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Eagle practices looking more like game week

Eastern Washington running back Jabari Wilson runs for a short gain during practice Monday morning (Jim Allen / The Spokesman-Review)
Eastern Washington running back Jabari Wilson runs for a short gain during practice Monday morning (Jim Allen / The Spokesman-Review)

Eastern Washington’s football practices are beginning to have that game-week feel.

And why not: the season begins in 12 days.

“We’re going to have a lot of combo work this week,” coach Beau Baldwin said Monday morning after the first session of two-a-days. Besides cleaning up some “fundamental things,” he said there will be plenty of “that scout aspect” heading into Friday’s second and final scrimmage.

“It’s camp work combined with first-game prep,” Baldwin said of this week’s practices ahead of the Sept. 3 opener at Washington State.

Two days after Saturday’s scrimmage, the Eagles seemed energized after taking Sunday off. Cooler weather Monday morning helped with focus as they enter the third week of camp.

While looking ahead to WSU, the Eagles also looked back to the scrimmage, when the offense racked up 494 yards on just 71 plays. Presumptive starting quarterback Gage Gubrud looked especially sharp, completing 16 of 17 passes for 202 yards and three scores.

“I think there’s a lot of great things that we’re doing on offense and defense right now,” Baldwin said after a 2 1/2 -hour morning session to open Monday’s two-a-days.

The next task: sorting through a promising group of true freshmen and deciding which ones will see action this fall. Coaches were planning to discuss the subject Monday night, Baldwin said.

“There’s always that fine line, but there are some true freshmen who could fit into what we’re doing,” said Baldwin, who added that “anywhere from three to five” will play.

Several true freshmen running backs have looked strong in camp, including Tamarick Pierce. “Things are starting to slow down for me … I’m starting to see things that the coaches talk about on film,” Pierce said as he walked off the field Monday morning.

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