We’ve got to get back to work. We’ve got a lot of work to do. They’re No. 8 in the country for a reason. —SUU coach Demario Warren, on facing Eastern Washington
SALT LAKE CITY — Coming off their convincing 32-16 Beehive Bowl victory over rival Weber State, SUU's fourth-straight victory in Ogden, the Thunderbirds could be forgiven for wanting to bask in their achievements.
After all, not only did the win cut into the Wildcats' all-team series lead (Weber State holds a 16-8 edge), it lifted the T-birds' record to 4-2 (2-1), good for fourth place in the Big Sky.
The time for celebration is over, however, as the T-birds prepare to host eighth-ranked Eastern Washington on Saturday.
“We’ve got to get back to work,” said SUU coach Demario Warren. “We’ve got a lot of work to do. They’re No. 8 in the country for a reason. This is the Big Sky champs from last year and we're the Big Sky champs from the year before, so it's going to be a big battle.”
The Eagles have reeled off five straight victories, including four in a row in conference play.
Leading the way has been quarterback Gage Gubrud, who has already thrown for over 2,000 yards and 20 touchdowns this season.
“That quarterback is pretty good,” said Warren. “He makes quick decisions and they have a whole cast of receivers now. It's going to be difficult for our defense to keep them under wraps."
As for the 23rd-ranked Wildcats (4-2, 2-1), Saturday's game at Cal Poly presents the opportunity to right the ship.
“Every loss is difficult,” said Weber State coach Jay Hill. “You want to make sure you rebound from every loss and not let it affect you in your next game. We didn’t play the way we wanted to play (against SUU). What we can’t do is allow ourselves to lose two games in a row.”
Weber State will not take anything for granted against the Mustangs (0-6, 0-3) despite their winless record, as the triple-option offense is always difficult to defend.
“It’s different,” said Hill. “We have to match the speed of what they do, as well as the toughness.”
WSU on the air
No. 23 Weber State (4-2)
at Cal Poly (0-6)
Saturday, 6 p.m. MDT
Spanos Stadium, San Luis Obispo, CA
Radio: KLO 1430 AM
Online: Pluto TV 244/WatchBigSky.com
SUU on the air
No. 8 Eastern Washington (5-2)
at Southern Utah (4-2)
Saturday, 5 p.m. MDT
Eccles Stadium, Cedar City, UT
TV: Eleven Sports
Radio: KSUB 590 AM
Online: Pluto TV/WatchBigSky.com