2019 NCAA Division I FCS football season
The 2019 NCAA Division I FCS football season, part of college football in the United States, is organized by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) at the Division I Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) level. The FCS Championship Game will be played on January 11, 2020, in Frisco, Texas. North Dakota State is the defending champion.
|2019 NCAA Division I FCS season|
|Number of teams||125|
|Duration||August – November|
|Duration||November 30 – December 21|
|Championship date||January 11, 2020|
|Championship site||Toyota Stadium, Frisco, Texas|
|NCAA Division I FCS football seasons|
- 1 Conference changes and new programs
- 2 Rule changes
- 3 "Week Zero"
- 4 FCS team wins over FBS teams
- 5 Non–D1 team wins over FCS teams
- 6 Conference standings
- 7 Postseason
- 8 Coaching changes
- 9 See also
- 10 References
Conference changes and new programsEdit
|School||Former conference||New conference|
|Hampton Pirates||FCS independent||Big South|
|LIU Sharks[a]||NE-10 (D-II)||NEC|
|Merrimack Warriors||NE-10 (D-II)||NEC|
|North Alabama Lions||FCS independent||Big South|
|North Dakota Fighting Hawks||Big Sky||FCS independent[b]|
|Savannah State Tigers||MEAC||SIAC (D-II)|
- Following the 2018–19 school year, Long Island University merged its two then-existing athletic programs—the Division I non-football LIU Brooklyn Blackbirds and Division II football-sponsoring LIU Post Pioneers—into a single Division I program that now competes as the LIU Sharks. The Sharks inherited LIU Brooklyn's membership in the Northeast Conference, with the former Post football team joining the NEC alongside most of LIU's other sports.
- North Dakota will officially join the Missouri Valley Football Conference in 2020, and is classified as an FCS independent for 2018 and 2019. However, to accommodate pre-existing game contracts, it still plays its Big Sky Conference schedule and conference games still count for their opponents.
The 2019 season was the last for Presbyterian in Big South Conference football. The school announced in 2017 that it had begun a transition to non-scholarship football. Presbyterian will play the 2020 season as an FCS independent before joining the non-scholarship FCS Pioneer Football League in 2021; it will remain a full but non-football Big South member.
The following playing rule changes have been recommended by the NCAA Football Rules Committee for 2019:
- Requiring replay reviews on targeting calls be either confirmed or overturned by reviewing all aspects of the play. If the review shows not all elements of targeting exist or if there is no indisputable video evidence, the call will be overturned.
- Players who commit a second targeting penalty in the same season will not only have to sit out the remainder of that game, but will also have to sit out their team's entire next scheduled game.
- Eliminating the two-man wedge on kickoffs.
- Starting with the fifth overtime period, each team will line up to attempt a two-point conversion instead of snapping the ball from the 25-yard-line.
- Adding a two-minute break after the second and fourth overtime period.
- Blindside blocks delivered with forcible contact will draw a 15-yard penalty (personal foul). If elements of targeting exist, the player delivering the block will be subject to ejection as with any other targeting foul.
All FCS teams are allowed to schedule 12 regular season games in the 2019 season. A standard provision of NCAA bylaws allows for 12 regular season games during years having 14 Saturdays in the period starting with the Labor Day (first Monday in September) weekend and ending with the last Saturday of November. The next time that a 12-game regular season will be allowed is 2024.
The regular season began with two games on Saturday, August 24:
FCS team wins over FBS teamsEdit
Non–D1 team wins over FCS teamsEdit
- September 7:
- September 14:
- September 21:
- September 28:
- October 12:
A 24-team single-elimination tournament bracket will culminate in the 2020 NCAA Division I Football Championship Game. Champions of the following 10 conferences automatically received playoff bids:
Teams were announced in a selection show on November 24, with the top eight teams seeded and receiving first-round byes.
NCAA FCS Playoff bracketEdit
12:00 pm EST
Toyota Stadium, Frisco, Texas
|1||North Dakota State|
|Southeast Missouri State||6||Illinois State|
|Austin Peay||42||Austin Peay|
|7||South Dakota State|
|Northern Iowa||17||Northern Iowa|
|Southeastern Louisiana||45||Southeastern Louisiana|
|December 21||Celebration Bowl||Mercedes-Benz Stadium
|ABC||North Carolina A&T Aggies (8–3)
Preseason and in-seasonEdit
This is restricted to coaching changes that took place on or after May 1, 2019. For coaching changes that occurred earlier in 2019, see 2018 NCAA Division I FCS end-of-season coaching changes.
|Howard||Ron Prince||November 6||Placed on administrative leave||Aaron Kelton (interim)|
Prince was placed on administrative leave by the university, "after allegations of verbal abuse and intimidation of players."
End of seasonEdit
|Gardner–Webb||Carroll McCray||November 24||Fired|
|Mercer||Bobby Lamb||November 24||Fired|
|Murray State||Mitch Stewart||November 24||Reassigned within athletic department|
|Northern Colorado||Earnest Collins Jr.||November 24||Fired|
|Eastern Kentucky||Mark Elder||November 25||Contract not renewed|
|Lamar||Mike Schultz||November 25||Fired|
|Cal Poly||Tim Walsh||November 25||Retired|
|Jacksonville||Ian Shields||December 3||Program discontinued||None|
- "Road to the Championship". ncaa.com. 2019. Retrieved November 11, 2019.
- "2019 FCS Playoff Schedule". FBSchedules.com. Retrieved January 9, 2019.
- "North Dakota State Completes Perfect Season as No. 1 Ranked Team". FCS Football Insider. Retrieved January 9, 2019.
- "Football Rules Committee to examine targeting". ncaa.org. February 26, 2019. Retrieved March 14, 2019.
- "Bylaw 188.8.131.52: Number of Contests, Maximum Limitations—Institutional" (PDF). 2018–19 NCAA Division I Manual. NCAA. July 2018. p. 273. Retrieved March 14, 2019.
- Chiusano, Anthony (November 16, 2019). "Every automatic qualifier for the 2019 FCS football playoffs". NCAA.com. Retrieved November 17, 2019.
- "FCS bracket revealed for 2019 Division I football championship". ncaa.com. November 24, 2019. Retrieved November 24, 2019.
- VanHaaren, Tom (November 6, 2019). "Howard places coach Ron Prince on leave amid ongoing investigation". ESPN. Retrieved November 12, 2019.