Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Maryville @ Ferrum
Game Preview

And so there is one regular season game left. This game will be meaningful in many ways. For one thing, Ferrum getting a win, guarantees themselves of a conference Co- Championship. (Co-Championship is better than no championship) Secondly, a Ferrum win squarely puts CNU into a must win situation.

While Ferrum handled Maryville last year, this is a much improved Maryville team. They are playing to assure themselves of a winning season, and a win, coupled with a CNU loss would make them part of a three way tie for first place, and considered one of three co-champions.(In that scenario, CNU would get the bid). Maryville is averaging 27 points per game, and for the most part has been successful in holding their opponents in check. They have lost to CNU, and LaGrange in conference. On defense, they have 5 of the top 15 leading tacklers in the conference....6 out of the top 20. Ferrum has 1 in Jatavious Adams at 14th.

This is no cakewalk...They will come in fired up, and with a lot to prove. To them, they cannot get into the playoffs, but they can be a spoiler. Ferrum has a strong team, and needs to remain focused on Maryville. This is the most important game of the year, and without a win, the season ends. Maryville puts their pads away after this game, win or lose, but Ferrum could play on....but only with a win, and some help from Methodist. There must be total focus for the Panthers.

The question has come up as to whether Ferrum may be in contention for an at large bid?  There are three pools for the tournament, and at large bids (pools B and C) are awarded by a selection committee

Pool A is made up of teams that win their conference. (Automatic Qualifier teams AQ)

Pool B is made up of teams that are either independent, or their conference does not have an AQ. (This does not apply to Ferrum)

Pool C is made up of other teams that may have just one ot two losses, but did not win their AQ..

There are 32 teams in the tournament, 24 Automatic Qualifier bids, 1 Pool B bid, and 7 at large Pool C bids.

So can Ferrum, if they do not win the conference outright, get a Pool C bid?

Here is the written process from

 How are the at-large bids determined?
These are the selection (and seeding) criteria:
The following primary criteria (not in priority order) will be reviewed:
• Win-loss percentage against regional opponents.
• Strength-of-schedule (only contests versus regional competition).
- Opponents’ Average Winning Percentage (OWP).
- Opponents’ Opponents’ Average Winning Percentage (OOWP).
• In-region head-to-head competition.
• In-region results versus common regional opponents.
• In-region results versus regionally ranked teams.
If the evaluation of the primary criteria does not result in a decision by the committee, the following secondary criteria (for ranking and selections) will be evaluated:
• Out-of region head-to-head competition.
• Overall Division III won-loss percentage.
• Results versus common non-Division III opponents.
• Results versus all Division III ranked teams.
• Overall win-loss percentage.
• Results versus all common opponents.
• Overall Division III strength of schedule
• Should a committee find that evaluation of a team’s win-loss percentage during the last 25 percent of the season is applicable (i.e., end of season performance), it may adopt such criteria with approval from the championships committee.
New for 2011: When all criteria are equal among teams with undefeated records in the primary criteria, the NCAA Division III Football Committee can use a team’s performance in the previous championship season as criterion.
Additionally, input is provided by regional advisory committees for consideration by the Division III football committee. In order to be considered for selection for Pools B or C, an institution must play at least 50 percent of its competition against Division III in-region opponents. Coaches’ polls and/or any other outside polls or rankings are not used as a selection criterion by the football committee for selection purposes.

While I would say it is possible, I would think it highly unlikely that Ferrum can get in unless it wins the conference outright...There will be many one loss teams ahead of Ferrum, and the Panthers strength of schedule is not strong enough when compared on a national scale.
So I would say that winning the conference is the most likely path to the playoffs, and that starts with beating Maryville.

So we are down to the final week, and that means my final week of they are:

This may be the most difficult week to pick...

Maryville 21 @ Ferrum 34
Averett @ NCW
LaGrange @ Greensboro

and.....drum roll!

Methodist @ CNU

Ferrum Panthers are playoff bound...I hope


  1. I see that you are picking FC to win by a lot but I do not see it that way. I see FC winning by a few points only like 28-24. I also saw you explaining how the FC panthers could backdoor their way into the playoffs. I would like to ask a few questions on that method. First you do know that FC strength of schedule is a joke bc other schools that are and near their region has played harder schools. Second how can you predict Methodist beating CNU when CNU was on their last legs last year against FC and won? I know your a homer and the creator of this blog but its sad that when you want answers from FC's coaching staff and I have asked you get the run around and homers like yourself have to explain what happened even though you are like me have no inside access. I do know this I knew a coach on the staff in the past and sadly to me what goes on and you know what? It is not good at all. So let me ask you. Do you consider finishing tied for first a good year? I don't because the dream that all players have to make it to the playoffs and beat someone or just go on the long bus ride feels good and when it comes down to it your asking to much from an FC team that has lost touch on reality and fans like myself who are tired of the excuses. Another question I have for you is that when is the FC coaching staff going to take responsibility for their actions meaning when they make excuses for players who are starters that have failing grades or partied the night before and covered for them? understand the players are told at least the very good ones your hear to play and everything else is covered. Understand that as a fan its wrong for the staff to cover for kids while they are paid and the players are doing so much. I know this because I have seen it with my own eyes and tired of hearing that coaches are doing the right things child please these players are being used like a used tire and when it falls off they fall of. You end your postting with FC panthers are playoff bound i hope. I end with FC panthers another great year but once again chasing that playoff bid they just can't get and they never will.

  2. You cover several topics, and I will try to address each of them. I indicated in the post, that Ferrum will likely have to win the USA South to get is the last paragrapgh of the story...copied and pasted.

    While I would say it is possible, I would think it highly unlikely that Ferrum can get in unless it wins the conference outright...There will be many one loss teams ahead of Ferrum, and the Panthers strength of schedule is not strong enough when compared on a national scale.
    So I would say that winning the conference is the most likely path to the playoffs, and that starts with beating Maryville.

    How can I predict Methodist beating CNU? CNU is struggling, and Methodisy is palying good ball right now...some of it is just me really wanting it to happen, and some of it is based on the difficulty CNU is having recently. It would be an upset, but it is not impossible at all. In fact, I think it will be a very close game that could go either way.

    Is being tied for first a good year? It is an improvement. Especially when you consider how many players they lost last year to graduation, and to transferring. Ferrum, like all of the teams would like to win the conference, and make the is a process to build a winning team
    Since it is just Harpers second year, I would call tied for first a good year, but not where they want to be, or will be in a year or two or three.

    As for your comments about coaching credibility, I have a far different impression and opinion of how the coaches operate than you, and I doubt we will agree. I know coach Harper personally, and have gained insight as to the type of person he is, and as to the type of program he is running and trying to build. The best way I can describe it would be first class. He is, in my opinion out there to win, but at the same time looking to develop the players as good people and good ambassadors of Ferrum. He is more concerned about turning out players that will be good citizens than anything...The fact that he is a hell of a football coach, and can produce a team that has two winning season in each of his first two years, and is at the cusp of making the playoffs both years, speaks volumes. You will be hard pressed to ever see or hear me say anything negative about Harper. He is a top notch person and coach.

  3. Good Evening FC Football Report! For the second week in a row the wife and I are loaded up and ready to head to FC in the morning. The flag is packed and the voice has rested all week. LETS GO BLACK HATS!!!