EL PASO, Texas - UTEP Head Football Coach Sean Kugler said Monday his starting quarterback moving forward is Ryan Metz.
UTEP lost to the NMSU Aggies 41-14 Saturday at Aggie Memorial Stadium, a loss that snapped an eight game winning streak over their rivals in the Battle of I-10. Saturday, Kugler benched quarterback Metz in favor of freshman Mark Torrez. Torrez and Metz threw a combined five interceptions against the Aggies.
"The story of the game was five turnovers, three of them in the first quarter," Kugler said Monday, "It sounds like a broken record, but it was a very disappointing loss. They outplayed us in every phase, they earned that win."
"I do want to emphasize Ryan Metz is our quarterback moving forward, but we do need better play from that position," Kugler said, adding Zach Greenlee and Mark Torrez will compete for the backup spot this week.
Kugler said the Miners' quarterbacks have thrown a combined two touchdown passes and six interceptions this season. The Miners' next game is against Army Saturday in West Point.
Kugler said his defense needs "to generate more pressure on the quarterback. We need to amp that up." The Miners' head football coach said Army likes to run the ball and his defense will need to focus on stopping the run this week.
"Right now, we're kind of a wounded animal and you need to make a decision, you either lay down or fight back, and we're going to fight back," Kugler said.
It has been a brutal season so far for the Miners, who lost 56-7 at Oklahoma, 31-14 against Rice at home, and 63-16 at home against Arizona prior to the trip north to Las Cruces.
When asked by a reporter if he feels time could be running out for his team, Kugler replied, "I will continue to work for the team, for the kids, for the program to help us turn this thing around. That is not on the back of my mind. What's on my mind right now is Army."