FCS Playoff Central – Quarterfinals
Welcome to Phil Steele’s FCS Playoff Central. Here you’ll find a breakdown of who is playing in the Quarterfinals. Click on any helmet (and speaking of the helmets, make sure to visit The Helmet Project) to go to the team’s page. Check out the schedules/results for all of the playoff teams. Get the latest news and stats from the teams themselves. See how the team’s did last week. Don’t forget to update your bracket. And – best yet – vote for you who think will move onto the next round
North Dakota State
Saturday, December 8th • 3:00 pm ET • ESPN3
With a 23-7 win over the University of New Hampshire on Saturday afternoon at Gibbs Stadium, Wofford has advanced to the quarterfinals of the NCAA FCS Playoffs. The Terriers are 9-3 overall and 6-2 in SoCon play. Wofford has a winning record for the tenth time in the last eleven seasons. This is the first meeting between North Dakota State and Wofford College. The Bison are 2-0 against members of the Southern Conference with both wins coming over Georgia Southern. North Dakota State is making its third straight NCAA Division I FCS playoff appearance and the program’s 26th postseason overall including 17 in the Division II playoffs. The Bison won the 2011 NCAA FCS national championship with a 17-6 win over Sam Houston State on Jan. 7, 2012, in Frisco, Texas. Top-seeded North Dakota State defeated South Dakota State 28-3 on Dec. 1.
Saturday, December 8th • 12:00 pm ET • ESPN
For a second-straight season Georgia Southern (9-3) and Old Dominion (11-1) will meet in the FCS Playoffs Saturday. After winning 55-48 in Statesboro a year ago, the Eagles will travel to Norfolk, Va. this year. Georgia Southern has reached the semifinals in the past two seasons and needs just one more win to do so for a third-straight year. Old Dominion has won six-straight games including a 63-35 win over Coastal Carolina in the second round of the FCS playoffs last week. No. 4 seed Old Dominion hosts No. 5 seed Georgia Southern in the quarterfinals of the FCS playoffs. Taylor Heinicke set an FCS Playoff record with 542 yards of total offense in ODU’s 63-35 win over Coastal Carolina.
Sam Houston St
Friday, December 7th • 8:00 pm ET • ESPN2
For the ninth time this season, the Bearkats (9-3) overall) have to go on the road, trying to come out on top. Last year, Sam Houston and Montana State also met in the quarterfinals round, but the game was played in Huntsville at Bowers Stadium. The contest was close until the early stages of the third quarter when Kats senior Brandon Closner returned a kickoff 82 yards for a touchdown to push Sam Houston ahead by two scores. That allowed the Bearkats to coast to an easy 49-13 victory to advance to the semifinals. The Kats know that the Bobcats are looking to return the favor. This marks the first time the Bobcats have hosted two Playoff home games in the same season since 1984. Montana State has won 10 games in consecutive seasons for the first time. The Bobcats stand 9-5 all-time in NCAA Playoff games
Saturday, December 8th • 6:00 pm ET • ESPN3
Following a dramatic overtime road win over No. 6 Appalachian State, No. 15 Illinois State (9-3, 5-3 MVFC) has advanced to the FCS playoff quarterfinals for the first time since 2006. Illinois State quarterback Matt Brown led the Redbirds to their first playoff victory since 2006 with a stellar performance last Saturday at Appalachian State. Illinois State and Eastern Washington will face off for the second time Saturday. The Redbirds picked up a 31-14 victory over the Eagles in 1987 at Albi Stadium in Spokane, Wash., in the only other meeting between the two programs. ISU is 2-2 all-time against current members of the Big Sky Conference. The Eastern Washington University football team puts its 6-0 record against the 6-0 road record of Illinois State this Saturday. Eastern advanced in the playoffs with yet another come-from-behind performance – a 29-19 victory over Wagner last Saturday. 9-3 ILS will get to travel West this time to face the 10-2 Eagles. The only losses this season for the Redbirds were home setbacks to Southern Illinois (17-0), Missouri State (24-17) and North Dakota State (38-20). The Eagles are 6-0 at Roos Field, and are 16-2 at The Inferno since 2010 when the red turf was installed and the stadium was renamed to Roos Field.