National Signing Day produces 12 new Eagles


Head football coach Aaron Best leads the football team out after halftime against Weber State last season. Best has been a part of the Eagles’ last eight Big Sky Championships – one as a player and seven on the coaching staff | Bailey Monteith for The Easterner

By Drew Lawson, Sports Editor


Feb. 5 was National Signing Day across the college football world, and EWU announced the signing of nine players who signed national letters of intent and three walk-ons. These 12 players join the 15 who signed with EWU in December during the early signing period. They will join EWU for the 2020 season.

The 12 individuals signed on February 5 featured five offensive players and seven on the defensive side of the ball.

The lone quarterback signed was Parker Johnson , who will graduate from Cascade Christian High School in Puyallup this spring. 

Running back Justice Jackson was EWU’s only signing from California. Jackson hails from Discovery Bay. Jackson played wide receiver in high school, but EWU plans to move him into the backfield. 

Other offensive players signed were wide receivers Malaki Roberson and Mike Rivera and offensive lineman Kellen Wallace. Roberson is from Graham, Washington and Rivera is from Sunnyside. Wallace is from Moapa Valley, Nevada. 

I think there is a level of mental toughness and some grit within the group overall.” -Aaron Best, EWU Head Coach

Defensively, EWU signed defensive ends Taalefili Fata, LeAndre Gaines and Ben Voigtlaender, linebackers Conner O’Farrell and Amani Williams and cornerbacks Cage Schneck and DaJean Wells. 

Voigtlaender is a local product, coming to EWU from Mead High School in Spokane. Fata comes from Tacoma, while Gaines is from Chehalis. Schneck is from Woodinville, while Wells is a Seattle native. Williams is also a Washington native, coming from Skyview High School in Vancouver. O’Farrell is EWU’s lone signing from up north, hailing from Anchorage, Alaska. 

EWU head coach Aaron Best said these 12 newcomers will bring a combination of success to the football field and the classroom. 

I think there is a level of mental toughness and some grit within the group overall,” Best said. “We finish the signing class off in February on top of what we had already added from a foundational aspect in December.”

EWU kicks off the 2020 season at the University of Florida on Sept. 5.