Staff Predictions: Owls seek first road win this season against UTEP

FAU has a 2-1 record against UTEP since the first matchup in 2015.


Jaden Wiston

Teja Young showing love to fans during family weekend on Oct. 15, 2022.

FAU is seeking its first victory on the road this season, taking on the University of Texas at El Paso Miners this Saturday.

The Owls had a tough win for last season’s matchup. They settled for a 28-25 victory despite having an 18-point lead at one point during the fourth quarter.

According to ESPN, FAU is the favorite with a four-point advantage.

The University Press Sports Staff makes their selections after going 2-2 last week.

Cameron Priester – Sports Editor (4-3)

Last Saturday’s victory over Rice left plenty to feel positive about, especially the defensive line, which tallied three sacks in the wake of sophomore defensive lineman Evan Anderson’s return to play. 

This comes at the right time as UTEP has struggled to run the ball efficiently this season, averaging 132.97 rushing yards per game. In fact, the Miners’ entire offense has struggled this season, ranking eleventh in the conference in scoring offense. 

However, the Owls have consistently proved they do not play well on the road. 

Their struggles on the road will probably make for another close game. However, if FAU is ever going to break this losing streak on the road, this is the game to do it. 

Prediction: FAU 28, UTEP 24

Richard Pereira – News Editor (5-2)

FAU arguably saw its best defensive performance in the win against Rice, allowing no points for three consecutive quarters after conceding 14 to start the game.

What the Owls will need against UTEP is a great offensive start. Only scoring 17 points on Rice, their offense needs a jolt from graduate quarterback N’Kosi Perry, sophomore wide receiver LaJohntay Wester, and running back Larry McCammon III to irritate the Miners’ defense, which has allowed 28.86 points per game this season.

Limiting the production of redshirt sophomore wide receiver Tyrin Smith will be key for the Owls on defense. Smith leads UTEP in receptions and receiving yards with 39 passes for 616 yards, respectively. The latter category also has him ranking 17th in the country, making him a dangerous player FAU needs to constantly watch out for.

The Owls have either struggled or got unlucky so far on the road this season. For them to snap out of it, this game is the best opportunity to do so.

Prediction: FAU 34, UTEP 24

Trey Avant – Staff Writer (4-3)

There’s a good chance FAU comes out of this game with its first road win of the season. 

While FAU’s offense is inconsistent, their offense is very tough to handle when things start clarking. The Owls are averaging 29.7 points per game, including throwing for 236 yards and rushing for 199.7 yards per game.

UTEP are not very good defensively, giving up 28.9 points per game.

FAU is similar in that aspects as they give up 27.1 points per game but FAU’s defense played well last week against Rice, allowing only 14 points. 

he win last week snapped a three-game losing streak for the Owls, but it is hard to trust them on the road. They are 0-3 on the road this season and went 1-5 on the road last season. 

This is not a team that is built to handle the adversity that road games produce. This season, FAU’s offense is committing more turnovers and the defense is giving up more points and yards in road games than in home games.

Rushing defense alone, FAU is giving up 206.3 rushing yards in road games and only 121 rushing yards in home games. That is a huge disparity in production.

UTEP is going for its third win in four games and if the team can contain FAU’s dynamic run game, they will come out on top.

Prediction: UTEP 35, FAU 31

Kevin Garcia – Staff Writer (3-3)

FAU narrowly escaped with a victory last week against Rice; this week’s matchup features the Owls traveling to El Paso, Texas, to face the 3-4 UTEP Miners. The Miners are a favorable matchup for FAU, as they are just 1-2 in conference play thus far. 

UTEP had its two-game win streak snapped against LA Tech last week, which included a 27-10 victory over Boise State. Offense has been a strong point for the Miners recently, averaging 33 points per game during that span.

Graduate quarterback N’Kosi Perry comes into this game with a interception-touchdown ratio of 16-5 and has looked the most comfortable of his entire career behind center this season. That sort of confidence is what will power the Owls to a much-needed road win. 

 Sophomore LaJohntay Wester, Perry’s best weapon at receiver, will need to get going but it will be tough as the Miners are exceptional against the pass, allowing just 199.6 yards per game. FAU’s rushing attack should make things difficult on UTEP’s front line and lead FAU to a victory. 

Prediction: FAU 28, UTEP 21

For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected] or tweet the staff:  Cameron Priester (@PriesterCameron), Richard Pereira (@Rich26Pereira), and Trey Avant (@TreyAvant3), and Kevin Garcia (@Kevingar658)