Update: Full FCS Playoff Predictions
How a team finishes the regular season is a big deal in the eyes of the FCS playoff committee. So today was an ideal time for Montana State to play its best game of the season, not only to claim bragging rights for another year with a 48-14 Brawl of the Wild win against rival Montana, but for seeding purposes. This also means it wasn't an ideal time for the Grizzlies to play their worst game of the season.
Earlier this week, I laid out what the scenarios are for the outcome of this game. What I didn't think about was what happens if the Bobcats just absolutely physically manhandle the Griz and blow them out. So obviously, the Bobcats are a seed with a 9-3 overall record and 9-2 mark against FCS opponents. There are still ongoing games that will shift things around, but MSU could be anywhere from a 4-7 seed, in my opinion.
But what happens to Montana? Does this give the playoff committee a reason to knock the Griz out of the seeds with MSU, Weber State and Sac State being seeds? As I type this, Sac State trails UC Davis 7-3, so that would help Montana. The Griz are also 9-3 overall and 9-2 against the FCS. A good resume, but an eyesore of a performance today. Meanwhile, Weber and Sac State entered this weekend with one FCS loss. Weber lost to Montana. And Sac State lost to Weber.
A mess, right?
It helps Montana that Illinois State lost today to get dropped from the seeding discussion. But a team like Wofford, Villanova or Central Arkansas could now move ahead of Montana. Wofford has eight FCS wins, which all came in a row to end the season (not including a November FBS loss). Villanova and UCA both have nine D1 wins with UCA beating an FBS opponent. UNI has eight wins and could be another team in the discussion for a seed.
As I type this, SDSU is losing to 4-7 South Dakota 24-21 in the fourth quarter. The Jacks would probably drop out of the seeds with a bad loss if this score holds.
So there very well could be room for Montana in the seeds still. But an ugly loss to end the regular season may hurt the Griz.
We'll be back later tonight with our full playoff field predictions once all these ongoing games are settled. This rambling article is a lot easier to do than to fit all of this info in some tweets.
To sum it up…
Montana State. A seed. Book it.
Montana. A seed could still happen. Sac State and SDSU losing would very much help.