September 07, 2017

(STATS) - It's home, sweet home for the Big Sky in the new Big Sky/MVFC Challenge Series. The far-western conference of the FCS could use the advantage.

The series was created to publicize current matchups and promote future nonconference scheduling between the Big Sky and Missouri Valley Football Conference, although the two premier leagues have a strong history of facing each other. The MVFC holds a 50-33 edge in all-time meetings, including 25-10 over the last four seasons.

Six of this year's eight games will be played at Big Sky schools, including four of the five on Saturday. They are: No. 2 North Dakota State at No. 7 Eastern Washington; No. 4 South Dakota State at Montana State; No. 22 Western Illinois at Northern Arizona; and Missouri State at No. 11 North Dakota. The exception is No. 21 Northern Iowa hosting Cal Poly.

Upcoming games are North Dakota at South Dakota (MVFC) and Northern Iowa at Southern Utah (Big Sky) on Sept. 16, and No. 18 Illinois State (MVFC) at Northern Arizona on Oct. 7.

All eight games involve at least one team currently ranked in the STATS FCS Top 25.

The conferences have produced 13 FCS champions.

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