The Washington State Cougars play host to the Eastern Washington Eagles on Saturday. The two schools are playing for the second time in three seasons, with FCS EWU upsetting the FBS Cougs 45-42 at Martin Stadium in their last meeting.
While WSU and EWU are just 68 miles apart, they don’t have much of a history playing each other. Eastern’s 2016 win was its first in the series that covers just four games, two of which have come during Mike Leach’s tenure.
Eastern Washington has had plenty of recent success in the FCS division, becoming a frequently ranked program and regular visitor to the playoffs. The same quarterback that torched a possibly confused Cougar defense in 2016—noted billboard model Gage Gubrud—is still at the helm for the Eagles.
WSU should not be taking any FCS team lightly with its recent history, but it especially should not take EWU lightly—having bragging rights for the far east side of Washington is a big deal for them, and so is beating any FBS team. The Eagles are going to come out fired up.
Through two games, the Cougar defense looks far more up to the task than the 2016 squad in containing EWU’s offense—it also helps that wide receiver Cooper Kupp is long gone to the NFL. WSU should have the talent on offense to move the ball against an overmatched EWU defense.
It will be a packed crowd in Martin Stadium, with fans comparing gear to determine the difference between WSU’s crimson and EWU’s red, and discussing the finer points along State Route 195.
Important Note: The Pac-12, in its infinite wisdom, has decided to go with three-hour broadcast windows for college football games. Yes, college football games, which average 3 hours and 24 minutes.
This means that, like last week, the game preceding WSU’s will likely run over. In this situation, the Pac-12 is directing fans to go to the regional Pac-12 network of their team—in this case Pac-12 Washington for WSU, which will be simultaneously airing the game.
So, if you are DVRing the game, be sure to set your DVR for both stations just in case. If you are like me, this sucks because the regional network isn’t in HD.
Game time: 5 p.m. PT
TV channel: Pac-12 Network, Pac-12 Washington
Streaming: Pac-12 Network Live (log-in required)