College Sports Journal Sagarin FCS Playoff Predictions–Oct. 29


Using the Sagarin ratings from this week alone to project the FCS playoffs, along with the automatic bid for the conferences that receive a bid, the following would be the playoff teams. These teams are seeded 1 through 24 for the 24 teams that make the FCS playoffs.

As a reminder, the following conferences receive an automatic bid, while 14 teams are selected as at-large picks.

Big Sky Conference
Big South Conference
Colonial Athletic Conference (CAA)
Missouri Valley Football Conference (MVFC)
Northeast Conference (NEC)
Ohio Valley Conference (OVC)
Patriot League
Pioneer Football League 
Southern Conference
Southland Conference

Top 24 Rankings with playoff spot with the conference name indicating the automatic spot for its conference and then the 14 at-large spots also listed. See the full Top 25 with the hyperlink:

1North Dakota StateMVFC
2South Dakota StateAt-Large 1
3James MadisonCAA
4MontanaBig Sky
5Sacramento StateAt-Large 2
6Weber StateAt-Large 3
7Northern IowaAt-Large 4
8Illinois StateAt-Large 5
9VillanovaAt-Large 6
10Kennesaw StateBig South
11Youngstown StateAt-Large 7
13Southern IllinoisAt-Large 8
14Montana StateAt-Large 9
15TowsonAt-Large 10
16Central ArkansasSouthland
17WoffordAt-Large 11
18Sam Houston StateAt-Large 12
19Stony BrookAt-Large 13
20New HampshireAt-Large 14
22Central Connecticut St.NEC
23San DiegoPioneer
24Holy CrossPatriot
Note that Central Connecticut State, San Diego, and Holy Cross are currently leading NEC, Pioneer League, and Patriot League in the Sagarin rankings and would be the last three schools into the field as those conference champions.
Also note that the Ivy League, MEAC, and SWAC do not have autobids. The MEAC and SWAC champions play in the Celebration Bowl. The SWAC also plays a championship game so both division champions would not be able to participate but any second place or lower team in either conference would be eligible. And the Ivy League as a whole has elected not to participate in the playoffs.
For this week, no MEAC or SWAC schools are in the Top 21 of the standings. But Princeton and Dartmouth from the Ivy League, who are in the this Top 21 are not eligible for the playoffs due to the Ivy League rule of no postseason play so these two were left off. Also, UC Davis, Eastern Washington, and South Dakota would be in the Top 21 but each have five losses and would not make it with the current rule of getting seven DI victories. If each win out, they may have a chance but I left them out in this prediction this week.

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