EWU Ranked Preseason No. 1 In Big Sky Polls - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

EWU Ranked Preseason No. 1 In Big Sky Polls

Eagle football will have early pressure on its back with EWU being named the Big Sky Conference's Preseason poll. (Image: EWU Athletics) Eagle football will have early pressure on its back with EWU being named the Big Sky Conference's Preseason poll. (Image: EWU Athletics)
 by EWU Athletics

A year after going an unblemished 8-0 in the Big Sky Conference for the first time in school history, the Eastern Washington University football team has been selected by both the media and coaches to win a third-straight title. The league announced the picks Tuesday (July 15) at the Summer Kickoff in Park City, Utah.

“I don’t shy away from the fact that we appreciate being picked so high,” said Eastern head coach Beau Baldwin, who enters his seventh season at the helm. “That means you’ve done good things in the past and it’s nice to see that recognized.”

“We appreciate what our past and present players did to put us in this position,” he added. “But after today you move forward toward the 2014 season.”

The defending champions earned 34 of the 36 first-place votes in the media poll, and 11 of 12 in the coaches poll. Montana received a first-place vote in both polls, and Montana was picked first by one media pollster. Eastern’s 464 total votes in the media poll easily outdistanced No. 2 Montana (416) and No. 3 Montana State (364), and the same was true in the coaches poll with voting totals of 144, 130 and 111, respectively.

The Eagles host Montana on Nov. 8, and play at Montana State on Sept. 20. The game versus the Bobcats is a non-conference game, but could come be considered in tiebreakers to determine the Big Sky’s automatic berth in the NCAA Football Championship Subdivison Playoffs.

Eastern will be trying for a third-straight Big Sky title, which is unprecedented in school history. The Eagles won back-to-back titles in 2004 and 2005, and again in 2012 and 2013. In each of the last two years, Eastern has been selected to finish second after earning the top spot following the school’s NCAA Division I title in 2010.

In 2011, a 0-4 start and a rash of injuries led to a 6-5 finish overall and 5-3 mark in the Big Sky in 2011. In 2012, the Eagles finished 11-3 overall and advanced to the semifinals of the FCS Playoffs, then finished 12-3 overall a year ago and again advanced to the semifinals.

“I also understand what the predictions said in 2011, when we had a close call against Washington, had some injuries and started 0-4,” said Baldwin. “It’s a fine line between winning and losing, especially with the difficult non-conference schedules all of us play, followed by a tough league schedule.”

Six starters are back on offense and another five on defense, plus the team’s punter and long snapper. The 45 returning letterwinners include 22 on offense, 21 on defense and two on special teams. The Eagles return 12 players who earned All-Big Sky Conference honors, including a trio of returning All-Americans.

After summer conditioning, Eastern will begin practices for the 2014 season on July 31 in preparation for the team’s season-opener on Aug. 23 versus Sam Houston State at Roos Field in Cheney, Wash. Eastern also plays at home the following week against Montana Western on Aug. 30.

2014 Big Sky Conference Preseason Polls

Media Poll

Rank - School (1st Place Votes) - Total Votes

1. Eastern Washington (34) - 464

2. Montana (1) - 416

3. Montana State (1) - 364

4. Cal Poly - 329

5. Northern Arizona - 328

6. Southern Utah 299

7. UC Davis - 228

8. Portland State 227

9. Sacramento State - 222

10. Idaho State 124

11. North Dakota - 121

12. Weber State - 103

13. Northern Colorado - 61

Coaches Poll

Rank - School (1st Place Votes) - Total Votes

1. Eastern Washington (12) - 144

2. Montana (1) 130

3. Montana State 111

4. Cal Poly - 108

5. Northern Arizona - 100

6. Southern Utah 89

7. Sacramento State - 79

8. Portland State 71

9. UC Davis - 66

10. North Dakota - 34

11. Weber State - 30

12. Idaho State 28

13. Northern Colorado - 23

EWU To Host Season Ticket Pick-Up Party

Cheney, Wash. – In partnership with the Swinging Doors and Miller Lite, Eastern Washington Football season-ticket holders will have the opportunity to pick up their tickets exactly one month before the Eagles' historic game on ESPN.

The season ticket pick-up party will take place next Wednesday, July 23, at 5:30 p.m. at the Swinging Doors in Spokane.

The fan celebration will feature food specials along with drink specials and a promotional giveaway from Miller Lite. There will also be a chance to win EWU gear as well as passes to the Miller Lite Touchdown Club during the Eagles' game versus Sam Houston State on Aug. 23.

To pick up season tickets at the Swinging Doors on July 23, fans must bring valid identification. If not picked up, tickets will be processed and mailed in early August.

EWU kicks off its 2014 campaign in historic fashion against Sam Houston State on Aug. 23, live on ESPN. The Eagles' slate features six home games, including clashes against Montana Western, Idaho State, Northern Colorado, North Dakota and Montana.

For more information or to order tickets, click here.

  • College

    • BYU bats blitz Bulldogs in WCC Championship

      Gonzaga Athletics STOCKTON, Calif.—The Gonzaga baseball team lost two games to BYU Saturday, falling in the West Coast Conference Championships at Banner Island Ballpark in Stockton. Game One: No. 3 BYU 10, No. 1 Gonzaga 3 The Cougars forced the winner-take-all nightcap by jumping out to an early lead in game one. They scored four in the bottom half of the first inning on four hits. The first two batters reached via a pair of tough infield singles, and then Tanner Chauncey br...
    • Cougars drop season-finale to No. 8 Stanford on Senior Day

      by WSU Athletics PULLMAN, Wash. – Washington State dropped a 15-1 decision to No. 8 Stanford in the season-finale in front of a season-high 1,776 fans at Bailey-Brayton Field Saturday afternoon. Prior to the game, WSU recognized senior lefthanded pitcher Trenton Dupre, the only senior on the roster. The Cougars finished the season 24-29 overall and 10-20 in Pac-12 play, recording more overall wins from a year ago including four Pac-12 series wins and a . WSU finished the yea...
    • WSU’s 9th inning rally held off by No. 8 Stanford

      PULLMAN, Wash. - Washington State put runners on first and second in ninth inning but No. 8 Stanford turned away the rally to post a 5-3 victory at Bailey-Brayton Field Friday afternoon.   The Cougars (24-28, 10-19 Pac-12) put runners on with one out in the ninth but the Cardinal (39-14, 20-9 Pac) ended the game with a strikeout and groundout.

    • Gonzaga one win away from a NCAA Tournament berth

      STOCKTON, Calif.--A host of scouts came out to Friday's WCC Championships game between top-seeded Gonzaga and second-seed Loyola Marymount to see LMU starter Cory Abbott Friday afternoon, but it was Gonzaga starter Justin Vernia who stole the show as he powered the Zags to a 3-1 win and a berth in the tournament title game.

    • Bennie Seltzer returns to WSU as assistant basketball coach

      PULLMAN, Wash. – A former Cougar standout on the basketball court and 20-year coaching veteran, Bennie Seltzer returns to Pullman to join Ernie Kent's staff as an assistant men's basketball coach, Kent announced Friday.

    • Cougars Drop Series-Opener to No. 8 Stanford

      PULLMAN, Wash. - Washington State dropped the series-opener with No. 8 Stanford 13-2 at Bailey-Brayton Field Thursday evening. The Cougars (24-27, 10-18 Pac-12) collected 10 hits led by junior Shane Matheny’s 3-for-4 performance, recording his third 3-hit game of the season. WSU also received two-hit games from sophomore shortstop Andres Alvarez, junior Cory Meyer and junior left fielder Blake Clanton. Meyer and Clanton each drove in a run in the ninth. S...

    • Offensive Surge Pushes Zags into Winner’s Bracket at WCC Tournament

      STOCKTON, Calif.—It took a few innings, but the Bulldog offense hit top gear Thursday afternoon, propelling the top-seeded Gonzaga baseball team past fourth-seed Saint Mary’s 11-3 and into the winners’ bracket of the West Coast Conference Championships at Banner Island Ballpark in Stockton, Calif. Saint Mary’s scored the game’s first runs, scoring twice in the top of the third off atypical wildness from GU starter Eli Morgan. Afte...

    • 7-foot graduate transfer Benas Griciunas to play for Eagles

      Seven-foot center Benas Griciunas from UNC Charlotte will spend his senior season as a graduate transfer at Eastern Washington University and play for Shantay Legans, the new EWU head men's basketball coach announced Thursday (May 25).

    • Former Gonzaga player Vivian Frieson named NAU assistant coach

      FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. – Northern Arizona women's basketball head coach Loree Payne completed her staff on Wednesday with former Gonzaga standout Vivian Frieson announced as assistant coach. "We're very excited to add Vivian to our coaching staff," Payne said. "The culture that she has been around playing at Gonzaga

    • Huskies host USC for final regular season series

      SEATTLE - Husky Ballpark will be abuzz starting Thursday as the Huskies have a big weekend in store for the final home series of the year. On the field, UW (26-25, 12-15 Pac-12) hosts USC (20-32, 7-20) in an important series, starting Thursday

    More
HD DOPPLER 6i
/
  • Eastern WashingtonEWUMore>>

  • 7-foot graduate transfer Benas Griciunas to play for Eagles

    7-foot graduate transfer Benas Griciunas to play for Eagles

    Courtesy: EWU AthleticsCourtesy: EWU Athletics

    Seven-foot center Benas Griciunas from UNC Charlotte will spend his senior season as a graduate transfer at Eastern Washington University and play for Shantay Legans, the new EWU head men's basketball coach announced Thursday (May 25).

    More >>

    Seven-foot center Benas Griciunas from UNC Charlotte will spend his senior season as a graduate transfer at Eastern Washington University and play for Shantay Legans, the new EWU head men's basketball coach announced Thursday (May 25).

    More >>
  • NAIA World Series bracket revealed; all games Live on SWX

    NAIA World Series bracket revealed; all games Live on SWX

    The defending champion Lewis-Clark State Warriors will look to win their 19th NAIA World SeriesThe defending champion Lewis-Clark State Warriors will look to win their 19th NAIA World Series

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. – (Bracket – PDF | Schedule) The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) has announced the seeds and bracket for the 2017 Avista-NAIA Baseball World Series, hosted by Lewis-Clark State (Idaho).

    More >>

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. – (Bracket – PDF | Schedule) The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) has announced the seeds and bracket for the 2017 Avista-NAIA Baseball World Series, hosted by Lewis-Clark State (Idaho).

    More >>
  • 2015-16 Academic Progress Rates released by the NCAA

    2015-16 Academic Progress Rates released by the NCAA

    Courtesy: Washington AthleticsCourtesy: Washington Athletics

    SPOKANE, Wash. -- Gonzaga's athletic programs continued to thrive in the latest release of the Academic Progress Rate by the NCAA on Wednesday with seven teams earning a perfect 1,000 score and all GU teams combining for a 997 mark. That mark is tied for the second-best combined average for any school in the nation, behind only the Ivy League's Dartmouth.

    More >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. -- Gonzaga's athletic programs continued to thrive in the latest release of the Academic Progress Rate by the NCAA on Wednesday with seven teams earning a perfect 1,000 score and all GU teams combining for a 997 mark. That mark is tied for the second-best combined average for any school in the nation, behind only the Ivy League's Dartmouth.

    More >>