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UTEP taps Pittsburgh Steelers' Sean Kugler as next head coach

By Chip Patterson | College Football/Basketball Writer
Sean Kugler previously played and coached at UTEP before an extended run in the NFL. (US Presswire)

UTEP has found its replacement for Mike Price, and is preparing to announce Sean Kugler, the Pittsburgh Steelers offensive line coach, as the Miners' next head football coach.

The El Paso Times reported the news over the weekend. Pete Roussel, of Coachingsearch.com, also confirmed that Kugler had accepted the position before the Steelers' loss to the Chargers on Sunday.

Kugler played offensive line at UTEP from 1984-88, under then-offensive line coach Andy Reid. He was a senior on the Miners' 1988 Independence Bowl squad, the only UTEP team to go to a bowl between 1967-2000. Bob Stull was UTEP's head coach while Kugler played and now Stull is the Miners' athletic director.

"I leave the administrating to Coach Stull," quarterback Carson Meger told the El Paso Times. "He got someone like Coach Price here, so obviously he knows what he's doing. I'm eager to meet [Kugler]. His accolades speak for themselves. It might be good to bring some energy in, something different."

It is not known when an official announcement will be made to introduce Kugler in El Paso. Price retired in Novebmer after finishing the 2012 season with a 3-9 record. In nine seasons as the UTEP coach, Price compiled a 48-61 record and led the Miners to three bowl games and two winning seasons.

This will be Kugler's first return to UTEP since serving as a graduate assistant and offensive assistant from 1993-2000. He then transitioned to a extended stint with the Detroit Lions before joining Boise State's staff in 2006 for that memorable Fiesta Bowl season. Kugler then took a job with the Buffalo Bills, where he served as the offensive line coach, until joining the Steelers in 2010.

According to CoachingSearch.com, Washington State linebackers coach Jeff Choate will join Kugler as his defensive coordinator.

For all the latest on coaching changes around the country, cruise on over to the CBSSports.com Coaching Carousel.

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