Missouri Valley Football Conference 2022 Week 1 Review/Week 2 Preview

Missouri State’s Montrae Braswell broke loose for a 98-yard kickoff return to help pace the Bears 27-13 win over Central Arkansas in Week 1 of play. (Courtesy of MSU Athletics)

The Missouri Valley Football Conference kicked off its 20222 season with all 11 schools in action. The league as a whole went 4-7 in Week 1 but five of the seven losses were to FBS foes.

The biggest game of the week not only in the MVFC but for all of the FCS was the Southern Illinois at Incarnate Word game. The Salukis could not handle Cardinal QB Lindsey Scott Jr. as he threw six touchdown passes and ran for another score in 64-29 drubbing.

The other MVFC squad to lose to another FCS squad was Western Illinois, who fell at Tennessee-Martin 42-25. The Leathernecks with much of a new roster and new head coach in Myers Hendrickson were able to hang in the game and were tied 7-7 after a quarter of play but UT Martin, who was the Ohio Valley preseason favorite, was able to pull away in the second half to get the win.

The four wins by the MVFC this week were NDSU over Drake, Missouri State over Central Arkansas, Youngstown State over Duquesne, and Indiana State over North Alabama.

Of the FBS games, the most peculiar game was SDSU’s game at Big 10 Iowa. The Jackrabbits defense only allowed a single field goal but the SDSU offense gave up to safeties as the margin for victory for the Hawkeyes in the 7-3 game.

North Dakota was tied with another Big 10 team in Nebraska 17-17 mid-way through the third quarter. The Fighting Hawks though saw the Huskers break the game open late in the game for the 38-17 loss.

The other three FBS games were rather one-sided in favor of the FBS opponents for UNI, Illinois State, and South Dakota.

Here are some highlights from each of the 11 games this past weekend with recaps from each MVFC school:

14 - 17
Memorial Stadium (Indiana State)

Indiana State 17, North Alabama 14

Highlights: Available
25 - 42
Graham Stadium

UT Martin 42, Western Illinois 25

Highlights: Available
27 - 14
Estes Stadium

Missouri State 27, Central Arkansas 14

Highlights: Available
3 - 7
Kinnick Stadium

Iowa 7, South Dakota State 3

Highlights: Available
17 - 48
Falcon Stadium

Air Force 48, Northern Iowa 17

Highlights: Available
14 - 56

North Dakota State 56, Drake 14

Highlights: Available
17 - 38
Memorial Stadium (Nebraska)

Nebraska 38, North Dakota 17

Highlights: Available
14 - 31
Stambaugh Stadium

Youngstown State 31, Duquesne 14

Highlights: Available
29 - 64
Benson Stadium

Incarnate Word 64, Southern Illinois 29

Highlights: Available
0 - 38
Camp Randall Stadium

Wisconsin 38, Illinois State 0

Highlights: Available
0 - 34
Bill Snyder Family Stadium

Kansas State 34, South Dakota 0

Highlights: Available

2022 Missouri Valley Standings

PosTeamWLConf WConf LPFPA

Week 2 Preview & Predictions

The Missouri Valley slate for this week starts with the first conference game as Northern Iowa visits North Dakota–the earliest MVFC game since NDSU lost at Northern Iowa in 2010.

The remainder of the slate is non-conference action with two ranked teams meeting early this week with Missouri State hosting UT Martin being the highlight game in a 2021 playoff rematch. South Dakota State also hosts a ranked team in and also a playoff rematch from a year ago when the Jackrabbits host UC Davis.

Thursday, Sept. 8  

30 - 35
Plaster Stadium

Missouri State 35, UT Martin 30

Highlights: Available

The Bears host the Skyhawks in a playoff rematch that last season saw UTM defeat the Bears in an upset 32-31. The Bears turned the ball over six times on three interceptions, a fumble and two special teams mishaps that led directly to 23 Skyhawks points and ultimately proved to be the difference. I think the Bears will be able to hold onto the ball in this game to avenge the loss last year and win their home opener. Missouri State 38 UT Martin 24

Saturday, Sept. 10    

10 - 62
Huntington Bank Stadium

Minnesota 62, Western Illinois 10

Highlights: Available

The Leathernecks played UT Martin tough last week and this team will get better as the season goes forward but it will be too much for WIU to overcome a strong Big 10 team. Minnesota 45 Western Illinois 10

7 - 24
Washington-Grizzly Stadium

Montana 24, South Dakota 7

Highlights: Available

South Dakota was shutout last week at Kansas State. The Coyotes get another tough road test in Top 5 ranked Montana this week. USD will get their first points of the season this week but the Griz are just too tough to beat at Washington Grizzly Stadium. Montana 31 South Dakota 17

The Bison took care of Drake last week easily. The Aggies come into this game having lost its first game to rival North Carolina Central. NDSU will again have a rather easy win in this one. North Dakota State 49 North Carolina A&T 14

27 - 29
Alerus Center

North Dakota 29, Northern Iowa 27

Highlights: Available

The first conference game of the year has the makings of a classic game. UNI and UND have not yet played each other since UND joined the MVFC two seasons ago. The last meeting between the two schools was in 2006 where UND won at Cedar Falls 35-31.

UNI was not great against the Air Force option game in giving up a whopping 582 yards on the ground and 691 yard overall. The Panthers defense did not force a punt the whole game UNI’s offense did get some things going and produced over 400 yards.

UND held its own against Nebraska last week. RB Isaiah Smith enjoyed his third 100-yard rushing game of his career, pacing UND at Nebraska with 104 yards and the Fighting Hawks were tied with the Huskers until late in the third quarter.

Look for UND to use its running game again in this game to see if UNI was able to correct any items from last week’s loss. I think UNI will use more of its passing game on its offense.

I think this game will go down to the wire but I like the home field for the Fighting Hawks to get the win. North Dakota 31 Northern Iowa 28

0 - 56
Ross-Ade Stadium

Purdue 56, Indiana State 0

Highlights: Available

The Sycamores were able to get by North Alabama in OT last week. The task will not be as easy with a road game at in-state Big 10 foe Purdue. The Boilermakers are coming off a close season opening conference loss at home to Penn State and will look to take out on Indiana State. I think they will do just that with a lopsided win. Purdue 41 Indiana State 7

16 - 49
Stambaugh Stadium

Youngstown State 49, Dayton 16

Highlights: Available

The Penguins are coming off an easy win over Duquesne, while Dayton had a narrow win over Robert Morris. YSU has not played their in-state Pioneer League foe of Dayton since 2013. That game was a 28-10 Penguin victory. I think it will be a similar margin this year. Youngstown State 31 Dayton 14

22 - 24
Dykhouse Stadium

South Dakota State 24, UC Davis 22

Highlights: Available

SDSU held their own especially defensively against a Big 10 foe of Iowa last week. UC Davis though might have a more prolific offense than Iowa. UC Davis held their own against their FBS opponent of California last week but ultimately fell 34-13.The two teams met in the opening round of the playoffs last year with the Jacks winning rather handedly 56-24. This kind of score is the reverse that SDSU saw last week so I think it will still be a Jacks win in their home opener comfortably. South Dakota State 38 UC Davis 17

The Salukis did not get off on a great start with the loss to the Southand’s Incarnate Word in a blow out loss. SEMO lost its opener as well but to FBS Big 12’s Iowa State. The War For The Wheel game is played between these two non-conference rivals every year. The Wheel trophy though has only been given out the last four games in the series with each school picking up two wins. However, SIU has won the last two meetings and last year the Salukis won 47-21. I think this game will be a bit tighter but SIU will keep the Wheel trophy. Southern Illinois 38 Southeast Missouri State 21

The second Pioneer League-MVFC match ends the weekend in Normal. Illinois State hosts the Beacons in their fifth overall meeting. The last time the two met was in 2016 with the Redbirds getting a 50-13 win. Valpo is an improving PFL team but Illinois State should be able to handle the Beacons rather easily. It might not be quite the difference as in 2016 but it will still be a comfortable ISU victory. Illinois State 41 Valparaiso 14