South Dakota State at #3 Eastern Washington 2013 FCS Playoffs 2nd Round Game Breakdown

South Dakota State at #3 Eastern Washington 2013 FCS Playoffs 2nd Round Game Breakdown


South Dakota State at #3 Eastern Washington, Saturday, 4:00

Led by a strong offense, Eastern Washington turned in an impressive season this year and looks to improve on it with a win in their opening game of the FCS Playoffs.  Their opponent will be South Dakota State, who beat Northern Arizona 26-7 last week to advance.  The season started out well for Eastern Washington, knocking off Oregon State, who at the time was ranked 25th in the country and they have continued to have success, going 8-0 in the Big Sky Conference.  They have a dynamic playmaker leading their offense in Vernon Adams.  The sophomore QB threw for 4,059 yards and 46 touchdowns, while rushing for 491 yards.  He leads an offense that was 3rd in the country in passing offense, 4th in total offense, and 7th in scoring offense.   Adams has four talented wide receivers to throw to, led by freshman Cooper Kupp, who had 77 receptions for 1,378 yards and 18 touchdowns.  All four of the receivers have at least 35 catches and all have over 500 yards.  Senior Ashton Clark and Shaquille Hill each have nine touchdowns and Hill averages nearly 22 yards per catch.  While the offense has been superb, the defense has been subpar this season.  The Eagles are 108th in pass defense, 71st in rush defense, and 97th in total defense.  They give up an average of 440.8 yards per game. 

South Dakota State will use their dynamic duo in the backfield to put enough points up to beat the Eagles.  A pair of juniors, Zach Zenner and Austin Sumner, does most of the damage for the offense.  Zenner, a running back, led the offense on the ground, running for 1,944 yards and 22 touchdowns.  He has been a workhorse for the offense, carrying the ball 330 times.  Sumner is the quarterback and has thrown for 2,684 yards and 18 touchdowns.  His favorite target at receiver, Jason Schneider, has helped him out.  Schneider has 72 catches for 1,007 yards and 10 touchdowns.  South Dakota State will need big production out of all three of these players to win the game.  Their defense has been average on the year, and against such a high-powered offense, it doesn’t look good for them.  Eastern Washington is too strong on offense to lose, even though their defense has been suspect this season.

Projected Score: Eastern Washington 41, Wagner 21


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