Jan. 30, 2007
Eastern Washington University will play six home football games as the finalized 2007 schedule has been announced by athletic director Dr. Darren Hamilton.
Eastern will open the season on Friday, Aug. 31, with a non-conference home game versus Montana-Western. After a bye week, Eastern plays another non-conference game against UC Davis on Sept. 15.
Big Sky Conference play begins at Idaho State on Sept. 22, followed by the EWU Athletics Hall of Fame Game on Sept. 29 against Portland State. After playing at Montana on Oct. 6, Eastern hosts Montana State on Oct. 13.
A difficult road trip at NCAA Division I Bowl Division (formerly I-A) member Brigham Young follows on Oct. 20, then the Eagles play at Sacramento State on Oct. 27. Eastern's Homecoming game is Nov. 3 against Northern Colorado, and the Eagles conclude the regular season with a road game at Northern Arizona on Nov. 10 and a home game versus Weber State on Nov. 17.
Last season, Eastern finished 3-8 overall and 3-5 in the Big Sky Conference with a schedule that included two NCAA Division I Bowl Division members West Virginia and Oregon State. The Eagles, young and inexperienced at several positions including quarterback and wide receiver, closed the year with a convincing 40-6 victory over Idaho State.
Eastern is 7-0 all-time against Western Montana, but hasn't played the Bulldogs since 1982 when both were affiliated with NAIA. Montana-Western is still a NAIA member while Eastern is now a member of the NCAA Division I Championship Division (formerly I-AA).
UC-Davis is also in the NCAA Division I Championship Division and is a member of the Great West Conference. The Aggies, who were 6-5 in 2006, will be eligible for the postseason for the first time since 2002 when it was still a member of NCAA Division II. In the only meeting between the two teams, Eastern beat UC Davis 24-6 on Nov. 19, 2005, at fog-shrouded Woodward Field.
Brigham Young finished the 2006 season ranked 15th in the USA Today Coaches Poll and 16th in the Associated Press top 25. The Cougars won their final 10 games, including a 38-8 victory over Oregon in the Pioneer PureVision Las Vegas Bowl to finish the season with an 11-2 record.
The Cougars finished the season ranked fourth nationally in passing offense (323.5 yards per game) and total offense (465.5). The BYU offense also ranked fifth in scoring offense with an average of 36.8 points per game. Additionally, the Cougars had a 167.08 passing efficiency rating on the season to rank second nationally.
Defensively, the Cougars finished the season ranked 10th in scoring defense, allowing just 14.7 points per game. BYU ranked 16th in passing efficiency defense (106.2) and 38th in total defense (319.2).
Since 1982 when it became a member of NCAA Division II (the Eagles became a I-AA team in 1983), Eastern is now 8-13 all-time versus Bowl Division teams. A 35-17 win over Connecticut on Sept. 8, 2001, snapped a five-game losing streak versus I-A foes. Eastern has lost its last four since beating Idaho 8-5 in 2003.
Montana is the defending Big Sky Conference champion, a title it has won outright or shared for the past nine season. The Grizzlies advanced to the playoffs for a record 14th straight season, and won twice in the playoffs before falling to Massachusetts 19-17 in the semifinals. Montana finished its season ranked third in The Sports Network poll with a 12-2 record.
Montana State won its first playoff game in 22 years, downing Furman 31-13 in the first round in Bozeman. The Bobcats' season came to an end with a 38-17 loss at eventual national champion Appalachian State. Montana State finished its season 8-5, and ranked 10th in The Sports Network poll.
2007 EASTERN WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY FOOTBALL SCHEDULE
Date - Opponent - Site - Time - EWU Versus/Last Meeting
Aug. 31 - Montana-Western - Cheney, Wash. - 7:05 p.m. - 7-0 . . . 1982 - W, 41-14
Sept. 15 - UC Davis - Cheney, Wash. - 6:05 p.m. - 1-0 . . . 2005 - W, 24-6
Sept. 22 - at *Idaho State - Pocatello, Idaho - TBA - 19-9 . . . 2006 - W, 40-6
Sept. 29 - %*Portland State - Cheney, Wash. - 6:05 p.m. - 12-16-1 . . . 2006 - L, 0-34
Oct. 6 - at *Montana - Missoula, Mont. - TBA - 10-22-1 . . . 2006 - L, 17-33
Oct. 13 - *Montana State - Cheney, Wash. - 2:05 p.m. - 22-8 . . . 2006 - W, 19-10
Oct. 20 - at Brigham Young - Provo, Utah - TBA - First Meeting
Oct. 27 - at *Sacramento State - Sacramento, Calif. - TBA - 12-3 . . . 2006 - L, 20-21
Nov. 3 -