North Dakota State vs Eastern Washington prediction and FCS spring football game preview.
North Dakota State vs Eastern Washington Broadcast
Date: Saturday, April 24
Game Time: 3:30 pm ET
Venue: Fargodome, Fargo, ND
North Dakota State vs Eastern Washington FCS Playoff Game Preview
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Why Eastern Washington Will Win
Eastern Washington (5-1) needed a game to warm up, and then the passing game became the EWU passing game.
The Eagles had the third-best passing game in the FCS averaging 389 yards per game thanks to a massive run by Eric Barriere, a veteran who threw six picks but did just about everything else right. He threw for close to 2,200 yards with 18 touchdowns, showed off the big arm to push it deep, spread it around well, and did a great job cranking up the offense.
Now it has to roll against the Bison.
This is still a great North Dakota State team, but it’s not the killer of years past and it doesn’t have the big-time passing game to keep up in a shootout. NDSU is averaging a paltry 137 passing yards per game, but …
Why North Dakota State Will Win
The offensive line has taken over.
No, the North Dakota State (5-2) passing game hasn’t been anything great, but the ground game continues to be excellent, hitting over 200 yards in three of the seven games behind a front five that’s not allowing anything in the backfield.
The Bison defense is fine against the pass. It could stand to come up with more takeaways – just two interceptions in the seven game spring run – but the problem is against the run. NDSU is 5-0 when allowing fewer than 170 rushing yards and is 0-2 when it doesn’t.
Eastern Washington is about the passing game, but …
What’s Going To Happen
The Eagles average 174 yards per game on the ground.
It’s never a positive to go against North Dakota State in a huge game, and there’s a shot the offensive line takes over and the team takes its level up a few notches, but Eastern Washington has too much offense along with the quarterback in Barriere.
This is a multi-level Eagle attack that can score in a variety of ways, and it has an offensive line that can hold up just line North Dakota State’s front five can.
No matter what – and forgetting that these two aren’t quite the superstars they normally are – this is the marquee matchup in the first round of the FCS Playoffs.
You never go broke betting on Bama or Bison, so very, very sheepishly …
North Dakota State vs Eastern Washington FCS Playoff Prediction, Line
Eastern Washington 30, North Dakota State 27
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Line: North Dakota State -7, o/u: 55.5
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