FCS – how it works

Posted on December 12, 2016. Filed under: Football, NCAA Sports, Sports Business | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

FCS Playoffs – ever wonder how they do it?

Well, we did too….

December 10, 2016

compiled by Prez Ro
follow back at @PrezRo365

With all of the conversation about the “so-called” money bowls and how they can’t afford nor have time to expand to a full-fledged playoff… Well, there is a Division I football division that does just that….


Building Men & Women via Athletics

FCS — or Division I-AA, which is what us older people like me will call it until the day we die — has been running a championship tournament for its football teams for years. This year, in fact, is the 35th anniversary of the tournament, which is now called the NCAA Division I Football Championship.

The single-elimination FCS playoff includes 24 teams. Ten of them are auto-bids as winners of 10 of the FCS’ 13 conferences.

NOTE: The Ivy League, SWAC, and MEAC don’t take playoff auto-bids.

The field shrinks from 24 to 16 after the first round, and then it’s pretty simple: whoever wins four games in a row wins the national championship. The tournament field is selected by a NCAA appointed committee made up of athletic directors from select FCS schools that represent each region of the country.

The rest of the 12 teams in the field are unseeded, and teams are usually matched up based on regional proximity, with hosting rights granted based on bidding and projected gate receipts, as well as record, conference affiliation and strength of schedule. If two unseeded teams meet in subsequent rounds of the playoff tournament, the team that presents the highest monetary bid to the NCAA is awarded hosting rights.

One interesting scenario is the higher-ranked teams host a home-field game until the finals. WHAT??? And the playoff runs through Jan. 7, when it ends at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas.


The eight FCS automatic playoff bids are awarded to the conference champion of the following conferences:

-Big Sky Conference
-Colonial Conference
-Mid East Athletic Conference
-Missouri Valley Conference (formerly the Gateway Conference)
-Ohio Valley Conference
-Patriot League
-Southern Conference
-Southland Conference


To see the LIVE bracket, click an icon below:


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