(STATS) - An FCS Top 10 team was guaranteed a loss in the Southland Conference Saturday night when No. 7 Sam Houston State visited No. 9 McNeese State.
But what happened throughout the day was hard for anybody to fathom, continuing what has been a wild season.
Six Top 10 teams in the STATS FCS Top 25 lost, the last occurring when McNeese State beat Sam Houston State 27-10 to clinch at least a share of the Southland title as well as the conference's automatic bid to the FCS playoffs.
McNeese (9-0, 8-0), one of three unbeaten teams remaining in the FCS - along with No. 13 Harvard and unranked Dayton - rallied from a 10-0 deficit after the first quarter. Quarterback Daniel Sams, who finished with 164 rushing yards and 168 passing yards, accounted for two touchdowns in the second quarter, scoring on a 64-yard run and throwing a 7-yard score to Kent Shelby in the second quarter.
Sam Houston (6-3, 5-2) didn't have an offensive touchdown. Darrion Flowers returned an interception 90 yards for a score.
In addition to Sam Houston, No. 2 Illinois State, No. 3 Chattanooga, No. 4 Eastern Washington, No. 5 Richmond and No. 10 Portland State lost their games Saturday.
STATS FCS TOP 25=
FRIDAY, NOV. 6
No. 24 Dartmouth (7-1, 4-1 Ivy) 21, Cornell (0-8, 0-5) 3
Dartmouth rebounded from its first loss as quarterback Dalyn Williams accounted for both a touchdown run and pass, and the defense limited Cornell to 194 yards. The Big Green committed 15 penalties, though, pushing them to 41 in their last three games. ---=
SATURDAY, NOV. 7
No. 1 Jacksonville State (8-1, 6-0) 24, Eastern Illinois (5-4, 5-1) 3
The FCS' top-ranked squad pulled away from Eastern Illinois to remain as the last unbeaten team in Ohio Valley Conference action. Quarterback Eli Jenkins had 242 yards of total offense and threw for a touchdown, while Troymaine Pope carried the ball 21 times for 114 yards and a touchdown.
Dawson Wells also scored off an interception for the second straight game, this time a 35-yarder.---=
No. 11 South Dakota State (7-2, 4-2 Missouri Valley) 25, No. 2 Illinois State (7-2, 5-1) 20
Quarterback Taryn Christion accounted for 372 yards and three touchdowns to spark No. 11 South Dakota State in the final regular-season home game at Coughlin-Alumni Stadium in Brookings, South Dakota.
Zach Lujan also threw for an SDSU touchdown, with All-America wide receiver Jake Wieneke finishing with four receptions for 104 yards and two touchdowns.Illinois State's Anthony Warrum caught three touchdowns from Tre Roberson and finished with eight receptions for 241 yards. All-America running back Marshaun Coprich was limited to 55 yards and 22 carries.
Mercer (4-5, 1-4) 17, No. 3 Chattanooga (7-2, 5-1) 14
Mercer earned its first win in the Southern Conference, forcing four turnovers in an upset of two-time defending champion Chattanooga.
Bears quarterback John Russ had a touchdown pass and run, while Chattanooga counterpart Jacob Huesman scored twice on the ground but was intercepted twice. Huesman (112) and running back Derrick Craine (102) both went over 100 yards in the loss.---=
Northern Arizona (6-3, 4-2 Big Sky) 52, No. 4 Eastern Washington (6-3, 5-1) 30
Casey Jahn rushed for a pair of touchdowns in the first half and Corbin Jountti scored three times in the second half as NAU knocked Eastern Washington from first place in the Big Sky.
EWU wide receiver Kendrick Bourne caught nine passes for 154 yards and Cooper Kupp added another nine receptions for 98 yards and a touchdown.
New Hampshire (5-4, 3-3 CAA) 30, No. 5 Richmond (7-2, 5-1 CAA) 25
UNH quarterback Sean Goldrich helped end Richmond's seven-game winning streak with three total touchdowns (two passing, one rushing)
Richmond's Kyle Lauletta was intercepted four times, including twice by Patrick Mensah. The Spiders fell into a tie for first place in CAA Football with William & Mary.
No. 6 North Dakota State (7-2, 5-1 Missouri Valley) 59, Western Illinois (4-5, 3-3) 7
NDSU redshirt freshman Eason Stick improved to 3-0 as the starting quarterback, throwing for four touchdowns.
The four-time defending FCS champion Bison held the ball for 43 minutes, 47 seconds.
No. 7 Sam Houston State (6-2, 5-1 Southland) at No. 9 McNeese State (8-0, 7-0), (n)
Unbeaten McNeese State was seeking to clinch an FCS playoff bid.
No. 8 Coastal Carolina (8-1, 3-1 Big South) 46, Gardner-Webb (3-6, 2-3) 0
Coastal Carolina rebounded from its first loss by posting its first Big South shutout since the conference formed in 2003.
Alex Ross passed for two touchdowns and De'Angelo Henderson (114 yards) and Osharmar Abercrombie both scored twice on the ground.
Northern Colorado (5-4, 3-4 Big Sky) 35, No. 10 Portland State (7-2, 4-2) 32
Northern Colorado's Trae Reik rushed for 145 yards, including a game-winning 2-yard score with 23 seconds remaining.
Portland State quarterback Alex Kuresa passed for 250 yards and two touchdowns.
No. 12 William & Mary (7-2, 5-1 CAA) 34, Elon (3-6, 2-4) 13
Kendall Anderson and Mikal Abdul-Saboor provided touchdown runs and DeVonte Demon returned a punt 70 yards for a score to spark William & Mary to a 21-0 first-quarter lead.
The Tribe forced four turnovers, including an interception and fumble recovery by senior linebacker Zach Fetters.
No. 13 Harvard (8-0, 5-0 Ivy) 24, Columbia (2-6, 1-4) 16
Harvard pushed its winning streak to 22 games as senior quarterback Scott Hosch completed 22 of 39 attempts for 324 yards and two touchdowns and freshman Justice Shelton-Mosley had 270 all-purpose yards, including 131 on eight receptions.
No. 15 Charleston Southern (8-1, 5-0 Big South) 28, Kennesaw State (6-3, 2-2) 14
Charleston Southern clinched at least a share of the Big South title while earning a spot in the FCS playoffs for the first time. The Buccaneers' only other Big South title came as co-champions in 2005.
The CSU defense held Kennesaw State's triple option offense to 131 yards and defensive lineman Anthony Ellis scored off a 61-yard fumble return.
No. 16 Fordham (8-2, 4-1 Patriot) 24, Bucknell (4-5, 1-3) 16
Fordham's Kevin Anderson was 20 of 27 for 296 yards and two touchdowns as All-America running back Chase Edmonds was held to 62 yards and one touchdown on 27 carries.
No. 17 Northern Iowa (5-4, 3-3 Missouri Valley) 59, No. 23 Indiana State (4-5, 2-4) 13
UNI cruised to its third straight win as quarterback Aaron Bailey rushed for four touchdowns and passed for one.
The Panthers picked off Indiana State quarterback Matt Adams three times, with Tim Kilfoy (30 yards) and Jamison Whiting (77 yards) scoring off their interceptions.
UT Martin (6-3, 5-1 OVC) 42, No. 18 Eastern Kentucky (5-4, 4-2) 35
Jarod Neal's 24-yard touchdown pass to Rod Wright with 1:05 remaining broke a 35-35 tie. UT Martin scored 25 points in the fourth quarter after trailing 28-17.
Neal was 24 of 51 for 358 yards and three touchdowns, but he threw four interceptions and was sacked twice by EKU defensive end Noah Spence. EKU's Bennie Coney threw for 354 yards and five touchdowns with two picks.
No. 19 North Carolina A&T (8-1, 6-0 MEAC) 9, South Carolina State (5-4, 4-2) 6
Khris Gardin's 17-yard touchdown reception from reserve quarterback Kylil Carter with 1:39 left lifted MEAC-leading North Carolina A&T to one of its most important wins of the season.
A&T running back Tarik Cohen managed only 58 yards on 22 carries.
No. 20 Southern Utah (7-2, 6-0 Big Sky) 34, Montana State (4-5, 2-4) 23
Malik Brown and Levi Te'o rushed for two touchdowns each to fuel Southern Utah, the first place team in the Big Sky..
Montana State quarterback Dakota Prukop had 259 yards of total offense and rushed for a touchdown, but threw two interceptions.
No. 21 Youngstown State (5-4, 3-3) 47, Missouri State (1-8, 0-6) 7
Youngstown State rolled to a 38-0 first-half lead as Hunter Wells threw for three touchdowns.
Jody Webb (107 yards, one touchdown) and Martin Ruiz (100 yards, one touchdown) led a 338-yard rushing assault.
No. 22 Montana (5-4, 4-2 Big Sky) 33, Idaho State (2-7, 1-5) 27
A botched snap ruined Idaho State's chance for a game-winning field goal in overtime, and after the ball was knocked around, Eric Johnson picked it up and returned it for a touchdown.
The Grizzlies also had a defensive touchdown on J.R. Nelson's 20-yard interception return in the second quarter.
No. 25 The Citadel (7-2, 6-0 Southern) 35, VMI (2-8, 1-5) 14
Quinlan Washington (72 yards) and Tevin Floyd (75 yards) both scored on pick-sixes as The Citadel forced six turnovers. Cam Jackson rushed for 100 yards and a touchdown and Eric Goins kicked five field goals, none longer than 34 yards.
With Chattanooga losing, The Citadel clinched at least a tie for the Southern Conference title. The Bulldogs can win the title outright with a victory at Chattanooga next Saturday.
No. 14 James Madison (7-2, 4-2 CAA)