2023-24 FCS Playoff Projections

The road to Frisco, the home of the 2023-2024 FCS National Championship game, starts on November 19th, 2023 with the Selection Show. On that day, twenty-four teams will be given the opportunity to work their way through the bracket to win a National Championship. Here, we attempt to project the FCS Playoff bracket to find out who those teams are. Of the fourteen FCS conferences, nine are awarded automatic bids as conference champions. One auto-bid is a combination of the Big South and Ohio Valley Conferences. The other fourteen teams come from an at at-large pool of the best of the rest non-conference champions.

For more reading, see our FCS College Football Ratings and our CFB game predictions.

We’ve analyzed the teams and understand how the selection process works, so below is our projected FCS Playoff field for the year. In preseason, this list is mostly a crap-shoot, however, as more games are played we will be able to more accurately predict where the FCS teams will land in the bracket.

Our FCS Playoff Bracket attempts to analyze everything that the selection committee would look at. This includes record, conference record, conference championships, strength of schedules, big wins, RPI and more. Remember, this list is not who we think should make the tournament, but who we think the committee will select to make the tournament.

Updated on 11/19/2023 @ 8:40am EST.

FCS Playoff Bracket Projection

Seed Team Record Conference
1 S Dakota St 11-0 Missouri Valley
Mercer 8-3 Southern
S Illinois 7-4 Missouri Valley
8 N Dakota St 8-3 Missouri Valley
Montana St 8-3 Big Sky
Duquesne 7-4 Northeast
5 SUNY Albany 9-3 Colonial
Austin Peay 9-2 United
Nicholls St 6-4 Southland
4 Villanova 9-2 Colonial
Richmond 8-3 Colonial
Lafayette 9-2 Patriot
3 South Dakota 9-2 Missouri Valley
UC Davis 7-4 Big Sky
TN Martin 8-3 Ohio Valley
6 Idaho 8-3 Big Sky
North Dakota 7-4 Missouri Valley
Gardner Webb 7-4 Big South
2 Montana 10-1 Big Sky
Youngstown St 7-4 Missouri Valley
CS Sacramento 7-4 Big Sky
7 Furman 9-2 Southern
Delaware 8-3 Colonial
Drake 8-3 Pioneer

Just missing the cut, here are our last four out…

Seed Team Record Conference
L1 Holy Cross 7-4 Patriot
L2 Chattanooga 7-4 Southern
L3 W Carolina 7-4 Southern
L4 Incarnate Word 8-2 Southland

FCS Projected Automatic Bids

As mentioned above, there are ten teams that are awarded automatic bids due to being a conference champion. In both the SWAC and MEAC, the conference champions play in the Celebration Bowl. However, teams that are not winners of those conferences are still eligible to make the FCS Playoff. The Ivy League is the only FCS conference that completely sits out of the playoff.

Conference Projected Bids Projected Auto Bid
Big Sky 5 Montana
Big South-OVC 2 Gardner Webb
Colonial 4 Villanova
FCS Independents 0 No Auto Bid
Missouri Valley 6 S Dakota St
Northeast 1 Duquesne
Patriot 1 Lafayette
Pioneer 1 Drake
Southern 2 Furman
Southland 1 Nicholls St
Southwestern Athletic 0 No Auto Bid
Mid-Eastern Athletic  0 No Auto Bid
United 1 Austin Peay
Ivy League 0 No Auto Bid