Publish date:

FCS Rankings: Power Poll for Week 11

Taryn Christion SDSU QB.jpg

SDSU QB Taryn Christion

The final two weeks of the FCS regular season look to be a dandy with teams jockeying for conference titles and playoff bids.

FCS

There’s not enough elbow room with only 24 spots (10 conference champs, 14 at-large) to go around and a large bubble. Some teams will earn bids starting this coming weekend.

Here is the Athlon FCS Power Poll heading into Week 11 of the regular season:

1. James Madison

(9-0, 6-0 CAA)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: 1

Last Week’s Result: 38-3 win over Rhode Island

Of Note: The Dukes scored 31 unanswered points in the second half to pull away to a Division I-leading 21st straight win.

Next Opponent: No. 22 Richmond (Nov. 11)

2. Jacksonville State

(8-1, 6-0 Ohio Valley)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: 3

Last Week’s Result: 59-23 win over Murray State

Of Note: Junior quarterback Bryant Horn isn’t dazzling, but he has settled into the starting job nicely.

Next Opponent: at UT Martin (Nov. 11)

3. North Dakota State

(8-1, 5-1 Missouri Valley)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: 2

Last Week’s Result: 33-21 loss to then-No. 7 South Dakota State

Of Note: The Bison committed an uncharacteristic five turnovers (quarterback Easton Stick had four) in falling to rival SDSU for the second straight time in the regular season.

Next Opponent: No. 10 South Dakota (Nov. 11)

4. Central Arkansas

(8-1, 7-0 Southland)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: 5

Last Week’s Result: 42-14 win over Lamar

Of Note: Young running backs Kierre Crossley and Carlos Blackman do a great job of complementing each other.

Next Opponent: at Incarnate Word (Nov. 11)

5. Sam Houston State

(8-1, 6-1 Southland)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: 6

Last Week’s Result: 57-20 win over Incarnate Word

Of Note: Senior wide receiver Yedidiah Louis (nine receptions for 100 yards and two touchdowns) has come back strong after missing three games in October.

Next Opponent: at Abilene Christian (Nov. 11)

6. South Dakota State

(7-2, 4-2 Missouri Valley)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: 7

Last Week’s Result: 33-21 win over No. 2 North Dakota State

Of Note: In the win over NDSU, senior tight end Dallas Goedert had his fourth straight game with more than100 receiving yards.

Next Opponent: No. 19 Illinois State (Nov. 11)

7. Elon

(8-1, 6-0 CAA)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: 8

Last Week’s Result: 33-30 2OT win over Towson

Of Note: Brelynd Cyphers (129) and De’Sean McNair (107) gave the Phoenix their first pair of 100-yard running backs in a game since 2009.

Next Opponent: at No. 25 New Hampshire (Nov. 11)

8. Wofford

(8-1, 6-1 Southern)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: 9

Last Week’s Result: 24-21 2OT win over Chattanooga

Of Note: Like Elon, the Terriers are prepared for tight games in the playoffs. They have played only one game decided by more than seven points.

Next Opponent: at VMI (Nov. 11)

9. Southern Utah

(7-2, 5-1 Big Sky)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: 11

Last Week’s Result: 47-21 win over North Dakota

Of Note: Jay Green rushed for three touchdowns and the SUU defense forced four turnovers while moving into a three-way tie for first place in the Big Sky (with Northern Arizona and Weber State).

Next Opponent: at UC Davis (Nov. 11)

10. South Dakota

(7-2, 4-2 Missouri Valley)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: 4

Last Week’s Result: 34-29 loss to then-No. 19 Northern Iowa

Of Note: Having committed four turnovers in their first eight games, the Coyotes doubled the season total with four against UNI.

Next Opponent: at No. 3 North Dakota State (Nov. 11)

11. Western Illinois

(6-3, 3-3 Missouri Valley)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: 14

Last Week’s Result: 31-14 win over then-No. 13 Illinois State

Of Note: The Leathernecks ripped off 31 unanswered points in the second half, including two Sean McGuire touchdown passes, to win the 100th all-time meeting with Illinois State.

Next Opponent: at Indiana State (Nov. 11)

12. Weber State

(7-2, 5-1 Big Sky)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: 15

Last Week’s Result: 28-20 win over then-No. 12 Eastern Washington

Of Note: Quarterback Stefan Cantwell (296 yards of total offense, three TD passes) outperformed his EWU counterpart, Gage Gubrud, in the big road win.

Next Opponent: at Portland State (Nov. 11)

13. North Carolina A&T

(9-0, 6-0 MEAC)

Image placeholder title

Recommended Articles

Last Week’s Ranking: 16

Last Week’s Result: 35-7 win over Norfolk State

Of Note: Linebacker Jeremy Taylor’s 47-yard interception return for a score was the Aggies’ fifth defensive touchdown of the season.

Next Opponent: Savannah State (Nov. 11)

14. Northern Iowa

(5-4, 4-2 Missouri Valley)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: 19

Last Week’s Result: 34-29 win over then-No. 4 South Dakota

Of Note: Isaiah Weston became the first UNI wide receiver to catch two touchdowns in a game this decade.

Next Opponent: at Missouri State (Nov. 11)

15. Furman

(6-3, 5-1 Southern)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: 17

Last Week Result: Bye

Of Note: Head coach Clay Hendrix has brought back the run game with Antonio Wilcox, Kealand Dirks and Darius Morehead combining for 1,538 of the Paladins’ 2,187 rushing yards.

Next Opponent: The Citadel (Nov. 11)

16. Stony Brook

(7-2, 6-1 CAA)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: 18

Last Week’s Result: 28-21 OT win over Albany

Of Note: Joe Carbone’s 13-yard touchdown pass to Harrison Jackson provided the OT winner. One more win should be enough to get the Seawolves in the playoffs.

Next Opponent: Wagner (Nov. 11)

17. Northern Arizona

(6-3, 5-1 Big Sky)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: 10

Last Week’s Result: 17-15 loss to Montana

Of Note: There’s no underplaying the importance, and weirdness, of star quarterback Case Cookus getting ejected in the first quarter at Montana for targeting while he blocked on a reverse.

Next Opponent: Montana State (Nov. 11)

18. Western Carolina

(7-3, 5-2 Southern)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: 21

Last Week’s Result: 31-19 win over The Citadel

Of Note: Double trouble: Detrez Newsome ran for 197 yards and a touchdown and Tyrie Adams passed for three scores against The Citadel.

Next Opponent: Mercer (Nov. 11)

19. Illinois State

(6-3, 4-2 Missouri Valley)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: 13

Last Week’s Result: 31-14 loss to then-No. 14 Western Illinois

Of Note: Having held a 14-0 halftime lead, the Redbirds suffered a shocking second-half collapse. They’ve been outscored 76-7 in the second half of their three losses.

Next Opponent: at No. 6 South Dakota State (Nov. 11)

20. Samford

(6-3, 4-2 Southern)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: 22

Last Week’s Result: 20-3 win over Mercer

Of Note: The Bulldogs had a pair of second-half safeties to get back on track after a home loss to Chattanooga.

Next Opponent: ETSU (Nov. 11)

21. Delaware

(6-3, 4-2 CAA)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: 24

Last Week’s Result: 31-17 win over Maine

Of Note: Under first-year head coach Danny Rocco, the Blue Hens have locked up their first winning season since 2013.

Next Opponent: Albany (Nov. 11)

22. Richmond

(5-4, 3-3 CAA)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: 25

Last Week’s Result: 22-0 win over Villanova

Of Note: Senior quarterback Kyle Lauletta surpassed 3,000 passing yards for the third straight season.

Next Opponent: at No. 1 James Madison (Nov. 11)

23. Eastern Washington

(5-4, 4-2 Big Sky)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: 12

Last Week’s Result: 28-20 loss to then-No. 15 Weber State

Of Note: The Eagles face must-wins against North Dakota and Portland and might need some help elsewhere to claim an at-large playoff bid.

Next Opponent: at North Dakota (Nov. 11)

24. Kennesaw State

(8-1, 3-0 Big South)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: Unranked

Last Week’s Result: 16-14 win over Montana State

Of Note: The third-year program extended its winning streak to eight since a 28-23 loss at Samford on opening night. The Owls’ triple option pounded Montana State for 346 rushing yards.

Next Opponent: Charleston Southern (Nov. 11)

25. New Hampshire

(6-3, 4-2 CAA)

Image placeholder title

Last Week’s Ranking: Unranked

Last Week’s Result: 35-16 win over William & Mary

Of Note: As veteran head coach Sean McDonnell earned his first career win at W&M, Trevor Knight passed for 406 yards and four touchdowns.

Next Opponent: at No. 7 Elon (Nov. 11)

Power Poll Possibilities: Grambling State (8-1, 5-0 SWAC); Monmouth (8-1, 3-0 Big South); Nicholls (7-2, 6-1 Southland)

— Written by Craig Haley, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network. Haley has covered the FCS level since 1999 and is the national writer for www.fcs.football. He appears frequently on radio shows and podcasts to discuss everything FCS. Follow him on Twitter @CraigHaley.

(Photo courtesy South Dakota State Athletics)