Eagles come a play away from upset of FBS team and increase No. 1 votes by 10 percent
Despite coming one play away from an upset of epic proportions, the Eastern Washington University football team still increased its respect by voters and maintained its No. 1 ranking in The Sports Network/Fathead.com FCS Top 25 released on Monday (Sept. 5). Eastern lost to Washington of the Pac-12 Conference 30-27 last Saturday despite a dominating 504-250 advantage in total offense.
The defending NCAA Division I Champions received 111 of the 150 first-place votes cast to retain its No. 1 ranking in the poll of NCAA Football Championship Subdivision teams. That 74 percent rate is actually an increase of 10 percent over the 64 percent of No. 1 votes Eastern received in the preseason poll when the Eagles were No. 1 on 90 of the 140 ballots cast.
Eastern’s 3,653 total votes (97 percent of the highest possible votes they could receive) is a slightly better percentage than the 3,377 the Eagles received in the preseason poll (96 percent). The Eagles are 184 total votes ahead of second-ranked Georgia Southern, which received 29 first-place votes after winning its Southern Conference opener against Samford, 31-17.
Eastern plays the remainder of its schedule versus FCS schools, starting this Saturday (Sept. 10) when the Eagles go on the road to play their first-ever game against South Dakota.
Big Sky Conference rival Sacramento State made a huge jump in the Sports Network poll after its 29-28 overtime upset of Oregon State. The Hornets jumped from 24th to 12th and received three first-place votes. Montana State is ranked sixth and Montana is 15th in this week’s poll after losses to FBS schools.
In its first-ever meeting against in-state rival Washington from the Pac-12 Conference and the NCAA Football Bowl Championship Subdivision, Eastern dominated the Huskies in total offense 504-250. But four turnovers led to the narrow victory by the Huskies, who clinched the win with an interception in the end zone with 29 ticks of the clock remaining and Eastern at the UW 25-yard line. The interception was recorded by Desmond Trufant, the younger brother of former Eagle Isaiah Trufant, who was a standout for EWU from 2002-05 and was recently released by the Philadelphia Eagles of the NFL. Their older brother, Marcus, starred at Washington State and now plays for the Seattle Seahawks.
The Sports Network/Fathead.com FCS Top-25 College Football Poll
|Team (First-place votes)||Record||Points||Previous Rank|
|1. Eastern Washington Eagles (111)||0-1||3,653||1|
|2. Georgia Southern Eagles (29)||1-0||3,469||4|
|3. Appalachian State Mountaineers (2)||0-1||2,972||2|
|4. Northern Iowa Panthers (1)||0-1||2,941||7|
|5. William & Mary Tribe (1)||0-1||2,905||3|
|6. Montana State Bobcats||0-1||2,670||6|
|7. Wofford Terriers||1-0||2,651||8|
|8. Delaware Blue Hens||0-1||2,647||5|
|9. Richmond Spiders (3)||1-0||2,503||16|
|10. Jacksonville State Gamecocks||1-0||2,314||9|
|11. North Dakota State Bison||1-0||2,185||11|
|12. Sacramento State Hornets (3)||1-0||1,924||24|
|13. New Hampshire Wildcats||0-1||1,751||10|
|14. Lehigh Mountain Hawks||1-0||1,743||13|
|15. Montana Grizzlies||0-1||1,561||12|
|16. Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks||1-0||1,456||17|
|17. Southern Illinois Salukis||1-0||1,360||19|
|18. Central Arkansas Bears||1-0||1,216||18|
|19. James Madison Dukes||0-1||1,098||15|
|20. Villanova Wildcats||0-1||1,064||14|
|21. Massachusetts Minutemen||1-0||695||25|
|22. McNeese State Cowboys||0-1||623||20|
|23. Chattanooga Mocs||0-1||475||21|
|24. Liberty Flames||0-1||456||22|
|25. Bethune-Cookman Wildcats||1-0||377||NR|
|Others receiving votes: South Carolina State 335, Penn 212, Eastern Kentucky 187, Murray State 166, Sam Houston State 129, Stony Brook 117, Grambling State 104, South Dakota State 95, Colgate 80, Georgia State 46, Harvard 39, Youngstown State 38, Jacksonville 36, Western Illinois 35, Cal Poly 32, Jackson State 32, Weber State 30, Southeast Missouri State 30, Florida A&M 29, Southern Utah 25, North Dakota 23, Elon 18, Rhode Island 18, Missouri State 18, Coastal Carolina 15, UC Davis 14, Yale 13, Brown 12, UT Martin 12, Eastern Illinois 12, Dayton 12, Maine 12, Old Dominion 11, The Citadel 11, Indiana State 8, South Dakota 7, Texas Southern 5, Central Connecticut State 5, Northern Arizona 4, Delaware State 3, Albany 3, Tennessee State 2, Northwestern State 2, Tennessee Tech 2, Furman 1, Norfolk State 1.|