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Thread: Is the gap closing between D1 FCS Football and D2 Football?

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    Default Is the gap closing between D1 FCS Football and D2 Football?

    It seems like over the past few seasons, that D2 Football keeps getting better and better. More competition, better players, bigger stadiums, bigger attendance, larger revenue. Is the gap closing between D2 and D1 FCS? Just throwing it out there.

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    Default Re: Is the gap closing between D1 FCS Football and D2 Football?

    It is all relative. I've been lucky enough to watch UND, NDSU, USD and SDSU in person the last couple of seasons. MSU-Mankato is obviously one of the best teams in D2. Yet they wouldn't be able to hang with those teams- at least playing them week after week.

    Could they beat lower level FCS teams? Possibly. But the difference in depth is telling. And the pounding that you take over an entire season takes a toll.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Is the gap closing between D1 FCS Football and D2 Football?

    Quote Originally Posted by laker View Post
    It is all relative. I've been lucky enough to watch UND, NDSU, USD and SDSU in person the last couple of seasons. MSU-Mankato is obviously one of the best teams in D2. Yet they wouldn't be able to hang with those teams- at least playing them week after week.

    Could they beat lower level FCS teams? Possibly. But the difference in depth is telling. And the pounding that you take over an entire season takes a toll.
    Oh for sure! Depth at D2 is a struggle for just about all teams. I think that will continue to get better with better sports medicine. I will say their is so much more ownership with D2 players. D2 players often quit or dont have the drive. Many of the successful D2 players have to do a lot for themselves.

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    Default Re: Is the gap closing between D1 FCS Football and D2 Football?

    Yes, and it will continue to close. Just as the gap between Power FBS conferences and group of five FBS conferences is closing, and the gap between group of five FBS conferences and FCS is closing. Kids are finally learning that if you can play, you will get noticed. You don't have to be in the MAC or Sun Belt to get noticed by NFL scouts if you are great. You will get noticed no matter where you're at.

    Additionally, the "perks" are starting to become the same everywhere. Use to be that only the power conferences in FBS had football centers and indoor practice facilities and all that. Now it is weird if you are in D1 and don't have a football center and indoor facility. It is starting to get to the point where it is weird in D2 if you don't have an indoor facility. Starting to get to a point where all the schools are bumping their head on the ceiling at each level.

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    Default Re: Is the gap closing between D1 FCS Football and D2 Football?

    I mean, it is a small sample size but Pueblo went on the road and more than dominated a Sam Houston team that made it to the semi-finals that year. However...week in and week out would hurt as the depth isn't there due to scholarship differences, and of course one team is more fired up than the other in that scenario. Too many variables and too small of a sample size to say yes or now for me. No matter the facilities a kid getting to say he is going D1 is many times the deciding factor for recruits. Heck, Northern Colorado still gets kids over Pueblo just so the kid can say he went D1 while he wins 3 games a season in his college career.

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    Default Re: Is the gap closing between D1 FCS Football and D2 Football?

    No. As more schools have made the move to FCS and FBS, the talent that has trickled down to D2 has lessened.

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    Default Re: Is the gap closing between D1 FCS Football and D2 Football?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mulerider View Post
    It seems like over the past few seasons, that D2 Football keeps getting better and better. More competition, better players, bigger stadiums, bigger attendance, larger revenue. Is the gap closing between D2 and D1 FCS? Just throwing it out there.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Carlson View Post
    No. As more schools have made the move to FCS and FBS, the talent that has trickled down to D2 has lessened.
    I feel like Mulerider is putting out two different things. His first thought is that D2 is getting better and his second thought is that the gap is closing between D2 and FCS.
    Ian addresses the first thought about less talent available in D2 as there are more spots opened up for players in FCS. But more teams competing in FCS doesn't necessarily mean there are more good teams in FCS.
    It's all in how you frame the narrative.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Is the gap closing between D1 FCS Football and D2 Football?

    D2 record against FCS (http://stats.ncaa.org/rankings/change_sport_year_div
    misc reports -> non conference)
    2018 3-38
    2017 5-27
    2016 7-36
    2015 3-35
    2014 7-40
    2013 16-47

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    Default Re: Is the gap closing between D1 FCS Football and D2 Football?

    Quote Originally Posted by twolfbenchwarmer View Post
    D2 record against FCS (http://stats.ncaa.org/rankings/change_sport_year_div
    misc reports -> non conference)
    2018 3-38
    2017 5-27
    2016 7-36
    2015 3-35
    2014 7-40
    2013 16-47
    Interesting!

  10. #10

    Default Re: Is the gap closing between D1 FCS Football and D2 Football?

    FCS vs FBS
    2018 7-105
    2017 11-92
    2016 12-113
    2015 9-96
    2014 14-103
    2013 24-106

    Very interesting that the best year D2 has had against FCS was their best year against FBS

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    Default Re: Is the gap closing between D1 FCS Football and D2 Football?

    Quote Originally Posted by twolfbenchwarmer View Post
    D2 record against FCS (http://stats.ncaa.org/rankings/change_sport_year_div
    misc reports -> non conference)
    2018 3-38
    2017 5-27
    2016 7-36
    2015 3-35
    2014 7-40
    2013 16-47
    Without mining this data down further the answer to the question would appear to be no, the gap between D2 and FCS isn’t closing.

    I suspect it really comes down to which two teams are playing. A D2 team playing one of the better teams from the Missouri Valley Football Conference such as Northern Iowa or South Dakota State won’t win very often. A good D2 team against a lower tier team from the Big South like Gardner Webb has a good chance for pulling out a win.

    And then there are the outliers...those times when there are big upsets....Pueblo beats a good Sam Houston team or Appalachian State beats Michigan, but these are outliers.

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    Default Re: Is the gap closing between D1 FCS Football and D2 Football?

    Let's also remember who is playing FCS games: the teams who need the money, not the teams who don't. And we know the teams who don't need the money are pretty good and/or have the funds to play a "national" non-conference schedule. NWMS and GVSU aren't scheduling James Madison or Eastern Illinois. Its Central State playing Robert Morris or Slippery Rock playing Youngstown State.

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    Default Re: Is the gap closing between D1 FCS Football and D2 Football?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fightingscot82 View Post
    Let's also remember who is playing FCS games: the teams who need the money, not the teams who don't. And we know the teams who don't need the money are pretty good and/or have the funds to play a "national" non-conference schedule. NWMS and GVSU aren't scheduling James Madison or Eastern Illinois. Its Central State playing Robert Morris or Slippery Rock playing Youngstown State.
    Yeah but NWMSU isn't playing ANYBODY OOC. SILOs are also killing D2 football.

    To answer the question, I don't believe so, for many kids it is D-I (scholy/preferred walk-on) or bust (Ju-Co.) I also reject the notion that G5s are approaching the P5s, anymore it seems that many kids are wanting to go to the same programs like A&M, Clemson, Ohio St, OU, before they eventually transfer to another program (likely another P5 school). UCF has some players, as does Houston, Boise St., Memphis, but I doubt Northern Illinois, UTEP, Tulsa, Texas State has talent that will keep it within 17 points to even a mediocre P5 right now. (Ball St. vs Notre Dame was early season and an anomaly)
    Go Bronchos!

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    Default Re: Is the gap closing between D1 FCS Football and D2 Football?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mulerider View Post
    It seems like over the past few seasons, that D2 Football keeps getting better and better. More competition, better players, bigger stadiums, bigger attendance, larger revenue. Is the gap closing between D2 and D1 FCS? Just throwing it out there.

    Ummm no.

    1. D2 has basically no revenue except as the students are taxed.
    2. FCS in about the same boat, but on a much larger scale.
    3. I don't know that there is more competition.
    4. Players are always getting better at all levels.
    5. Bigger stadiums make no sense - I'm not sure what the average D2 attendance is, but I suspect you could fit them all in a Walmart and still have plenty of room to shop.

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    Default Re: Is the gap closing between D1 FCS Football and D2 Football?

    Quote Originally Posted by KleShreen View Post
    Yes, and it will continue to close. Just as the gap between Power FBS conferences and group of five FBS conferences is closing, and the gap between group of five FBS conferences and FCS is closing. Kids are finally learning that if you can play, you will get noticed. You don't have to be in the MAC or Sun Belt to get noticed by NFL scouts if you are great. You will get noticed no matter where you're at.

    Additionally, the "perks" are starting to become the same everywhere. Use to be that only the power conferences in FBS had football centers and indoor practice facilities and all that. Now it is weird if you are in D1 and don't have a football center and indoor facility. It is starting to get to the point where it is weird in D2 if you don't have an indoor facility. Starting to get to a point where all the schools are bumping their head on the ceiling at each level.

    The gap between P5 and G5 is cavernous and continues to widen. Not sure what rock you've been hiding under. P5 is playing with dollars. G5 is playing with nickels. Many former big-time programs are now in that G5 class and there is little-to-no hope that they will ever climb out. P5 is now the flagship state schools of most (but not all) states, and a few (very few) private schools. That's it. The other FBS programs are eating peanut butter sandwiches, FCS is eating Fritos, and D2 is eating crumbs. In the future, schools will either be P5 or non-scholarship, because anything other than P5 is a waste of time and money.
    Last edited by Herb Street; 01-08-2019 at 06:35 PM.

  16. #16

    Default Re: Is the gap closing between D1 FCS Football and D2 Football?

    Quote Originally Posted by Herb Street View Post
    The gap between P5 and G5 is cavernous and continues to widen. Not sure what rock you've been hiding under. P5 is playing with dollars. G5 is playing with nickels. Many former big-time programs are now in that G5 class and there is little-to-no hope that they will ever climb out. P5 is now the flagship state schools of most (but not all) states, and a few (very few) private schools. That's it. The other FBS programs are eating peanut butter sandwiches, FCS is eating Fritos, and D2 is eating crumbs. In the future, schools will either be P5 or non-scholarship, because anything other than P5 is a waste of time and money.
    The gap in money is huge, but there is only so much you can buy. P5 is getting (at least the B1G and the SEC) huge amounts of money, but they are long past the point of diminishing returns. I mean, suppose each school had $1 billion/year to work with... they might start paying their coaches $200 million/year, but they are already getting the best coaches so all that is happening is that their expenses are increasing to match their revenue. Are they going to bedazzle their weight plates? Put fine Corinthian leather on every surface that doesn't have a flat-screen TV on it? Pool tables in the players-only bathrooms? Fact is, they've pretty much maximized all that stuff already.

    Sure, I wouldn't want my team (NDSU) to play Alabama or Clemson, but I have seen NDSU play Kansas State, Kansas, Minnesota, Iowa State, and Iowa... the gap in talent didn't look that huge to me considering that NDSU beat them all. Heck, I'd love to see NDSU get Nebraska and Wisconsin on the schedule, but they'd much rather play MAC schools. And speaking of MAC schools, they are never, ever going to schedule NDSU again.

    I'd like to see the G5 and FCS combine. And I'd like to see the Ivy League participate in that division's playoffs. And the P5 can do whatever they want.

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    Default Re: Is the gap closing between D1 FCS Football and D2 Football?

    Quote Originally Posted by tony View Post
    The gap in money is huge, but there is only so much you can buy. P5 is getting (at least the B1G and the SEC) huge amounts of money, but they are long past the point of diminishing returns. I mean, suppose each school had $1 billion/year to work with... they might start paying their coaches $200 million/year, but they are already getting the best coaches so all that is happening is that their expenses are increasing to match their revenue. Are they going to bedazzle their weight plates? Put fine Corinthian leather on every surface that doesn't have a flat-screen TV on it? Pool tables in the players-only bathrooms? Fact is, they've pretty much maximized all that stuff already.

    Sure, I wouldn't want my team (NDSU) to play Alabama or Clemson, but I have seen NDSU play Kansas State, Kansas, Minnesota, Iowa State, and Iowa... the gap in talent didn't look that huge to me considering that NDSU beat them all. Heck, I'd love to see NDSU get Nebraska and Wisconsin on the schedule, but they'd much rather play MAC schools. And speaking of MAC schools, they are never, ever going to schedule NDSU again.

    I'd like to see the G5 and FCS combine. And I'd like to see the Ivy League participate in that division's playoffs. And the P5 can do whatever they want.
    I think the original poster was stating that the gap was closing between the divisions. I was just making the point that the opposite is actually true. Whether or not the fact is a good thing for college athletics is a different topic.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Is the gap closing between D1 FCS Football and D2 Football?

    Quote Originally Posted by Herb Street View Post
    I think the original poster was stating that the gap was closing between the divisions. I was just making the point that the opposite is actually true. Whether or not the fact is a good thing for college athletics is a different topic.
    I agree that the money gap between the P5 and G5 is increasing but don't think it necessarily follows that the competitive gap is increasing between the P5 and the FCS or the FCS and DII. I certainly don't see any evidence for the former and there is hardly any data either way for the latter.

  19. #19

    Default Re: Is the gap closing between D1 FCS Football and D2 Football?

    Quote Originally Posted by Herb Street View Post
    I think the original poster was stating that the gap was closing between the divisions. I was just making the point that the opposite is actually true. Whether or not the fact is a good thing for college athletics is a different topic.
    Yeah, I know the money gap was huge, I was just talking about level of competition. As far as straight up matchups.

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    Default Re: Is the gap closing between D1 FCS Football and D2 Football?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mulerider View Post
    Yeah, I know the money gap was huge, I was just talking about level of competition. As far as straight up matchups.
    So if there is no evidence either way, how do we figure the competitive gap is closing? A decent hunch?

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