New Hampshire eyes seventh straight playoff berth
Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - Six consecutive seasons. Six consecutive seasons that the New Hampshire Wildcats have qualified for the FCS playoffs. Only Montana (17) and Southern Illinois (seven) have longer active streaks.
Early this season, though, it appeared that the streak was in jeopardy.
The Wildcats opened the 2010 campaign with a victory over Central Connecticut State, then proceeded to lose three of their next four games, falling to 2-3 and 0-2 in the competitive CAA.
But the Wildcats refused to go quietly. Since the slow start they have reeled off three straight victories, all over CAA foes, and have managed to insert themselves into the playoff conversation.
So what would it take for the Wildcats to run their playoff appearance streak to seven?
Given the strength of the CAA, head coach Sean McDonnell believes that his team may only need two more victories to garner consideration for an at-large bid.
"Absolutely," replied McDonnell when asked if a 7-4 record is worthy of playoff consideration. "You just look at the landscape of our level of football right now, FCS football, and you look at who we play and what kind of league (CAA) we play in...I think any team that's got four losses should be looked at, should be looked at closely and should get in."
The Wildcats currently sit at 5-3 (3-2 CAA) and must win two of their last three games - No. 4 William & Mary (Saturday), No. 3 Villanova (Nov. 13), Towson (Nov. 20) - to get to 7-4.
McDonnell is taking it one game at a time:
"We can't worry about what's down the line. We've got a big worry coming in here in William & Mary. The Tribe are a really good football team so that's where our focus is at and that's where it's got to be."
New Hampshire and William & Mary meet this Saturday at Cowell Stadium. The Wildcats have won a school-record 12 consecutive home games but have not defeated The Tribe since 1998.
11/05 16:10:03 ET