For the second time in the last 20 years, a UTEP home football game against Texas Tech has been canceled. The Miners and Red Raiders were set to play in 2001, but the 9/11 attacks forced that contest to be canceled with no makeup date. Last night, the Big 12 announced that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, their football schedule would be a 9 + 1 format. In addition to all of their conference games, each school would have an opportunity to host one non-conference game. 600 ESPN El Paso mentioned this scheduling scenario in a story last Friday. The Miners were preparing to host Tech in their season opener on September 5th, but that game is now canceled. UTEP Director of Athletics Jim Senter offered this comment following the Big 12's announcement.

The good news is that it appears UTEP will still get their $1.4 million payout on September 19th when they travel to Austin to play the Texas Longhorns. UT was also scheduled to host South Florida on September 5th with a $1.9 million payout, but that game looks to be a casualty of the pandemic scheduling change.

As for the Miners, they still have three non-conference games on their schedule: at Nevada on 9/12, at Texas on 9/19, and home against NMSU on 9/26. The Aggies play in Birmingham against UAB on Thursday, September 3rd making a possible home and home against the Miners a longshot. However, there are plenty of FCS teams that could potentially accommodate a 9/5 replacement home date for UTEP. As for the independents, BYU's first five games of the season have been canceled. Army's 9/3 game against Bucknell has been canceled and the Black Knights play at Rice on 9/12.