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Update: Mike Price named UTEP football interim head coach

Former UTEP football coach Mike Price. File Photo

UTEP confirms that former head coach Mike Price is coming out of retirement to coach the football team for the remainder of the 2017 season.

Former head coach Sean Kugler stepped down as UTEP football coach Sunday after calling acting Athletic Director Bob Stull to discuss his future with the team.

This comes after the Miners opened the season with five straight losses.

Sources told CBS4 that Price will return as UTEP’s head coach while the university searches for a permanent replacement, which was later confirmed by UTEP.

“I’ve asked Mike if he could help us in this situation,” Stull said. “He has thankfully agreed. We’ve lost two coaches, and while we have two fine coordinators who are capable of doing the job, I just felt like it was important to bring in somebody with head coaching experience that is familiar with El Paso and our program.”

“I was surprised and flattered by Bob’s call and appreciate the opportunity to help this program one more time,” Price said. “I am not interviewing for the future job, and I’m not going to be the future head coach. I’m going to manage the program and provide leadership for the rest of the year.”

Price coached the Miners from 2004 to 2012 as the team transitioned from the Western Athletic Conference to Conference USA.

He took the Miners to three bowl games in 2004, 2005 and 2010.

Price retired from coaching in 2012, and his overall record with the Miners was 48-61.

The 1997 National Coach of the Year, Price has compiled 177 head coaching wins with stints at Weber State (1981-88), Washington State (1989-2002) and UTEP.

Price led Weber State to a 10-win campaign in 1987, and Washington State to 10 victories on three occasions (1997, 2001, 2002). He directed the Miners to back-to-back eight-win campaigns in 2004 and 2005. Price was finalist for National Coach of the Year in his first year at UTEP in 2004.

On Monday, UTEP held its weekly luncheon and Stull said they didn’t have any announcements to make with regard to the interim head coach.

"I want to talk to some of the coaches and some of the players first," said UTEP acting athletics director Bob Stull. "Then I will make a decision, hopefully by Tuesday."

Stull also said a permanent football coach will be named, but not until UTEP hires a new athletic director to replace Stull, who announced his retirement last month.

UTEP is home against defending conference champion Western Kentucky this weekend.

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