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#CAAFB NCAA Quarterfinal Storylines

Dec 7, 2012, 1:25 PM EDT

As one of FCS Football’s premier conferences, CAA Football certainly has no shortage of news and notes from around the league. See below for some of the latest storylines coming out of the conference and Saturday’s NCAA Quarterfinal matchup between Old Dominion and Georgia Southern.

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CAA FOOTBALL IN THE PLAYOFFS

  • After Villanova earned CAA Football’s autobid in the final week of the regular season, New Hampshire and Old Dominion punched their postseason tickets by earning at-large berths.
  • The Monarchs were named the No. 4 seed in the playoffs and will remain at home through the Quarterfinal Round should they advance.
  • CAA Football has had multiple NCAA Postseason berths in each of the last 22 seasons.
  • 15 CAA Football programs (including the Yankee Conference and Atlantic 10) have earned 83 postseason berths all-time dating back to 1978.
  • CAA Football has been represented in the NCAA Division I National Championship game in seven of the last nine seasons, with a league program winning two of the last four and four of the last nine national titles.
  • In 2007, CAA Football became the first league to ever garner five postseason berths in the NCAA Division I Football Championship field of 16. The league, which has three postseason berths this season, has accomplished the feat three times since 2007.
  • Over the last three seasons CAA Football teams are 22-14 in NCAA Division I Championship games when not facing league opponents.
  • Over the last nine seasons, the league is 50-32 (.610) in playoff games, second only to the Southern Conference’s mark of 30-18 (.625) in terms of winning percentage.
  • CAA Football teams are 43-25 (.632) in playoff games over the last nine years when not facing league foes, representing the best nonconference playoff percentage by any automatic-bid conference.
  • CAA Football squads own a mark of 18-26 (.409) in NCAA Championship Quarterfinal action.
  • The league holds a 10-10 playoff record versus the Southern Conference since 2003 and is 12-15 all-time against the SoCon in the postseason.

INSIDE THE POLLS

  • The final polls of the regular season were released on Nov. 19 with CAA Football fielding six teams in both The Sports Network and FCS Coaches polls. This marks the ninth time the league has had at least six teams in both polls this year.
  • CAA Football remains the only FCS conference to have ever had six or more teams ranked in either the TSN or FCS Coaches polls in a single week.
  • UNH leads FCS Football with 125 straight appearances in the TSN poll dating back to 2004.

6/7 (No. 5 seed) GEORGIA SOUTHERN (9-3, 6-2 Southern) VS. 3/3 (No. 4 seed) OLD DOMINION (11-1, 7-1)

  • This is the second meeting between Old Dominion and Georgia Southern after the Eagles came away with a 55-47 home win over the Monarchs in the Second Round of the last year’s FCS Playoffs. CAA Football teams are 4-9 all-time against GSU.
  • ODU is 2-1 all-time in the postseason and remains unbeaten (2-0) at home, while GSU is 44-12 all-time and 11-9 on the road in the playoffs. The Eagles have reached the Semifinals in each of the past two seasons and will make it three straight with a win on Saturday.
  • ODU has won six straight games following its lone loss of the season to Villanova on Oct. 13. The streak includes last week’s 63-35 Second Round win over Coastal Carolina.
  • The Monarchs have outscored their opponents, 552-347, this season and 257-167 during their current six-game winning streak.
  • GSU has won two of its last three after securing a 24-16 home victory over Central Arkansas on Saturday in Statesboro.
  • The Eagles won a share of the Southern Conference title along with Appalachian State and Wofford, marking the team’s 10th overall league title and its first consecutive titles since winning six straight from 1997-2002. They also earned the SoCon’s autobid this season.
  • GSU has acquired quite the playoff pedigree, ranking first all-time nationally with 44 playoff wins and six national championships. The Eagles are also FCS Football’s winningest program with more than 50 games played, posting a .722 winning percentage and 286 all-time wins. ODU is 38-9 (.809) in its four seasons played in FCS Football.
  • Sophomore QB Taylor Heinicke became just the third FCS player to win the Dudley Award given to the state of Virginia’s top player in the sport. He is also one of three finalists for The Sports Network’s Walter Payton Award (nation’s top player) that will be presented at the organization’s annual banquet on Dec. 17.
  • Heinicke threw for 497 yards and rushed for another 45 to set an FCS Playoff record with 542 yards of total offense last Saturday against the Chanticleers. He also tied the playoff record with his six touchdown passes, a mark that has not been equaled since 1989.
  • With his 497 passing yards against CCU, Heinicke now has 4,655 passing yards on the season, putting him just 208 shy of tying Steve McNair’s (Alcorn State) single-season record of 4,863 yards established in 1994.
  • The Monarchs lead all FCS schools in total offense (549.4 yards), passing offense (391.6 yds) and scoring offense (46.0 points). Heinicke paces the nation in passing yards per game (387.9), passing yards (4,655), total offense (423.1), points responsible for (26.2) and touchdown passes (41).
  • Junior PK Jarod Brown, senior DL Chris Burnette, senior P Jonathan Plisco and senior WR Nick Mayers all joined CAA Football Offensive Player of the Year Heinicke on the All-CAA First Team. 10 total Monarchs earned all-conference honors in the program’s final year playing as part of CAA Football at the FCS level.
  • Senior LB Craig Wilkins ranks 10th among active players in career tackles with 332 and is 11th in solo stops with 174.
  • Eagles senior LB and former walk-on John Stevenson is just two tackles shy of reaching 100 for the season.
  • GSU sophomore Dominique Swope needs 17 more rushing yard sto become the first Eagle to post consecutive 1,000-yard seasons in nearly a decade. With junior QB Jerick McKinnon’s 1,478 rushing yards this fall, if Swope accomplishes the feat, it will mark the fifth season in program history that the Eagles have fielded two 1,000-yard rushers in the same season.
  • Eagles senior DT Brent Russell needs a half sack to set the school’s career sack record.