, but he'll get a little more of a test when UTEP comes to town. Led by new quarterback Bo Wallace, the Rebels showed a lot of offense in their blowout win over Central Arkansas. The secondary had a little more bend in it than the coaches would want, but at least there's a little more excitement in Oxford when the Rebels have the ball.

The Rebels have a new head coach, Hugh Freeze. Freeze took Arkansas State to the GoDaddy bowl last year on a 10-2 record. He has limited head coaching experience but he did win his first game against Central Arkansas this past Saturday. The Rebels were led by sophomore quarterback Bo Wallace. He was 20/24, for 264 yards and two touchdowns in the 49-27 Ole Miss victory.

Don't forget to check out SB Nation's Mississippi site Red Cup Rebellion. I'd expect you to see the two sites share some good information in the coming week.

Wrapping Up UTEP's 24-7 loss to the Oklahoma Sooners

The Explanation: Mike Price explained his decision to call the highly criticized fake punt against the Sooners at Monday's press conference.

"We went for it fourth and one and put them in a bad position earlier in the game. I was disappointed we didn't make that. The fake was there. The play was there. The hole was there. It was the same way in the previous three or four punts, it was a perfect setup and for some reason we practiced it all week and just didn't run it to the right hole. We ran it up the middle instead of off tackle and off tackle was wide open. We did have some kids who were hurt who were on that team. Five of the guys were substitutes. If I was aware of that, it probably would have been enough to say no. It was supposed to go to Nathan Jeffery, but he cramped up and couldn't go and we had to put [Josh] Bell in. If I had known that, in hindsight we shouldn't have done that. But if you look at the tape, it was wide open and would've been a first down. It took whatever momentum we had going in the fourth quarter, and then we had nine plays on offense. Three downs and out, three downs and out, three downs and out. Come on, we've got to do better than that."

Panic Time? Sports Illustrated's Stewart Mandel says it's not quite time to panic for the OU...

• Oklahoma (beat UTEP 24-7): The circumstances were admittedly weird. Somehow a preseason top five team wound up playing its opener in El Paso at seemingly 1 a.m. But it's never encouraging when a team dealing with questions on the offensive line and at receiver goes out and scores one touchdown in three quarters against UTEP.

Just Stop This: The Oklahoman linked to this video mocking UTEP before the last weekends game. Maybe, they can update to show Nathan Jeffery running all over the Sooners? Or to make it funny?

Odd Man Out: Oklahoma's Roy Finch is having trouble finding a role with the Sooners.

Signs of More to Come? The Tulsa World saw a lot of the "underachieving" 2011 Sooners on display Saturday night.

The Sooners who vow they will rally from Saturday night's lethargic win at UTEP have some history in their favor. And with 11 games coming over the next 13 weeks, time is also on their side. Judging from their performance in the Sun Bowl, however, the Sooners are just as likely to repeat their underachieving 2011 season. They are making many of the same mistakes.

Random but Noteworthy

Better Than Expected: Houston Cougars legend Case Keenum did not make the Houston Texans 53 man final roster. He did, however, land on the practice squad. Good for him, after seven or eight collegiate seasons, we're glad he's no longer in the C-USA.

The QUICK HOOK: By now, UTEP and C-USA fans alike are fully aware that last year's BCS hopefuls lost badly to Texas State (yes the one in San Marcos). But, you might not know that new UH head coach Tony Levine has already accepted the resignation of offensive coordinator Mike Nesbitt. How do you put that on a resume?

Old Tricks? Lastly, looks like ex-UTEP hoops coach Billy Clyde Gillispie is up to his old tricks.,....

On to Oxford..............