Between them, Wyoming and Texas-El Paso have only three victor
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) _ Between them, Wyoming and Texas-El Paso have only three victories this season. It is fitting that they should be playing their final game some 15,000 miles from home, where few people know how the game should be played - or how well it can be played.
What’s more, the Western Athletic Conference game, dubbed the Australia Bowl, is the final game for both head coaches and has been dogged by financial problems.
The game, at VFL Park, home of Australian Rules Football (sort of a cross between rugby and soccer) originally was conceived as a festival of all things American.
But the dropping value of the Australian dollar and other problems forced the promoters, Sydney-based Frontline Communications, to scrub plans to bring over the Southern California Trojans Marching Band. They also have cut back on other American razzmatazz and have had problems meeting other commitments.
American Don McLean, who is to sing the National Anthem and do a post-game performance, also had been a doubtful starter - but on Friday he agreed to perform and waived his fee.
The Wyoming Cowboys enter the game with a 2-8 record. The Miners from UTEP are 1-9. Al Kincaid, coach at Wyoming since 1981, has been replaced for next season by former University of Idaho Coach Dennis Erickson. The successor for UTEP Coach Bill Yung, in charge of the Miners for the last time after a four- year stint, has not yet been named.
UTEP and Wyoming have split their last four meetings. Wyoming is a one- touchdown favorite.
UTEP’s only victory was an upset over former national champion Brigham Young University - after which UTEP was accused of having listened in to the BYU coaches’ conversations during the game. Wyoming recorded victories over San Diego State and Cal State Fullerton this year.