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WSU football notes: Eteuati happy to be contributing

SHARE WSU football notes: Eteuati happy to be contributing

Like he usually leaves a defensive back or a player on a coverage unit, Weber State receiver/returner Bryant Eteuati is putting the past behind him.

Eteuati has been back full-time with the Wildcats since his indefinite suspension ended a day before Weber State's loss to Eastern Washington in its regular-season finale. Eteuati was arrested on outstanding felony warrants on Oct. 22, and his football playing future looked murky at best following a short stay in jail.

But Eteuati agreed to a plea deal in what were two separate cases, reducing his charges from felonies to misdemeanors on Nov. 20. He was quickly reinstated to the team, and he's getting his legs back now and making an impact.

"I'm glad it's over," Eteuati said after practice on Wednesday. "I'm glad with how everything worked out. I'm back on the field, and a lot of stress is relieved. Everything is done, and now I get to continue on."

Eteuati will be sentenced for the misdemeanors on Jan. 8.

Eteuati missed three games and four weeks of action while he was suspended. Since returning to the lineup, he's caught six passes for 36 yards. He made a big impact against Cal Poly, returning a kickoff 44 yards to Cal Poly's 43-yard line, setting up a touchdown that gave Weber State a 42-28 lead.

"I started off a little rusty," Eteuati said. "Last week I played a lot better. I'm getting back into it."

Eteuati's re-emergence couldn't come at a better time for the Wildcats, who face Montana in a Football Championship Subdivision quarterfinal game on Saturday. Eteuati has enjoyed his share of success during his career against the Grizzlies, and he had one of his best games of the season against them earlier this year. He caught seven passes for 74 yards and a touchdown and also broke a 53-yard kickoff return.

NO APOLOGIES: Some Weber State fans and players are upset that Montana was given a higher playoff seeding than the Wildcats and the chance to host two postseason games. They will get no sympathy from Grizzlies coach Bobby Hauck.

When asked during a phone interview on Wednesday if he was surprised Montana (12-1) was given a top four seed in the FCS playoffs, the answer was a resounding no.

"We have the best record in the nation; I don't see how they couldn't (award Montana a top-four seed)," Hauck said.

Hauck added that the Wildcats should be happy the game is in Missoula, and not in Ogden.

"If you're Weber, you really would rather be here in front of 25,000 fans than in front of 1,500 fans or whatever it was in Ogden (when the two teams played in October)," he said.

The official attendance from that first game was actually 3,753, but that counted all paid tickets. Actual attendance on what was a cold, rainy and dreary day may have been closer to the number Hauck estimated.

Interestingly, the Wildcats aren't all that upset about playing the game in Missoula. They've been there before and know there isn't another atmosphere like it in the Big Sky, and possibly in the FCS.

"Playing there will be a lot of fun,' Eteuati said. "In Ogden, we have great fans, but in Montana they're ridiculous. They love football."

SCANLON UNSATISFIED: Weber State defensive tackle Bryce Scanlon filled up the stat sheet in the Wildcats' win over Cal Poly last Saturday, recording a total of 10 tackles and recovering a fumble.

The numbers look good, but Scanlon said he isn't satisfied with how he played and that he'll need to do better against the Grizzlies on Saturday.

"I need to come out and play a much better game for my team to be successful," Scanlon said. "My job is about being technically sound and going out there and doing what I have to do to get the job done. My job isn't to make tackles, it's to keep linebackers free and have them make the tackles. That's what counts."

E-mail: aaragon@desnews.com