OVC Title hopes and an autobid are on the line in Murray, KY this Sunday.
As the calendar turns to April with the promise of flowers blooming soon, plenty must first be settled on the football field as the contenders for the FCS playoffs begin to rise to the top.
A full Sunday of OVC action is going on today.
Depending on what happens there could be as many as five teams with one loss by the end of the day and making the second half of the spring schedule even more critical with a smaller playoff field this spring.
This week we welcome the SWAC, Big Sky, and Big South to the wonderful world of spring FCS football, to go with the Missouri Valley, SoCon and OVC, who started their spring conference slates last week, and Tarleton State, who spent their time crushing FBS New Mexico State 43-17.
Only one of four games scheduled to kick off the 2021 spring season in the Ohio Valley Conference was actually played out last weekend, thanks to storms that hit a big part of the Mid-South. With any luck things will return to a semblance of normalcy as four games are slated to be played Sunday.
Five players including RB Quay Holmes from East Tennessee State, RB Pierre Strong Jr. from South Dakota State, QB Cameron Burston from Tarleton State, Devon Krzanowski from North Dakota, and Hayden Olsen from Tennessee Tech have been selected as the College Sports Journal All-Stars for the week ending Dec. 14, 2020 from the NCAA Division I FBS Group of Five schools.
Here is this week’s College Sports Journal Top 25 as voted on by the staff.
This weekend saw the best-ever spring weekend of FCS football in history, with a near-full slate of thrilling Missouri Valley conference action, a back-and-forth affair in the OVC, the start of SoCon play, and even a good old-fashioned FCS over FBS upset. It’s like a typical FCS football weekend. Except it’s February 22nd.
The Ohio Valley Conference, which will use a seven game-game round robin schedule for the eight schools taking part in the spring season, is expected to begin play the weekend of Feb. 21 as the spring season is scheduled to get underway.
Austin Peay senior wide receiver DeAngelo Wilson and senior nickelback Kordell Jackson were named the 2020 OVC Preseason Offensive and Defensive Players of the Year in a vote of by the league’s head football coaches and communications directors.
Austin Peay rolled all over Eastern Illinois to win the Ohio Valley Conference championship for just the second time in school history and the first time since 1977 with a 35-7 win over the Panthers on Saturday.
So balanced has the conference been over the years that 12 times there has been at least two teams that have shared the conference title. This year could possibly make it 13 as Austin Peay and Southeast Missouri head into the final week of the regular season with identical 6-1 records in OVC play. Both are expected to be selected to play in the FCS playoff when the field is announced on Sunday.
While many automatic bids for the FCS playoffs were determined over the weekend, the OVC chose to extend the suspense a tad bit longer.
Austin Peay, whose win over UT Martin last week pushed the Skyhawks from atop the conference standings, and Southeast Missouri State must both avoid any sort of letdown this week if they are to keep their goal of an OVC championship and a berth in the FCS playoffs intact.
Why is 1977 significant? It’s been that long since Austin Peay found itself atop the Ohio Valley Conference standings this late in the season. It was also the last time the Governors claimed the conference title. They are hoping for a similar finish more than 40 years later.
The contenders will get a chance to distinguish themselves from the pretenders in the Ohio Valley Conference as a pair of games on Saturday will go a long way in determining who will represent the league in the upcoming FCS playoffs. The first round of the playoffs will begin on Nov. 30.
The race for the Ohio Valley Conference became a tad bit clearer as league leader UT Martin won for fourth time in five league encounters while Southeast Missouri and Austin Peay both posted important wins to keep their title hopes alive. UT Martin defeated five-time defending conference champion Jacksonville State 22-17. The Skyhawks improved to […]
Whoever drew up the 2019 Ohio Valley Conference football schedule is probably thinking rather highly of themselves right about now. It’s been a masterful schedule and one that dreams are made of – or nightmares, depending on your outlook.
After nine weeks of the 2019 college football season many of the conference races are beginning to become clearer. The Ohio Valley Conference simply is setting itself up for a dramatic finish over the final four weeks of the regular season. Southeast Missouri State put itself in nice position for a potential conference championship and […]
As the 2019 regular season continues to wind down and the hunt for a playoff spot heats up two of the Ohio Valley Conference’s best teams take to the gridiron Saturday in the Show-Me State. League-leader UT Martin, undefeated in four conference games, hits the road to take on No. 24-ranked Southeast Missouri State at Houck Stadium in Cape Girardeau. It is the best conference start since 2006, when the Skyhawks won their only OVC championship.
Last week’s game of the week lived up to the hype, with Southeast Missouri State defeating Tennessee Tech in double overtime. It was a game the Redhawks needed and they got the job done. At the same time, the Golden Eagles proved they are not a team to be taken lightly the rest of the way. The OVC is wide open with Jacksonville State continuing to struggle.
Just when you thought Jacksonville State was going to run away with the OVC title again, Austin Peay blew them out last week. The conference appears to be a toss up with three or four teams with a shot at the title. The order will probably change week after week for the rest of the year. The biggest surprise so far has been Tennessee Tech who is out to a 4-1 start. A win this week solidifies them as a contender as well.
Jacksonville State, as usual, is carrying the banner for the OVC. The only other team having real success in the non-conference portion of the schedule is Tennessee Tech. Other than those two teams, the OVC has shown very poorly against non-conference opponents.
The Ohio Valley picked up the signature FCS win this year when they stormed back with 21 fourth quarter points to beat Eastern Washington. The Gamecocks were led by Zerrick Cooper and Marlon Bridges. Eastern Kentucky had a chance to put a solid win on its resume, but wound up losing to Indiana State. Most of the rest of the league played and lost to FCS competition.
Only one Ohio Valley team picked up a win last week – Jacksonville State – while everyone else lost. Of course six of the teams played FBS opponents, so those results are not too surprising. In FCS action, both Austin Peay and Southeast Missouri State lost well hyped out of conference games last week. Week three brings even more competitive non-conference games, including the game that probably got the most hype of any non-conference game over the summer.
The OVC as a whole had a nice opening weekend, going 7-2. But the biggest surprise loss was felt by a team many thought would challenge for Frisco, Jacksonville State. The question on everyone’s mind is: was it just a bad game and JSU will bounce back, or is it a sign of things to come? Either way, the rest of the OVC surely took notice of the open door and will be looking to kick their way through.
The Ohio Valley Conference has been Jacksonville State’s personal playground over the last five years. The Gamecocks actually lost a conference game last year, but still won the title. Can anyone continue to close the gap and knock JSU off of their perch? It doesn’t look like it, but that’s why they play the games.
Jacksonville State has long had a strangle hold on the Ohio Valley Conference, winning the conference every year since 2014. Despite losing to SEMO last year, the Gamecocks still prevailed.
On Homecoming, head coach Dewayne Alexander and the Golden Eagles broke their 11 game losing streak, upsetting Murray State 27-24. It was the highlight of an otherwise tough 1-10 season.