Week 4 Other FCS Football Game Breakdowns



Most of the second-tier FCS conferences are in preview mode this week, with a handful starting league play. The big showdown of the week is easily the first matchup of Week 4 as Arkansas-Pine Bluff faces Alabama State in a big contest Thursday. Otherwise, there are a couple of matches that may look one-sided on the outside but are actually a lot different.


Arkansas-Pine Bluff at Alabama State, Thursday, 6:30

The Southwestern Athletic Conference is in its third week and already two of the top programs are facing off in an interdivisional showdown. Arkansas-Pine Bluff, which is tied with Texas Southern atop the SWAC West but has the better record, cruised to a 24-6 win over Alcorn State last week behind quarterback Ben Anderson. Alabama State and Alabama A&M are tied atop the SWAC East with 2-0 records. Alabama State’s in-conference victories have come against Mississippi Valley State (29-7) and Grambling State (19-18). The latter win came off a 29-yard touchdown by Greg Jenkins. This should be a good contest and the Thursday slot helps it win viewers.

Projected score: Arkansas-Pine Bluff 21, Alabama State 17


Lafayette at Bucknell, Saturday, 12:00

This game marks the start of play in the Patriot League, and Lehigh and Lafayette are the only teams with undefeated overall records. Those teams do not meet this week, but the best Patriot game comes from this matchup. Lafayette is off to a 2-0 record thanks to a pair of close games against William and Mary and Penn; both Lafayette wins are by a combined margin of ten points. Be on the lookout for Lafayette’s crushing defense, which forced seven interceptions off Penn’s quarterback. Bucknell’s defense allows 344 yards per game and 18 points a contest. Quarterback Brandon Wesley has 387 yards in two games with two touchdowns and two interceptions.

Projected score: Lafayette 24, Bucknell 17


Jacksonville at Dayton, Saturday, 1:00

Like the Patriot League, the Pioneer League is getting underway this weekend. Pioneer teams have really taken it on the chin in the non-conference schedule. Only Jacksonville, at 2-1, has a winning record. Does it mean the Pioneer is a rotten league? Not at all. Jacksonville has had a fine recovery after a 58-0 drubbing by Georgia Southern to start the season. The team beat Charleston Southern and Webber International to reach 2-1. The duo of Treviu Folston and Kade Bell combined for three touchdowns last week. Dayton had a bad game against Illinois State (56-14) to start the year, but its last two games (17-7 loss to Duquesne and 20-14 win over Robert Morris) have been much stronger.

Projected score: Jacksonville 28, Dayton 20


Harvard at Brown, Saturday, 4:30

The Ivy League starts play this weekend as two of the five teams with 1-0 records face off in a match that will cull the ranks of the unbeaten. Harvard, last year’s Ivy League champion, began the season with a very impressive 28-13 victory over San Diego in a game that helped the Crimson maintain its top 25 aspirations. Brown, meanwhile, endured a close contest with Holy Cross that ended with Brown escaping the gridiron with a 24-21 victory. The Ivy may not take part in the FCS playoffs, but it’s the epitome of New England college football on a fall afternoon. This is one of the featured games.

Projected score: Harvard 24, Brown 14


Florida A&M at Delaware State, Saturday, 6:00

The Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference has had about as much luck as the Pioneer League when it comes to teams escaping non-conference play unbeaten. Florida A&M is one of three MEAC teams to win its league opener, the others being Bethune-Cookman and Howard. Florida A&M overcame a dismal 0-2 start with a 44-20 win over Hampton last week, a game that helped the Rattlers get the MEAC season off to a strong start. Delaware State is in the other direction. Following a season-opening win over VMI, Delaware State lost 38-14 to Delaware and then fell 23-7 to Cincinnati. Delaware State has a week off after this, so the Hornets would love to go into the bye week with a .500 mark.

Projected score: Florida A&M 27, Delaware State 19


Coastal Carolina at Toledo, Saturday, 7:00

This is the first meeting between these schools, and it is hard to tell how a Big South Conference team will fare in Toledo’s famed Glass Bowl. Coastal Carolina began the season with an impressive 2-0 record, but Family Weekend turned into a disappointing party as Eastern Kentucky overcame ten receptions from Niccolo Mastromatteo and beat the Chanticleers 35-17. Aramis Hillary had 205 passing yards and a touchdown in the losing effort. Toledo beat Bowling Green last week, 27-15, to improve to 2-1 overall and start Mid-American Conference play early. Toledo’s offense averages 26 points a game, which should make this contest close.

Projected score: Toledo 30, Coastal Carolina 24


St. Francis (Pa.) at Towson, Saturday, 7:00

The Northeast Conference meets the Colonial Athletic Association in a non-conference matchup. St. Francis is one of three NEC teams with 1-0 records, as it beat Bryant in week two. Albany and Monmouth are the other schools that have won their first NEC games. Last week, St. Francis overpowered Morehead State 57-23 to move to 2-1 overall and position itself nicely for this game. Towson plays in one of the toughest conferences in all of the nation, and the Tigers began with a 41-21 loss to Kent State before knocking off William and Mary in a 20-17 thriller. Towson hopes this game goes much better than its next one will… the Tigers face off against LSU at the end of September.

Projected score: St. Francis 28, Towson 17


See All FCS Games of the Week Breakdowns