Eastern Washington comes into the 2021 season after a playoff appearance in 2020 with a host of key components back looking to do more this season. Quarter Back Eric Barriere will be back this season looking to build his NFL resume flanked by his favorite targets from 2020. EWU is loaded with talent and has the line and pieces to give Barriere time in the pocket and the potential for a huge season is lying in wait.
The Eagles will lean on their best defensive player from 2020 in Anthany Smith to foot the bill as the team’s leader. Mitchell Johnson who was an All-Big Sky member and red shirt Freshman DL Joshua Jerome will man the middle for EWU. Much like the offense the Eagles have the talent and depth to push UNLV in this game to a possible week 1 upset.
UNLV comes into the 2021 year after an atrocious 0-6 record looking to build the program to the future. UNLV is amid a QB battle with TCU transfer Justin Rogers, Doug Brumfield, and Miami transfer Tate Martell. Regardless of who wins Kyle Williams will be offensive stat leader as the top receiver returning from 2020.
Defensively UNLV has no choice but to improve after a terrible year giving up nearly 500 yards and 38 points per game. The talent for UNLV on the defensive side of the ball has to improve in the 2021 season for the team to improve. Jacoby Windmon is back and will lead the defense flanked by transfers Connor Murphy and Kylan Wilborn to improve the defense in 2021.