The staggering rise of COVID-19 infection and hospitalization rates in El Paso has caused a mini-shutdown amongst a lot of entities. The El Paso Independent School district, the Socorro Independent School district, and the Canutillo Independent School district all announced that they were going to suspend athletic activities for the foreseeable future due to the COVID-19 infection numbers, but there was no word about whether the UTEP Athletic Department would follow suit and not allow fans in the stands of the Sun Bowl for their remaining four home games.

On Tuesday afternoon, UTEP President Dr. Heather Wilson and Athletic Director Jim Senter said that they will not be allowing fans to watch the football game against North Texas at the Sun Bowl on Saturday, October 31. Fans were able to go to a couple of home football games this season but UTEP officials are doing the right thing by not allowing fans this weekend. It would have been great because everyone could have dressed up in their Halloween costumes and it could have really been a lot of fun, but it is better to be safe than sorry.

Wilson and Senter said in their statement that they believe that there has been no evidence of community spread from the Miners’ first two home games because fans and the university have been following proper safety protocol.

For this particular game, coaches, student-athletes, support staff, officials, medical personnel, and media will be allowed in Sun Bowl stadium. Wilson and Senter say that they will be deciding on a week-to-week basis about further fan attendance for the remaining three home games after this weekend's matchup. If you are a season ticket holder or had already bought single-game tickets, you'll be hearing from UTEP about how you can get a refund. You can also watch the Miners on the CBS Sports Network. Kick-off is at noon local time.

I'm glad that UTEP decided to close the game to fans. I hope that they decide to do this for the rest of the season. They need to keep fans safe and do the right thing by the community at large.

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