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A new I-AA Diary; Playoff Predictions

A New I-AA Diary
To see my play-by-play diary of the Lehigh/James Madison game on I-AA.org, click on the link below:
I-AA Diary: Lehigh vs. James Madison

Again, I felt like Lehigh played a very good game on Saturday against a great team. Lehigh has nothing to be ashamed of with a great effort, with no turnovers, awesome defense, and brave offense standing up to James Madison's physical play.

Proud Patriots
Lehigh and Lafayette both played excellent games against the best conference in I-AA, the Atlantic 10, and in both cases nearly came away with the victory. On this blog you won't see much praise of Lafayette, but they need to get their props for scaring the entire state of Delaware on Saturday. A laughingstock to the rest of I-AA before Saturday, they clearly showed that they were the equals to Delaware last Saturday and very nearly pulled off the biggest upset of the 1st round.

Overall, despite the losses, both schools did the Patriot League proud, and can enter the offseason with their heads held high.

Playoff (yuck) Predictions
I know everyone who picked Georgia Southern on their side of the bracket got upset. But 3-5 screams out to me, "Don't quit your day job".

Really right:
Furman/Jacksonville St. Predicted score: 44-17; Real score: 49-7. Furman took care of business at home against the OVC, and I did pretty well here.

William & Mary/Hampton. Predicted score: 34-28; Real score: 42-35. I thought this game might be closer than some folks thought, and I was right. The margin of victory was only off by 1 point.

Kinda right:
Montana/Northwestern St. It wasn't a 10-point Montana win like I predicted - it was more like a Montana blowout. Still, on a tough week, I'll take it.

Should have been right:
James Madison/Lehigh. Had the questionable call at the goal line not been called, and the Dukes had to settle for a FG in that spot, we all might be celebrating a 13-10 Lehigh victory.

Delaware/Lafayette. Most of I-AA Nation was shocked to see Lafayette ahead of Delaware in the middle of the 4th quarter. I wasn't. If Maurer didn't fumble the ball away with a minute to play, we might have seen overtime, and Lafayette absolutely could have pulled it off.

Eastern Washington/Southern Illinois. I knew this would be a close, well-fought game. What was amazing was I thought somehow the Salukis would come up with an answer at home, when the Eagles have thrived on close games all year. The Salukis couldn't, and the Eagles snatched the victory. Had I only had the courage to pick the upset.

Was I ever wrong!:
Sam Houston St./Western Kentucky. I guess I overrated the Gateway and the Hilltoppers' 2 losses to a I-A and Southern Illinois. Sam Houston S. proved the Southland is a good conference - at home anyway. But a 30-point blowout?

New Hampshire/Georgia Southern. The biggest upset by far of the first round, I picked a 20 point blowout GSU win. Ricky Santos sure messed that up for me. What an unbelievable victory. I was totally flat-footed.

This Tuesday: Press; Game Balls for Lehigh/JMU

Later This Week: All-Patriot Team Honors; 2nd Round Predictions

Next Tuesday: Lehigh Football Nation's Player Of the Year + Virtual Awards

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