The FCS — once known as the I-AA level — began in 1978. But many current FCS schools have played college football for more than 100 years, and used to go to Bowl Games and go toe-to-toe with the Notre Dames, Penn States, Southern Cals and Alabamas.
RELATED: Top NFL Draft Picks from the FCS level since the FCS/I-AA began in 1978
Not surprisingly, if you go back before the FCS/I-AA beginning in 1978, there were also some pretty high draft picks. We've pointed out that Carson Wentz of North Dakota State was the highest NFL Draft pick of the FCS/I-AA era (since 1978), but did you know two No. 1 draft picks have come from schools that are now in the FCS?
Take a look at the 17 players who have been taken within the first five picks and attended current FCS schools.
|PICK||POS||PLAYER||SCHOOL||YRS||DFT YR||NFL TEAM||NOTEWORTHY|
|No. 1||LB-C||Chuck Bednarik||PENN||14||1949||Philadelphia||NFL Hall of Famer|
|1||DE||Too Tall Jones||TENNESSEE STATE||15||1974||Dallas||106 career sacks|
|2||BACK||Sid Luckman||COLUMBIA||12||1939||Chicago||NFL Hall of Famer|
|2||FB-LB||Joe Muha||VMI||5||1946||Phil/Pitt.||Two time All Pro|
|2||HB||Skippy Minisi||PENN||1||1948||N.Y. Giants||Only played one season|
|2||QB||Carson Wentz||NORTH DAKOTA STATE||1||2016||Philadelphia||3,700 pass yds in 2016|
|3||B||Boyd Brumbaugh||DUQUESNE||4||1938||Brooklyn||800 yds in 5 seasons|
|3||G||Fritz Barzilauskas||YALE||4||1947||Boston Yanks||36 career games|
|3||DE||Claude Humphrey||TENNESSEE STATE||13||1968||Atlanta||NFL Hall of Famer|
|3||T||Lionel Antoine||SOUTHERN ILLINOIS||6||1972||Chicago||68 career games|
|3||QB||Steve McNair||ALCORN STATE||13||1995||Houston||31,000 yds passing|
|4||QB-TB||Paul Governali||COLUMBIA||3||1946||Brooklyn||3,300 pass yds, 4 yrs|
|4||LB||Waymond Bryant||TENNESSEE STATE||4||1974||Chicago||3 yr starter for Bears|
|4||RB||Walter Payton||JACKSON STATE||13||1975||Chicago||NFL Hall of Famer|
|5||C||Mike Basrak||DUQUESNE||2||1937||Pittsburgh||1937 Orange Bowl MVP|
|5||HB||Bob MacLeod||DARTMOUTH||1||1939||Brooklyn||Also played Pro Hoops|
|5||DL||Richard Harris||GRAMBLING||7||1971||Philadelphia||856 career games|