Weber State, James Madison highlight the upcoming FCS quarterfinals
Weber State at No. 1 James Madison: The battle of streaks
Weber State travels to Harrisonburg, Virginia to take on unbeaten James Madison Friday night. The Wildcats are winners of seven straight, including their second-round win over Southern Utah-the only FCS school to beat Weber State in the regular season. Senior quarterback Stefan Cantwell leads the team this postseason in passing and rushing yards, and has accounted for six total touchdowns.
The Dukes come into Friday’s game winners of 24 consecutive games, including last season’s national championship, which is the longest winning streak in all of Division I. James Madison’s defense led the way with five interceptions in its second-round win over Stony Brook. The Dukes offense shined through the air as Bryan Schor tossed for 255 yards and two touchdowns.
One streak will come to an end at Bridgeforth Stadium Friday night. The game kicks off at 7 p.m. eastern and can be seen on ESPN2.
No. 7 Wofford at No. 2 North Dakota State: The battle of seeded opponents
The only weekend matchup between seeded opponents features Wofford and North Dakota State in the depths of the Fargodome. Wofford ran, ran, and ran some more in its second-round game against Furman. The Terriers rushed for nearly 300 yards and three touchdowns led by dual-threat running backs Lennox McAfee and Andre Stoddard.
North Dakota State’s approach to its second-round game versus San Diego: Run. The Bison were able to crack the 300-yard mark in the rush column on just 46 carries. Quarterback Easton Stick ran for 54-yards and a touchdown, and added three touchdowns on just nine completed passes.
The winner of the line of scrimmage will walk out of the Fargodome with a berth in the semis. Saturday’s matchup can be seen on ESPN2 at 12 p.m. eastern Saturday.
New Hampshire at No. 5 South Dakota State: The battle of playoff experience
South Dakota State hosts New Hampshire Saturday in an atmosphere both squads have come accustomed to. New Hampshire has made the playoffs in 14 consecutive seasons. The Wildcats are aching to clinch their third semifinals trip in five years and will need their gritty defense to continue expanding its postseason resume. New Hampshire offense looks for a bounce back performance for whoever gets the nod.
#FCSPlayoffs Quarterfinal Matchups— FCS Football (@NCAA_FCS) December 3, 2017
Weber St at No. 1 JMU - Friday, 7 pm, ESPN2
No. 7 Wofford at No. 2 NDSU - Saturday, Noon, ESPN2
UNH at No. 5 SDSU - Saturday, 3 pm, ESPN3
Kennesaw St at No. 6 SHSU - Saturday, 8:30 pm, ESPN3
All times Eastern pic.twitter.com/T6yayddgF7
The Jackrabbits continued their streak with six straight playoff appearances, but are looking to climb the next hurdle and reach the semifinals for the first time. Junior quarterback Taryn Christion led the offense to its 37-point performance last week throwing three touchdowns and rushing in another. Christion utilized seven different receivers and kicker Chase Vinatieri capped off drives with every opportunity he was given.
Which team’s experience will catapult a semifinals birth? Kickoff is at 3 p.m. eastern in Brookings, South Dakota or live on ESPN3.
Kennesaw State at No. 6 Sam Houston State: The battle of opposites
Fan of offense? This games for you. Fan of defense? This games for you. Kennesaw State heads to Texas to take on Sam Houston State in Saturday’s nightcap. The Owls defense and its turnover plank has Kennesaw State sitting pretty after a pair of playoff victories in the first playoff appearance in school history. They haven’t allowed over 21 points in nearly two months, including last week’s upset over No. 3 Jacksonville State where they let up just 7 points and less than 200 yards.
The Bearkats offense, led by quarterback Jeremiah Briscoe, has had the door to the end zone wide open all-season long. Briscoe heaved for 505 yards and four touchdowns. His targets Nathan Stewart and Davion Davis accounted for 311 of those yards and all four TDs. The last time this high-octane offense scored less than 30 points? Two months ago.
One streak has to give way in order to determine the final spot in this season’s semifinals. The two square off at 8:30 p.m. eastern on ESPN3.
Defending champs or upset-destined? First-timers or playoff-experienced? Which squads will stamp their spot in the FCS semifinals and move one step closer to hoisting the hardware?