Ferris State has earned the No. overall seed in the DII football championship semifinals after a commanding 25-3 victory over Northwest Missouri State on Saturday, Dec. 7. Slippery Rock, Minnesota State and West Florida will be joining the Bulldogs as the final four teams left standing in the DII football season after a thrilling quarterfinals.
This is your one-stop-shop for schedule, scores, the bracket and updates from the opening kickoff to the championship game on Dec. 21 from McKinney, Texas.
DII BOWL TRACKER: Schedule, scores and how to watch the 4 DII bowl games Saturday
🚨2019 DII football semifinals: Seed, schedule announced 🚨
The 2019 DII football semifinals are set. Ferris State earned the top seed and will play a West Florida team that has already ended No. 1 Valdosta State's season in upset fashion. Minnesota State and Slippery Rock will battle in what should be a high scoring affair.
Here is the schedule and seeds for the semifinals on Saturday, Dec. 14 (all times Eastern):
- No. 3 Minnesota State at No. 2 Slippery Rock, 12:30 p.m.
- No. 4 West Florida at No. 1 Ferris State, 3 p.m.
2019 DII football quarterfinals: What you may have missed Saturday
- Slippery Rock and Notre Dame (OH) featured two Harlon Hill candidates that may very well be the frontrunners for the DII football Heisman Trophy. They certainly delivered. Roland Rivers III passed for 436 yards and combined for eight touchdowns while Jaleel McLaughlin ran for 126 yards and two touchdowns, while adding a 96-yard kickoff return in a wild 65-59 win for The Rock.
- West Florida can now add a No. 2 seed to its upset resume for the 2019 postseason. One week after taking down Valdosta State in the final seconds, the Argos went into Hickory, North Carolina and defeated Lenoir-Rhyne 43-38. It was the first time in 15 games that the Bears lost at home and the second time in the past three years West Florida has made it to the semifinals.
- After a quiet first half in which only three points were scored, Ferris State dropped 22 en route to a 25-3 victory over Northwest Missouri State. Marvin Campbell rumbled for 149 yards and a touchdown as the Bulldogs are back in the semifinals for the third time in four years.
- Nate Gunn had himself a day (again). The Minnesota State running back reeled off 173 yards and three scores to lead the Mavericks to a 42-21 victory over Texas A&M-Commerce.
Here are the scores from Saturday:
- No. 1 Slippery Rock 65, No. 3 Notre Dame (OH) 59
- West Florida 43, No. 2 Lenoir-Rhyne 38
- No. 1 Ferris State 25, No. 3 Northwest Missouri State 3
- No. 1 Minnesota State 42, Texas A&M-Commerce 21
The 2019 DII football championship: What to read
Consider this your crash course, a DII football championship 101 if you would.
- The DII football championship is a five-round, single-elimination tournament in which 28 schools vie for the national title. The tournament concludes in McKinney, Texas, with this year's game taking place at 3 p.m. ET on Saturday, Dec. 21. For a complete look at how the tournament works, check this out: THE ESSENTIAL GUIDE TO THE DII FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP
- How is Augustana (SD) playing in Colorado? There is a new format this year. The selection committee had the flexibility to move teams from their traditional Super Regions if it reduced travel and expenses. To find out exactly how the new format works, tap here: THE NEW DII FOOTBALL BRACKET, EXPLAINED
- The eight Harlon Hill Trophy finalists have been released. You can see the complete list here, and find out everything you need to know about the DII football version of the Heisman, tap here: THE ESSENTIAL GUIDE TO THE HARLON HILL TROPHY
2019 DII football championship: Second-round recap
West Florida snapped Valdosta State's 25-game winning streak. Elsewhere in second-round action, Texas A&M-Commerce soundly upset third-seeded Colorado School of Mines, 23-3. The 2019 DII football championship tournament hasn't gone as expected, to say the least.
- No. 3 Notre Dame (OH) 20, No. 2 Kutztown 17
- No. 1 Slippery Rock 51, Shepherd 30
- West Florida 38, No. 1 Valdosta State 35
- No. 1 Ferris State 37, No. 4 Central Missouri 10
- No. 2 Lenoir-Rhyne 49, Carson-Newman, 21
- No. 3 Northwest Missouri State 63, Lindenwood 7
- No. 1 Minnesota State 35, No. 4 CSU-Pueblo 7
- Texas A&M-Commerce 23, No. 3 Colorado School of Mines 3
2019 DII football championship first round recap
The first round showed why the DII football championship is one of the best tournaments in all of college sports.
Anything can happen.
Some incredible upsets and fantastic finishes went down. Here are the highlights.
- Lindenwood went into Cliff Harris Stadium and took down No. 2-seeded Ouachita Baptist 41-38, getting the go-ahead field goal with just over a minute left. It was a back and forth battle all day long, but in the end, the Lions defeated their third top-25 team of the season. Lindenwood will be heading to one of the winningest teams in DII football history and try to make Northwest Missouri State its next top-25 victim.
- Not to be outdone, Texas A&M-Commerce traveled to Tarleton State — owners of the best home record in DII football — and upset the No. 2-seeded Texans in a rematch from earlier in the season. Quarterback Miklo Smalls led the Lions through the air (197 yards passing) and on the ground (126 yards rushing), but it was the defense that deserves the credit here. The Lions held one of DII football's best offenses to 16 points and 330 total yards in the upset.
- You could barely catch your breath with the three games played at noon. All three came down to the final minutes of play. Indiana (Pa) took the lead over Shepherd with 1:40 left, but Tyson Bagent led the Rams right back down to field connecting with Devin Phelps for the 31-27 win with just 11 ticks on the clock. Notre Dame jumped out to a big lead but was able to hold off West Chester's 17-point second half and win 31-24. Tiffin's star running back Ja'Quan Hardy gave the Dragons the late lead with 1:26 remaining, but Collin DiGalbo found big tight end Jack Pilkerton for the six-yard touchdown and 33-31 lead with 44 seconds left on the clock and inevitably the win.
- Carson-Newman and West Florida did their best to shake things up in Super Region Two. Both teams went on the road and pulled off impressive wins. The Eagles defense struggled to maintain dual-threat Ja'Rome Johnson but stepped up when it needed to in a 17-9 win. West Florida, our team to watch in this part of the bracket, dominated Wingate. Quarterback Austin Reed and Quentin Randolph hooked up for two more scores in the 38-17 win after connecting three times a week ago.
Saturday, Nov. 23 | First round (all times Eastern)
- Shepherd 31, Indiana (Pa) 27
- Kutztown 33, Tiffin 31
- Notre Dame (OH) 31, West Chester 24
- West Florida 38, Wingate 17
- Carson-Newman 17, Bowie State 9
- Lenoir-Rhyne 36, Miles 7
- Central Missouri 37, Indianapolis 27
- Lindenwood 41, Ouachita Baptist 38
- Northwest Missouri State 7, Harding 6
- Texas A&M-Commerce 23, Tarleton State 16
- Colorado School of Mines 24, Sioux Falls 21
- Colorado State-Pueblo 17, Augustana (SD) 0
DII football championship: History
Valdosta State defeated Ferris State in a thrilling championship game last year to win its fourth national championship in program history. The Blazers enter the 2019 DII football championship as the No. 1 seed in Super Region Two with an undefeated record.
The Blazers are looking to match Northwest Missouri State's incredible 2015 and 2016 run when the Bearcats won back-to-back seasons without losing a game. The complete history of the DII football championship game is below.
|2018||Valdosta State||Kerwin Bell||49-47||Ferris State||McKinney, Tex.|
|2017||Texas A&M-Commerce||Colby Carthel||37-27||West Florida||Kansas City, Kan.|
|2016||Northwest Missouri State||Adam Dorrel||29-3||North Alabama||Kansas City, Kan.|
|2015||Northwest Missouri State||Adam Dorrel||34-7||Shepherd||Kansas City, Kan.|
|2014||Colorado State-Pueblo||John Wristen||13-0||Minnesota State-Mankato||Kansas City, Kan.|
|2013||Northwest Missouri State||Adam Dorrel||43-28||Lenoir-Rhyne||Florence, Ala.|
|2012||Valdosta State||David Dean||35-7||Winston-Salem State||Florence, Ala.|
|2011||Pittsburg State||Tim Beck||35-21||Wayne State (Mich.)||Florence, Ala.|
|2010||Minnesota-Duluth||Bob Nielson||20-17||Delta State||Florence, Ala.|
|2009||Northwest Missouri State||Mel Tjeersdma||30-23||Grand Valley State||Florence, Ala.|
|2008||Minnesota-Duluth||Bob Nielson||21-14||Northwest Missouri State||Florence, Ala.|
|2007||Valdosta State||David Dean||25-20||Northwest Missouri State||Florence, Ala.|
|2006||Grand Valley State||Chuck Martin||17-14||Northwest Missouri State||Florence, Ala.|
|2005||Grand Valley State||Chuck Martin||21-17||Northwest Missouri State||Florence, Ala.|
|2004||Valdosta State||Christ Hatcher||36-31||Pittsburg State||Florence, Ala.|
|2003||Grand Valley State||Brian Kelly||10-3||North Dakota||Florence, Ala.|
|2002||Grand Valley State||Brian Kelly||31-24||Valdosta State||Florence, Ala.|
|2001||North Dakota||Dale Lennon||17-14||Grand Valley State||Florence, Ala.|
|2000||Delta State||Steve Campbell||63-34||Bloomsburg||Florence, Ala.|
|1999||Northwest Missouri State||Mel Tjeersdma||58-52 (4ot)||Carson-Newman||Florence, Ala.|
|1998||Northwest Missouri State||Mel Tjeersdma||24-6||Carson-Newman||Florence, Ala.|
|1997||Northern Colorado||Joe Glenn||51-0||New Haven||Florence, Ala.|
|1996||Northern Colorado||Joe Glenn||23-14||Carson-Newman||Florence, Ala.|
|1995||North Alabama||Bobby Wallace||27-7||Pittsburg State||Florence, Ala.|
|1994||North Alabama||Bobby Wallace||16-10||Texas A&M-Kingsville||Florence, Ala.|
|1993||North Alabama||Bobby Wallace||41-34||Indiana (Pa.)||Florence, Ala.|
|1992||Jacksonville State||Bill Burgess||17-13||Pittsburg State||Florence, Ala.|
|1991||Pittsburg State||Chuck Broyles||23-6||Jacksonville State||Florence, Ala.|
|1990||North Dakota State||Rocky Hager||51-11||Indiana (Pa.)||Florence, Ala.|
|1989||*Mississippi College||John Williams||3-0||Jacksonville State||Florence, Ala.|
|1988||North Dakota State||Rocky Hager||35-21||Portland State||Florence, Ala.|
|1987||Troy||Rick Rhoades||31-17||Portland State||Florence, Ala.|
|1986||North Dakota State||Earle Solomonson||27-7||South Dakota||Florence, Ala.|
|1985||North Dakota State||Earle Solomonson||35-7||North Alabama||McAllen, Texas|
|1984||Troy||Chan Gailey||18-17||North Dakota State||McAllen, Texas|
|1983||North Dakota State||Don Morton||41-21||Central State (Ohio)||McAllen, Texas|
|1982||Texas State||Jim Wacker||34-9||UC Davis||McAllen, Texas|
|1981||Texas State||Jim Wacker||42-13||North Dakota State||McAllen, Texas|
|1980||Cal Poly||Joe Harper||21-13||Eastern Illinois||Albuquerque, N.M.|
|1979||Delaware||Tubby Raymond||38-21||Youngstown State||Albuquerque, N.M.|
|1978||Eastern Illinois||Darrell Mudra||10-9||Delaware||Longview, Texas|
|1977||Lehigh||John Whitehead||33-0||Jacksonville State||Wichita Falls, Texas|
|1976||Montana State||Sonny Holland||24-13||Akron||Wichita Falls, Texas|
|1975||Northern Michigan||Gil Krueger||16-14||Western Kentucky||Sacramento, Calif.|
|1974||Central Michigan||Roy Kramer||54-14||Delaware||Sacramento, Calif.|
|1973||Louisiana Tech||Maxie Lambright||34-0||Western Kentucky||Sacramento, Calif.|