• Brackets:  Interactive  Printable

INDIANAPOLIS -- The field of 20 teams competing for the 2011 FCS title was announced Sunday by the NCAA Division I Football Championship Committee.

Sam Houston State (11-0) tops the bracket as the No. 1 seed after capturing the automatic-qualifying berth from the Southland Conference. The Bearkats are making their fifth appearance and first since 2004.

Second-seeded North Dakota State (10-1) is making its second consecutive appearance. The Bison captured the Missouri Valley Football Conference automatic berth.

Georgia Southern University (9-2), which is making its 18th overall tournament appearance, is the No. 3 seed. The six-time national champion Eagles captured the Southern Conference automatic berth.

Montana (9-2) earned the No. 4 seed after winning the Big Sky Conference automatic berth. The Grizzlies, the 1995 and 2001 national champion, are making its 21st appearance in the playoffs.

Rounding out this year’s seeded teams is Northern Iowa (9-2) with the No. 5 seed. The Panthers are making their 16th overall appearance.

First-round hosts include Big South automatic qualifier Stony Brook (8-3), Ohio Valley Conference automatic qualifier Tennessee Tech (7-3) along with Old Dominion (9-2) and Eastern Kentucky (7-4).

The top four national seeds will host winners from the first-round matchups. Others hosting second rounds game will be Northern Iowa, Appalachian State (8-3), Montana State (9-2) and the Colonial Athletic Association automatic qualifier Towson (9-2).

Other automatic qualifiers in the tournament include Albany (8-3), the Northeast Conference champion, which clinched its first trip into the championship. Also making its first trip into the championship is Norfolk State (9-2), winner of the automatic bid from the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference. Winning the Patriot League was the Mountain Hawks of Lehigh (10-1).

Other teams in the field: first-time participant Central Arkansas (8-3); James Madison (7-4); Maine (8-3); New Hampshire (8-3); and Wofford (8-3).

Ten conferences received automatic-qualifying berths: the Big Sky Conference, Big South Conference, Colonial Athletic Association, Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference, Missouri Valley Football Conference, Northeast Conference, Ohio Valley Conference, Patriot League, Southern Conference and Southland Conference.

The combination of NCAA.com and ESPN’s family of networks will once again provide coverage of all rounds of the 2011 FCS Championship. Television schedules and games times for all rounds of the 2011 championship will be updated daily at NCAA.com/fcs.

The 2012 FCS Championship Game is slated for 1 p.m. ET on Saturday, Jan. 7, at Pizza Hut Park in Frisco, Texas. The game will be televised on ESPN2 HD and on ESPN3 the championship game.

FCS Championship Participating Teams
Conference Automatic Qualifier (Record)
Big Sky No. 4 Montana (9-2)
Big South Stony Brook (8-3)
Colonial Athletic Association Towson (9-2)
Mid-Eastern Athletic Norfolk State (9-2)
Missouri Valley Football Conference No. 2 North Dakota State (10-1)
Northeast Conference Albany (N.Y.) (8-3)
Ohio Valley Conference Tennessee Tech (7-3)
Patriot League Lehigh (10-1)
Southern Conference No. 3 Georgia Southern (9-2)
Southland Conference No. 1 Sam Houston State (11-0)
 
Conference At-Large Qualifier (Record)
Big Sky Montana St. (9-2)
Colonial Athletic Association James Madison (7-4)
Colonial Athletic Association Maine (8-3)
Colonial Athletic Association New Hampshire (8-3)
Colonial Athletic Association Old Dominion (9-2)
Missouri Valley Football Conference No. 5 Northern Iowa (9-2)
Ohio Valley Conference Eastern Kentucky (7-4)
Southern Conference Appalachian State (8-3)
Southern Conference Wofford (8-3)
Southland Conference Central Arkansas (8-3)
Championship Appearances
School *Appearances (Last) Wins Losses *Championships
Albany (N.Y.) First      
Appalachian State 19 (2010) 24 15 3
Central Arkansas First      
Eastern Kentucky 20 (2008) 16 17 2
Georgia Southern 18 (2010) 41 11 6
James Madison 10 (2008) 8 8 1
Lehigh 9 (2010) 5 8 0
Maine 6 (2008) 2 5 0
Montana 21 (2009) 30 18 2
Montana State 6 (2010) 4 4 1
New Hampshire 10 (2010) 6 9 0
Norfolk State First      
North Dakota State 2 (2010) 2 1 0
Northern Iowa 16 (2010) 18 15 0
Old Dominion First      
Sam Houston State 5 (2004) 3 4 0
Stony Brook First      
Tennessee Tech First      
Towson First      
Wofford 5 (2010) 4 4 0
*Division I only