Kats Get 1st Round Bye

Written by Eric 'WizKid' Odom. Posted in Local Sports

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Bearkats Get First Round Bye to NCAA 2012 Playoffs (via GoBearkats.com)

Published on November 19, 2012 by Eric 'WizKid' Odom

GoBearkats.com Sam Houston State will play host to Cal Poly in the second round of the NCAA Division I Football Championships on Saturday, Dec. 1.

The Bearkats and the Mustangs will kick off at 3 p.m. Central Time at Elliott T. Bowers Stadium in Huntsville.

Sam Houston is one of 20 teams selected to the 2012 NCAA Division I championships and one of 12 teams that received byes. The game Dec. 1 marks the first time that the Bearkats have earned NCAA Football Championship Subdivision playoff selection in consecutive years.

“We’re proud to be in the field and especially excited about earning a berth for a second consecutive season,” SHSU head coach Willie Fritz said. “That was one of our goals when we started as coaches – to build a program that competes for the national championship year after year.”

The winner of Sam Houston State’s second round matchup with Cal Poly will face either No. 3 seed Montana State or the winner of the first round contest between Stony Brook and Villanova.

Sam Houston reached the national championship game in Frisco last January, following to North Dakota State, this year’s No. 1 seed. The Bearkats rolled up an 8-3 record during the 2012 regular season and were Southland Conference co-champions with Central Arkansas.

Eastern Washington, Montana State, Old Dominion and Georgia Southern drew seeds No. two through five in that order.

“Any time you get in the playoffs, you have a chance to win the title,” Fritz said. “The first round bye comes at a really great time for us. We’ve played 11 consecutive weeks. It will be good to get the guys some rest and also to have some time to prepare for a quality Cal Poly squad.”

Complete ticket information for the second round game in Huntsville Dec. 1 will be listed shortly on www.gobearkats.com .

“We had great crowds for all three playoff games last year and all three home games at Bowers this season,” Fritz said. “We’d love to set another attendance record for the Cal Poly game. Those fans in the stands make a big difference.”

The complete schedule for the NCAA first and second rounds:

First Round:
Game 1 : Eastern Illinois (7-4) at South Dakota State (8-3)
Game 2: Coastal Carolina (7-4) at Bethune Cookman (9-2)
Game 3: Villanova (8-3) at Stony Brook (9-2)
Game 4: Colgate (8-3) at Wagner (8-3)

Second Round:
Game 1 winner at No. 1 North Dakota State (10-1)
New Hampshire (8-3) at Wofford (8-3)
Central Arkansas (9-2) at No. 5 Georgia Southern (8-3)
Game 2 winner at No. 4 Old Dominion (10-1)
Game 3 winner at No. 3 Montana St. (10-1)
Cal Poly (9-2) at Sam Houston State (8-3)
Illinois State (8-3) at Appalachian State (8-3)
Game 4 Winner at No. 2 Eastern Washington (9-2)

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