2020 FCS Season: Inside The Box Score for Week 2

Week two of the college football season is complete after six FCS teams took on FBS schools on Saturday. Below are some observations and trends from week two of the FCS season.

9/12Eastern KentuckyWest Virginia10-56
9/12CampbellGeorgia Southern26-27
9/12Austin PeayPittsburgh0-55
9/12The CitadelSouth Florida6-27
9/12Missouri StateOklahoma0-48
9/12Houston BaptistTexas Tech33-35

FCS Versus FBS Points and Yardage

We will keep track of points and yardage for each FCS versus FBS game this season. Listed below are the FCS team, points scored by each FCS team, points given up, offensive yards gained by each FCS team, and yards given up by each FCS team. Week one totals and averages are also provided.

To date, 10 FCS versus FBS games have been played.

FCS TeamPointsOpp. PointsOff. YardsDef. Yards
Austin Peay055139456
The Citadel627284404
Eastern Kentucky1056206624
Houston Baptist3335600624
Missouri State048136608
Week 2 Totals752481,7343,062
Week 2 Averages12.541.33289510.3
Week 1 Totals801851,2582,171
Week 1 Averages2046.25314.50542.75
YTD Totals1554332,9925,233
YTD Averages15.543.3299.2523.3

The historical scoring average through 2019 of FCS versus FBS games since the Division I split in 1978 was 15 points for FCS teams and 37 points for FBS squads. In 2019, FCS teams averaged 13.9 points per game against FBS teams while FCS teams gave up 43 points per game on defense.

FCS Versus FBS Conference and Team Records

Below are the records for each conference for FCS versus FBS games. A running total will be kept throughout the season and updated weekly. Historical team records can be found here and historical conference records can be found here.

Team2020 vs. FBSAll-Time RecordLast FBS Win
Austin Peay0-11-291987
The Citadel0-18-442019
Eastern Kentucky0-26-342014
Houston Baptist0-20-7Never
Missouri State0-11-381990
ConferenceWeekly Record2020 Record
ACC (FBS)1-01-0
American Athletic (FBS)1-01-0
Big 12 (FBS)3-03-0
Big South (FCS)0-10-1
Conference USA (FBS)0-04-0
MVFC (FCS)0-10-1
Ohio Valley (FCS)0-20-3
SoCon (FCS)0-10-1
Southland (FCS)0-10-4
Sun Belt (FBS)1-01-0

FCS School Trends Versus FBS Teams

Austin Peay was crushed by Pittsburgh 55-0 and it has been a long time since they were close at the end of the game against an FBS opponent. The Governors last defeated an FBS team in 1987 when they defeated Kansas State 26-22. Since then, they have lost 27 in a row and none have been closer than 12 points. The average margin of defeat? 38.7 points per game.

Campbell started wonderfully against Georgia Southern including building a 20-6 lead early in the second half. After scoring a touchdown late to make it 27-26, they went for two and failed to score to lose by a heartbreaking point. It was just the fourth game versus FBS competition and the best for the Camels. The previous there were also against Sun Belt teams but were never close as the Camels lost by an average of 44 points per game.

The Citadel is not a program to shy away from a big game as they are a common opponent for ACC and SEC teams. The Bulldogs game against South Florida was just the third against a non-Power 5 team. They also faced Wyoming in 2002 (lost 34-30) and Georgia Southern in 2015 (lost 48-13). The Citadel also has FBS games this season against the ACC’s Clemson Tigers and FBS independent Army.

Eastern Kentucky was featured in last week’s edition of Inside The Box Score as having gone 0-11 since their last win over an FBS team. It is now 0-12 with an average margin of defeat at 27.83 points per loss after the 56-10 drubbing by West Virginia. It was only the second game the Colonels played against the Big 12. They also played Kansas State in 2011, a game which they lost only by a score of 10-7.

Houston Baptist’s first game against a Power 5 opponent was nearly an amazing upset against Texas Tech. The Huskies lost 35-33 and the Red Raiders marked only the 7th FBS opponent in HBU’s history. Three of those seven games have been decided by less than 10 points and they nearly got their first upset last season. They lost to UTEP by a nearly similar score – 36-34 – on August 31, 2019.

Missouri State was blanked by Oklahoma on Saturday night 48-0. It was just the third shutout suffered by the Bears against FBS foes after a 38-0 defeat in 2000 against Arkansas and a 35-0 loss in 2016 versus Kansas State. It was also a rare shutout against a Bobby Petrino led offense. The Bears are also accustomed to non-competitive games against FBS teams as they have played 25 straight games with no game closer than 14 points dating back to 1999.

Kicking Woes Continue

After a good week zero from FCS kickers, weeks 1 and 2 have been less than stellar. Field goals have been an issue over the last two weeks while extra points are no longer perfect.

WeekField GoalsExtra Points
Week 04/43/3
Week 11/711/11
Week 25/86/7

There were also issues with several teams struggling with punt snaps (Campbell and The Citadel specifically) and fumbles on punt returns. Below is one example of some of the special teams issues plaguing FCS teams early this season.

Zappe’s Aerial Attack

As mentioned above, Houston Baptist lost 35-33 but Bailey Zappe’s performance against Texas Tech gave the Huskies some national attention. Zappe went 30 of 49 for 567 yards and 4 touchdowns with no interceptions. Combined with his 480 yards against North Texas in week one, Zappe’s stats are:

69 completions from 111 attempts (62.2% completion percentage) for 1,047 yards with 7 touchdowns and no interceptions.

For comparison, Zappe threw for 3,811 yards with 35 touchdowns and 15 interceptions. Zappe has already thrown for more than a quarter of 2019’s total in a sixth of the games played.

Zappe’s 567 yards against Texas Tech are a school record for passing yards. He broke his own record of 513 yards set last season against South Dakota. Zappe completed 12 passes to Jerreth Sterns for 130 yards and a touchdown with those 12 catches tying for 3rd most in school history.

Zappe also completed 5 passes to Josh Sterns for a school-record 209 yards. Sterns’ record was 31 yards receiving more than the previous record set by Ben Ratzlaff last season. Houston Baptist put up a total of 600 yards of offense but that amount is only third-best in school history.

The Huskies have one more game this fall against Louisiana Tech on Saturday, September 26. The game will be televised on ESPN3, which is another great opportunity for Zappe and the Huskies on a national stage.

What’s Ahead

11 FCS games are in the books and, as of this writing, 40 are still scheduled to be played. The full FCS schedule for 2020 can be found here.

Another six games are scheduled for week three and all six will again feature FCS versus FBS matchups. Those six games are also listed below. Abilene Christian will be the only FCS team making its season debut as they face off against UTEP.

DateAwayHomeTime (ET)TV
9/18Campbell (0-1)Coastal Carolina (1-0)7:30 PMESPN
9/19Austin Peay (0-2)Cincinnati12 PMESPN+
9/19Stephen F. Austin (0-1)UT-San Antonio (1-0)3 PMESPN3
9/19The Citadel (0-1)Clemson (1-0)4 PMACCN
9/19Central Arkansas (1-1)Arkansas State (1-1)7 PMESPN+
9/19Abilene ChristianUTEP (1-1)9 PMESPN3
Photo courtesy of Campbell University Athletics.

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