There were three more FCS victories over FBS teams on the second weekend of college football. Illinois State continued a 2016 trend from last weekend.
Illinois State, a powerhouse team from a top-notch FCS conference, continued the trend of last week which saw some of these teams knock-off in-state, regional, FBS and Power Five, rivals. The Redbirds, from the Missouri Valley, ventured into Big 10 country and came away with a 9-7 squeaker win at Northwestern on a field goal as the clock expired. Add this to Northwestern’s 22-21 loss last week to Western Michigan and there may be big signs of trouble for the Wildcats this year. More offense along the shores of Lake Michigan would certainly help the Wildcats. Illinois State is at home against Eastern Illinois this coming weekend. Here is how Northwestern saw the game. At the end of the video, note how the Illinois State fans relegated to the end zone had the best seats in the house.
And, speaking of the devil, Eastern Illinois also did the FCS victories over FBS honors Saturday. The Ohio Valley member traveled to Mid-American Conference member Miami of Ohio and won 21-17. The Panthers scored 14 points in the fourth quarter, including a touchdown in the last minute to get the win. Both Eastern Illinois and Illinois State were in the FCS playoffs last year, so this could be a good one coming-up.
Another MAC team also went down at the hands of an FCS opponent. Kent State lost to visiting North Carolina A&T in a four overtime slugfest, 39-36. North Carolina A&T showed a tremendous amount of grit in pulling off this win. This is a rare win for a Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference team against an FBS foe. The Aggies were the best HBCU team last season. It will be interesting to see what they can do at Tulsa this coming weekend in another FBS game.
With seven FCS victories over FBS teams in 2016 already, the FCS looks to potentially surpass both the 2014 and 2015 totals of FCS victories over FBS teams in 2016. In 2014 there were eight and in 2015 there were nine. Although the number of these FCS versus FBS games will dwindle dramatically after the next two weeks, it appears that both the 2014 and 2015 marks may be in jeopardy.
A review of the upcoming schedule reveals a number of FCS games that could be quite problematic for the FBS hosts. There should be no looking ahead by coaches, players or fans. As always, the operative words are “should be.” Thus, the ever-present question lurks in the darkness of night. Who will be the next victim?