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Ex-Eastern Washington football stars likely to appear on HBO’s “Hard Knocks”

UPDATED: Thu., June 18, 2020

Los Angeles Rams head coach Sean McVay, back to camera, hugs Los Angeles Rams wide receiver Cooper Kupp before an NFL football game against the New Orleans Saints in New Orleans, Sunday, Nov. 4, 2018.   (Associated Press)
Los Angeles Rams head coach Sean McVay, back to camera, hugs Los Angeles Rams wide receiver Cooper Kupp before an NFL football game against the New Orleans Saints in New Orleans, Sunday, Nov. 4, 2018.  (Associated Press)

Cooper Kupp is usually down the road from Hollywood, but the low-key Los Angeles Rams receiver is anything but Tinseltown.

He won’t avoid an appearance on HBO, though.

The network’s popular “Hard Knocks” series will feature the Los Angeles Rams and Los Angeles Chargers, the first time the annual NFL reality show will document the preseason journeys of two teams.

Three former Eastern Washington standouts are the on the Rams’ roster: Kupp – sporting his new No. 10 jersey – linebacker Samson Ebukam and receiver Nsimba Webster, who may be seen in the five-episode series that premieres Aug.11.

Former Idaho star Jeff Cotton, signed by the Chargers as an undrafted free-agent rookie receiver, could also make an appearance as he tries to make the team’s 53-man roster.

“Hard Knocks” brings a raw, in-depth look at the personal and professional lives of the featured team’s players, coaches and staff members, as they navigate position battles, family life, team culture and the arduous journey that comes with trying earn a roster spot.

The five-episode season will likely key on how both the Rams and Chargers will work around coronavirus-related mandates and how the pandemic had affected the organizations in preceding months.

“‘Hard Knocks’ always offers a rare opportunity for our fans to see our players’ hard work to prepare for the season, as well as gives them a peek behind the curtain to observe these guys off the field, too,” Rams head coach Sean McVay said.

McVay said last summer that “(EWU has) good football players who are good people, and that’s what we look for,” when his team had five former Eagles on the roster.

Kupp ranked ninth in the NFL in receiving yards (1,161) in 2019, part-time starter Ebukam had a hand in 48 tackles and 4½ sacks and Webster returned five punts and two kickoffs last season as a rookie.

The Rams are coming off a disappointing 9-7 campaign, missing the playoffs after reaching the Super Bowl the previous season.

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