The Eastern Washington Eagles and wide receiver Nicholas Edwards will make the short journey to in-state foe Washington State on September 8. Photo Credit: James Snook-US PRESSWIRE

Know the Opponent: Eastern Washington Eagles

You might be familiar with the next opponent due to the fact they play on a red field and have won a national title in the last two years. Who are we talking about? The Eastern Washington Eagles who are another Big Sky opponent that’ll tangle with a Pac-12 team.

In what will be a highly anticipated match-up in the eastern part of the State of Washington, the Eagles meet the Washington State Cougars on September 8th at 12:00 p.m. PT and can be seen on the Pac-12 network. Last season EWU went 6-5 with a Big Sky Conference record of 5-3 a season after winning the FCS national title.

The Eagles will need to replace Bo Levi Mitchell who threw for 4,009 yards with 33 touchdowns and completed 63.2 percent of his passes. Senior Greg Herd, who has the most experience last season playing in seven games, is listed as a wide receiver as the team has brought in SMU transfer Kyle Padron who’ll likely start.

With the number of passing yards the team has shows they aren’t much of a running team. However, leading rusher sophomore Jordan Talley is back. Last season he ran for 413 yards with five TD’s and 3.4 yards per carry. Fellow sophomore Quincy Forte also returns, who was second on the team with 270 yards, one TD and 5.0 yard per carry average.

Senior receiver Nicholas Edwards is also back for the team coming off a 1,250 yard campaign with 19 touchdowns with a 13.2 per catch average. Herd, who has already been mentioned, is another 1,000 yard receiver having a total of 1,022 with seven TD’s with 15.3 YPC.

Junior linebacker Ronnie Hamlin who led Eastern Washington in tackles in 2011 is back coming off a year with 85 tackles, 38 solo and 47 assisted. Senior defensive back Jeff Minnerly, who was second in tackles with 77 (47 solo, 30 assisted) with an interception returns. Senior LB Grant Williams also returns to what should be a good defense; he was third with 61 tackles (33 solo, 28 assisted).

Even bringing in a transfer, the Eagles can rebound and be a playoff team in 2012 with the key returners Eastern Washington brings back. Their big games against Montana, North Dakota, Sacramento State and UC Davis are at home which should help.

2012 Eastern Washington Eagles Schedule –

@Idaho 8/30
@Washington State 9/8
@Weber State 9/22
Montana 9/29
North Dakota 10/6
@Montana State 10/13
Sacramento State 10/20
@Southern Utah 10/27
Cal Poly 11/3
UC Davis 11/10
@Portland State 11/17

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Tags: Big Sky Big Sky Co Big Sky Conference Football Bo Levi Mitchell Eastern Washington Eagles Eastern Washington Eagles Football Eastern Washinton Grant Williams Greg Herd Jeff Minnerly Jordan Talley Kyle Padron Mike Leach Nicholas Edwards Pac-12 Pac-12 Conference Pac-12 Conference Football Pac-12 Network Quincy Forte Ronnie Hamlin Southern Methodist Washington State Washington State Cougars Washington State Cougars Football

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