Week 9 FCS Football Bracketology Breakdown

Northern Arizona FCS College Football
George Hammond

Last Four In: Northern Arizona, Liberty, Northern Iowa, Sam Houston State

First Four Out: William & Mary, Bethune-Cookman, Southern Illinois, Cal Poly

Besides shocking the FCS world with its victory over No. 2 Eastern Washington, Northern Arizona (5-3-0) probably made a lot of other playoff hopefuls unhappy this weekend. Why? Because Northern Arizona should be on its way to the Big Dance now. Its four remaining opponents have a combined record of 6-26. So unless it fails miserably, expect NAU to have a playoff berth come the end of November. The question now is: With Montana losing to Cal Poly Saturday night, how many berths will the Big Sky get? We’re still going to say four: Eastern Washington, Montana, Montana State and Northern Arizona, although the loser of that Montana-Montana State game will definitely be on the bubble.

If the Big Sky gets four berths, that means somebody else is going to lose one. The Missouri Valley Football Conference has to get five berths this year so we’re thinking the Colonial Athletic Association and MEAC will likely take hits. Villanova and New Hampshire are locks from the CAA with Richmond expected to get a playoff spot, too. But William & Mary might lose out now with Northern Arizona emerging.

Meanwhile, traditional MEAC power South Carolina State has the edge to get that league’s auto bid now that it knocked off Bethune-Cookman. The MEAC could receive just one spot this season.


See the FCS Football Projected Bracket


Big Sky: *Eastern Washington, Montana, Montana State, Northern Arizona

Big South: *Coastal Carolina, Liberty

CAA: *Villanova, New Hampshire, Richmond

MEAC: *South Carolina State

MVFC: *North Dakota State, Illinois State, South Dakota State, Youngstown State, Northern Iowa

NEC: *Bryant

OVC: *Jacksonville State, Eastern Kentucky

Patriot: *Fordham

Pioneer: *Jacksonville

Southern: *Chattanooga

Southland:  *Southeastern Louisiana, McNeese State, Sam Houston State

* Automatic bid


See the FCS Football Projected Bracket