Word began to circulate last night that Dana Dimel was the likely choice to become UTEP’s new head coach.
Sure enough, the deal is done. UTEP’s annoucement:
Dana Dimel was named the 26th head coach in UTEP football history by University President Diana Natalicio and Director of Athletics Jim Senter on Wednesday.
Dimel, 55, was previously the head coach at the University of Wyoming and the University of Houston. He most recently served as the offensive coordinator, running backs coach and tight ends coach at his alma mater, Kansas State University, where he has worked since 2009. He also spent three seasons on the staff at the University of Arizona.
UTEP and Coach Dimel are working on a mutually agreeable start date following completion of his coaching responsibilities with Kansas State in the Cactus Bowl on Dec. 26 in Phoenix.
“We welcome coach Dimel, his wife Julie, son Winston and daughter Josey to El Paso,” UTEP President Diana Natalicio said. “We look forward to an exciting new era of UTEP Football under his leadership. His prior experience as a head coach at Wyoming and Houston and as offensive coordinator in the turnaround at Kansas State make him a great fit for UTEP and the El Paso community at this time.”
“We are very pleased to find a coach with the talent, expertise and experience of Dana Dimel,” UTEP Director of Athletics Jim Senter said. “He has strong ties to the state of Texas. He will immediately impact recruiting in the state of Texas and he is a proven winner.”
“I’m greatly looking forward to the opportunity at UTEP to build a program utilizing a ‘1-0’ concept,” Dimel said. “I would like to thank President Natalicio and Jim Senter for the opportunity. We will work diligently to elevate UTEP football to the highest level in Conference USA. Having been a part of a major turnaround at Kansas State and having the success we did at Wyoming, I’m just really excited about the leadership challenge that’s ahead.”
Dimel is completing his third tour of duty with the Wildcats, including a year (2005) continuing work on his graduate degree. Working under legendary coach Bill Snyder, he has been a part of 12 bowl teams during 19 seasons in Manhattan. The Wildcats have posted an 11-win season (2012), two 10-win campaigns (1995, 2011) and five nine-win seasons (1993, 1994, 1996, 2014, 2016) during that span, and have finished in the top-18 of the national poll on three occasions (2011, 2012, 2014). They won the Big 12 championship in 2012.
Dimel has the most wins of any active offensive coordinator in college football since 2011 (60), and has been a part of eight straight bowl appearances including in 2017. The 2016 Wildcats defeated Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, Baylor and TCU. With Dimel calling the plays over the last seven seasons, the Wildcats have averaged 33.4 points per game and 6.2 yards per play. They have ranked third nationally in fewest turnovers per game behind LSU and Alabama over the last seven years.
During Dimel’s tenure as offensive coordinator, Kansas State has routinely ranked among the nation’s best teams in red zone and third down efficiency.