Call it a Hail Mary for attendance that might not be as big a prayer as it appears.

With football ticket sales flagging as 1-6 UTEP is at the point of no bowl return, the university is opening up the taps on beer sales for both UTEP football and basketball games.

The announced home crowd for the Miners' last home game -- a demoralizing 17-0 loss to SMU -- was over 30,000, but UTEP had given away 10,000 tickets to area teachers. Some came, many didn't, and the crowd was probably about 10,000 fewer than the stat line read. Subtract another 15,000 for the start of the fourth quarter.

Clearly anticipating a dreadful turnout in its final three homgames and looking to revive enthusiasm in the Don Haskins Center for what promises to be a solid team under head coach Tim Floyd, UTEP President Diana Natalicio is bringing in the suds.

“UTEP’s extensive experience with beer sales at special events in the Sun Bowl and the Don Haskins Center assures us that we will be able to offer at athletic events the same safe and family-friendly environment that this community has come to expect,” said Natalicio in a press release. “Introducing beer sales at UTEP’s Homecoming Game on October 20 underscores our commitment to this goal.”

So, how about it? Will lifting the beer ban get you to a UTEP game?