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1997 NCAA Division I-AA football season

The 1997 NCAA Division I-AA football season, part of college football in the United States organized by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) at the Division I-AA level, began in August 1997, and concluded with the 1997 NCAA Division I-AA Football Championship Game on December 20, 1997, at Finley Stadium in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The Youngstown State Penguins won their fourth I-AA championship, defeating the McNeese State Cowboys by a final score of 10−9.[1]

1997 NCAA Division I-AA season
NCAA logo.svg
Regular season
DurationAugust–November
Payton AwardBrian Finneran (WR, Villanova)
Buchanan AwardChris McNeil (DE, North Carolina A&T)
Playoff
DurationNovember 29–December 20
Championship dateDecember 20, 1997
Championship siteFinley Stadium
Chattanooga, Tennessee
ChampionYoungstown State Penguins
Division I-AA football season

Contents

Conference changes and new programsEdit

School 1996 Conference 1997 Conference
Austin Peay Ohio Valley I-AA Independent
Marshall Southern (I-AA) MAC (I-A)
Norfolk State CIAA (D-II) I-AA Independent
South Florida New Program I-AA Independent
Towson State I-AA Independent Patriot
Wofford I-AA Independent Southern
Youngstown State I-AA Independent Gateway

Conference standingsEdit

1997 Atlantic 10 Conference football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
New England
New Hampshire x   5 3         5 6  
Connecticut   4 4         7 4  
Maine   4 4         5 6  
Rhode Island   2 6         2 9  
Boston University   1 7         1 10  
UMass   1 7         2 9  
Mid-Atlantic
#1 Villanova x$^   8 0         12 1  
#3 Delaware ^   7 1         12 2  
#20 Northeastern   5 3         8 3  
Richmond   4 4         6 5  
William & Mary   4 4         7 4  
James Madison   3 5         5 6  
  • $ – Conference champion
  • x – Division champion/co-champions
  • ^ – Division I-AA playoff participant
Rankings from The Sports Network I–AA Poll
1997 Big Sky football standings
Conf     Overall
Team W   L   T     W   L   T
#6 E Washington $^ 7 1 0     12 2 0
#11 Montana ^ 6 2 0     8 4 0
Montana State 5 3 0     6 5 0
Northern Arizona 4 4 0     6 5 0
Weber State 4 4 0     6 5 0
Cal State Northridge 4 4 0     4 8 0
Portland State 3 5 0     4 7 0
Idaho State 2 6 0     3 8 0
Sacramento State 1 7 0     1 10 0
  • $ – Conference champion
  • ^ – Division I-AA playoff participant
  • Cal State Northridge record includes two losses by forfeit
Rankings from The Sports Network I-AA Poll
1997 Gateway Football Conference standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
#2 Western Illinois $^   6 0         11 2  
Northern Iowa   5 1         7 4  
#4 Youngstown State ^   4 2         13 2  
Southwest Missouri State   3 3         5 6  
Indiana State   2 4         3 8  
Southern Illinois   1 5         3 8  
Illinois State   0 6         2 9  
  • $ – Conference champion
  • ^ – Division I-AA playoff participant
Rankings from The Sports Network poll
1997 Ivy League football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
Harvard $   7 0         9 1  
Dartmouth   6 1         8 2  
Penn   5 2         6 4  
Brown   3 4         6 4  
Cornell   3 4         5 5  
Princeton   2 5         5 5  
Columbia   2 5         3 7  
Yale   0 7         1 9  
  • $ – Conference champion
  • † Penn was forced to forfeit five conference and one non-conference wins due to use of an ineligible player after season was over
1997 MAAC football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
Georgetown $   8 0         8 3  
Duquesne   6 2         7 3  
St. John's   5 3         8 3  
Fairfield   5 3         7 3  
Siena   5 3         6 3  
Marist   4 4         6 4  
Canisius   2 6         3 7  
Saint Peter's   1 7         1 0  
Iona   0 8         0 10  
  • $ – Conference champion
Rankings from The Sports Network poll
1997 MEAC football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
#9 Hampton $^   7 0         10 2  
#22 South Carolina State   5 2         9 2  
#10 Florida A&M ^   5 2         9 3  
Howard   4 3         7 4  
North Carolina A&T   3 4         7 4  
Morgan State   2 5         3 7  
Bethune–Cookman   1 6         4 7  
Delaware State   1 6         3 8  
Norfolk State   0 0         3 7  
  • $ – Conference champion
  • ^ – Division I-AA playoff participant
  • Norfolk State games did not count as conference games in 1997
Rankings from The Sports Network poll
1997 NEC football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
Robert Morris $   4 0         8 3  
Monmouth   3 1         5 4  
Wagner   2 2         6 4  
Central Connecticut   1 3         5 5  
Saint Francis (PA)   0 4         2 9  
  • $ – Conference champion
Rankings from The Sports Network poll
1997 Ohio Valley football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
No. 19 Eastern Kentucky $^   7 0         8 4  
No. 16 Eastern Illinois   5 2         8 3  
Murray State   5 2         7 4  
Tennessee Tech   4 3         6 5  
Tennessee State   4 3         4 7  
Middle Tennessee State   2 5         4 6  
Southeast Missouri State   1 6         4 7  
UT Martin   0 7         1 10  
  • $ – Conference champion
  • ^ – Division I-AA playoff participant
Rankings from The Sports Network poll
1997 Patriot League football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
Colgate $^   6 0         7 5  
#24 Bucknell   5 1         10 1  
Fordham   4 2         5 6  
Holy Cross   2 4         4 7  
Lehigh   2 4         4 7  
Lafayette   2 4         3 8  
Towson   0 6         2 8  
  • $ – Conference champion
  • ^ – Division I-AA playoff participant
Rankings from poll=The Sports Network poll
1997 Pioneer Football League standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
#23 Dayton $   5 0         9 1  
San Diego   4 1         8 3  
Drake   2 3         8 3  
Butler   2 3         6 4  
Valparaiso   2 3         3 7  
Evansville   0 5         2 8  
  • $ – Conference champion
Rankings from The Sports Network poll
1997 Southern Conference football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
#8 Georgia Southern $^   7 1         10 3  
#15 Appalachian State   6 2         7 4  
East Tennessee State   5 3         7 4  
Furman   5 3         7 4  
The Citadel   4 4         6 5  
Chattanooga   4 4         7 4  
Western Carolina   3 5         3 8  
Wofford   2 6         3 7  
VMI   0 8         0 11  
  • $ – Conference champion
  • ^ – Division I-AA playoff participant
Rankings from The Sports Network I-AA Poll
1997 Southland Football League standings
Conf     Overall
Team W   L   T     W   L   T
#7 McNeese State +^ 6 1 0     13 2 0
#21 Northwestern State +^ 6 1 0     8 4 0
#13 Stephen F. Austin 5 2 0     8 3 0
Sam Houston State 3 4 0     5 6 0
Nicholls State 3 4 0     5 6 0
Southwest Texas State 2 5 0     5 6 0
Troy State 2 5 0     5 6 0
Jacksonville State 1 6 0     1 10 0
  • + – Conference co-champions
  • ^ – Division I-AA playoff participant
  • Ranking is from the Sports Network Poll
1997 SWAC football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
#12 Southern $   8 0         11 1  
#14 Jackson State ^   7 1         9 3  
Arkansas–Pine Bluff   6 2         8 3  
Texas Southern   4 4         5 6  
Alcorn State   4 4         4 7  
Mississippi Valley State   3 5         4 6  
Alabama State   2 6         3 8  
Grambling State   2 6         3 8  
Prairie View A&M   0 8         0 9  
  • $ – Conference champion
  • ^ – Division I-AA playoff participant
1997 NCAA Division I-AA independents football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
#18 Cal Poly   0 0         10 1  
#5 Western Kentucky ^   0 0         10 2  
#17 Hofstra ^   0 0         9 2  
#25 Liberty   0 0         9 2  
Samford   0 0         7 4  
Morehead State   0 0         5 4  
South Florida   0 0         5 6  
Southern Utah   0 0         5 6  
Saint Mary's   0 0         4 6  
Davidson   0 0         3 8  
Buffalo   0 0         2 9  
La Salle   0 0         1 8  
Charleston Southern   0 0         1 9  
Austin Peay   0 0         0 10  
  • ^ – Division I-AA playoff participant
Rankings from The Sports Network poll

Conference championsEdit

Conference Champions

Atlantic 10 ConferenceVillanova
Big Sky Conference – Eastern Washington
Gateway Football Conference – Western Illinois
Ivy League – Harvard
Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference – Georgetown
Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference – Hampton
Northeast ConferenceRobert Morris
Ohio Valley Conference – Eastern Kentucky
Patriot League – Colgate
Pioneer Football League – Dayton
Southern Conference – Georgia Southern
Southland Football League – McNeese State and Northwestern State
Southwestern Athletic Conference – Southern

PostseasonEdit

Playoff BracketEdit

The NCAA departed from standard bracket structure—where, for example, the fourth and fifth seeds could meet in the second round—in order to place teams from the same conference in different halves of the bracket.[2]

First Round
November 29
Campus Sites
Quarterfinals
December 6
Campus Sites
Semifinals
December 13
Campus Sites
National Championship Game
December 20
Finley Stadium
Chattanooga, TN
            
1 Villanova* 49
16 Colgate 28
1 Villanova* 34
8 Youngstown State 37
8 Youngstown State* 28
9 Hampton 13
8 Youngstown State 25
3 Eastern Washington* 14
5 Western Kentucky* 42
12 Eastern Kentucky 14
5 Western Kentucky 21
3 Eastern Washington* 38
3 Eastern Washington* 40
14 Northwestern State 10
8 Youngstown State 10
6 McNeese State 9
4 Delaware* 24
13 Hofstra 14
4 Delaware* 16
7 Georgia Southern 7
7 Georgia Southern* 52
10 Florida A&M 37
4 Delaware* 21
6 McNeese State 23
6 McNeese State* 19
11 Montana 14
6 McNeese State 14
2 Western Illinois* 12
2 Western Illinois* 31
15 Jackson State 24

* Denotes host institution
Source: [3]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "1997 NCAA Division I Football Championship" (PDF). NCAA.org. p. 16. Retrieved December 29, 2013.
  2. ^ Tomashek, Tom (November 24, 1997). "Delaware, Villanova could meet in the mountains". The News Journal. Wilmington, Delaware. p. C4. Retrieved February 8, 2019 – via newspapers.com.
  3. ^ "I-AA football playoffs". Missoulian. Missoula, Montana. November 24, 1997. p. D4. Retrieved February 8, 2019 – via newspapers.com.