UTEP loses Matt Willms for the season, Omega Harris for at least one semester


UTEP will be without the services of center Matt Willms and guard Omega Harris for at least the first semester of the 2015-16 season.

Willms suffered a flareup of a stress fracture in his foot that cost him six games last season. It’s the same injury — a fracture of the navicular bone — that has cost Joel Embiid his first two seasons in the NBA.

“He’s a very, very talented young man,” Floyd said of Willms, who averaged 5.2 points and 4.3 boards as a sophomore. “He kind of deferred to Cedric Lang so that Cedric could start his senior year, but he started for us as a freshman.”

“We thought he would play in the NBA maybe one day.”

The Miners also found out in mid-July that guard Omega Harris will miss at least the first semester due to academic ineligibility. Harris averaged 6.7 points as a freshman last season. With Vince Hunter turning pro and Lang, Julian Washburn and C.J. Cooper graduating, the Miners will need to replace six of their top seven scorers from a season ago.