College Football Team May Get Screwed Out Of Playoffs Because Of A Coin Flip

This weekend is massive for FCS football. There are multiple outcomes that will determine the look of the playoff bracket and a coin flip could be one of the determining factors.


A college football program could be screwed out of a postseason birth because of a coin flip. In 2022.

As things stand, Southeast Missouri State and the University of Tennessee at Martin sit atop the Ohio Valley Conference at 4-0. The former will host Murray State at 2 p.m. ET on Saturday, while the latter will host Eastern Illinois at 3 p.m. ET.

Both the Redhawks and Skyhawks should win. If that is what happens, they would each finish 5-0 in the conference.

This is where the FCS playoff bids get both interesting and ridiculous between UT Martin and Southeast Missouri State.

A total of 24 teams make the FCS football playoff. there are 10 automatic qualifiers and 14 at-large bids.

Automatic qualifier bids are awarded to these conference champions:

Notice how the OVC champion is one of the automatic qualifier bids. That bid will either be awarded to SEMO or UT Martin, but a few scenarios could play out.

Should the first, third or fourth scenario become reality, the Skyhawks may be in trouble.

Will a coin flip determine the FCS playoff picture? Potentially.

At 8-2 overall, SEMO is ranked No. 15 in the FCS Coaches Poll. Win, lose or otherwise, the Redhawks are likely making the FCS playoff as either an automatic qualifier or through an at-large bid.

At 6-4, UT Martin is not ranked in the FCS Coaches Poll. If the Skyhawks lose Saturday, they are out of playoff contention. If it comes to a coin toss, they could get screwed.

Because of membership transition, the original OVC schedule was adjusted. UT Martin and SEMO did not play each other this year, so there is no head-to-head matchup to determine the conference champion.

Should both schools finish with the same conference record, the tiebreaker will be a coin flip. The winner of the coin toss would be declared the conference champion and receive an automatic bid to the playoff.

The coin flip result would likely be announced by 7:15 p.m. ET.

The coin toss could go in favor of UT Martin, which would put the Skyhawks into the playoff as the OVC champion. Should it go in favor of SEMO, the Skyhawks are likely just outside of the conversation and won't get in. That would be brutal.