Written by Brandon Clearwatrers
Cheney, Washington- Week five of the college football season is upon us, as the Eagles prepare for the Thunderbirds of Southern Utah. EWU is coming off their third Big Sky Conference win, with a 34-17 over Montana State last week. However, Saturday is a case of redemption for the Eagles against Southern Utah after they suffered a 46-28 loss to the Thunderbirds last season.
Southern Utah has been struggling this season, and opened up conference play last week with a 31-23 loss against Northern Arizona. The Thunderbirds, will be looking for their first win this season on Saturday.
“We’ve been making too many mistakes to be able to win games “Thunderbirds head coach Demario Warren said regarding his team’s performance thus far.
EWU has been dominating in the Big Sky Conference so far this season picking up their third conference win against Montana State. EWU exploded to another almost 500 total yard game with 490 total yards against Montana State. A game where six- year senior Roldan Alcobendas set the Eagles all-time record for posts by a kicker with 244 points after a 24-yard field goal early in the second quarter. One key factor that has seemed to help the Eagles thus far in the season is the ability to convert on third downs when needed. EWU has covered 50.7% of the time on third downs this season.
The Eagles are also currently ranked fourth in the FCS for total yards per game with 554, they are also averaging over eight yards per game. With the Thunderbirds struggling this season it should be easy for EWU to have another 500 total yard game, with SUU giving up an average 580 yards per game to their opponents.
Saturday’s game against the Thunderbirds should be a milestone day for Eagle senior quarterback Gage Gubrud, who is just 16 passing yards from reaching the 10,000-yard plateau in his EWU career. Saturday will also be a milestone for the EWU athletic department as they are the recipients of the 2017-2018 Big Sky Conference President Cup. This is the third time in four years the Eagles have received this prestigious award.
“It’s about playmaking, and I think it’s about kind of calling things at the right time and getting a feel for the game.” Arron Best Said regarding the Eagle success thus far.
Kickoff is slated for a 12:05pm Pacific Standard Time at Ross Field in Cheney and can be seen on Root Sports.