The Battle In The Trenches, Part 1: Meet Pat Paschall

Rob Weiss, FCS Update

This weekend, those of us in the Fargodome are in for what should amount to be an epic battle. North Dakota State’s running back, Pat Paschall, is currently the number one running back in all of FCS football. Paschall, coming into the game averaging 150.8 yards per game, is going to be up against the defense from the University of Northern Iowa. The Panther defense comes into Saturday’s game ranked in the top 10 in 3 major statistical categories.

 Paschall, The Bison’s fifth year senior from St. Louis, Mo., was originally recruited to Georgia Southern University, where in his redshirt season he was named scout team player of the year. Unhappy with the situation in Statesboro, Paschall headed to Dodge City Community College, where he would eventually be recruited by North Dakota State.

In his sophmore season, his first with the Bison, Paschall would run the ball 84 times for a total of 530 yards and five TDs. He also had one reception for 16 yards and a touchdown.

His junior year was very similar to his sophmore campaign. He would run the ball 108 times for 601 yards and two TDs, so more carries, a little more yardage, but less TDs. He would also catch nine passes for 51 yards.

The 2009 season has already been great to Pat. Through 5 games he has rushed the ball 100 times for 765 yards (7.65 yards per carry) and 5 TDs. Career highs less than halfway through the season in both yards and TDs. He also has 6 receptions for 120 yards.

This week the Bison’s running game faces a highly ranked Panther defense.

We’ll turn to the Panther defense on Thursday and will finish next week with a post game commentary on what should be a great battle.

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Site Updates 10/5/09

We have been hard at work here at ChampionshipSubdivison.com and have the following additions to announce to you! Hope you enjoy what we are doing here and we are looking forward to continuing the development process and providing you the BEST resource for FCS football! The following resources are possible due to the hard work of the members of this site.  Join our community today and grow with us.

1. FCS Schedules: Complete schedules broken down by conference and team. We currently have the complete 2009 schedules available and are working on the 2010 schedule. We will be creating additional future schedules as we get information on potential/confirmed games.

2. National School and Stadium Map: This is a complete map showing all FCS schools, color coded by conference.  Click on the school and it brings up information and links to help you find what ever you may be looking for.

3. ChampionshipSubdivision.com Top 25 Football Poll: We will be releasing our very first top 25 poll tomorrow.  We opted to wait till the season was underway to get a better representation of how the teams are actually doing verses how they were ranked before the season even started.  It will be very interesting to see how this turns out.

We are working on many other features as this post is being written so please check back!  If you have any great ideas for this site, please send me a PM on the forums. I love to hear what fans want and do everything I can to provide it!

Thanks for supporting this site and have a great season!

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Top 25 Summary 10/3

Rob Weiss, FCS Update

Crazy day in the Top 25. I had the opportunity to watch four games today. Here’s a rundown on my predictions, how it went down, and what I thought of the outcome.

1. Richmond is idle.

 

2. Villanova vs. No. 4 William and Mary

My prediction: William and Mary 24  Villanova 21

Reality: Villanova 28  William and Mary 17

 William and Mary just didn’t really seem like they were ready to play in the first half. The Tribe’s QB, R.J. Archer had enough problems on his own. He ooked like he lacked the necessary confidence to make the plays he needed to. When it wasn’t the offense stalling, it was the defense making errors. One Villanova drive was extended by an unsportsmanlike conduct flag on a defensive player who felt the need to taunt and injured played who had just been rocked on a hard hit.

The Tribe went into halftime down 21-6, but back ready to play in the 2nd half. It was just too little, too late for the Tribe.

Villanova on the other hand looked like the best team in the country. Easily #1 in my mind.  The Villanova offense, led by QB Chris Whitney, was very balanced with148 yards on the ground and 169 through the air. The only issue I saw was the defense. The Wildcats defense gave 472 yards, but managed to keep the Tribe to 17 points. The Tribe’s first drive was ended by an INT in a goalline situation. Had that play gone differently, we may have seen a different game.

Was very thankful for the invention of DVR. Was great to come back and watch this game on Versus.

 

3. Northern Iowa  vs. Indiana State

My prediction: Northern Iowa 52  Indiana State 7

Reality: Northern Iowa 62  Indiana State 7

I called this one pretty closely. Northern Iowa was ahead 42-0 at the half. All of starters on offense andmost of the starters on defense sat out the entire second half. Indiana State had a 12 yard scoring drive after a UNI fumble. Indiana State was held to 101 yards of total offense. Not too much to say about this game. One highlight was UNI FB Matt Strathman, a junior, who led the Panthers with 133 yards on 16 carries.

 

5. Montana is idle.

 

6. New Hampshire vs. Towson

My prediction: New Hampshire 28  Towson 10

Reality: New Hampshire 57  Towson 7

Man, I was a little short on New Hampshire scoring. The Wildcats beat my prediction in the 1st quarter. The Wildcats were without junior QB R.J. Toman, but still managed to put an old fashioned whopping on the Tigers. The offense was assisted by a safety, a TD on the ensuing kick return, and 2 INTs returned for a TD.

 

7. James Madison vs. Hofstra

My Prediction: James Madison 38  Hofstra 7

Reality: Hofstra 24  James Madison 17

Wow. This game threw me for a loop. I couldn’t believe it as I checked the game throughout the afternoon. I thought ESPN had gotten it wrong like they do at times. Although this game was effected by weather(lightning delay in the first half), good teams find ways to win games.

Hofstra lead 21-10 at the half, and neither team could muster much offense in the 2nd half. This is James Madison’s first lost since falling to Maryland in OT.

 

8. Southern Illinois vs. Western Illinois

My Prediction: Southern Illinois 31  Western Illinois 14

Reality:Southern Illinois 30 Western Illinois 10

 This is one of the games I got to catch a bit of. When I turned the game on at halftime SIU was up 27-10. From watching Western Illinois twice this season, it’s easy for me to say the WIU is not very good. Their starting QB Barr went down, and I watched his back-up pick apart the SIU defense. Unfortunately, a lot of those passes were dropped by WRs. I mean, he hit them right in the hands. It was sad really. WIU does not have a defense, so it was hard to gauge SIU.  Saluki running back Deji Karim went nuts tonight. 157 yards rushing on 18 carries with 282 all purpose yards. The Saluki’s first big test of the season comes against Northern Iowa on 10/17 in a game that as of late has decided the Valley autobid.

9. McNeese St is idle

 

10. Appalachian State vs.  The Citadel

My prediction: Appalachian State 42  The Citadel 24

Reality: Appalachian State 30  The Citadel 27   OT

I was a little off on this game. Barely got the outcome right. It was a hard fought game, back and forth all day, but when it came to the end, The Citadel just couldn’t finish what they started. After taking a 27-20 lead with 5:18 remaining, the Bulldog defense gave up the game tying score on just 2 plays, the 2nd of which was a 74 yard TD strike from Armanti Edwards to Brian Quick. Each team had the ball one more time in regulation, but couldn’t score. In overtime, The Citadel had the ball first, and after 3 plays attempted a 37 yard FG on 4th and 5. A bad snap was eventually placed and the kick sailed right. Appalachian State would connect on a 29 yard FG to win.

 

11. Elon vs. No. 21 Furman

My Prediction: Elon 28  Furman 24

Reality: Elon 19  Furman 12

I was right when I assumed we were in for a good SoCon battle in this game. The game was a low scoring, back and forth, affair all afternoon. Elon kicked a FG with 2 seconds left to take the lead 13-12. Furman fumbled the ensuing kickoff and Elon recovered to make it a 19-12 final.

 

12. Central Arkansas vs Missouri S&T

My prediction: Central Arkansas 52 Missouri S&T 10

Reality: Central Arkansas 45 Missouri S&T 10

I was close on this one. UCA pulls out the sub D-I win.

 

13. Weber St. vs. Montana State

My Prediction: Weber State 31  Montana State 14

Reality: Montana State 26  Weber State 21

It was a last play heart breaker today in Ogden, UT. Weber State had the ball on the Montana State 1 yard line with 20 seconds left. 4th and goal. The Bobcat defense stopped a Wildcat formation option play, and that was the game.

I can’t decide if I’m overestimating Weber State, or underestimating Montana State. I thought Weber State was overrated coming into this game, but I also thought Montana State wasn’t that good.

 

 
14. South Dakota State vs. No. 17 Cal Poly

My Prediction: South Dakota State 35  Cal Poly 17

Reality:  Cal Poly 21  South Dakota State 14

I forked over the $7 to watch this game online tonight. This was a match up between two teams that I couldn’t figure out. But I’m not sure I learned much of anything. The Jackrabbits of SDSU lost their starting QB early in the game. After he was out they brought in a back-up freshman QB and also ran the wildcat formation. Neither team looked that great.

Cal Poly took a 21-14 lead with about 2 minutes left in the game when the Jackrabbits fumbles into their own endzone. On the following drive the Cal Poly defense sealed the win with an interception.

So are both teams for real? Neither of them? I’m not positive. My evaluation says they both fall somewhere between 17-25 in the poll.

 

15. Massachusetts is idle.

 

16. South Carolina State vs. South Carolina

My prediction: South Carolina 52  South Carolina State 14

Reality: South Carolina 38  South Carolina State 14

Not a bad showing by S.C. State, but this was their only shot at a quality out of conference win. I was pretty close on this one.

 

18. Eastern Washington vs. Idaho State

My prediction: Eastern Washington 27  Idaho State 7

Reality: Eastern Washington 38  Idaho State 3

 A little off on the score, but it was the same idea.

Idaho State just looks terrible this year. They are winless on the season and have lost 20 out of their last 21 games.

Taiwan Jones of EWU set a Holt Arena and EWU record with a 96 yard touchdown run.

Idaho State fumbled six times, losing three of them.

You get the idea….

 

19. Eastern Kentucky vs. No. 24 Eastern Illinois

My prediction: Eastern Kentucky 35  Eastern Illinois 10

Reality: Eastern Kentucky 36  Eastern Illinois 31

EIU played this much closer than I expected. The Panthers, led by Iowa-transfer QB Jake Christensen, came up just short. EKU’s Jeremy Caldwell forced a fumble at midfield with under 10 seconds left.

With Jacksonville State ineligible for the playoffs, I viewed this as the autobid for the OVC. EKU improves to 3-0 in the Ohio Valley.

 

20. Texas State vs. Southern Utah

My prediction: Southern Utah 24  Texas State 14

Reality: Southern Utah 38  Texas State 16

This was the game I got the most comments on. Everyone said I was crazy for thinking Texas State would only score 14. If anything, I was crazy for shorting the Southern Utah offense. The Thunderbird offense put up 31 points. The other 7? A 99 yard fumble return for a TD. Maybe I should thank SUU’s junior CB Akeem Anifowoshe for keeping the Bobcats out of the end zone.

 

22. Holy Cross vs. Northeastern

My prediction: Holy Cross 31  Northeastern 7

Reality: Holy Cross 42  Northeastern 21

This game was over even sooner than I thought. Holy Cross led 21-0 at the end of the 1st quarter. Only suprise was Holy Cross allowing Northeastern to score 14 in the 4th quarter. But hey, you gotta throw people a bone sometimes.

 

23. Jacksonville State vs. Tennessee Martin

My prediction: Jacksonville State 21 Tennessee Martin 10

Reality: Jacksonville State 52 Tennessee Martin 7

Holy smokes, Jax State is good this year! Too bad they won’t be playing Thanksgiving weekend. JSU is one of a few schools ineligible for the playoffs this year. Unfortunately the NCAA dropped a ban on them after poor historical performance in the APRs.

JSU defensive back had 3 INTs and returned 2 for TDs in the first nine minutes. This game was over quick.

 

25. Delaware vs. Maine

My prediction: Delaware 24  Maine 17

Reality: Delaware 27 Maine 17

This was a great pick. If only Delaware had missed their last FG.

Delaware had a rough 2008, and 2009 hasn’t been much better. The Blue Hens lost to reigning national champion, Richmond by one, and then the next week lost another close one to William and Mary. This win gets them back on the road to where they want to go.

Penn State transfer QB Pat Devlin threw for 329 yards and 1 TD in the Delaware win.

 

My record this week: 13-4

On the season: 13-4

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Top 25 Update

Rob Weiss, FCS Update:

In early Top 25 games:

Looks like I’m going to be under on No. 22 Holy Cross. I predicted a 35-7 win, but going into halftime they already have a 35-7 lead.

 

So far I’m WAY off on No. 10 Appalachian State against The Citadel, who is unranked. I picked the Mountaineers to win 42-24, but at the half they are down 13-7.

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I’ve Been Outed

Rob Weiss, FCS Update:

Earlier today another FCS website outed me by associating my real name with my user name. This will not stop me from writing this blog. I will continue writing the most honest and unbiased material in FCS coverage. If knowing where my FCS loyalty lies on Saturday bothers you, shoot me a message or give me a couple reads. You’ll find that my coverage of FCS football is knowledgable, honest, and unbiased.

Thanks for reading!

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10/3 Top 25 Predictions

Rob Weiss, FCS Update:

 

1. Richmond is idle.

 

2. Villanova vs. No. 4 William and Mary

William and Mary 24  Villanova 21

 

3. Northern Iowa  vs. Indiana State

Northern Iowa 52  Indiana State 7

 

5. Montana is idle.

 

6. New Hampshire vs. Towson

New Hampshire 28  Towson 10

 

7. James Madison vs. Hofstra

James Madison 38  Hofstra 7

 

8. Southern Illinois vs. Western Illinois

Southern Illinois 31  Western Illinois 14

 

9. McNeese St is idle

 

10. Appalachian State vs.  The Citadel

Appalachian State 42  The Citadel 24

 

11. Elon vs. No. 21 Furman

Elon 28  Furman 24

 

12. Central Arkansas vs Missouri S&T

Central Arkansas 52 Missouri S&T 10

 

13. Weber St. vs. Montana State

Weber State 31  Montana State 14

 
14. South Dakota State vs. No. 17 Cal Poly

South Dakota State 35  Cal Poly 17

 

15. Massachusetts is idle.

 

16. South Carolina State vs. South Carolina

South Carolina 52  South Carolina State 14

 

18. Eastern Washington vs. Idaho State

Eastern Washington 27  Idaho State 7

 

19. Eastern Kentucky vs. No. 24 Eastern Illinois

Eastern Kentucky 35  Eastern Illinois 10

 

20. Texas State vs. Southern Utah

Southern Utah 24  Texas State 14

 

22. Holy Cross vs. Northeastern

Holy Cross 31  Northeastern 7

 

23. Jacksonville State vs. Tennessee Martin

Jacksonville State 21 Tennessee Martin 10

 

25. Delaware vs. Maine

Delaware 24  Maine 17

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The Rumor Mill is turning: Pioneer League applying for autobid

Rob Weiss, FCS Update:

The end of November is always an exciting time in FCS football.  For 16 teams it means the beginning of a shot at the national championship.  Starting in 2010 that number will jump to 20 with the addition of automatic bids for the Big South and NEC, and 2 more at-large bids.

 

When the playoffs started in 1978 there was only 4 teams involved.  In 1981 the format changed to 8 teams.  One year later the playoffs were expanded to 12 teams, with 4 teams getting a first round bye.  The first 16 team playoff bracket was formed in 1986.

 

With the first change in over 20 years only a season away, another change is already brewing.

 

A little more than a month ago the rumors began spreading that the Pioneer Football League, a non-scholarship football only conference, was applying for an automatic bid.  The league is in its 17th year of operation and it currently ranges from coast to coast.  The ten team conference is composed of Butler, Campbell, Davidson, Dayton, Drake, Jacksonville, Marist, Morehead State, San Diego, and Valparaiso.  Although the Pioneer League has not officially announced it’s intentions, the rumor was confirmed by Morehead State Athletic Director Brian Hutchinson.  ( http://www.wkyt.com/wymtsports/headlines/61520037.html )

 

This announcement has stirred up a lot of arguments in the FCS community.  Here are the two sides to that argument:

 

“The Pioneer League meets all requirements”- This is the positive side of the discussion, and it’s true.  The Pioneer meets all of the requirements set forth by the NCAA for teams who want to apply for an automatic bid.  They are one of three conferences who are eligible to apply for an autobid, but most likely the only one that will apply.

 

I agree with this side of the argument.  There is no reason to keep a league from applying for an automatic bid if they meet all of the requirements put forth by the NCAA.  If the NCAA plans to exclude them, they would have to change the language in the by-laws.  If they Pioneer League is denied, they will be the only qualified applicant who has been denied.  The SWAC and Ivy show no interest in participating at this juncture.

 

“The Pioneer League is not competitive”- The other side of the argument is that the teams in the Pioneer League do not schedule properly and are not competitive when playing against teams from the other auto bid conferences.  Statistically, since 2002 the Pioneer League is 7-25 against teams from auto bid conferences.  They were outscored in these games by a total of 1132-486.  In the 7 games that they won, their opponents combined for a record of 18-54, although one of those wins was against a 2007 Fordham team that won the Patriot League and lost in the first round to Massachusetts.  There are two teams, Butler and Campbell, that did not play teams from automatic bid conferences during this period.  The other issue that makes the Pioneer League appear to be weak is the losses to sub D-I opponents.  The 10 teams in the league have combined for 53 losses to sub D-I opponents since 2002.

 

It’s hard to disagree with this side.  If the Pioneer League intends to participate in the playoffs, some changes need to be made in order for them to be competitive. The changes need to start with the schedules.  The teams in the Pioneer League need to schedule less sub D-I teams and more teams from auto-bid conferences.  Hopefully with some changes the Pioneer League will find itself competitive and their playoff match-ups won’t end up like a 1 seed playing a 16 seed in March Madness.

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FCS Update hits the road

Rob Weiss, FCS Update:

FCS Update will make it’s first in-person reporting appearance a week from Saturday in Fargo, ND. Our feature story will be the #1 RB in the country, Pat Paschall of NDSU facing the highly ranked Northern Iowa defense.  

We will feature Paschall and the Panther defense leading up to the game and will follow up with a feature on the game after the weekend.

Also debating a road trip on Halloween weekend. I appear to be freed up and would like to get some suggestions on the best games in the country. If money and time works out, we’ll be there to cover another great game(or two games in the same area if possible).

Give me your suggestions in the comment section, the cs.com board, or email me at (my name with no spaces at cs.com)

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Battle For The CAA : Take 1

Rob Weiss, FCS Update:

The CAA has come out strong. So strong that the top teams in the conference have a combined four FBS wins. Those teams have also combined for a 15-0 record and are receiving at least one vote in one of the three major polls.

This week is the first chance we have to start sorting things out at the top.

Saturday at 3:30pm EST, William and Marywill take the field at Villanova Stadium against the Wildcats.

William and Mary comes into the game with quite the resume.  The Tribe opened the season with a big 26-14 win over in-state FBS rival, Virginia. They have followed that up with three straight FCS wins, including a win over Delaware. Although Delaware isn’t “back”, they appear to be much improved from last year’s miserable 4-8 campaign.

Villanova has continued last year’s success that took them to the quarterfinals in the FCS playoffs. They have rattled off four straight wins, including a last second win over crosstown FBS rival Temple in a game that was played at the Philadelphia Eagles’ Lincoln Financial Field.

Both teams come into the game 1-0 in the CAA. The only team with a better record in the CAA is Richmond at 2-0. Richmond has a bye this week.

The big debate in the Northeast is: Should the winner of the Villanova-William and Mary clash overtake Richmond as the number one team in FCS football?

In this writers opinion, yes. Those of you who have read my previous article about the polls have seen my thought process on the polls. I don’t care who last year’s champion was. I am voting for the best teams in 2009. I think that an argument can be made for five or six teams to be number one, but the winner of this game will have the most quality wins of any of the teams involved. No one else would have a FBS win and  FCS Top 5 win.

Villanova follows up this game by heading to New Hampshire and James Madison. William and Mary  plays Northeastern, has a bye week, and then has James Madison at home.

In the end, everything will be sorted out. Most of the top CAA teams face each other this year with a few exceptions. William and Mary  and Villanova avoid Massachusetts, while New Hampshire dodges Richmond and James Madison.

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Polls: Who can you trust?

Rob Weiss, FCS Update: The 2009 season is off to a great start. The debate over who is the best team in the country is heating up more and more each week. Between the 3 major polls (AGS, Coaches, and TSN) there are 6 different teams with first place votes. While Richmond is the consensus […]

2013 CS Top 25 Poll

Week 11 | 11/11/2013 (Points)

1. North Dakota State Bison (300)
2. Eastern Washington Eagles (278)
3. Eastern Illinois Panthers (273)
4. Maine Black Bears (266)
5. Sam Houston State Bearkats (251)
6. Fordham Rams (247)
7. Southeastern Louisiana Lions (216)
8. Montana Grizzlies (208)
9. McNeese Cowboys (195)
10. Northern Arizona Lumberjacks (172)
11. Montana State Bobcats (169)
12. Charleston Southern Buccaneers (154)
13. William and Mary Tribe (148)
14. Youngstown State Penguins (143)
15. Towson Tigers (138)
16. Chattanooga Mocs (129)
17. Coastal Carolina Chanticleers (116)
18. Delaware Fightin’ Blue Hens (78)
19. Bethune-Cookman Wildcats (71)
20. Jacksonville State Gamecocks (65)
21. Princeton Tigers (54)
22. South Dakota State Jackrabbits (48)
23. Tennessee State Tigers (44)
24. Southern Utah Thunderbirds (33)
25. Lehigh Mountain Hawks (29)

Next 10 receiving votes:
26. New Hampshire Wildcats (10), 27. Samford Bulldogs (5), 28. Jackson State Tigers (4), 29. Harvard Crimson (3), 30. South Carolina State Bulldogs (2), 31. Wofford Terriers (1), 32. James Madison Dukes (1).

2013 TSN Top 25 Poll

Week 11 |11/11/2013 | (1st place votes)

1. North Dakota State Bison (156)
2. Eastern Illinois Panthers
3. Eastern Washington Eagles
4. Sam Houston State Bearkats
5. Fordham Rams
6. Maine Black Bears
7. Montana Grizzlies
8. Montana State Bobcats
9. McNeese State Cowboys
10. Towson Tigers
11. Coastal Carolina Chanticleers
12. Northern Arizona Lumberjacks
13. Charleston Southern Buccaneers
14. Southeastern Louisiana Lions
15. Youngstown State Penguins
16. William & Mary Tribe
17. Chattanooga Mocs
18. Bethune-Cookman Wildcats
19. South Dakota State Jackrabbits
20. Lehigh Mountain Hawks
21. Delaware Blue Hens
22. Jacksonville State Gamecocks
23. New Hampshire Wildcats
24. Wofford Terriers
25. Princeton Tigers

Others receiving votes (points):
Samford 180, Tennessee State 142, James Madison 140, Southern Utah 133, Villanova 93, South Carolina State 75, Harvard 52, Northern Iowa 35, Central Arkansas 25, Jackson State 20, Eastern Kentucky 19, Georgia Southern 18, Furman 15, Cal Poly 14, Illinois State 14, Sacred Heart 10, Missouri State 7, UT Martin 6, Liberty 4, Southern Illinois 3, Jacksonville 2, San Diego 1, Florida A&M 1, Alcorn State 1.

2013 Coaches Top 25 Poll

Week 11 | 11/11/2013 | (1st place votes)

1. North Dakota State (26) 9-0
2. Eastern Illinois 9-1
3. Eastern Washington 8-2
4. Sam Houston State 8-2
5. Fordham 10-0
6. Maine 9-1
7. Towson 8-2
8. Montana 8-2
9. Coastal Carolina 9-1
10. Montana State 7-3
11. McNeese State 8-2
12. Charleston Southern 10-1
13. Northern Arizona 7-2
14. Southeastern Louisiana 8-2
15. Youngstown State 8-2
16. Bethune-Cookman 8-2
17. Lehigh 7-2
18. Chattanooga 8-2
19. South Dakota State 6-4
20. William & Mary 7-3
21. Wofford 5-4
22. Delaware 7-3
23. Jacksonville State 8-2
24. Princeton 7-1
25. James Madison 6-4

Others receiving votes:
New Hampshire 52, Harvard 26, Samford 24, Tennessee State 19, Southern Utah 16, Jackson State 11, Cal Poly 7, South Carolina State 4, Sacred Heart 4, Central Arkansas 2.

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