The final week of the regular season is here and with it, the craziest and most fun week of the season. There’s plenty to be decided, six automatic bids are still out there and teams are hoping to lock up playoff berths with wins. As per usual, here’s how I project the bracket to look like on Sunday. One schedule note, the annual Bison Media Blog Bracketology Show will air Saturday night with Jeff and me as we try to predict the field of 24. We also will be holding our live chat on Sunday morning beginning at 9:30 before the Selection Show starts at 10 on ESPN U. So here it is. Digest. Debate. Discuss.
AUTOMATIC BIDS (10)
- Colonial – James Madison
- Missouri Valley – North Dakota State
- Northeast – Central Connecticut State (already clinched)
- SoCon- Wofford (already clinched)
- Ohio Valley – Jacksonville State (already clinched)
- Pioneer – San Diego (already clinched)
- Big Sky – Southern Utah
- Patriot – Lehigh
- Big South – Kennesaw State
- Southland – Central Arkansas
AT-LARGE BIDS (14)
- Weber State
- Northern Arizona
- Stony Brook
- New Hampshire
- South Dakota State
- Northern Iowa
- Western Illinois
- South Dakota
- Sam Houston State
NEW TEAMS IN: New Hampshire, Central Connecticut State, Montana
TEAMS OUT: Duquesne, Samford, Western Carolina
The Bubble Teams:
- Illinois State (6-4): pretty simple here, win and in, lose and go home.
- Northern Iowa (6-4); same scenario with the Panthers, win and in.
- Montana (7-3); beat Montana State and go to the playoffs, lose and likely done
- Eastern Washington (6-4); need to beat Portland State and have Montana lose. Likely still need help after that.
- Monmouth (9-1); beat Kennesaw State. Lose, resume isn’t strong enough to warrant at-large(wins over Lafayette, Lehigh, Liberty, Holy Cross, lost to Albany)
- Delaware (7-3); beat Villanova, lose and likely home.
- New Hampshire (7-3); beat Albany and in. Even with loss at 7-4, FBS win over Georgia Southern gets them in.
- South Dakota (7-3); I don’t think they’re on the bubble. They’re in win or lose.
- Austin Peay (7-4); 3 FBS losses and lost by 20 to Jax State. Not enough quality wins to warrant bid.
- Samford (7-3); beat Furman and in the field. Lose and have just 6 D-1 wins, not enough.
- Western Carolina (7-4); shock everyone and beat North Carolina. Lost to Mercer should eliminate them.
- McNeese State (8-2); beat Lamar and have Nicholls lose. Nicholls has head to head on McNeese though, who lost by 30 to Central Arkansas.
12 teams will sweat it out on Saturday.