Ever since the beginning of the season, UCF head coach George O'Leary has been telling his team it's going to play 14 one-game seasons this year, 12 in the regular season and two in the post season.
This week, the Knights (7-2, 5-0) will play their tenth one-game season against the UTEP Miners (2-7, 1-4) at the Sun Bowl in El Paso, Texas. This is a city few members of the team have ever visited. As much as O'Leary wants to players to enjoy seeing a new area of the country, he wants to make sure they're focused and ready to take care of business come kickoff.
"Anytime you're in a strange environment and everything is new it's more of a sightseeing tour for some of these kids," O'Leary said. "I think the big thing is that you have to get their minds right, especially when you have three games left and each and every one of them is equally important."
Last season in Orlando, the Knights defeated UTEP 31-14 and running back Latavius Murray had a career day running for 233 yards and two touchdowns. The New York native has been on fire the past three games running for 503 yards and seven touchdowns.
"Anytime you run the ball the offensive line is getting the job done," O'Leary said during his weekly press conference. "I think they've gotten a lot more aggressive as in staying on blocks and getting the line of scrimmage moved. When you can do that, a good running back will make the line look good too."
The Knights have the third ranked rushing offense in Conference USA and the running game has played a big role in UCF's success all season.
Just like O'Leary, UTEP head coach Mike Price is in his ninth season as the Miners' head coach. The long time UCF head coach had high praise for Price's coaching style when he talked about UTEP's play on the field.
"I have a great respect for Mike Price and his coaching staff," O'Leary said. "I know their record is 2-7, but to keep his team playing with the great effort they've been playing with and to keep them upbeat with a lot of enthusiasm, it's a heck of a job that he's done. If you look at the schedule he's had them play, he's had a tough schedule."