Both Busey catches lead to points for UTEP in opening win
UTEP wide receiver Alan Busey of Anchorage twice put his team in the red zone to set up scoring drives as the Miners opened the season with a 36-34 win over Houston Baptist in El Paso, Texas.
The 6-foot-1 senior hauled in two catches for a career-high 57 yards, basically matching his career total (59) in one half thanks to receptions of 25 and 32 yards.
UTEP head coach Dana Dimel saw this breakout coming long before the crowd of 35,000 at Sun Bowl Stadium.
“I thought Alan Busey just came into camp and knew there would be competition, so he raised his game,” the coach said last week.
Busey, of Service High fame, was on the field early and made big plays to help UTEP build a 20-17 halftime lead.
On UTEP’s first drive, the first pass play went to Busey. His 25-yard reception on second-and-2 put the Miners at the 10-yard line and led to a field goal.
In the second quarter, Busey went was called on for second-and-22 and third-and-22, with the second play resulting in a 19-yard catch that was called back because of another player being offsides.
Near the end of the half, the Alaskan hauled in a career-high 32-yard catch on third-and-10 that got UTEP all the way down to the 3-yard line with 7 seconds left. That led to another field that gave the Miners the lead.
Busey now has eight receptions for 116 yards in 12 career games with UTEP.
He played his first two seasons in 2015 and 2016 at Chabot College in California, where he put up impressive totals of 73 receptions, 1,521 yards and 18 touchdowns.