One of the big topics of discussion right now in Division III football, and in college football as a whole, is preseason practice time, including what seems to be likely — the end to two-a-day practices in camp. It’s certainly important to coaches, who have already planned their August camp, especially in Division III, where spring ball is not the same as at the other levels.
With us to talk about that and other issues are Muhlenberg coach Mike Donnelly, UW-Whitewater coach Kevin Bullis and Hope coach Peter Stuursma. In addition, Pat Coleman and Keith McMillan discuss the implications of the pending move of Buffalo State to the Liberty League, how that affects the playoff bids and schedules going forward. Plus. who bid to host the Stagg Bowl? We’ll talk about the possibilities.
The D3football.com Around the Nation Podcast is a regular conversation between Pat Coleman and Keith McMillan and guests covering the wide range of Division III football. It drops monthly in the offseason and during the season, weekly on Monday morning.
When a former WIAC head coach became the chair of the Division III football committee, it’s understandable why strength of schedule was more important this year.
Photo by Larry Radloff, d3photography.com
With the selection show cut down to less than eight minutes of actual content, there’s no analysis, no breakdown, just a reading of teams and a few nuggets of info. So it’s up to the rest of us to try to generate that, get the committee chair on the phone, try to get some questions answered, etc. Duey Naatz, the athletic director and former head football coach at UW-Stout, gave more than a half-hour of his time to our friends at In the HuddLLe, the weekly show covering the Liberty League and East Region football. Frank Rossi and James Baker are the interviewers on the clip below.
Definitely worth a listen, as there are several insights to be had regarding the emphasis on strength of schedule, how deep you might go within a region for at-large bids and much more. This conversation is also available as part of the Around the Nation podcast, Continue reading
The second NCAA regional rankings are now out.
Remember that regional rankings primarily take Division III games into account. Teams are listed with their Division III record first, followed by their overall record. For more information about the playoff format and how participants are determined, check out our FAQ.
Teams that have clinched playoff bids: ASC, Mary Hardin-Baylor; CC, Johns Hopkins; CCIW, North Central; ECFC, Gallaudet; E8, Ithaca; LL, Hobart; MIAC, Bethel; NACC, Concordia (Wis.); NCAC, Wittenberg; NWC, Linfield; SCIAC, Redlands; UMAC, St. Scholastica; USAC, Maryville; WIAC, UW-Whitewater.
1. Hobart, 8-0, 8-0
2. Ithaca, 8-1, 8-1
3. Lebanon Valley, 8-1, 8-1
4. Rowan, 7-2, 7-2
5. Gallaudet, 8-0, 9-0
6. Framingham State, 8-1, 8-1
7. Alfred, 7-2, 7-2
7. St. John Fisher, 7-2, 7-2
9. Salve Regina, 7-1, 7-2
10. Brockport State, 6-3, 6-3
Lebanon Valley and Rowan leapfrog Gallaudet, which was third last week. Brockport State moving into the rankings, instead of Endicott or Western Connecticut, who each have really low strength of schedule figures, explains Rowan’s boost. Also worth noting that Alfred and St. John Fisher, who clash on Saturday, are tied in the regional advisory committee’s view.
1. Mount Union, 9-0, 9-0
2. North Central, 9-0, 9-0
3. John Carroll, 9-0, 9-0
4. Wittenberg, 8-0, 8-1
5. Illinois Wesleyan, 8-1, 8-1
6. Wabash, 8-1, 8-1
7. Wheaton, 7-2, 7-2
8. Hope, 7-2, 7-2
9. Frankin, 6-2, 6-3
9. Heidelberg, 7-2, 7-2
John Carroll’s win over Heidelberg helped it surpass Wittenberg, which it trailed in last week’s first set of regional rankings. Even though Wabash, Wheaton, Franklin and Heidelberg lost, there were no other teams in the North Region ready to move into the rankings. Albion, which faces Hope for the MIAA title in Week 11, is the closest.
1. Mary Hardin-Baylor, 9-0, 9-0
2. Johns Hopkins, 9-0, 9-0
3. Millsaps, 8-0, 9-0
4. Wesley, 4-2, 7-2
5. Thomas More, 8-1, 8-1
6. Maryville, 8-1, 8-1
7. Texas Lutheran, 7-1, 7-1
8. Washington U., 7-2, 7-2
9. Hampden-Sydney, 7-2, 7-2
10. Washington & Jefferson, 7-2, 7-2
Millsaps moved in front of Wesley after its win over Centre, while Texas Lutheran falls from third last week to seventh. That’s bad news for the Bulldogs, who if they missed a Pool B bid, wouldn’t get to the table in Pool C until Thomas More went in first.
The Saints play Washington & Jefferson in Week 11.
1. UW-Whitewater, 8-0, 9-0
2. Bethel, 9-0, 9-0
3. Linfield, 8-0, 8-0
4. UW-Oshkosh, 7-1, 8-1
5. UW-Platteville, 8-1, 8-1
6. Pacific Lutheran, 8-1, 8-1
7. St. Thomas, 7-2, 7-2
8. Wartburg, 7-2, 7-2
9. Concordia-Moorhead, 6-2, 7-2
10. St. John’s, 7-2, 7-2
The last four teams in the rankings are all teams that Bethel has beaten or is scheduled to play; the Royals face St. John’s in Week 11. Still, four regionally ranked opponents isn’t enough to get to the No. 1 spot ahead of UW-Whitewater. Meantime, St. Thomas moved in while Illinois College moved out, on the heels of a win over Concordia-Moorhead and IC’s loss to Cornell. PLU’s position behind Oshkosh and Platteville suggests that the winner of that Week 11 game is on the table for a Pool C bid before the Lutes.
How to use these regional rankings: If you are an at-large candidate, you want to be sure you are the top at-large candidate in your region. That will ensure you get discussed by the national committee and have a chance to be put in the field.
There are 24 automatic bids, three Pool B bids and five Pool C (true national at-large) bids. Selection Sunday is Nov. 17.
Being listed in these rankings is not a guarantee of selection to the playoffs. There is no guarantee an at-large team will be taken from each region.