MOSCOW The Idaho Vandals opened their season with a dud.
Visiting Eastern Washington, an FCS team from nearby Cheney, Wash., topped Idaho 20-3 in the season opener for both teams at the Kibbie Dome on Thursday night.
Idaho played without starting quarterback Dominique Blackman, who won the job with a strong fall camp. Blackman was in uniform before the game, then after kickoff, stood on the sideline in sweats.
Coach Robb Akey declined to say why Blackman didnt play, but told the Spokesman-Review that hes the QB the rest of the season.
Senior backup Logan Bushnell struggled, completing 10-of-24 passes for 123 yards and an interception.
The Vandals managed only a 27-yard field goal by Trey Farquhar (in the first quarter) and only 10 first downs overall. Idaho was 2-of-15 on third downs.
Arizona State transfer Ryan Bass was the top rusher for the Vandals, gaining 52 yards on 15 carries. Wide receiver Najee Lovett caught eight passes for 105 yards, including a 66 yarder that set up the Vandals only score.
Eastern Washington got a touchdown pass from former SMU quarterback Kyle Padron (260 yards passing) and two field goals from Jimmy Pavel, a former Boise State walk-on.
The game was a defensive struggle. The teams combined for 15 punts. But Idahos inability to move the ball 237 total yards eventually took its toll on the defense and Eastern Washington scored early in the fourth quarter on a 2-yard run by Quincy Forte to round out the scoring.
Idaho forced one turnover a Homer Mauga interception.