Week 4 FCS Football Bracketology Breakdown

Last Four In: Chattanooga, Stony Brook, Central Arkansas, Sam Houston State
First Nine Out: Northern Arizona, Tennessee State, Western Illinois, South Dakota, Northern Iowa, Rhode Island, Western Carolina, Delaware, Austin Peay
Been a lot of questions the last week about how the bracketology is designed. Is it seen more “as it stands now” or is it more “of a projection of season’s end?” Really, it’s some of both. But if pinned down to which side of the question holds more of the water, then it’s more of an “as it stands” bracket. Some people don’t like that idea, saying that a bracket being put out there should always “project” towards season’s end. That can be done but the problem with that is, almost nothing would change within the first half of the season and there would be very little to write about, move around and speculate. On the subject of bracketology and where it pretty much started, with basketball, that has almost always been function of “as it stands.” A few may say that’s a much easier way of going about selecting the field, changing every week. Perhaps, but with the bubble as large as it is so far this season and was even after twelve weeks last season, it’s no more or less simple either way.
Now that that’s out of the way, let’s look at this week’s bracketology. A few major things I’m almost positive I’ve never had happen putting a bracket together. First, three conferences have more “CURRENT” teams in the field than the Missouri Valley. No, I do not expect that to continue. But right now, as it stands, there’s not really a fourth MVFC team to put in the field and there’s many deserving teams from other conferences that have equal or better resumes. It’s not a slight towards the MVFC, nor would it be any conference. Teams are selected on a team-by-team comparison. This includes all the normal points; record, good wins, bad losses, strength of schedule, head-to-head competition. Conference affiliation comes further down the line.
The second strange occurrence this week is two conferences each have three teams as current national seeds. Again, I do not expect this to continue, as conference play is just starting to ramp up and these teams will start playing one another. Someone has to lose. The Colonial, with their five overall, are one of those conferences. The other, is the aforementioned Missouri Valley, who only has three in the field at the moment, but all of them are holding national seeds.
The Ohio Valley and Southern Conferences each lost a team this week, giving the Big Sky and Southland another team each. It’s still a very strange point in the season, where these things have happened. Wofford has taken over as the automatic favorite in the SoCon, but Chattanooga is right there for consideration also. Nicholls big win over Sam Houston State has put the Bearkats directly on the bubble. And that bubble is pulsating to pop with SHSU playing another bubbler, Central Arkansas next week.
Bids By Conference
Big Sky (5): *Eastern Washington, Montana, Weber State, Montana, State, UC-Davis
Big South (1): *Kennesaw State
Colonial (5): *James Madison, Maine, Elon, Villanova, Stony Brook
Missouri Valley (3): *North Dakota State, South Dakota State, Illinois State
Northeast (1): *Sacred Heart
Ohio Valley (1): *Jacksonville State
Patriot (1): *Colgate
Pioneer (1): *San Diego
Southern (2): *Wofford, Chattanooga
Southland (4): *McNeese, Nicholls, Central Arkansas, Sam Houston State
* denotes conference’s projected automatic qualifier