2002 NCAA Division I-AA football season

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2002 NCAA Division I-AA season
NCAA logo.svg
Regular season
DurationAugust–November
Payton AwardTony Romo (QB, Eastern Illinois)
Buchanan AwardRashean Mathis (FC, Bethune-Cookman)
Playoff
DurationNovember 30–December 20
Championship dateDecember 20, 2002
Championship siteFinley Stadium
Chattanooga, Tennessee
ChampionWestern Kentucky Hilltoppers
Division I-AA football season

The 2002 NCAA Division I-AA football season, part of college football in the United States organized by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) at the Division I-AA level, began in August 2002, and concluded with the 2002 NCAA Division I-AA Football Championship Game on December 20, 2002, at Finley Stadium in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The Western Kentucky Hilltoppers won their first I-AA championship, defeating the McNeese State Cowboys by a final score of 34−14.[1]

Conference changes and new programs[edit]

School 2001 Conference 2002 Conference
Charleston Southern I-AA Independent Big South
Elon I-AA Independent Big South
FIU New Program I-AA Independent
Gardner-Webb D-II Independent Big South
Liberty I-AA Independent Big South
Savannah State D-II Independent I-AA Independent
Troy State I-AA Independent I-A Independent

Conference standings[edit]

2002 Atlantic 10 Conference football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
#6 Maine $^   7 2         11 3  
#11 Northeastern $^   7 2         10 3  
#4 Villanova ^   6 3         11 4  
UMass   6 3         8 4  
William & Mary   5 4         6 5  
Richmond   4 5         4 7  
Delaware   4 5         6 6  
Hofstra   4 5         6 6  
James Madison   4 6         5 7  
New Hampshire   2 7         3 8  
Rhode Island   1 8         3 9  
  • + – Conference co-champions
  • ^ – Division I-AA playoff participant
Rankings from The Sports Network I-AA Poll
2002 Big Sky football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
#7 Montana $^   5 2         11 3  
#19 Montana State $^   5 2         7 6  
#18 Idaho State $   5 2         8 3  
Eastern Washington   3 4         6 5  
Northern Arizona   3 4         6 5  
Portland State   3 4         6 5  
Sacramento State   3 4         5 8  
Weber State   1 6         3 8  
  • $ – Conference champion
  • ^ – Division I-AA playoff participant
Rankings from The Sports Network I-AA Poll
2002 Big South football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
#22 Gardner–Webb $   3 0         9 1  
Elon   2 1         4 7  
Liberty   1 2         2 9  
Charleston Southern   0 3         4 8  
  • $ – Conference champion
Rankings from The Sports Network poll
2002 Gateway Football Conference standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
#1 Western Kentucky +^   6 1         12 3  
#5 Western Illinois +^   6 1         11 2  
Youngstown State   4 3         7 4  
Illinois State   4 3         6 5  
Indiana State   3 4         5 7  
Northern Iowa   2 5         5 6  
Southern Illinois   2 5         4 8  
SW Missouri State   1 6         4 7  
  • + – Conference co-champions
  • ^ – Division I-AA playoff participant
Rankings from The Sports Network poll
2002 Ivy League football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
#17 Penn $   7 0         9 1  
Harvard   6 1         7 3  
Princeton   4 3         6 4  
Yale   4 3         6 4  
Cornell   3 4         4 6  
Dartmouth   2 5         3 7  
Brown   2 5         2 8  
Columbia   0 7         1 9  
  • $ – Conference champion
2002 MAAC football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
Duquesne $   8 0         11 1  
Marist   5 3         7 4  
Saint Peter's   5 3         6 5  
Fairfield   5 3         5 6  
Iona   4 4         5 6  
Siena   3 5         3 7  
St. John's   2 6         2 8  
Canisius   2 6         2 9  
La Salle   2 6         2 9  
  • $ – Conference champion
Rankings from The Sports Network poll
2002 MEAC football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
#15 Bethune-Cookman $^   7 1         11 2  
Florida A&M   5 3         7 5  
Hampton   5 3         7 5  
Morgan State   5 3         7 5  
South Carolina State   4 4         7 5  
Howard   4 4         6 5  
Norfolk State   2 6         5 6  
North Carolina A&T   2 6         4 8  
Delaware State   2 6         4 8  
  • $ – Conference champion
  • ^ – Division I-AA playoff participant
Rankings from The Sports Network poll
2002 NEC football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
Albany (NY) $   6 1         8 4  
Stony Brook   5 2         8 2  
Sacred Heart   5 2         7 3  
Wagner   4 3         7 4  
CCSU   3 4         5 6  
Robert Morris   2 5         3 4  
Monmouth   2 5         2 8  
Saint Francis (PA)   1 6         2 8  
  • $ – Conference champion
2002 Ohio Valley football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
No. 13 Eastern Illinois +^   5 1         8 4  
No. 20 Murray State +^   5 1         7 5  
No. 21 Eastern Kentucky   4 2         8 4  
No. 24 Southeast Missouri State   4 2         8 4  
Tennessee Tech   2 4         5 7  
Tennessee State   1 5         2 10  
UT Martin   0 6         2 10  
  • + – Conference co-champions
  • ^ – Division I-AA playoff participant
Rankings from The Sports Network poll
2002 Patriot League football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
#12 Fordham +^   6 1         10 3  
#25 Colgate +   6 1         9 3  
Lafayette   5 2         7 5  
Lehigh   4 3         8 4  
Towson   3 4         6 5  
Georgetown   2 5         5 6  
Holy Cross   2 5         4 8  
Bucknell   0 7         2 9  
  • + – Conference co-champions
  • ^ – Division I-AA playoff participant
Rankings from The Sports Network poll
2002 Pioneer Football League standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
North Division
Dayton $   4 0         11 1  
San Diego   3 1         5 5  
Butler   2 2         4 6  
Drake   1 3         5 6  
Valparaiso   0 4         1 10  
South Division
Morehead State   3 0         9 3  
Davidson   2 1         7 3  
Austin Peay   1 2         7 5  
Jacksonville   0 3         3 7  
  • $ – Conference champion
  • ^ – Division I-AA playoff participant
Rankings from The Sports Network poll
2002 Southern Conference football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
#3 Georgia Southern $^   7 1         11 3  
#14 Wofford   6 2         9 3  
#10 Appalachian State ^   6 2         8 4  
#9 Furman ^   6 2         8 4  
VMI   3 5         6 6  
Western Carolina   3 5         5 6  
East Tennessee State   2 6         4 8  
Chattanooga   2 6         2 10  
The Citadel   1 7         3 9  
  • $ – Conference champion
  • ^ – Division I-AA playoff participant
Rankings from The Sports Network I-AA Poll
2002 Southland Football League standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
#2 McNeese State $^   6 0         13 2  
#16 Northwestern State ^   4 2         9 4  
#23 Nicholls State   3 3         7 4  
Stephen F. Austin   3 3         6 5  
Jacksonville State   2 4         5 5  
Sam Houston State   2 4         4 7  
Southwest Texas State   1 5         4 7  
  • $ – Conference champion
  • ^ – Division I-AA playoff participant
  • Ranking is from the Sports Network Poll
2002 SWAC football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
East
Alabama A&M x   6 1         8 4  
Jackson State   5 2         7 4  
Alcorn State   3 4         6 5  
Mississippi Valley State   3 4         5 6  
Alabama State   2 5         6 6  
West
#8 Grambling State x$   6 1         11 2  
Southern   5 2         6 6  
Texas Southern   3 4         4 7  
Arkansas–Pine Bluff   2 5         3 8  
Prairie View A&M   0 7         1 10  
Championship: Grambling State 31, Alabama A&M 19
December 14, 2002
  • $ – Conference champion
  • x – Division champion/co-champions
2002 NCAA Division I-AA independents football standings
Conf     Overall
Team   W   L         W   L  
Saint Mary's   0 0         6 6  
FIU   0 0         5 6  
Samford   0 0         4 7  
Cal Poly   0 0         3 8  
Florida Atlantic   0 0         2 9  
Savannah State   0 0         1 8  
Southern Utah   0 0         1 10  
Morris Brown   0 0         1 11  

Conference champions[edit]

Conference Champions

Atlantic 10 Conference – Maine and Northeastern
Big Sky Conference – Idaho State, Montana, and Montana State
Big South ConferenceGardner-Webb
Gateway Football Conference – Western Illinois and Western Kentucky
Ivy League – Penn
Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference – Duquesne
Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference – Bethune-Cookman
Northeast Conference – Albany (NY)
Ohio Valley Conference – Eastern Illinois and Murray State
Patriot League – Colgate and Fordham
Pioneer Football League – Dayton
Southern Conference – Georgia Southern
Southland Football League – McNeese State
Southwestern Athletic Conference – Grambling State

Postseason[edit]

NCAA Division I-AA Playoff bracket[edit]

The top four teams in the tournament were seeded;[2] seeded teams were assured of hosting games in the first two rounds.[3][4]

First Round
November 30
Campus Sites
Quarterfinals
December 7
Campus Sites
Semifinals
December 14
Campus Sites
National Championship Game
December 20
Finley Stadium
Chattanooga, TN
            
1 McNeese State* 21
Montana State 14
1 McNeese State* 24
Montana 20
Montana* 45
Northwestern State 14
1 McNeese State* 39
Villanova 28
Villanova* 45
Furman 38
Villanova* 24
Fordham 10
4 Northeastern* 24
Fordham 29
1 McNeese State 14
Western Kentucky 34
3 Georgia Southern* 34
Bethune-Cookman 0
3 Georgia Southern* 31
Maine 7
Appalachian State* 13
Maine 14
3 Georgia Southern* 28
Western Kentucky 31
Western Kentucky* 59
Murray State 20
Western Kentucky 31
2 Western Illinois* 28
2 Western Illinois* 48
Eastern Illinois 9

* Denotes host institution

References[edit]

  1. ^ "2002 NCAA Division I Football Championship" (PDF). NCAA. NCAA.org. p. 16. Retrieved December 29, 2013.
  2. ^ Nielsen, Brian (November 25, 2002). "Eastern to go to Western in I-AA playoff matchup". Journal Gazette. Mattoon, Illinois. p. B5. Retrieved February 2, 2019 – via newspapers.com.
  3. ^ Kasper, Jon (November 12, 2001). "NCAA changes format for playoff pairings". Missoulian. Missoula, Montana. p. D1. Retrieved February 2, 2019 – via newspapers.com.
  4. ^ Kasper, Jon (November 12, 2001). "NCAA changes format for playoff pairings (cont'd)". Missoulian. Missoula, Montana. p. D6. Retrieved February 2, 2019 – via newspapers.com.