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SWC75

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Because their conference championship is after when they start playoffs for FCS.

They needed to receive an at large bid to get in.

They did not receive a bid into the FCS playoffs

From Wikipedia:

"Because the Celebration Bowl takes place during the FCS playoff tournament, neither the SWAC nor the MEAC can send their champion to the tournament. At the time the Celebration Bowl was inaugurated, the SWAC's regular season already extended too late into the year for its champion to enter the FCS playoffs, while the MEAC dropped its automatic bid to the FCS playoffs in order to send its champion to the Celebration Bowl."
 

SWC75

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View attachment 211991 SWC, I’ve enjoyed your small school posts for years, and anticipated them even more this year, with son #1 wearing the orange and blue of the Wheaton Thunder as a freshman. (Of course, he’s orange and blue.) Here he is celebrating a touchdown by his roommate in a JV game against North Park, earlier this fall.

Wheaton was ranked #6 most of the season, going 9-1. The only loss, a 20-7 setback to conference rival North Central, whose last loss before Friday night was to the Thunder back in 2019.

NAIA and D2 offer a select number of athletic scholarships, whereas D3 does not.

There’s no doubt MHB, North Central, Mount Union, Wheaton and UWW could play with most of the D2 and NAIA schools. But I disagree with the suggestion to combine all of the lower level schools. There’s a long tail of schools in D3 that cannot compete at the same level.

Wheaton’s JV played two games this year. The varsity had 55 4th, 5th and 6th year seniors, as everyone got an extra covid year and some medical exceptions had 6th year opportunities. The Thunder was upset in the second round of the playoffs, 30-28, when Central (Iowa) scored on the last play of the game. They’ll look to reload next year and make a run at North Central again.

Three years of eligibility left and the goal is to get to and win the Stagg Bowl. I know he’s motivated. Got home Thursday night for the first time since August and was at the gym at 5:45 on Friday morning.

You're confirming that some DIII schools have built programs that are above what DIII was intended to be, which is why schools in the Northeast are no longer competitive at a national level. Cortland State lost to RPI 14-21, who lost to North Central 6-55. Those schools belong in Division II. And FCS is full of schools that were in Division II. And the Group of 5 is full of schools that were FCS, (or 1AA). DIII is for school that just want to have a football team and will win a lot of games against traditional rivals if they have a good coach. DII is for schools that want more than but don't have the resources to compete at the highest level. DI is for the school that do and want to use them to win the big prize. We need more specific rules that determine at what level schools should compete and to be able to move schools up and down based on performance, like the English soccer leagues do.
 

CuyahogaCuse

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You're confirming that some DIII schools have built programs that are above what DIII was intended to be, which is why schools in the Northeast are no longer competitive at a national level.
Help me out here on this one. What exactly are D3 programs intended to be?

My kid is going to school where he gets to be a student and a football player. No athletic scholarships are given out. They play in a 50 year old stadium. There is a real campus. The students cheer their classmates. And they know them personally. The football players share athletic facilities with the other school teams. They show up on campus three weeks before the first game.

Somebody has to win the championship. If RPI or Cortland can’t compete, how is that different than the D1 playoff blowouts that are all too common? I’d say D3 is more competitive at the top than D1. At least you can make the argument.

Having just gone through the D2/NAIA/D3 recruiting process, there are a whole bunch of D2 “schools” that are athletic programs that just happen to be attached to a university or college. The quality of school, in many cases, was not ideal. Most of the D3 programs have little in common with the majority of D2 schools, other than the fact the football is offered at both levels.

Conversely, there are some quite good NAIA schools out there with football programs, and there’s some scholarship money to be had at that level.

But i don’t think it’s a straight line to say that because the northeast schools can’t compete that the top schools should be forced to move up. Mount Union ruled the roost for nearly two decades. Next year will be the first time in nearly 20 years the Mount won’t have a class on its roster that won the national championship.

There’s more competitive balance than ever.

You want to be better? Do the work. Make sure your school has a great brand, because almost none of you are playing football after this level (NCAC coach). It helps in recruiting, even at this level. Get kids to buy in. (PAC coach). Develop men (OAC coach). Have a common vision (CCIW coach).

And go out in pursuit of something greater than yourself.

D3 is just fine. Thank you very much. 27 conferences with auto bids. Five at large bids. And a true tournament that crowns a champion.

And then 99.99% of the kids go on to live real lives.

Always appreciate your perspective, SWC, but think you may be a bit off on this one.
 

SWC75

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Help me out here on this one. What exactly are D3 programs intended to be?

My kid is going to school where he gets to be a student and a football player. No athletic scholarships are given out. They play in a 50 year old stadium. There is a real campus. The students cheer their classmates. And they know them personally. The football players share athletic facilities with the other school teams. They show up on campus three weeks before the first game.

Somebody has to win the championship. If RPI or Cortland can’t compete, how is that different than the D1 playoff blowouts that are all too common? I’d say D3 is more competitive at the top than D1. At least you can make the argument.

Having just gone through the D2/NAIA/D3 recruiting process, there are a whole bunch of D2 “schools” that are athletic programs that just happen to be attached to a university or college. The quality of school, in many cases, was not ideal. Most of the D3 programs have little in common with the majority of D2 schools, other than the fact the football is offered at both levels.

Conversely, there are some quite good NAIA schools out there with football programs, and there’s some scholarship money to be had at that level.

But i don’t think it’s a straight line to say that because the northeast schools can’t compete that the top schools should be forced to move up. Mount Union ruled the roost for nearly two decades. Next year will be the first time in nearly 20 years the Mount won’t have a class on its roster that won the national championship.

There’s more competitive balance than ever.

You want to be better? Do the work. Make sure your school has a great brand, because almost none of you are playing football after this level (NCAC coach). It helps in recruiting, even at this level. Get kids to buy in. (PAC coach). Develop men (OAC coach). Have a common vision (CCIW coach).

And go out in pursuit of something greater than yourself.

D3 is just fine. Thank you very much. 27 conferences with auto bids. Five at large bids. And a true tournament that crowns a champion.

And then 99.99% of the kids go on to live real lives.

Always appreciate your perspective, SWC, but think you may be a bit off on this one.

There's way, way too many blow-out games, far more than in D-1. here are the semi-finalist's seasons:

Mary Hardin-Baylor football schedule and results


UW-Whitewater football schedule and results


Here are the playoff scores:


Games involving New York State teams: Cortland State beat Springfield 26-21. RPI beat Endicott 20-14. then RPI beat Cortland 21-14. then they were road-kill to North Central, 6-55.

Here are the all-time championship game results:

let's break it down by century:

From 1973 to 1999, 23 different schools played for the national championship in 27 years. Ithaca led with 7 appearances, then Augustana, Dayton and Rowan with 5. The Mount Union dynasty had begun by the end of that period but they still had just 4 appearances. Central Iowa had 3. Four schools had 2 appearances11 other schools had one appearance. the states represented were Ohio with 14 appearances from 4 different schools, new York with 10 from 3 schools, Pennsylvania with 8 from 5 schools, Iowa with 3, all from Central, 2 from two different schools in Maryland and one each from Georgia, Michigan, Minnesota and Oregon.

From the year 2000 onward, 9 different schools made the final in 22 years. Mount Union made it 17 times and Wisconsin-Whitewater 10 times. Mary Hardin-Baylor has made it 5 times. the Johnnies and Tommies of Minnesota have made it twice each. North central of Illinois has made it twice. Bridgewater of Virginia made it one, as did Trinity of Texas, Linfield of Oregon and Wisconsin-Oshkosh. Nobody from New York, New England, New Jersey or Pennsylvania.

That suggests an imbalance. It's not as much fun as it used to be.
 

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