All or nothing for Lamaison
Published: Tuesday, September 25, 2012
Updated: Friday, May 17, 2013 13:05
UTEP senior quarterback Nick Lamaison is on his second year as starter for the Miners and his only goal for 2012 is simple, winning.
“I want a conference championship,” Lamaison said. “We want to go to a bowl game and win a bowl game, those are our objectives and we’ll accept nothing less.”
Lamaison began his college career at Mt. San Antonio College, where he earned the All-California and All-American honors and was also named the offensive player of the year.
He led the Mounties to a win over the City College of San Francisco and obtained both a state and national championship for a second straight year in 2010.
Lamaison committed to UTEP mainly because of head coach Mike Price and what the program had to offer.
“I wanted to make sure I was going to play for someone I was going to have a close relationship with and a person I could go and talk to about football or things going on at home,” Lamaison said. “Coach Price definitely fit that mold for me.”
In 2011, against Stony Brook, Lamaison had an impressive debut when he orchestrated a come-from-behind victory against the Seawolves by completing 24-of-38 for 365 yards and three touchdowns. He suffered an injury against SMU that sidelined him for four games.
Last season, Lamaison completed 130 of his 224 attempts, for 1,718 passing yards 12 touchdowns and 10 interceptions in eight starts. However, the California native has really improved his play in 2012.
After four games, Lamaison has completed 70 of 127 passes for 811 yards, seven touchdowns and no interceptions.
“Right now he is playing his best football of his career probably,” offensive coordinator and quarterback coach Aaron Price said. “The way he is playing right now is like a veteran a fifth year senior, he has really improved his game in the two years he’s been here and he is doing a nice job.” The signal caller has become one of the leaders of the team and tries to lead by example, along side back-up quarterback junior Carson Meger, who’s been rotating with Lamaison as quarterback.
“We all have a pretty good relationship, we kind of feed off each other, I give him (Lamaison) confidence, he gives me confidence, team has confidence in both of us, so I think it works for us,” Meger said.
“We are each other’s eyes when we are not on the field and help each other on what we see in when we are not on the field.”
Meger says he has learned a lot from his teammate, but also keeps a healthy friendship off the field.“I’m a little cooler than him, but he is an alright guy,” Meger jokingly said. “We like to laugh and joke and keep it light, but we know when to lock in and focus.”
For Meger, the best quality of his teammate is how he has picked up the offense and his ability, accuracy to throw the ball, and how he likes to take chances.
Price’s last two signal callers led the Miners to bowl appearances, Jordan Palmer (2004, 2005) and Trevor Vittatoe (2010). Lamaison is trying to become the third straight quarterback to achieve that.
“I’ve grown a lot since I came here, I’ve grown with my teammates,” Lamaison said. “I really owe it to UTEP, coach Price and El Paso for helping me get that growth.”
Edwin Delgado may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.