This year has been another disappointment for fans with the Miners winning three games and losing eight.
Home attendance has dwindled as the season has progressed.
A few promotions were added to try and boost attendance, including teachers getting four free tickets after signing up for a program. At the most recent home game, fans were able to attend the game for free with the ticket stub from the previous night's UTEP basketball game.
Beer sales for home games were added starting with the homecoming game against Tulane. Adauto said beer sales were not added because of low attendance but did say it was hoped attendance would get a boost from the beer sales.
The team's final game this season is against Rice on Saturday at the Sun Bowl and it will be "Coach Mike Price Appreciation Day," with the first 20,000 fans receiving commemorative tickets. To see the ticket, click here. Seventeen seniors also will be honored.
"We're definitely going to continue to live here. We love it here. We have our summer home up in Coeur d'Alene that we're looking into, but the more places you go, the better El Paso looks," Price said. "We have friends here and the people are just so gracious and nice. It was obvious to me when I was looking at the stadium [in Hattiesburg] and what they're writing about the poor coach there. It's BS. You don't get that here. I've been to a lot places and I have thick skin, but they treat people with dignity and respect here and I appreciate that."
More Price quotes from his retirement news conference:
(On staying on in the athletic department)
"I don't know what capacity that would be. I have no plans right now. I'm interested in staying on board as a booster and as a supporter, and I will do anything the athletic department asks me to do. I'm in all the way. I'm not jumping out of the boat. I have been an athletic director, and I don't want that job. This guy [Bob Stull] is the best at what he does. If the new coach wants advice, that's fine. I'm definitely going to be here to support these players. I'm disappointed I can't be here to coach the freshmen I've recruited. If I'm asked, I'll be there, but right now we'll probably take a little time off."
(On when he decided to retire)
"We've been talking about it for a couple of weeks. As you talk and discuss it with people, it starts to get out. I kind of wanted to wait until the end of the year, but this is ok. We have a responsible team. They're going to be motivated and our coaches aren't going to quit on anybody. They're going to work hard to make this a great week."
(On his legacy)
"That's hard for me to say. I'm just so happy with the relationships I have built here in El Paso. It's just going to continue. It's going to be a great chapter in Joyce and my life. We don't know what we want to do, but we're going to be around and support athletics in this community, and maybe do some charity work she is interested in becoming involved with, helping high school students get advanced scholarships and other stuff like that. I can't say one thing other than that I think we've been representative and I think we've been competitive. We just haven't won enough games."
(On maintaining continuity in the football program)
"I think there is going to be continuity in our program. I think if Andre gets the job, that's awesome. But we have awesome assistant coaches here, and they're going to be retained and we have awesome support staff and they're going to be retained. Nobody is running around threatening to fire people. Bob is the best in the business at hiring people. His only mistake was me [laughs]."
(On keeping the recruiting class together)
"Recruiting is definitely an issue. We have 14 kids who have committed to us. Our staff and I are going to work on it and talk to the parents about the program. We're going to solidify those [commitments] with coach Stull's help."
(On meeting with the team)
"The players were a little bit stunned. They probably thought it would be after the last game. I don't think they were shocked. With this group, I'm not worrying about any quit or anybody going sideways on us."
(On what he has done for UTEP)
"Probably the main thing we've done is raise our expectation level, raised our attitude, raised our self image. What do the kids in high school think about UTEP now? Do they want to go here? Yeah, it's a great place. Do they want national recognition and play in bowl games and enjoy winning seasons and go into locker rooms that are beautiful and nice and be treated with dignity in the community? Yes. This is a great place to play college football."
(What's the hardest thing about consistently winning here?)
"I have been other places where it is harder to win than UTEP. That is a cop out to me. I think you can win here. I didn't do a good enough job and didn't win enough games. That's my fault."
(How much would a packed Sun Bowl mean on Saturday?)
"It would be great. It would be awesome. The next step is to give the beer away free. That will get them in here!" [Laughs]
(On the best day of his UTEP tenure)
"The day I stood up here and got the job. That meant an awful lot to the Price family. There are only two people responsible for that, who took a chance on me, and that's Diana and Bob. I can call her Diana now [laughs]."
(On staying in El Paso)
"We're definitely going to continue to live here. We love it here. We have our summer home up in Coeur d'Alene that we're looking into, but the more places you go, the better El Paso looks. We have friends here and the people are just so gracious and nice. It was obvious to me when I was looking at the stadium [in Hattiesburg] and what they're writing about the poor coach there. It's BS. You don't get that here. I've been to a lot places and I have thick skin, but they treat people with dignity and respect here and I appreciate that."