UTEP has fired head football coach Dana Dimel after the completion of his sixth season in charge of the Miners, sources tell Texas Football. He was 20-49 overall and 10-34 in Conference USA as head coach of the Miners.
Dimel was hired ahead of the 2018 season after UTEP went winless the year before. He led the Miners to one win in 2018 and 2019, and three wins in the pandemic-shortened 2020 season. UTEP appeared to turn the corner in 2021 with a seven-win season that included a bowl trip but the excitement was short lived in El Paso. The Miners went 5-7 last year and 3-9 this season.
The job in El Paso is not an easy one historically. The New Mexico Bowl appearance in 2021 was only the fifth time this century and the 15th in over 100 years of football. The Miners left the independent ranks to join the WAC in 1968 and have only posted consecutive winning records once in that span – 2004 and 2005 under head coach Mike Price. UTEP is in the Mountain Time Zone and far away from recruiting hot beds that help other Texas programs avoid poor results.
Dimel came from the Bill Snyder school of coaching and implemented a plan for JUCO recruits to boost talent levels. And, for the most part, it worked. The Miners are far more talented now than they were when Dimel was in charge. UTEP fans owe a debt of gratitude to Dimel for leaving the job better than he found it, but talent isn’t the only requirement for consistent success, and the Miners simply didn’t capitalize on the momentum built in 2021.
Since reaching the bowl game in 2021 season, UTEP is 8-17. Dimel had one year left on his contract and the Miners must pay him $667,292 because of his buy out. He would’ve made $850,000 had he remained head coach in 2024. A job search will begin immediately for his replacement.
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