Celebration time has ceased – It's time to get back to football.
A little over 72 hours after Oregon State kicker Trevor Romaine's 52-yard attempt sailed wide and Eastern became the fourth FCS team in history to beat a ranked FBS team, Eagles players and coaches made it clear that they're moving on. EWU takes on Western Oregon University – a Division-II program – in the home opener at Roos Field on Saturday.
"Coaches and players, and how we're wired, we get a lot of that stuff out of our system on Sunday and watch the film, good or bad," head coach Beau Baldwin said. "Right now, today, the focus is obviously Western Oregon."
It can be easy to get lost in the history of this victory.
The Eagles were a 27-point underdog, on the road, against a Pac-12 school that won nine games last year. And the Eagles went home with a victory and a $450,000 payday for the effort.
Baldwin agreed when it was suggested that the victory could be seen from outside the locker room as a "bigger deal" than winning the FCS national championship after the 2010 season. "I think it is," he said. "It's not necessarily to us as coaches or a team, because our ultimate goal is to win a national title, but to the outside world, I think it becomes almost bigger and it becomes more national. And that's fine."
Linebacker J.C. Agen said looking past Western Oregon is not an option. "We know they're going to come play us hard," Agen said. "They're playing up a division kind of like we were last week, so they're going to come in wanting to ruin our first home game. They're going to come in hard. We're preparing for them as a great opponent like they are.
"We're definitely not taking them lightly. We never take an opponent lightly."
The player who has been receiving – and deservedly so – the lion's share of attention and even a national spotlight is quarterback Vernon Adams, who set all kinds of records with his six touchdown performance, including a game-winning score with 18 seconds left. Adams was on the Jim Rome Show Tuesday, his second national radio interview in three days. "He's handing it great, especially for only being a sophomore," Baldwin said of Adams. "He understands that comes with it. I think the experiences he went through last year are helping him handle it."
Without hesitation, Adams deferred to his wide receiving corps, naming six – Ashton Clark, Cooper Kupp, Shaquille Hill, Cory Mitchell, Daniel Johnson and Kendrick Bourne – in a show of gratitude. He unintentionally left out Washington State transfer Blair Bomber, who caught one of Adams' four TD passes on Saturday. "Our receivers are great. They're making me look better than what I am. You guys are giving me all this attention; you guys should be looking at those guys. Those guys are amazing."
Not so amazing was the performance of EWU's defense. Oregon State's offense totaled 30 first downs, 527 yards, and Beavers quarterback Sean Mannion completed 37 of 43 passes for 422 yards and three touchdowns.
Still, Baldwin found positives on that side of the ball, saying that many of Oregon State's big plays actually graded out as positive plays for the defense when watching film. "I'm excited about our defense going forward, and I'm excited that they want to respond."