TGIF! It's Week 5. Let's predict some scores.
[divider]TARYN VERSUS EASTON: Compare FCS Players | FCS Teams[divider]
We're starting to get into the meat of the FCS season here at HERO Sports, so it's time for the boys to start priming you for Game Day with a few Friday morning predictions. Start your weekend by checking in with our FCS prognostication department.
On to our six featured games!
[divider]MORE: Compare FCS Players | FCS Teams
TRENDING NOW: Sam Houston RB Joins Kelly Bryant on 4-Game Transfer Market
SOME LOVE FOR THE BIG GUYS: A Behind-the-Scenes Peak at Illinois State's Monstrous Left Tackle
THE BEST OF WEEK 4: Vote on The Best Play from Last Week
THE FCS PLAYOFF PICTURE: We Update our Playoff Bracket Every Monday[divider]
Game of the Week: No. 3 South Dakota State at No. 1 North Dakota State
Chase: NDSU 34, SDSU 31
I don't have the stones to pick against the Bison in this spot, but I do think South Dakota State finds some offensive success in Fargo on Saturday.
Sam: NDSU 27, SDSU 17
From being at home to Jabril Cox and Greg Menard playing in this year's game to Easton Stick looking to have a stronger performance, it's hard to predict against the Bison. It'll be close all game, but NDSU will seal it with a late TD.
Brian: NDSU 28, SDSU 20
Since NDSU's national title run began in 2011, SDSU is the only program in the nation that has beaten the Bison twice. No FBS team has beaten NDSU even once. SDSU is not scared of NDSU or the FargoDome. This will be a barnburner.
No. 2 James Madison at Richmond
Chase: JMU 30, Richmond 21
Only three of the last 14 matchups have been more than a one-score games. Neither team has won three rivalry contests in a row since Richmond did from 2000-2002.
Sam: JMU 38, Richmond 10
I know this is one of those "throw the records out the window" games, but I think JMU is going to roll. The Dukes have so much momentum while Richmond is going in the opposite direction with injuries.
Brian: JMU 35, Richmond 3
With Kyle Lauletta gone to the NFL, this game just changes a ton — rivalry or not. In years past, this has been a good game, but I think this time around James Madison just has too much going for it.
[divider]MORE FROM THE FCS GUYS: Brian and Co. Empty Out the Week 4 Mailbag[divider]
Central Arkansas at Sam Houston State
Chase: Central Arkansas 27, Sam Houston 24
I just feel like the Bearkats could fall flat here.
Sam: Sam Houston 28, Central Arkansas 24
UCA isn't as strong as last year along with SHSU absolutely needing this win. This game is the turning point for the Bearkats, for better or worse. I think they get it done.
Brian: Sam Houston 28, Central Arkansas 21
This is a must win situation for Sam Houston State if the Bearkats want to keep their FCS playoff hopes alive. It has been a tough couple of weeks for Sam Houston State, but they'll answer the challenge against a rebuilding but tough UCA program. This may end up the best win for Sam Houston his year.
No. 5 Eastern Washington at Montana State
Chase: Eastern Washington 51, Montana State 31
Montana State's defense has not impressed me. I think the Eagles break things open early in the third quarter.
Sam: EWU 45, Montana State 42
A lot of points in this one. I think Troy Andersen is going to run wild. But EWU is still the better team, even on the road.
Brian: Eastern Washington 35, Montana State 27
This should be an entertaining matchup to keep an eye on. EWU has emerged as one of the dominant powers in the FCS, but the Bobcats are tough in Bozeman and it'll be a packed house of 20K plus.
[divider]MORE MONTANA STATE: Bobcats? More Like Thundercats[divider]
No. 13 Villanova at No. 18 Stony Brook
Chase: Villanova 20, Stony Brook 15
Ugly game coming. This one is likely to be a rock fight.
Sam: Nova 17, Stony Brook 10
This is a football guy's football game. Two hardnosed teams going at it. In the end, Nova's stronger offense will be the difference.
Brian: Villanova 16, Stony Brook 13
This game not only should settle a CAA score, it may help us determine who is the No. 2 or No. 3 team in the league behind James Madison. And trust me … we need that help. PLEASE.
Samford at No.4 Kennesaw State
Chase: Kennesaw 38, Samford 27
I'm a believer in Samford, but at a certain point, you are what your record says you are, and Samford is a 1-3 team that has yet to beat a Division I team. Compare that against a top-5 team that's going to run the ball methodically and keep the ball away from the Bulldogs. Kennesaw by double digits.
Sam: KSU 35, Samford 14
I don't see Samford having the defense to slow down KSU's running attack. And the Owls have the defense to limit Hodges to a respectable game.
Brian: Kennesaw State 38, Samford 27
If you've written Samford off already, you're making a mistake. The last two losses to SoCon teams could easily have gone the other way, and you can't help but wonder if the after effect of falling to Florida State after dominating the Seminoles for more than 3 quarters had something to do with the past two weeks. This is going to be a very, very good game — and we'll be talking about it in November when the playoff seedings are released.
SUBSCRIBE: To the HERO Sports FCS Podcast
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: It's Time for College GameDay to Return to Fargo
MORE COLLEGE FOOTBALL: Kentucky, Hawaii Among Best Bets in Week 5