When it comes to the one-bid FCS conferences like the NEC, Patriot League and the Pioneer Football League, a lot of casual fans may assume Duquesne, Colgate and San Diego are easily the favorites.
And that's understandable.
Duquesne won a playoff game in 2018. Colgate made a run to the quarterfinals. And USD hasn't lost a conference game since 2015. But we at HERO Sports thought these conferences would be much more competitive than what's on the surface, not only because there were some close games last year, but also because of what some other teams have coming back in 2019.
Some Week 2 results tell us we may be on to something. For the second year in a row, a Pioneer team defeated a ranked MVFC opponent. Dayton beat No. 12 Indiana State 42-35 on the road and there was nothing fluky about it. It was a statement performance.
Now, last year when Butler defeated No. 24 Youngstown State, the Bulldogs went on to finish 2-6 in the Pioneer standings. But with Dayton, this is a team that went 5-3 last year in conference play, including a narrow loss to San Diego. This win against the Sycamores tells us this team is ready to compete for a PFL title.
The same can be said for Holy Cross. We track recruiting at HERO Sports and this program has crushed it. With a big 13-10 win against the CAA's New Hampshire, the Crusaders put the Patriot League on notice. With Colgate looking a little down to start the season, the race for a conference title looks to be wide open.
We discussed the two huge wins on the latest episode of B-Mac and Herd's FCS Podcast, which is also available on iTunes, Spotify, iHeart, Stitcher and Spreaker.
The conversation begins at 24:00.
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