Eastern Washington (4-0, 2-0) at Montana State (2-1, 1-0)
Eastern Washington is aiming for its seventh consecutive victory in the series and its chances look very good. The Eagles are off to their best start since they were 5-0 in 1985. Eastern Washington junior Mike MacKenzie leads the Big Sky with 466 yards rushing and last week had a career-high 172 yards in a 35-11 victory over Weber State. Senior Harry Leons has 893 yards passing with 10 touchdowns and leads the conference with a 174.21 efficiency rating. Montana State is riding the arm of junior Rob Compson, who has 804 yards passing with seven touchdowns, and an aggressive defense. Senior defensive end Neal Smith, 6 feet 5 and 270 pounds, has seven of the team's eight sacks and 12 unassisted tackles. He had three sacks and seven solo tackles in Montana State's 14-13 victory over Idaho State last week.
Idaho State (0-3, 0-1) at Cal State Sacramento (0-3, 0-1)
Idaho State, which last week committed three turnovers and had 12 penalties for 80 yards in a 14-13 setback against Montana State, has lost eight of its past nine games. Sacramento is 1-13 since stepping up to Division I-AA last year and has dropped 12 consecutive games. The latest debacle came last Saturday against the division's top-rated team, Montana, 52-10. Sacramento's Steve Thorns is averaging 45.3 yards per punt, second in I-AA.
Northern Arizona (3-1, 1-0) at Weber State (2-2, 0-1)
Forget that Northern Arizona hasn't won a game in Ogden, Utah, since 1989. The three-game swoon is about to end. Northern Arizona is ranked No. 4 in one poll, a distinction Portland State can attest is well deserved after losing to the Lumberjacks, 56-21, last week. Travis Brown passed for 357 yards and five touchdowns against the Vikings, his eighth 300-yard output in 15 games with the Lumberjacks. Brown owns the school's single-game touchdown record with seven against Cal State Sacramento last year. Running back Kino Carson leads the Big Sky in all-purpose yardage at 161.3 yards per game. Weber State is coming off a 35-11 loss at Eastern Washington. Ninth-year Coach Dave Arslanian of Weber State needs one victory to tie his father, Sark, as the school's career leader with 50. Maybe next week, coach.
Montana (3-0) at Wyoming (3-2)
Montana is ranked No. 1 in I-AA but has a less-than-sparkling history against Wyoming. Montana was 0-12 in the series from 1951-63, was outscored, 149-0, in the last five meetings, and is 17-66 all-time against the Cowboys. True, it has been 34 years since the teams played, but Montana perhaps should have waited longer. Wyoming was 10-2 in 1996 and its two losses this season came against Ohio State, 24-10, and Colorado, 20-19, last week. Marques Brigham has rushed for 447 yards and four touchdowns, and Jeremy Silcox has passed for 666 yards and three touchdowns for the Cowboys. Montana, fresh from pounding Sacramento, 52-10, can at least head for Laramie with a relatively healthy Brian Ah Yat, who missed the second game and part of the first because of a knee injury. The junior quarterback played in the first half last week and completed 17 of 23 passes for 286 yards and one touchdown. Josh Branen carried 14 times for 187 yards, the third-best single-game performance in school history.