Five seniors selected as Co-Captains for the 2018 football seaso - SWX Right Now-Sports for Spokane, CdA, Tri-Cities, WA

Five seniors selected as Co-Captains for the 2018 football season

Photo: EWU Athletics Photo: EWU Athletics

By Eastern Washington Athletics

On a team chock full of veterans, seniors Gage Gubrud, Spencer Blackburn, Sam McPherson, Mitch Fettig and Ketner Kupp have been selected as Eastern Washington University football captains for the 2018 season.
 
The five seniors represent a total of 148 games worth of experience for the Eagles, including 92 starts. They are among the 28 seniors playing under second-year head coach Aaron Best.
 
Gubrud is a 2014 graduate of McMinnville (Ore.) High School and was a captain in 2017 as well. The other four are products from the state of Washington -- Blackburn is a 2014 graduate of Meridian HS in Bellingham, Wash.; McPherson graduated in 2015 from Bothell HS; Fettig graduated in 2014 from Olympia HS; and Kupp graduated from Davis HS in Yakima, Wash., in 2015.
 
The five co-captains for the 2018 season were selected via a vote by their Eagle teammates. Eastern opens the season Sept. 1 at Roos Field versus Central Washington. Eastern begins practices for the 2018 season in early August.
 
"We are working our tails off in the off-season and leadership is already ahead of where it was last year just based on the sheer numbers of veterans we have coming back," said Best this spring. "There are more voices and guys listening. Hopefully it's the details and work in the off-season and pre-season that will help us be successful when we get to our opener in September."
 
A second team All-Big Sky selection in 2017 after winning MVP honors as a sophomore, Gubrud is a two-time finalist for the Walter Payton Award presented by STATS to the top offensive player in FCS. As a junior he was second in FCS in total offense per game (357.8) and fourth in passing yards per game (334.2), after leading in both passing and total offense (368.6 and 411.0, respectively) in 2016.
 
Most importantly, Gubrud is 17-6 in 23 games as a starter, and in 27 total games as an Eagle he has 9,441 yards of total offense and 8,568 passing yards. A duplication of last year's totals (3,578 total offense and 3,342 passing) and he'll challenge Big Sky records owned by former Eagle Matt Nichols (13,308 total offense and 12,616 passing).
 
Blackburn, with 22 starts and 24 games played in his career, has been a second team All-Big Sky selection in each of the past two seasons. A year ago, Eastern was fifth in FCS in total offense (476.7 per game), and was also eighth in passing (320.5), 14th in scoring (34.5) and 11th in third down conversions (46.1 percent).
 
McPherson earned honorable mention All-Big Sky honors as a junior and has played in 30 career games (one as a starter). He had 477 rushing yards in 2017 and has career totals of 649 on the ground, 448 receiving and 1,259 all-purpose yards.
 
Fettig was a third-team All-Big Sky selection as a junior after earning honorable mention as a sophomore, and has started 33 of the 34 games he's played. He has 231 tackles, five interceptions and 12 passes broken up in his career. In 2017 he averaged 8.4 tackles per game (team-leading total of 92) to rank 61st nationally and ninth in the Big Sky.
 
Kupp has started 13 of the 33 career games he's played, and has 152 career tackles with 2 1/2 sacks after finishing with 66 stops in eight games as a junior. He is the younger brother of four-time EWU FCS All-American Cooper Kupp, who now plays for the Los Angeles Rams in the NFL.

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