Mike White And Four Other Players To Watch In The Battle Of The Bluegrass

mike white.jpg

Create a free account to unlock this article!

Get Started

Already a subscriber?  Log In

One of the all-time great FCS rivalries in college football will be renewed on Saturday when Eastern Kentucky and Western Kentucky meet for the first time since 2008.

The two teams have played against each other 84 times -- with the Hilltoppers holding a 46-35-3 series advantage -- but the Battle of the Bluegrass came to a halt after Western Kentucky made the jump from FCS to FBS nine years ago.

Now, with a handful of impact FBS transfers in uniform, the Colonels will head west to WKU's L.T. Smith Stadium in Bowling Green, KY, to add a chapter in the rivalry.

null

Western Kentucky's recent run of success is well documented.

The Hilltoppers have been outstanding since joining college football's strongest subdivision, and more of the same is expected in 2017 from a group headlined by…



Mike White, QB, WKU
A lot was expected from White when he arrived at Western Kentucky by way of South Florida, and, yet, he has managed to exceed those expectations.

White passed for 4,363 yards, 37 touchdowns and just seven picks last season en route to Conference USA Player of the Year honors. And if you like the deep ball, you'll love watching him sling it. White led the FBS in completions of 30- and 40-plus yards.

Entering 2017, the senior quarterback is on the watch list for the Maxwell, Davey O'Brien, Manning, and Johnny Unitas awards and the Danny Wuerffel Trophy and the Walter Camp Player of the Year.

While White is the most commonly known character in this cross-state drama, he's far from the only one you should be watching.

Here are some more:

LJ Scott, RB, EKU
It could be said that the performance of running back LJ Scott will serve as a reliable predictor of the ultimate performance of the Colonels offense as a whole.

The 6-foot, 220-pound Louisville transfer arrived in Richmond, KY, after rushing for 396 yards on 71 carries in three seasons with the Cardinals. Incumbent EKU starter Ethan Thomas was pedestrian at best in 2016, so the job belongs to Scott -- and a lot figures to be asked of him.



Nacarius Fant, WR, WKU
Fant was one of the best punt returners in the country last year, but the Tops will lean on him harder for offensive production in 2017.

The senior playmaker is one of the most versatile players in C-USA and will have ample opportunity to impact this game from multiple angles on Saturday.

Aaron Patrick, DL, EKU
Patrick headlines the Eastern Kentucky defense after wreaking havoc on opposing offenses and earning first team All-Ohio Valley Conference honors last season.

The junior defensive collected seven sacks and 10 tackles for loss a year ago and will look to jump-start his 2017 totals against a green Western Kentucky offensive line.

Joel Iyiegbuniwe, LB, WKU
Iyiegbuniwe is the most talented defender we'll see on the field Saturday. In 2016, the All-Conference USA honorable mention racked up 10 tackles for a loss and 3 1/2 sacks as a sophomore in 2016.

Iyiegbuniwe is powerful and aggressive enough to make noise in the box but also possesses the speed and athleticism necessary to be a terror in the passing game. The Colonels would do well to avoid him, but that's a virtually impossible task.


How to Watch Eastern Kentucky vs. Western Kentucky

On TV: Available on Roku and Apple TV 4 -- download the FloSports app now.
Streaming: Only on FloFootball with a PRO subscription. A yearly PRO subscription provides access to ALL FloSports sites. JOIN NOW


Join The Conversation On Social

•  Follow us on Twitter @FloFootball
•  Follow us on Instagram @FloFootball
•  Follow us on Facebook


FloFootball's hottest content, delivered to your inbox

Don't miss breaking news, feature stories, event updates, and more. Sign up for the FloFootball mailing list today.

UMass Faces Unique Challenges, Advantages As 2020 Season Approaches

null

Create a free account to unlock this video!

Get Started

Already a subscriber?  Log In

On a typical autumn Saturday, college football can feel like the most important thing on Earth. The year 2020, however, has been anything but typical — not that anyone needs reminders. 

Create a free account to unlock this article!

Get Started

Already a subscriber?  Log In

Loaded Valdosta State Is Eager To Light Up Some More Scoreboards

RoganSU.jpg

At Valdosta State, the pressing question on offense may be less if the Blazers will move the ball, but rather who’s doing so. 

Create a free account to unlock this article!

Get Started

Already a subscriber?  Log In

Delta State's Junior Faulk Is An Interception Machine

JuniorFaulk_091119_625.jpg

One benefit to a college football team returning a veteran lineup, Delta State defensive coordinator Kelvin Green explains, is the opportunity to build “a player-led team.” 

Create a free account to unlock this article!

Get Started

Already a subscriber?  Log In

Gulf South Moves To Conference-Only Season, Delays Start

USATSI_13576808_168383134_lowres.jpg

The Gulf South Conference announced on Thursday that it will delay the start of fall sports to either the last week of September or the first week of October.

Create a free account to unlock this article!

Get Started

Already a subscriber?  Log In

CAA Football Votes To Suspend Conference Competition In 2020

Rhodes_Stadium_aerial_03.jpg

The CAA announced on Friday that the Conference's Board of Directors has voted to suspend conference competition originally scheduled for this fall due to continuing concerns associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.

Create a free account to unlock this article!

Get Started

Already a subscriber?  Log In

Big Tens Opts For Conference-Only Football Schedule This Fall

USATSI_11199272_168383134_lowres.jpg

The Big Ten Conference announced on Thursday that it if the league is able to participate in fall sports, it will move to conference-only schedules in those sports.

Create a free account to unlock this article!

Get Started

Already a subscriber?  Log In

Towson's Rob Ambrose Continues To Lead By Example Throughout Pandemic

Stare Into The 'Soul' Of Towson Football

Create a free account to unlock this video!

Get Started

Already a subscriber?  Log In

Social media too often is an outlet for negativity in sports – but also has the capacity for good. Towson head coach Rob Ambrose knows both sides of these communicative platforms. 

Create a free account to unlock this article!

Get Started

Already a subscriber?  Log In

Shane Simpson Looking Strong In Recovery

Simpson

During the third game of the 2019 season against Maine, Towson standout running back Shane Simpson suffered a season-ending knee injury. 

Create a free account to unlock this article!

Get Started

Already a subscriber?  Log In

We Stand With You

Flo-Blackout-1920x1080.jpg

The events of the last week have been tremendously painful to us all.

CAA Has 21 Players Recognized On HERO Sports Preseason FCS All-America Team

TCQQC23CX5B5NHIHC6DEBSEG7Q.jpg

CAA Football had 21 players from nine different teams recognized on the 2020 HERO Sports Preseason FCS All-America team that was released on Thursday afternoon.

Create a free account to unlock this article!

Get Started

Already a subscriber?  Log In