2012 Season Schedule Winningest Active FCS Coaches

North Dakota State won its first FCS championship in 2011, while Sam Houston State lost just one game. Unfortunately for the Bearkats, it came in that national title game to the Bison. Check out the top teams to watch in 2012.


2011 Statistics
Appalachian State returns 16 starters -- five offense, eight defense, three specialists -- from last year’s squad that finished 8-4. The Mountaineers' offense will look to bounce back from a season in which it struggled, at least in comparison to what they are used to in Boone, N.C. For the first time in seven seasons, ASU ended a campaign averaging less than 400 yards of total offense per game (390.2 YPG/38th in FCS) and less than 30 points per game (28.6 PPG/38th in FCS). Junior Jamal Jackson is back after stepping in as the starting quarterback when DeAndre Presley was injured.
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2011 Statistics
Georgia Southern returns eight starters on offense including Southern Conference Freshman of the Year Dominique Swope, who rushed for 1,023 yards and seven touchdowns. Swope tallied 165 yards on the ground against Wofford to help Georgia Southern lock up the SoCon title and followed that up with a 255 yard performance in the FCS playoff opener against Old Dominion. The Eagles finished with the nation's second-best rushing attack with 323.50 yards per game, thanks to the triple-option attack.
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2011 Statistics
James Madison is one of 10 teams in the Colonial Athletic Association that is ranked or receiving votes in the preseason polls. Dynamic running back Dae'Quan Scott returns after rushing for 1,304 yards and 12 touchdowns in 2011. The Dukes face a tough test in the third week of the season, when they travel to Washington, D.C. to take on West Virginia at FedEx Field. It will be a stiff test for a defense that finished 11th in the nation last season, allowing only 299.77 yards per game.
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2011 Statistics
Montana is looking for a new starting quarterback after Jordan Johnson was suspended this summer. Leading the charge in fall practice has been Trent McKinney, a redshirt freshman, who looks like he'll be under center when the Grizz face South Dakota on Sept. 1. Montana averaged over 420 yards per game last season, but it was a balanced attack --  210.86 on the ground and 209.50 through the air. Leading rusher Peter Nguyen returns after rushing for 835 yards in 2011.
 
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2011 Statistics
Montana State has won back-to-back Big Sky Championships and made it to the quarterfinals of the FCS playoffs in 2011. The offense should be loaded in 2012 with starting quarterback DeNarius McGhee, who has thrown for more than 6,000 yards in his career, along with two running backs with 1,000-yard seasons on their resumes in Cody Kirk and Orenzo Davis.
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2011 Statistics
North Dakota State was built on defense en route to its first FCS national championship in 2011. The Bison finished the year allowing only 12.73 points per game -- good for No. 1 in the nation. And what was even more impressive for NDSU? It allowed 13 total points in the final three playoff games. Steady quarterback Brock Jensen does return to guide the offense after averaging 179.80 total yards last season.
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2011 Statistics
Northern Iowa's 2011 season ended in disappointing fashion with a 48-10 loss at Montana in the quarterfinals. The worst part for the Panthers was the 48 points allowed, after allowing no more than 27 -- to eventual national champion North Dakota State -- in any game. UNI still finished the season allowing just 19.0 points per game and was one of the top teams in the country in turnover margin at 1.08. On offense, the Panthers will need to replace dynamic quarterback Tirrell Rennie, who averaged 223.92 yards of offense per game. UNI will face two Big Ten programs in 2012, starting the year at Wisconsin before a trip to Iowa two weeks later.
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2011 Statistics
Before it moves on to Conference USA in 2013, Old Dominion will look to build off a successful 2011 season in the CAA. The emergence of quarterback Taylor Heinicke has ODU fans excited. As a freshman, Heinicke threw 25 touchdowns and only one interception, after coming in for injured starter Thomas DeMarco against UMass. That one interception was on a hail mary.
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2011 Statistics
Sam Houston State's only loss last season was in the national championship game to North Dakota State. If that doesn't leave a team hungry, nothing will. Behind running back Tim Flanders, the Bearkats had the No. 6 rushing attack in the nation with 255.93 yards per game. On the flip side, its defense held opponents to only 72.93 yards on the ground. Not a bad combination.
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2011 Statistics
Towson burst onto the scene in the CAA in 2011, making the conference even deeper than most seasons. The Tigers' season ended in heartbreak fashion with a loss in the second round of the playoffs to Lehigh 40-38. Leading the charge will be senior quarterback Grant Enders, who finished seventh in the nation in passing efficiency.
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