Eastern Plays the First of Two-Straight Road Games

No. 19 Eagles continue Big Sky Conference play at Sacramento State, followed by another road contest at Idaho State as classes begin at EWU

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Eastern Washington Univ. "Eagles"
at
Sacramento State "Hornets"

Saturday, Sept. 26 • 6:05 p.m. Pacific
Hornet Stadium • Sacramento, Calif.

EWU Coach: Beau Baldwin (Central Washington ‘96)
School Record: 8-6/5-3 Big Sky (2nd Season)
Career Record: 18-9 (3rd Season -- was 10-3 at CWU in 2007 and 6-5 at EWU in 2008)
2009:
2-1
Last Game: #21 Eastern Washington 16, Northern Colorado 0 (Sept. 19 in Cheney, Wash.)
2008:
6-5/5-3 in Big Sky Conference (3rd)
TV: None
Radio: 790-AM in Spokane & www.teamline.cc
Webcast: www.bigskytv.org
Weekly Coaches Luncheon: Tuesday, Noon at the Northern Quest Resort & Casino, cost $12


On the same week as the start of classes for the Eastern Washington University football team, the Eagles will face their first road test of the 2009 Big Sky Conference season this Saturday (Sept. 26).

Eastern, coming off a 16-0 shutout victory over Northern Colorado in the league opener for both teams, travels to Sacramento State to face the Hornets in a game that starts at 6:05 p.m. Pacific time. The game may be heard live via radio in the Spokane area on 790-AM and via the internet through audio (www.teamline.cc) or video (www.bigskytv.org) webcasts.

Eastern, which moved up two spots to 19th in this week's Sports Network NCAA Football Championship Subdivision poll, enters with a 2-1 record, having also defeated Western Oregon (35-14) and falling to 10th-ranked California (59-7). The Hornets were idle last week and are 0-2 after difficult road games at UNLV on Sept. 5 (38-3) and Cal Poly on Sept. 12 (38-19).Cal Poly remained at 12th in the FCS rankings after the win over Sac State and is currently 16th.

Eagle players will have to deal with something this week they haven't had to since opening preseason practices in August -- attend academic classes. School starts at Eastern on Sept. 23, and that comes just prior to two-straight road games for the Eagles. Eastern plays at Idaho State on Oct. 3 before returning home to face defending Big Sky co-champion Weber State on Oct. 10 for Hall of Fame Day at EWU.

"We have to keep our focus through a lot of changes this week," said Baldwin. "On top of that we have to go on the road to play a very good Sacramento State team. It's going to be a serious challenge for us. From a talent standpoint they have all the makings to be one of the top teams in the Big Sky. They have gotten better and better each year."

Although they have now won their Big Sky Conference opener each of the past four seasons, the Eagles are hoping that a different piece of history does not repeat itself. In each of the last three years, the Eagles have opened league play with a victory, only to lose their next two league games.

In games played against EWU's first three 2009 league opponents, the Eagles have won 10 of 13 games against those teams since 2004. The lone losses came at home to Sacramento State (2006 and 2008) and at Idaho State (2005).

In fact, although Eastern has lost the past two home meetings with Sac State, the Eagles are a perfect 9-0 in games against the Hornets played in Sacramento. In the last nine meetings between EWU and Sac State, the home team has won only once (EWU 45-10 in 2004).

Eastern's shutout last week against Northern Colorado was one to savor, as the last shutout at Woodward Field came back in 1983. Big Sky Conference Defensive Player of the Week J.C. Sherritt led the way with 16 tackles, and the junior linebacker now leads the Big Sky and ranks ninth in FCS with an average of just over 12 per game (total of 37). Sherritt was also selected as one of four National All-Stars by College Sporting News for his effort against the Bears.

Senior safety Kevin Hatch had his third interception of the season against UNC and leads the league and ranks third nationally with an average of one per game (total of three).

Sac State strong safety Zach Schrader is right behind Sherritt in tackles, ranking second in the league and 15th nationally with an average of 11.0 per game. Chris Diniz has three field goals (1.5 per game) to rank second in the Big Sky and 13th in FCS.

Last season, Sacramento State upset Eastern 15-13 at Woodward Field. The Eagles had 363 passing yards and 23 first downs, but had three turnovers, were 0-for-6 on third down and had minus 31 yards rushing. It was one of the high points for Sac State during a 6-6 finish that included a 3-5 record in the Big Sky.

The Eagles are coming off a 6-5 finish in 2008 that included a 5-3 record in the Big Sky Conference, but EWU ended the season with a three-game winning streak after falling to Sacramento State. Eastern returned 38 letter winners from that team, including 17 back on offense and 21 on defense. A total of 15 starters returned, featuring eight on offense and seven on defense.

Eastern is led by quarterback Matt Nichols, a four-year starter who should break EWU's career passing and total offense records in 2009. The starting debut for the 36-game starter came in 2006 when Eastern played at 12th-ranked West Virginia.

In the process of EWU's loss to California on Sept. 12, Nichols broke the school's career completions record to go along with the attempts record he broke last season. He is now 755-of-1,236 (61 percent) for 9,413 yards and 69 touchdowns in his 38-game career.

Nichols is now 848 passing yards and 927 yards of total offense from setting school records in those categories. For the second-straight year he is on the watch list for the Walter Payton Award presented by the Sports Network to the top player in the FCS.

Nichols led Eastern to nine victories as a sophomore in 2007 when he passed for 3,744 yards and 34 touchdowns, and had another 392 yards on the ground. As a junior, his numbers (in two less games) slipped to 3,293 yards and 21 touchdowns passing, and 83 yards rushing.

 

Game Promotions/Tickets -- Eastern's next home game is Oct. 10 for "Hall of Fame Weekend" when the Eagles host defending Big Sky Conference co-champion Weber State. The game sponsor is Best Western Peppertree Inns. It will also be Special Olympics Day, Grand Columbia Boy Scout Day, EWU Staff/Faculty Appreciation Day and Sponsor Appreciation Day. Ticket information is available at http://goeags.com/tickets/ewas-ticketcentral.html or by calling 1-866-4GO-EAGS.

 

PDF Link to Fact Book -- The complete version of the 2009 EWU football fact book may be found at: http://goeags.com/trads/ewas-factbooks.html.

 

Practices -- This week, two-hour practices take place Tuesday at 3 p.m., Wednesday at 3:45 p.m. and Thursday at 3:45 p.m. on the EWU Sports and Recreation Center practice fields. Media interviews take place after practice or 1/2 hour before the time listed.

 

Eagles to Watch -- Junior linebacker J.C. Sherritt equaled the 16th-most tackles in school history with 16 versus Northern Colorado on Sept. 19 and earned BSC Defensive Player of the Week accolades for his efforts. Sherritt was also selected as one of four National All-Stars by College Sporting News for his effort against the Bears. Three of the tackles were for losses, including one on a third down play that forced the Bears to punt. He also recovered a fumble, one of four turnovers the Eagles forced in the 16-0 shutout. Sherritt leads the Big Sky and ranks ninth in FCS with an average of just over 12 tackles per game (total of 37). "J.C. has played great in three-straight games," said head coach Beau Baldwin. "He has consistently been in double-digit tackles and is always around the ball. He's a great player and a great leader for us." . . . Junior punter Cameron Zuber (Chehalis, Wash. - W.F. West HS '06) had an impressive outing versus Northern Colorado on Sept. 19 to earn Big Sky Conference Special Teams Player of the Week honors. He punted seven times for a 39.1 average, with five downed inside the 20. His 64-yard punt equaled the eighth-longest in school history and the average field position for the Bears after six of his punts was their own 19. On his seventh punt, Eastern forced a fumble on the return and took over at the UNC 6-yard line before scoring for a 13-0 lead. Zuber has been attending EWU since he graduated in 2006 from W.F. West High School in Chehalis, Wash., but this is his first season as an Eagle football player. He originally walked-on in spring 2007 but did not make the team. He then returned this fall through the recommendation of Eastern tight end Nathan Overbay, who is 2005 graduate of W.F. West. "He's getting better every day," said Baldwin of Zuber. "He's had a few really good kicks and is doing a great job. We consistently gave our defense great field position to work with, and when our punters do a good job of pinning them back there, it makes it hard on opponents to have to go 80-plus yards to score." . . . Sophomore running back Taiwan Jones (Antioch, Calif.) had 164 all-purpose yards versus Northern Colorado on Sept. 19, including 95 yards rushing on 18 carries. He also caught a pass for 16 yards, returned a punt for one yard and returned a kickoff 52 yards. His kickoff return would have been an 85-yard touchdown, but a penalty nullified it. Last season, Jones had a 93-yard return for a touchdown versus the Bears. That return helped convince the coaching staff to move him to running back in 2009 to help replace four departed seniors at that position. He had an 87-yard touchdown on his first career carry in EWU's 35-14 victory over Western Oregon on Sept. 5. It equaled EWU's fifth-longest rush in school history, and was the longest for the Eagles since 1997. It also equaled the longest in the Big Sky since 1989 when Eastern's Dominic Corr had a 92-yard scamper versus Idaho State. The school record is 95 set by John Ditz against Lewis & Clark in 1954. Jones missed the early part of the 2008 season with a broken fibula, but returned to start four games at cornerback for the Eagles . . . A total of 12 players return who earned All-Big Sky Conference honors a year ago, including a pair of wide receivers selected to the second team last year as juniors -- Aaron Boyce (Kent, Wash. - Kentwood HS '05) and Brynsen Brown (Puyallup, Wash. - Emerald Ridge HS '05). Brown, however, has since moved over to a defensive end position after freshman redshirt Nicholas Edwards (Tacoma, Wash. - Foss HS '08) earned a starting position in the off-season. Boyce caught 63 passes for 917 yards and 10 touchdowns last season and now has 191 catches for 2,855 yards and 24 touchdowns in his career. Boyce began his senior season with six catches for 126 yards versus Western Oregon on Sept. 5, including a 53-yard touchdown catch, to help him earn Big Sky Conference Offensive Player of the Week honors . .  . Senior quarterback Matt Nichols (Cottonwood, Calif.) is one of 10 players returning who earned honorable mention All-Big Sky honors in 2008 after earning the league's Offensive Player of the Year award as a sophomore. A 2009 Walter Payton Award candidate, he has passed for 9,267 yards and 67 touchdowns in his career, having opened his senior season with 286 yards and three touchdowns versus Western Oregon. He already owns EWU's school records with 1,236 career pass attempts and 755 completions. Later in the season, he should break EWU's career passing yards and total offense records . . . Senior free safety Kevin Hatch (Spokane, Wash. - Freeman HS '05) had a pair of interceptions, two passes broken up and six total tackles against  WOU to earn Big Sky Conference Defensive Player of the Week honors. Besides the two touchdowns they scored, the Wolves had the ball inside the Eastern 20 three other times and came away empty. One was ended on an interception by Hatch in the end zone at the end of the first half with EWU clinging to a 14-7 lead. Hatch's other interception led to a touchdown that gave EWU some breathing room at 28-14. He added an interception against Northern Colorado on Sept. 19, giving him eight in his career to go along with 171 tackles. With an average of 1.0 interceptions per game thus far in 2009, Hatch is tied for third in FCS. Hatch ended his junior season with a 73-yard interception return for a touchdown in EWU's upset 33-26 victory over eighth-ranked and regular season Big Sky champion Weber State . . . Junior cornerback Jesse Hoffman (Seattle, Wash. - Shorecrest HS '06) had 10 tackles versus WOU in his first-ever start as an Eagle cornerback. He played previously at EWU as a safety (2008) and running back (2006). Hoffman, however, suffered a high ankle/knee sprain during EWU's practice the day before the Northern Colorado game, and he missed that game and perhaps a couple more . . . Twin brothers Matt and Zach Johnson (Tumwater, Wash. - Tumwater HS '07) return after stellar debut seasons. They combined for 179 tackles to rank 1-2 on the team, with Zach finishing with 96 and a team-high seven passes broken up, and Matt closing the year with 83 tackles and a team-leading four interceptions. Both players earned honorable mention All-Big Sky accolades in 2008. Zach, however, is lost until at least October after a blood clot in his leg was diagnosed following knee surgery this summer and hasn't yet dissipated completely . . . Defensive tackle Renard Williams (Port Orchard, Wash. - South Kitsap HS '07) and center Chris Powers (Black Diamond, Wash. - Tahoma HS '07) were picked by the coaching staff as the team's players of the week from the California game. Earning scout team player of the week honors were wide receiver Ikaika Gleason (Spanaway, Wash. - Bethel HS '08) and defensive back Artise Gauldin (Kent, Wash. - Kent-Meridian HS '09). The previous week, team player of the week honors were won by Hatch and Boyce, as well as kicker Mike Jarrett (Puyallup, Wash. - Puyallup HS '07) for special teams.

 

Seven Eagles Make Starting Debuts Against WOU -- Seven Eagles, including a pair each on the defensive line and offensive line, made their Eastern starting debuts against Western Oregon on Sept. 5.

Three of Eastern's starting defensive linemen were seniors in 2008, so freshman redshirt Evan Cook made his debut at strong end and sophomore David Miles made his starting debut at tackle. Miles is backed up by 2008 seven-game starter Renard Williams. Senior Jacob Kragt made the second start of his career at the other end position as he and Cook helped replace record-breaking Buck Buchanan Award winner and Big Sky Conference Defensive Player of the Year Greg Peach.

The only other starting debuts made on defense were made by junior cornerback Jesse Hoffman and freshman redshirt weak-side outside linebacker Rusty Haehl. Hoffman is a former running back (2006) and safety (2008) who moved to cornerback last spring. Haehl earned a starting spot after 20-game senior starter Makai Borden suffered a hamstring injury early in preseason practices.

The lone starting debuts on offense were made by freshman redshirt wide receiver Nicholas Edwards, sophomore center Chris Powers and junior right guard Nikolai Myers. Sophomore tackle Gabe Jackson made his second start after playing previously as a backup behind injured starter Brice Leahy. And sophomore Taiwan Jones, a four-game starter at cornerback in 2008, made his starting debut as a running back.

Also making debuts were sophomore kicker Mike Jarrett and junior punter Cameron Zuber. Jarrett was a non-lettering squad member last season, and Zuber is punting for the first time since 2005 when he was a high school senior at W.F. West High School in Chehalis, Wash.

Freshman redshirt fullback Grant Williams made the first start of his career against California at tailback. He took the majority of snaps in practice during the week leading up to the game as a trio of Eagle running backs nursed minor injuries. Cornerback Dante Calcote made the first start of his career as an injury replacement for Jesse Hoffman when Eastern played Northern Colorado.

A total of 25 players with starting experience returned for the 2009 season. Here are the current number of career starts by Eastern players currently on the 2009 roster:

Defense (141 starts by 17 players) -- Kevin Hatch 27, Makai Borden 22, Lonnie Hosley 16, Matt Johnson 14, Zach Johnson 11, J.C. Sherritt 11, Renard Williams 8, Tyler Jolley 8, Josh Jacobson 6, Kyle Wilkins 5, Jacob Kragt 4, Evan Cook 3, Jesse Hoffman 2, Dante Calcote 1, Will Edge 1, David Miles 1, Rusty Haehl 1.

Offense (206 starts by 17 players) -- Matt Nichols 36, Aaron Boyce 35, Brynsen Brown 29, Tony Davis 21, Chris Thomas 21, Nathan Overbay 14, Ryan Forney 14, Brice Leahy 11, Taiwan Jones 6 (includes four on defense in 2008), Gabriel Jackson 4, Nicholas Edwards 3, Chris Powers 3, Nikolai Myers 3, Matt Martin 3, Nicholas Ramos 1, Ashton Gant 1, Grant Williams 1.

 

Preseason Honors -- Quarterback Matt Nichols and wide receiver Aaron Boyce topped the list of preseason honors received by Eagle football players. Nichols is on the watch list for the Payton Award (Sports Network) and was an honorable mention All-America selection (College Sporting News). Boyce earned a pair of second team All-America honors (Sports Network, Consensus Draft Services) and joined offensive tackle Chris Thomas and linebacker Zach Johnson on the Big Sky Conference all-league team. Phil Steele Magazine selected Thomas as a first team selection on its preseason All-BSC squad, with Nichols, running back Taiwan Jones, wide receiver Brynsen Brown, tight end Nathan Overbay, strong safety Matt Johnson and injured offensive tackle Brice Leahy on the second team.

 

Career Records Watch -- Senior quarterback Matt Nichols is chasing school career passing records held by the player he replaced, 2005 Walter Payton Award winner Erik Meyer (2002-05). Nichols has 9,413 yards passing, 10,015 yards of total offense and 69 touchdown passes in his career. Meyer holds school records with 10,261 passing yards (848 more than Nichols), 10,942 yards of total offense (927 more) and 84 touchdowns (15 more). Nichols also has 602 career rushing yards, trailing Meyer by just 79 yards for the school record of 681 by an Eastern quarterback. Nichols already holds the school records with 1,236 passing attempts and 755 completions.  Wide receiver Aaron Boyce, already second in school history with 195 receptions, has an outside shot of catching Eric Kimble (2002-05) for the record of 253. Tony Davis (152) is now seventh on Eastern's top 10 list, and Brynsen Brown (141) is 11th. Boyce also has 2,894 reception yards, trailing only Kimble's 4,140 and the 3,013 by Tony Brooks (1990-93). Senior safety Kevin Hatch now has eight interceptions in his career, and needs just one more to join six other former Eagles with nine to rank ninth on EWU's leaders list.  Hatch also has 171 career tackles and needs just 29 more to move into the top 25 in that category.

 

Injury Report -- Cornerback Jesse Hoffman missed the Northern Colorado game on Sept. 19 after suffering a high ankle/knee sprain the day before during EWU's practice. He is questionable for the next couple of games.

Starting linebackers Zach Johnson and Makai Borden both missed most of Eastern's preseason practices because of injuries and sat out the Western Oregon game. Johnson is out until mid-October after a blood clot in his leg was diagnosed following knee surgery this summer and hasn't yet dissipated completely. Borden suffered a hamstring injury in the opening days of practice, adding to ankle, foot and toe injuries he's suffered the past two seasons. Borden returned to the lineup against California and had a team-high nine tackles. Before the Cal loss, Eastern was 13-4 in the last two seasons with Borden in the starting lineup and 2-5 without him in it.

Eastern was also forced to adjust along the offensive line after starting right tackle Brice Leahy was lost for the season with a knee injury suffered in a non-football related accident in June. But Eastern did have a dose of good news during preseason practices. Safety Will Edge, who suffered a dislocated left ankle and broken fibula during a spring scrimmage on April 11, returned earlier than expected. He played in EWU's second preseason scrimmage on Aug. 29 and played in EWU's opener against Western Oregon on Sept. 5.

 

Nichols Selected To Payton Watch List Again -- On the cusp of breaking Eastern Washington University's career records for passing and total offense, senior quarterback Matt Nichols has been selected by The Sports Network as a preseason candidate for the Walter Payton Award given to the top player in the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision.

A four-year starter for the Eagles, Nichols was named to the Payton Watch List for the second-straight season after earning All-America honors and Big Sky Conference Offensive MVP accolades as a sophomore in 2007. The 2005 graduate of West Valley High School in Cottonwood, Calif., earned honorable mention All-Big Sky honors a year ago.

Nichols passed for 3,293 yards and 21 touchdowns as a junior, and his average of 306 yards of total offense per game ranked fifth in FCS. He led the Eagles to the quarterfinals of the FCS Playoffs as a sophomore when he passed for 3,734 yards and a school-record 34 touchdowns.

A year ago, Eastern's Greg Peach won the Buck Buchanan Award presented by TSN to the top defensive player in FCS. In 2005, Eastern's Erik Meyer -- the player Nichols replaced and is chasing in the school record books -- won the Payton Award. Meyer (2002-05) holds school records with 10,261 passing yards, 10,942 yards of total offense and 84 touchdowns.

A total of 20 players have been named to the watch list, including last year's winner, quarterback Armanti Edwards from Appalachian State. Besides Nichols and Edwards, the list currently includes Weber State quarterback Cameron Higgins, Montana running back Chase Reynolds and Weber State running back Trevyn Smith.

The watch list will be revised in October and again in November before the final ballot is announced.  Voting from a panel of FCS sports information directors, writers, broadcasters and other football experts will be conducted after the regular season ends. Three finalists will be announced on Nov. 30 and will be invited to the 23rd annual Sports Network Awards banquet on Dec. 17 in Chattanooga, Tenn., the night prior to the FCS championship game. The Eddie Robinson Award (top FCS Coach) and Buck Buchanan Award (top FCS Defensive Player) will also be presented that night.

 

Nichols Has 12 300-Yard Passing Games in His Career -- Senior quarterback Matt Nichols had six 300-yard passing games in 2008, giving him a total of 12 in his 36-game career thus far. He had at least 300 yards of total offense in seven games in 2008 (14 in his career), including a season-ending 313-yard effort against Weber State (242 passing, 71 rushing).

He also had a 346-yard passing performance against Northern Arizona (11/15/08) and had 418 against Portland State (10/4/08) to rank as the third-best in his career and 10th-best in school history. A week before the PSU game, he had 382 and five touchdowns against Idaho State (9/27/08) as he earned Big Sky Conference Offensive Player of the Week honors.

On Eastern's single season passing lists, Nichols finished the 2008 season with the second-most attempts (451), completions (3,293) and average passing yards per game (299.4); the fifth-most passing yards (3,293); the ninth-most touchdown passes (21); and the fifth-most total offensive yards (3,376).

Below is a complete list of his 300-yard outings:

 

300-Yard Passing Games for Nichols (total of 12)

451 - 37x59, 2td - Montana - 10/6/07 (#3 in school history)

434 - 34x44, 2td - McNeese State - 11/24/07 (#6 in school history)

418 - 34x55, 2td - Portland State - 10/4/08 (#10 in school history)

382 - 26x40, 5td - Idaho State - 9/27/08 (#18 in school history)

363 - 29x43, 1td - Sacramento State - 11/1/08 (#27 in school history)

363 - 19x30, 2td - Portland State - 9/29/07 (#27 in school history)

346 - 25x42, 2td - Northern Arizona - 11/15/08 (#37 in school history)

335 - 36x61, 1td - Texas Tech - 8/30/08 (#42 in school history)

329 - 21x42, 1td - Sacramento State - 9/30/06

328 - 20x29, 3td - Sacramento State - 10/27/07

316 - 17x22, 5td - Northern Arizona - 11/10/07

303 - 32x51, 1td - Colorado - 9/6/08

 

300-Yard Total Offense Games for Nichols (total of 14)

478 - 451 passing, 27 rushing - Montana - 10/6/07

459 - 434 passing. 25 rushing - McNeese State - 11/24/07

435 - 418 passing, 17 rushing - Portland State - 10/4/08

376 - 382 passing, -6 rushing - Idaho State - 9/27/08

375 - 426 passing, 29 rushing - Northern Arizona - 11/15/08

370 - 363 passing, 7 rushing - Portland State - 9/29/07

359 - 256 passing, 103 rushing - Weber State - 11/17/07

359 - 329 passing, 30 rushing - Sacramento State - 9/30/06

364 - 316 passing, 48 rushing - Northern Arizona - 11/10/07

355 - 328 passing, 27 rushing - Sacramento State - 10/27/07

322 - 335 passing, -13 rushing - Texas Tech - 8/30/08

320 - 363 passing, -43 rushing - Sacramento State - 11/1/08

314 - 303 passing, 11 rushing - Colorado - 9/6/08

313 - 242 passing, 71 rushing - Weber State - 11/22/08

 

Wide Receiver Trio Similar to Previous Quartet -- Eastern's receiving corps in 2009 includes two seniors - Tony Davis and Aaron Boyce - who have started since they were freshmen in 2006. A third, current defensive lineman Brynsen Brown, started for the Eagles at receiver from 2006-2008.

In their careers, that trio has already combined for 488 catches for 6,683 yards and 45 touchdowns in 106 games worth of experience as receivers (85 starts). In 2008, they combined for 166 passes for 2,229 yards and 17 touchdowns. They combined for 118 catches for 1,539 yards and eight touchdowns as redshirt freshmen in 2006, then combined for 172 catches for 2,561 yards and 18 scores in 13 games in 2007.

In 2008, Boyce equaled his 2007 performance with 10 touchdown catches to rank eighth in school history, and his 63 catches also rank eighth. Interestingly, all of Boyce's touchdown catches have come from Matt Nichols. Of the 44 total touchdowns Boyce, Brown and Davis have caught, all but two of them have come from Nichols (Brown and Davis each caught a TD pass from Chris Peerboom in 2006).

That trio is a reminder of a recent quartet of players that began playing with quarterback Erik Meyer in 2002. Eric Kimble, Raul Vijil, Richmond Sanders and Craig McIntyre had career totals of 503 catches for 7,858 yards and 74 touchdowns in 156 games worth of experience (74 starts). In 2005, Meyer and his teammates won their second-straight Big Sky Conference title and appeared in the playoffs for the second-straight season. Meyer would go on to win the Walter Payton Award in 2005 as the top player in the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision.

 

100-Yard Receiving Games for Aaron Boyce

232 (*17 catches, 1 TD) - Montana - 10/6/07 (#2 in school history)

186 (9 catches, 2 TD) - Sacramento State - 10/27/07 (#10 in school history)

181 (#13 catches, 1 TD) - Portland State - 10/4/08 (#14 in school history)

157 (5 catches, 0 TD) - Northern Arizona - 10/15/08

135 (9 catches, 3 TD) - Idaho State - 9/27/08

135 (9 catches, 1 TD) - Brigham Young - 10/20/07

126 (6 catches, 1 TD) - Western Oregon - 9/5/09

126 (5 catches, 0 TD) - Montana State - 10/13/07

119 (6 catches, 1 TD) - Portland State - 9/29/07

108 (6 catches, 2 TD) - Weber State - 11/22/08

107 (9 catches, 0 TD) - UC Davis - 9/15/07

*School record. #Second in school history.

 

100-Yard Receiving Games for Tony Davis

150 (6 catches, 0 TD) - Idaho State - 9/22/07

131 (8 catches, 1 TD) - McNeese State - 11/24/07

126 (6 catches, 1 TD) - Western Washington - 9/20/08

114 (#13 catches, 1 TD) - Texas Tech - 8/30/08

112 (6 catches, 0 TD) - Central Washington - 9/16/06

#Second in school history behind Aaron Boyce.

 

100-Yard Receiving Games Brynsen Brown

147 (%11 catches, 1 TD) - Sacramento State - 11/1/08

139 (5 catches, 0 TD) - Portland State - 9/29/07

138 (9 catches, 2 TD) - Northern Arizona - 10/28/06

104 (4 catches, 1 TD) - Idaho State - 9/27/08

104 (7 catches, 0 TD) - McNeese State - 11/24/07

104 (5 catches, 0 TD) - Sacramento State - 9/3/06

99 (6 catches, 1 TD) - Weber State - 11/17/07

%Ninth in school history.

 

NCAA Postseason Ban Update -- To return to the FCS Playoffs this year, the Eagles will not only have to win more, but hope they eventually receive good news from the NCAA as well. Eastern appealed a postseason ban levied by the NCAA after a two-year review of activities involving the EWU football team from 2003-07 was released in February.

As part of the appeal process, Eastern athletic director Bill Chaves, EWU President Dr. Rodolfo Arévalo and other administrators met with the appeals committee in Indianapolis, Ind., on Aug. 17. No timetable for a decision on the appeal has been provided by the NCAA.

Whether or not the appeal is denied, head coach Beau Baldwin has said since February that the Eagles are taking the approach that the postseason ban won't be a penalty unless Eastern takes care of business on the field in the 2009 season.

 

Fisher Among Hall of Fame Inductees to Be Honored on Oct. 10 -- Five former Eastern Washington University student-athletes and the school's 1989 volleyball team will comprise the ninth class of inductees into the Eastern Athletics Hall of Fame as they will be honored in ceremonies that take place on Oct. 10 in Cheney.

The new inductees include a quartet of former Eastern student-athletes who went on to illustrious coaching careers -- Curt Byrnes (football player and wrestling coach at Eastern), Ed Fisher (football/track athlete at Eastern), George Gablehouse (basketball player at Eastern) and Tracy Walters (track athlete at Eastern). The other individual inductee is national collegiate wrestling champion Mike Reed. The 1989 volleyball team will be inducted on the 20th anniversary of its 25-7 finish that include a Big Sky Conference title and NCAA Tournament appearance.  In addition, former Eastern baseball coach Jim Wasem Sr. will receive the Eastern Washington University Athletics Hall of Fame Service and Contribution Award.

The inductees will be honored with a breakfast and ceremony that starts at 9 a.m. on Oct. 10 at the Pence Union Building. The public is invited to attend (RSVP to 509-359-2463 or 1-800-648-7697) and the cost is $15 per person. They will also be honored at EWU's football game against Weber State that begins at 12:35 p.m. Pacific time and is regionally-televised on Altitude Sports and Entertainment. Hall of Fame recipients will also be recognized at Eastern's volleyball match the previous evening against Portland State at 7 p.m. Pacific time.

Best Western PepperTree Inns of Washington (www.peppertreeinns.com) serves as sponsor of the event.  More information on the Hall of Fame is available under the "Fan Zone" tab at WWW.GOEAGS.COM.

  

More Eagle Football Links and Headlines --

EwU Football Web Page - http://goeags.com/sports/m-footbl/index

Big Sky Conference Football - http://www.bigskyconf.com/sport.asp?path=football&tab=mens

Spokane Spokesman-Review EWU Football Page - http://www.spokesman.com/sections/eagles/

The Sports Network (FCS Football) - http://www.sportsnetwork.com/merge/tsnform.aspx?c=sportsnetwork&page=cfoot2/indexpic.htm

NCAA FCS Football - http://www.ncaafootball.com/index.php?s=&url_channel_id=36&change_well_id=1

NCAA Statistics - http://web1.ncaa.org/mfb/mainpage.jsp?year=2009

College Sporting News - http://www.championshipsubdivisionnews.com/index.php?blog=5

 

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September 3, 2009 - Eagle Coaches Luncheons Move to Northern Quest Starting Sept. 8
August 31, 2009 - Eagles Open at Home Versus Western Oregon
August 20, 2009 - WSU Quarterback J.T. Levenseller Transfers to Eastern
August 19, 2009 - Thomas Nominated for ‘Good Works' Team

 

BEAU BALDWIN COMMENTS

On Shutout Versus Northern Colorado -- "Our defense played an incredible game and we did some good things on special teams too. You have to find a way to win these games -- maybe it's 16-0 or later in the season it may be 35-34. The offense wasn't playing great, but the defense kept stopping them and finding a way to win. It's nice when one side of the ball can lift up the other. The reality is that you might get into games where a team is moving the ball on you and you have to be able to answer as an offense. This was one of those games where it was a low-scoring defensive battle. Our defense continually forced turnovers and stopped them on third and fourth down. We prevailed, and to come away with a shutout is awesome."

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