The numbers are nice, Eastern Washington football coach Beau Baldwin admits.
His offense is putting up some ridiculous stats – again. The Eagles rank third in the nation in total offense, averaging 590 yards per game.
Eastern’s passing offense leads the Football Championship Subdivision, with quarterback Jordan West atop the national charts for efficiency (201.6), touchdown passes (15), yards per game (386) and yards per completion (15.9).
The numbers are dizzying, but Baldwin is a coach with his feet planted in the reality of winning games.
“We’re a long way from where we want to be,” said Baldwin, who went on to discuss the stats that matter to him, on both sides of the ball: turnovers, third-down conversion rates and red-zone efficiency.
With four games behind him and a home game against Cal Poly on Oct. 10, Baldwin sees room for improvement in all those areas:
• The Eagles are minus-2 in turnovers after breaking even in last weekend’s 28-20 win at Sacramento State. That may be a product of a tough early-season schedule, but Baldwin has said in the past that the team needs to be solidly in the plus to be a championship contender.
• The offense ranks 46th and the defense 47th out of 123 FCS teams in third-down performance – solid, but not at championship level. “Our standards are to be at 50 percent,” said Baldwin, who is close to that threshold if one considers that Eastern is 7 for 8 on fourth down. On defense, the Eagles need to do a better job on the perimeter, he said.
• Inside the red zone, the offense has been almost perfect: In 17 trips, the Eagles have 15 touchdowns and have yet to settle for a field goal. On defense, the Eagles are tied for 100th out of 123 teams after giving up 19 scores on 21 chances by the opposition. On the other hand, four of those scores were field goals, including one by Montana State late in the first half of a game the Eagles won 55-50.
Hall of Fame inductions set
Former Eastern football/track and field standout and longtime University of Oregon athletic trainer Dean Adams will be among the seven individuals and one team honored at the 15th induction of the Eastern Athletics Hall of Fame on Oct. 10.
The induction breakfast and ceremony will start at 8:30 a.m. at the Pence Union Building. The public is invited to attend and the cost is $20 per person. Guests must register via a link available at http://www.goeags.com/hallfame/hallfame.
Basketball scoring and rebounding standouts Randy Buss (1969-72) and Kathleen Nygaard-Kaut (2000-04) will be honored, as well as a trio of athletes from the 1960s. They include Adams, baseball player/contributor Gary Glasgow and gymnast/contributor Randy Carruthers.
Also, the 1966 baseball team will be inducted on the 40th anniversary of its Evergreen Conference and NAIA District 1 titles under the direction of Hall of Fame head coach Ed Chissus.
Formerly from Manson, Washington, Adams was the runner-up in the triple jump at the NAIA Championships in 1966 and held the school record in that event for nine years. On the gridiron, he earned first team All-Evergreen Conference honors in 1964 as a cornerback and the following season was honored on the NAIA All-District 1 squad. He had a successful and honor-filled career as a Hall of Fame collegiate athletic trainer, including from 1980-2003 at Oregon.
EWU joins anti-cancer fight
The Eastern Washington University athletic department and the Community Cancer Fund have teamed up to promote the local fight against cancer in advance of the Cal Poly game.
Eagle fans can purchase BELIEVE T-shirts for $10 at EagsBelieve.com. All funds raised will stay in the Inland Northwest through the Community Cancer Fund to support the local fight against cancer.
The Eagles’ Big Sky Conference contest against the Mustangs will be “Cancer Awareness Day.” Fans are encouraged to wear their BELIEVE T-shirts to Roos Field.
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