Quarterfinal 2021 FCS Playoff Prognostication


Quarterfinal FCS Playoff Prognostication


A little different format than in year's past. Not going to go insanely deep into team capsules and regurgitate information that’s already been shared. If you want to look at each team’s capsules, and you should, you can find them here. I’m going to hit on the higher points for all the games here, rather than draw them out individually. Let’s just be thankful we have playoffs.


Looking at last week, I went 6-2. Lost on Virginia Military, who played the best they could but were never really a danger to upsetting James Madison. Also missed on Eastern Washington, who started pretty good against North Dakota State, then was run off the field.


Southern Illinois @ #1 South Dakota State

This is the one game that is a rematch in this year’s playoffs. And The Jackrabbits won that game 44-3. Is that going to happen again? Probably not. But the team winning the game should remain the same. South Dakota State is at home. South Dakota State is rested after a smoother First Round ride. The Salukis were in a fight on the road. It’ll be closer, but not a lot closer.

Prediction: South Dakota State 35, Southern Illinois 14


North Dakota State @ #2 Sam Houston State

This is the one quarterfinal game of who’s controlling trend continues. North Dakota State has a long history of playoff success and when they do lose, it’s not before the semifinals. Sam Houston State has never lost a playoff home game. There’s also some history between these two in the playoffs and it’s not favorable for the Bearkats. The Bison pretty much rolled Eastern Washington, but the seeded Bearkats had all they could handle against visiting Monmouth. This is an interesting clash in styles between a physical NDSU and a high-powered SHSU. Toughest pick here.

Prediction: Sam Houston State 24, North Dakota State 23


North Dakota @ #3 James Madison

The aforementioned James Madison had a tough Virginia Military give all they had, but was never in serious danger of overtaking the game. North Dakota, on the other hand, obliterated Missouri State, laying to rest any thoughts of a road upset early on. The roles are reversed for the Fighting Hawks this week as they travel to James Madison. At times this year, North Dakota looked like the best team in the country. They’re going to need it this week. Even with a down year by Dukes’ standards, they’re still undefeated and still the #3 seed. On top of that, it’s been over five years since they’ve lost a home playoff game. I originally picked North Dakota to prevail...originally.

Prediction: James Madison 27, North Dakota 20


Delaware @ #4 Jacksonville State

This is one of those rare playoff games where the home team may be seen as the underdog, at least if it were played in a neutral setting. Well, this will be far from neutral. You can expect the Gamecock fans to be very loud and make things as difficult and uncomfortable as they can for the visiting Blue Hens. Delaware had a much tougher time than was thought to be going into their game with Sacred Heart. But a win is a win and they’ve played in big, hostile road stadiums before. Jacksonville State had a much easier time disposing of Davidson than anything that should happen in this one.

Prediction: Jacksonville State 28, Delaware 24