Eastern seeded fourth in Division 1: How FCS seeds the playoffs

By Mike Hantho, Staff Writer

Eastern recently received number four seed for the Football Championship Subdivision.

Eastern earned a bye through the first week of the tournament and will play the University of Montana after the Grizzlies beat the University of San Diego.

Bill Chaves, the athletic director at EWU, said the top eight schools in the division would be seeded while the other 16 schools will play against each other in the first round of the championship.

“A team wants the highest seed possible,” said Chaves. “The higher the seed, the more chances a team has to host games, plus that team gets a bye on the first weekend of the championship. Higher seeded teams continue to host throughout the higher rounds of the championship.”

Chaves said there are approximately 125 schools that meet in Indiana for a committee where they watch NCAA games and based on different criteria, such as good versus bad losses and overall season results, the different teams are ranked or seeded.

“We’ve been fortunate that we will be in the playoffs at the fourth seed,” said Chaves. “If you’re seeded you get more and better opportunities to advance in the playoffs.”

According to goeags.com, EWU has received 25 honors, such as honorable mentions for offensive tackle Clay Debord and linebacker Cody McCarthy, quarterback Vernon Adams being selected for first team All-Big Sky, along with running back Quincy Forte and punter Jake Miller being selected for second team and the Offensive Player of the Year Award received by Adams.

Head football coach Beau Baldwin said Eastern was seeded fourth because of the well-rounded abilities of the team both on and off the field.

“It says a lot about our recruiting assistants, who have been able to recruit a lot of quality players, not just one or two star players,” said Baldwin. “It says a lot about the respect that the players have earned throughout the league. It’s a tribute to all of that and our program. Whenever awards are being won, there’s a team behind it.”

Adams said one of the reasons for the team’s fourth seed is the hard work the players have put in on and off the field, and despite all the effort the team has already given and the bye Eastern has, now is the time to work even harder.

“We need to work on our technique,” said Adams. “We need to hit on those tackling techniques, but not necessarily with full speed, just focusing on form.”

Baldwin said Adams was very deserving of the Offensive Player of the Year award.

“For Adams to still earn this [award] despite missing four games speaks volumes for the impact he has on this team, on this league and shows what type of player he is when he is out there,” said Baldwin. “He’s seven and one starter and in that one loss he did things at the Husky’s stadium that no one has ever done as a [quarterback]. I think that speaks for itself both statistically and for a win-loss standpoint.”

Eastern will be hosting the University of Montana on Dec. 6 at 1:30 p.m.