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FCS Rankings: Top 25 Power Poll Following Week 4

FCS Rankings: Top 25 Power Poll Following Week 4

FCS Rankings: Top 25 Power Poll Following Week 4

The Ivy League arrived on the 2019 scene this past Saturday, flexing its muscle with Princeton, Dartmouth, and Yale. Even those strong teams will have to work to be a part of the appropriately named Athlon FCS Power Poll.

Top 25 teams are holding their own with greater consistency — sans 2018 national runner-up Eastern Washington, a stunning 1-3 and now on the outside. Many teams hold positive vibes heading into conference play.

Here's the Athlon FCS Power Poll following Week 4 games:

1. North Dakota State

(4-0, 0-0 Missouri Valley)

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Last Week's Ranking: 1

Last Week's Result: 27-16 win over UC Davis

Notable: Michael Tutsie and Cole Karcz had important interceptions in the fourth quarter as the Bison fended off an upset and earned their 25th straight win — the third-longest streak in FCS history.

Next Game: at Illinois State (Oct. 5)

2. James Madison

(3-1, 0-0 CAA)

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Last Week's Ranking: 2

Last Week's Result: 37-14 win over Chattanooga

Notable: Percy Agyei-Obese ran for 114 yards as well as the game-opening and game-closing TDs. Opponents are converting less than 25 percent of third downs against the Dukes.

Next Game: at Elon (Sept. 28)

3. South Dakota State

(3-1, 0-0 Missouri Valley)

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Last Week's Ranking: 3

Last Week's Result: 43-7 win over Southern Utah

Notable: The Jackrabbits blocked three kicks in the win. After being sidelined by injury for two games, quarterback J'Bore Gibbs returned to the lineup to throw two TD passes.

Next Game: Southern Illinois (Oct. 5)

4. UC Davis

(2-2, 0-0 Big Sky)

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Last Week's Ranking: 5

Last Week's Result: 27-16 loss to North Dakota State

Notable: An upset of the two-time defending FCS champ was within reach in the fourth quarter. Jake Maier passed for 312 yards as the Aggies outgained the Bison, 422-354.

Next Game: Montana (Sept. 28)

5. Weber State

(1-2, 0-0 Big Sky)

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Last Week's Ranking: 6

Last Week's Result: Bye

Notable: This bears repeating: The Wildcats allowed only one offensive touchdown and 19 points to two FBS opponents. But UNI is coming to Ogden.

Next Game: Northern Iowa (Sept. 28)

6. Northern Iowa

(2-1, 0-0 Missouri Valley)

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Last Week's Ranking: 7

Last Week's Result: 13-6 win over Idaho State

Notable: In a game with just 437 yards, UNI got interceptions from Omar Brown, Bryce Flater, and Austin Evans.

Next Game: at Weber State (Sept. 28)

7. Montana State

(3-1, 0-0 Big Sky)

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Last Week's Ranking: 9

Last Week's Result: 56-21 win over Norfolk State

Notable: The Bobcats switched to quarterback Tucker Rovig and he responded by completing 21 of 27 passes for 221 yards and four touchdowns.

Next Game: Northern Arizona (Sept. 28)

8. Illinois State

(3-1, 0-0 Missouri Valley)

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Last Week's Ranking: 12

Last Week's Result: 40-27 win over Northern Arizona

Notable: Andrew Edgar caught 12 passes for 228 yards and two touchdowns. The Redbirds' win clinched the Big Sky-MVFC Challenge series for the Valley.

Next Game: North Dakota State (Oct. 5)

9. Furman

(2-2, 1-0 Southern)

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Last Week's Ranking: 13

Last Week's Result: 45-10 win over Mercer

Notable: The Paladins cruised in their SoCon opener with 600 yards of offense, including Devin Wynn (99 yards) and Corey Watkins (97 yards, 2 TDs) leading a 410-yard ground assault.

Next Game: ETSU (Sept. 28)

10. Villanova

(4-0, 1-0 CAA)

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Last Week's Ranking: 19

Last Week's Result: 52-45 OT win over Towson

Notable: QB Daniel Smith accounted for his sixth touchdown with a game-winning, 2-yard run in overtime. Justin Covington had 27 carries for a career-high 194 yards and one touchdown.

Next Game: Maine (Sept. 28)

11. Towson

(3-1, 1-1 CAA)

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Last Week's Ranking: 4

Last Week's Result: 52-45 OT loss to Villanova

Notable: Quarterback Tom Flacco passed for 304 yards and a touchdown and rushed for 110 yards and a score. Defensive back Coby Tippett racked up 13 tackles.

Next Game: at Florida (Sept. 28)

12. Maine

(2-2, 0-1 CAA)

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Last Week's Ranking: 10

Last Week's Result: 35-21 win over Colgate

Notable: Earnest Edwards had 100- and 95-yard kick returns for touchdowns in the same quarter (third). He also caught a 40-yard touchdown while finishing with 256 all-purpose yards.

Next Game: at Villanova (Sept. 28)

13. Central Arkansas

(3-1, 1-0 Southland)

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Last Week's Ranking: 11

Last Week's Result: 35-16 loss to Hawaii

Notable: Aloha to running back Carlos Blackman rushing for 147 yards and a touchdown and connecting on his second TD pass of the season.

Next Game: at Nicholls (Oct. 5)

14. Kennesaw State

(3-1, 0-0 Big South)

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Last Week's Ranking: 14

Last Week's Result: 35-24 win over Missouri State

Notable: Bronson Rechsteiner (10 carries, program-record 221 yards, TD) and Isaac Foster (8-183-2) both averaged more than 22 yards per carry.

Next Game: Reinhardt (Sept. 28)

15. Southeastern Louisiana

(2-1, 1-0 Southland)

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Last Week's Ranking: 15

Last Week's Result: 45-34 win over Lamar

Notable: Chason Virgil passed for 307 yards and four touchdowns and Cole Kelley added his third TD pass of the season off the bench.

Next Game: at Northwestern State (Sept. 28)

16. Jacksonville State

(3-1, 0-0 Ohio Valley)

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Last Week's Ranking: 16

Last Week's Result: 30-12 win over North Alabama

Notable: QB Zerrick Cooper and wide receiver Josh Pearson connected for three touchdown passes.

Next Game: at Austin Peay (Sept. 28)

17. Montana

(3-1, 0-0 Big Sky)

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Last Week's Ranking: 17

Last Week's Result: 47-27 win over Monmouth

Notable: Seniors Dalton Sneed (334 passing yards, 4 TDs) and Dante Olson (13 tackles, including one sack and 2.5 tackles for a loss) powered the Griz. Malik Flower's 100-yard kickoff return for a score was the show-stopper - the longest for the Griz since 1936.

Next Game: at UC Davis (Sept. 28)

18. Nicholls

(2-1, 0-0 Southland)

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Last Week's Ranking: 18

Last Week's Result: 48-30 win over Stephen F. Austin

Notable: Julien Gums rushed for 135 yards and three touchdowns, and Laryon James had 10 tackles and an interception.

Next Game: at Texas State (Sept. 28)

19. North Carolina A&T

(2-1, 0-0 MEAC)

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Last Week's Ranking: 20

Last Week's Result: Bye

Notable: The Aggies offense has been sluggish in the first quarter, managing only three points in three games.

Next Game: Delaware State (Sept. 26)

20. Youngstown State

(3-0, 0-0 Missouri Valley)

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Last Week's Ranking: 22

Last Week's Result: Bye

Notable: With QB Mark Waid scoring twice on Wildcat plays, the Penguins can mix and match with three signal-callers (also starter Nathan Mays and strong-armed Joe Craycraft).

Next Game: Robert Morris (Sept. 28)

21. Elon

(2-2, 1-0 CAA)

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Last Week's Ranking: 21

Last Week's Result: 49-7 loss to Wake Forest

Notable: To stay in the power poll, the Phoenix will have to beat No. 2 James Madison and the head coach, Curt Cignetti, who led them to playoff appearances in 2017 and '18.

Next Game: James Madison (Sept. 28)

22. The Citadel

(2-2, 0-0 Southern)

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Last Week's Ranking: 23

Last Week's Result: 22-13 win over Charleston Southern

Notable: Bragging rights in Charleston again go to the Bulldogs after Remus Bulmer rushed for two touchdowns.

Next Game: at Samford (Sept. 28)

23. Southeast Missouri

(2-2, 0-0 Ohio Valley)

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Last Week's Ranking: 24

Last Week's Result: 56-10 win over West Virginia State

Notable: The Redhawks averaged 10 yards per play while battering an overmatched opponent with 669 offensive yards.

Next Game: Tennessee Tech (Oct. 5)

24. Princeton

(1-0, 0-0 Ivy)

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Last Week's Ranking: N/R

Last Week's Result: 49-7 win over Butler

Notable: The Tigers were picked third in the Ivy League's preseason poll after a perfect season last year. Kevin Davidson was 18 of 21 for 341 yards and two TDs on opening day.

Next Game: at Bucknell (Sept. 28)

25. Delaware

3-1, 1-0 CAA)

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Last Week's Ranking: 25

Last Week's Result: 28-27 win over Penn

Notable: Penn failed on a two-point conversion attempt after making it a one-point game with 2:24 left. New Blue Hens QB Nolan Henderson has five TD passes in his last five quarters.

Next Game: at Pittsburgh (Sept. 28)

— 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 of Nicholls Athletics)