Week 9 Other FCS Football Game Breakdowns

Week 9 Other Conference Game Breakdowns

With the exception of a highly-anticipated Mideastern Athletic Conference matchup, most of this week’s games are second-tier contests that may have a small bearing on their conference pennant races. It should be noted that the Patriot League doesn’t really have any solid matchups this week, but Lehigh (8-0, 3-0) is off this week and Lafayette and Colgate (both 2-0 in Patriot play) have a chance to make this league REALLY interesting.


Monmouth at  Duquesne,Saturday, 12:10

This Northeast Conference matchup in Pittsburgh pits two teams that are still in the NEC title hunt but looking for league-leading Albany to trip up before too long. Monmouth (3-4, 2-2) suffered a mild upset, 27-24, at the hands of Bryant. That game may have dulled Monmouth’s title chances a bit, but the reality is Monmouth is two games behind Albany for the top spot and a win here would be beneficial. Duquesne (5-2, 3-1) is a half-game behind Wagner and one game behind Albany in the battle for the NEC championship, and the Dukes blasted Sacred Heart 35-3 last week. Duquesne should have the upper hand in this game, but don’t be surprised if Monmouth pulls the upset.

Projected score: Duquesne 20, Monmouth 14


Alabama State at Alabama A&M, Saturday, 2:30

It is the annual Magic City Classic at Birmingham, and while it may not quite be Alabama-Auburn (in a year where both teams are good, at least) it’s still a very solid contest. Alabama State (4-3, 4-2) is one game behind Alabama A&M (6-1, 5-1) in the Southwestern Athletic Conference’s East Division, and an Alabama State victory will make this conference very interesting. Jackson State is idle this week, by the way, so it can’t be a three-way tie in the SWAC East. Both teams are coming off bye weeks, which may make them a bit rusty, but this is still an eagerly-anticipated contest.

Projected score: Alabama A&M 34, Alabama State 27


Liberty at Coastal Carolina, Saturday, 3:30

In an otherwise lackluster Big South Conference weekend, this game is the one that stands out. This game pits two teams with 3-4 overall records against each other, but Coastal Carolina is 1-1 while Liberty is 2-0 in conference. Liberty is one-half game behind Stony Brook for first place in the league, and the Flames need this game to keep pace because Stony Brook plays last-place Presbyterian and will win big, barring a massive upset. Coastal Carolina won handily over VMI, 34-7, last week, but Liberty barely squeaked past Concord in a 21-13 game that was more of a surprise. Quinn Backus, Coastal Carolina’s standout defensive back, earned College Sports Madness Big South Defensive Player of the Week honors a week ago.

Projected score: Coastal Carolina 34, Liberty 21


North Carolina Central at #23 Bethune-Cookman, Saturday, 4:00

The name of the conference might be the Mideastern Athletic Conference, but the battle for MEAC supremacy will take place in Daytona Beach. Both of these teams sport identical 5-2 overall records and 4-0 MEAC marks, and Bethune-Cookman is coming off a one-sided 48-3 drubbing of Norfolk State. Quentin Williams threw for 157 yards on 9-of-11 passing with two touchdowns and two sacks, and Brodrick Waters had nine carries for 103 yards and a touchdown. Not very impressive overall numbers, you might say, but Bethune-Cookman has won five games so it must be doing something right. North Carolina Central will have a nine-day layoff by game time, as it beat Hampton 37-20 on Oct. 18. Jordan Reid completed 11-of-22 passes for 193 yards.

Projected score: Bethune-Cookman 23, North Carolina Central 20


Harvard at Dartmouth, Saturday, 5:00

On the cusp of twilight in New England, a key Ivy League matchup gets underway that will have title implications. Dartmouth (4-2) and Harvard (5-1) sport identical 2-1 records along with Penn, and all three teams are looking up at 3-0 Princeton. Harvard lost its unbeaten league record by virtue of Princeton’s 39-34 victory a week ago. This despite the Crimson gaining 634 yards total offense. Now that’s a lot of yardage. If Colton Chapple can throw for 448 yards and five touchdowns once again, Harvard might have something. Chances are that won’t happen, not with Dartmouth’s lower-scoring offense and defense coming in. Dartmouth beat Columbia last week, 21-16.

Projected score: Harvard 28, Dartmouth 24


Dayton at San Diego, Saturday, 9:00

By virtue of San Diego’s 24-7 win at Jacksonville last week, Jacksonville fell from the ranks of the Pioneer League’s unbeaten and left Butler and Drake fighting atop the league. San Diego (4-3, 3-1) is a game and a half off the pace, so a little divine intervention may be needed for San Diego to have a chance at the championship. Meanwhile, Dayton (4-4, 3-2) drilled Valparaiso 45-0, but Valparaiso has been among the league lowlights all season so don’t read too much into this game. Given that San Diego has won before against difficult opponents, there is no reason to believe it can’t happen again.

Projected score: San Diego 24, Dayton 10


See All FCS Games of the Week Breakdowns