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|Current season, competition or edition:|
|No. of teams||130|
|Official website|| www|
The NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS), formerly known as Division I-A, is the top level of college football in the United States. The FBS is the most competitive subdivision of NCAA Division I, which itself consists of the largest and most competitive schools in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). As of 2018, there are 10 conferences and 130 schools in FBS.
College football is American football played by teams of student athletes fielded by American universities, colleges, and military academies, or Canadian football played by teams of student athletes fielded by Canadian universities. It was through college football play that American football rules first gained popularity in the United States.
NCAA Division I (D-I) is the highest level of intercollegiate athletics sanctioned by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) in the United States. D-I schools include the major collegiate athletic powers, with larger budgets, more elaborate facilities and more athletic scholarships than Divisions II and III as well as many smaller schools committed to the highest level of intercollegiate competition.
The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) is a non-profit organization which regulates athletes of 1,268 North American institutions and conferences. It also organizes the athletic programs of many colleges and universities in the United States and Canada, and helps more than 480,000 college student-athletes who compete annually in college sports. The organization is headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana.
College football is very popular throughout much of the United States, and the top schools generate tens of millions of dollars in yearly revenue.Top FBS teams draw tens of thousands of fans to games, and the ten largest American stadiums by capacity all host FBS teams or games. College athletes are not paid, but colleges are allowed to provide players with non-monetary compensation such as athletic scholarships that provide for tuition, housing, and books.
An athletic scholarship is a form of scholarship to attend a college or university or a private high school awarded to an individual based predominantly on his or her ability to play in a sport. Athletic scholarships are common in the United States, but in many countries they are rare or non-existent.
Unlike other NCAA divisions and subdivisions, the NCAA does not officially award an FBS football national championship, nor does it sanction a playoff tournament to determine such a champion on the field. Instead, organizations such as the Associated Press and AFCA have historically sought to rank the teams and crown a national champion, by taking a vote of sports writers and coaches, respectively. In place of such a playoff, various cities across the United States hold their own post-season contests, called bowl games , in which they traditionally invite teams to participate in them. Historically, these bowl games were mostly considered to be exhibition games involving a payout to participating teams. However, in the modern era they are considered the de facto post-season. There have been agreements in recent decades (such as the Bowl Coalition from 1992 to 1994, the Bowl Alliance from 1995 to 1997, the Bowl Championship Series from 1998 to 2013, and the College Football Playoff from 2014 to the present) by the premier FBS conferences and bowl games to organize matchups so that the FBS national championship is decided on the field.
A national championship in the highest level of college football in the United States, currently the NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS), is a designation awarded annually by various organizations to their selection of the best college football team. Division I FBS football is the only National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) sport for which the NCAA does not sanction a yearly championship event. As such, it is sometimes unofficially referred to as a "mythical national championship".
The Associated Press provides weekly rankings of the top 25 NCAA teams in one of three Division I college sports: football, men's basketball and women's basketball. The rankings are compiled by polling 65 sportswriters and broadcasters from across the nation. Each voter provides his own ranking of the top 25 teams, and the individual rankings are then combined to produce the national ranking by giving a team 25 points for a first place vote, 24 for a second place vote, and so on down to 1 point for a twenty-fifth place vote. Ballots of the voting members in the AP Poll are made public.
The American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) is an association of over 11,000 American football coaches and staff on all levels. According to its constitution, some of the main goals of the American Football Coaches Association are to "maintain the highest possible standards in football and the profession of coaching football," and to "provide a forum for the discussion and study of all matters pertaining to football and coaching." The AFCA, along with USA Today, is responsible for the Division I Football Bowl Subdivision Coaches Poll. The AFCA is also responsible for the Top 25 poll for Division II and Division III football.
The FBS is the highest level of college football in the United States, and FBS players make up the vast majority of the players picked in the NFL Draft.For every sport but football, the NCAA divides schools into three major divisions: NCAA Division I, NCAA Division II, and NCAA Division III. However, in football, Division I is further divided into two sub-divisions: the Bowl Subdivision, abbreviated as the FBS, and the Championship Subdivision, abbreviated as the FCS. Divisions are themselves further divided up into conferences, which are groupings of schools that play each other in contention for a conference championship. The FBS currently has ten conferences, which are often divided into the "Power Five conferences" and the less prominent "Group of Five".
The National Football League (NFL) is a professional American football league consisting of 32 teams, divided equally between the National Football Conference (NFC) and the American Football Conference (AFC). The NFL is one of the four major professional sports leagues in North America, and the highest professional level of American football in the world. The NFL's 17-week regular season runs from early September to late December, with each team playing 16 games and having one bye week. Following the conclusion of the regular season, six teams from each conference advance to the playoffs, a single-elimination tournament culminating in the Super Bowl, which is usually held in the first Sunday in February, and is played between the champions of the NFC and AFC.
Division II is an intermediate-level division of competition in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). It offers an alternative to both the larger and better-funded Division I and to the scholarship-free environment offered in Division III.
Division III (D-III) is a division of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) in the United States. D-III consists of athletic programs at colleges and universities that choose not to offer athletic scholarships to their student-athletes.
Although FCS programs can draw thousands of fans per game, many FCS schools attempt to join the FBS in hopes of increased revenue, corporate sponsorship, alumni donations, prestige, and national exposure. [ citation needed ]However, FBS programs also face increased expenses in regards to staff salaries, facility improvements, and scholarships. The athletic departments of many FBS schools lose money every year, and these athletic departments must rely on subsidies from the rest of the university. The 2014 decision by UAB (an FBS program) to discontinue the football program generated national headlines, and other FBS programs have also considered discontinuing their football program. In many states, the highest-paid public employee is the head coach of an FBS team. FBS schools are limited to a total of 85 football players receiving financial assistance. Nearly all FBS schools that are not on NCAA probation give 85 full scholarships.
The University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) is a public research university in Birmingham, Alabama. Developed from an academic extension center established in 1936, the institution became a four-year campus in 1966 and a fully autonomous institution in 1969. Today, it is one of three institutions in the University of Alabama System and, along with the University of Alabama, an R1 research institution. In the fall of 2018, 21,923students from more than 110 countries were enrolled at UAB pursuing studies in 140 programs of study in 12 academic divisions leading to bachelor's, master's, doctoral, and professional degrees in the social and behavioral sciences, the liberal arts, business, education, engineering, and health-related fields such as medicine, dentistry, optometry, nursing, and public health.
In order to retain FBS membership, schools must meet several requirements.FBS schools must have an average home attendance of at least 15,000 (over a rolling two-year period). An FBS school must sponsor a minimum of 16 varsity intercollegiate teams (including football), with at least six men's or coeducational teams and at least eight all-female teams. Across all sports, each FBS school must offer at least 200 athletic scholarships (or spend at least $4 million on athletic scholarships) per year, and FBS football teams must provide at least 90% of the maximum number of football scholarships (which is currently 85).
The FBS season begins in late August or early September and ends in January with the College Football Playoff National Championship game. Most FBS teams play 12 regular season games per year, with eight or nine of those games coming against conference opponents.As of the 2018 season, all conferences will hold a conference championship game; the Big 12 reinstated its championship game in 2017, and the Sun Belt will hold its first championship game in 2018. Between conference games, non-conference games, a conference championship game, and one bowl game, a top FBS team could play 14 games in a season. A team that plays in the national championship game could play up to 15 games, as any team playing in the national championship must first win a playoff semifinal bowl game. The Hawaii Rainbow Warriors and teams that play at Hawaii get a special exemption and are allowed to play a thirteenth regular season game in order to defray travel costs, so an FBS team that plays 13 regular season games, a conference championship game, a semifinal bowl game, and in the national championship game could theoretically play 16 games in a season.
|Year||Bowls||Teams in bowls|
For non-conference regular season games, FBS teams are free to schedule match-ups against any other FBS team, regardless of conference. A small number of FBS teams are independent, and have total control over their own schedule. Non-conference games are scheduled by mutual agreement and often involve "home and homes" (where teams alternate as hosts) and long-established rivalries. A 2014 study found that teams from the stronger conferences frequently play non-conference games against teams from the weaker conferences or, occasionally, against FCS teams.FBS teams are free to schedule up to forty percent of their games against FCS teams, but FBS teams can only use one win per season against an FCS team for the purposes of bowl eligibility. Additionally, the FCS opponent must have averaged at least 90% of the FCS limit of 63 scholarship equivalents over a rolling two-year period. An FBS team must schedule a total of five home games per year; for the purposes of scheduling, a "home game" must take place at a venue in which the team plays 50% of its "home games", although a team is allowed to count one neutral-site game against an FBS team toward the "home game" requirement. FBS-FCS games, known as "money games," are often home games for the FBS team, and victories by FCS teams are usually considered to be upsets. FCS teams receive hundreds of thousands of dollars for their participation in these games.
|Rose Bowl||Pasadena, CA||1902|
|Orange Bowl||Miami Gardens, FL||1935|
|Sugar Bowl||New Orleans, LA||1935|
|Cotton Bowl||Arlington, TX||1937|
|Peach Bowl||Atlanta, GA||1968|
|Fiesta Bowl||Glendale, AZ||1971|
The Football Bowl Subdivision gets its name from the bowl games that many FBS teams play at the end of the year, although other college divisions also have their own bowl games. FBS bowl games are played at the end of the season in December or January, and collectively generate over $400 million per year as of 2012.For the 2017–18 bowl season, there were 40 bowl games. In order to be bowl eligible, an FBS team must have a winning record. In certain cases, 5-7 and 6-7 teams can also be selected to bowls, usually to fill bowl vacancies.
Many bowls have an established conference tie-in; for example, the Camping World Bowl provides a match-up between teams from ACC and the Big 12. A small number of long-established bowls played a major role in the Bowl Championship Series, which was used to select the national champion until 2015, and these bowls continue to play a major role in the College Football Playoff. Under the playoff, there are six major bowls, known as the New Year's Six, with automatic bids going to the conference champions of the Power Five conferences and the top-ranked member of the "Group of Five." Two of these bowls serve as semi-final games to the College Football Playoff National Championship game. Conferences receive millions of dollars for each school that appears in the playoff, and appearances in other bowls are also quite lucrative.In addition to the regular bowls, some post-season bowls, such as the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl, match up teams of all-stars and NFL Draft entrants.
College football has been played for over one hundred years, but the game and the organizational structure of college football have evolved significantly during that time. The first college football game was played in 1869, but the game continued to develop during the late 19th and early 20th century. During this period, Walter Camp pioneered the concept of a line of scrimmage, the system of downs, and the College Football All-America Team.The 1902 Rose Bowl was the first bowl game in college football history, and the event began to be held annually starting with the 1916 Rose Bowl. In the 1930s, other bowl games came into existence, including the Sugar Bowl, the Cotton Bowl Classic, and the Orange Bowl. The 1906 college football season was the first season played under the IAAUS (which would later change its name to the NCAA) and the first season in which the forward pass was legal. The IAAUS had formed after President Theodore Roosevelt, responding to several deaths that had occurred during football games, requested that colleges find ways to make football a safer sport. In 1935, the Heisman Trophy was presented for the first time; the award is generally considered to be college football's most prestigious individual award. In 1965, the NCAA voted to allow the platoon system, in which different players played on offense and defense; teams had previously experimented with the concept in the 1940s. In 1968, the NCAA began allowing freshmen to compete in games; freshmen had previously been required to take a redshirt year. In 1975, after a growth of "grants-in-aid" (scholarships given for athletic rather than academic or need-based reasons), the NCAA voted to limit the number of athletic scholarships each school could offer. In 1968, the NCAA required all teams to identify as members of either the University Division (for larger schools) or the College Division (for smaller schools), and in 1973, the NCAA divided into three divisions. At the urging of several larger schools seeking increased autonomy and commonality, Division I-A was formed prior to the 1978 season; the remaining teams in Division I formed the Football Championship Subdivision or FCS (then known as Division I-AA). In 1981, members of the College Football Association attempted to create a fourth division consisting solely of the most competitive schools, but this effort was defeated. In the 1992 season, the SEC split into divisions and played the first FBS conference championship game. The Big 12 and Western Athletic Conference did the same for the 1996 season, and most conferences eventually adopted divisions and championship games.
The NCAA does not officially award an FBS football championship,but several teams have claimed national championships. Other organizations have also sought to rank the teams and crown a national champion. The Dickinson System and other methods were formed in the early 20th century to select the best team in the country, and the AP Poll and the Coaches Poll began rankings teams in the middle of the 20th century. In many seasons, selectors such as the AP and the Coaches Poll designated different teams as national champions. Often, more than one team would finish undefeated, as the top teams were not guaranteed to play each other during the regular season or in bowl games. In 1992, five major conferences established the Bowl Coalition in order to determine the FBS champion. In 1998, the two remaining major conferences joined with the other five conferences to form the Bowl Championship Series. The BCS used a rankings system to match up the top two teams in the BCS National Championship Game. However, even the BCS era saw split national championships, as in 2003 the AP Poll and the Coaches Poll selected different national champions. The College Football Playoff, with a four-team field, replaced the BCS starting with the 2014 season.
College football was first broadcast on radio in 1921, and first broadcast on television in 1939.Television became profitable for both schools and the NCAA, which tightly controlled the airing of games in the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s. The NCAA as limited each football team to six television appearances over a two-year period. The 1984 Supreme Court case NCAA v. Board of Regents of the University of Oklahoma granted television rights to individual schools as opposed to the NCAA and allowed teams to televise all of their games. After a period during which FBS schools negotiated collectively under the College Football Association, Notre Dame's 1991 television contract ushered in an era in which schools and conferences negotiate their own television contracts. This new era of television led to several waves of conference realignment, most notably in 1996, 2005, and the early 2010s. FBS games continue to be a major draw on television, as over 26 million people watched the 2014 BCS National Championship Game.
National networks such as CBS, ABC, NBC, several ESPN networks, several Fox networks have all covered the FBS, as have several regional and local networks. As conferences negotiate their own television deals, each conference is affiliated with a network that airs its home games. In the mid-2000s, college and conferences began to create their own television networks;such networks include the Big Ten Network, BYUtv, the Longhorn Network, and the Pac-12 Network. In 2012, college football games drew over 400 million viewers.
The Big Ten (then popularly known as the Western Conference) was founded in 1896, after which several other schools joined together to form conferences, including the Pacific Coast Conference, the MVIAA, the Southwest Conference, the Southern Conference, the Mountain States Conference (also known as the Skyline Conference), and the Border Conference. In 1928, six schools seceded from the MVIAA to form the Big Six Conference, which later expanded to the Big Eight in 1957; the remaining schools formed the Missouri Valley Conference. In 1932, several Southern schools formed the SEC after breaking away from the Southern Conference, and in 1953 several more schools seceded from the Southern Conference to form the ACC. In 1946, several Midwestern schools formed the MAC. Several elite Northeastern schools had formed the Eastern Intercollegiate Basketball League in 1901, and its members (plus Brown University, not an EIBL member at the time) signed the Ivy Group Agreement, which governed football competition between the signatories, in 1945; the Ivy League was formally founded in 1954, when the agreement was extended to cover all sports. In 1959, the Pacific Coast Conference dissolved, and most of its former members formed the new Athletic Association of Western Universities, which became the Pac-8 when more former PCC members joined. In 1962, several schools from the Mountain States Conference and the Border Conference formed the Western Athletic Conference. In 1969, the Pacific Coast Athletic Association (PCAA), later known as the Big West Conference, was formed by several Division II California schools that sought to join Division I.
Division I separated into Division I-A (the predecessor to the FBS) and I-AA (predecessor of the FCS) prior to the 1978 season. At that time, there were several independent I-A schools and twelve Division I-A conferences: the Southeastern Conference (SEC), Big 10, Pacific-10 (Pac-10), Big 8, Southwest Conference (SWC), Western Athletic Conference (WAC), PCAA (which later changed its name to the Big West), Missouri Valley Conference, Southern Conference, Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC), Mid-American Conference (MAC), and the Ivy League. The Ivy League and the Southern Conference left for Division I-AA prior to the 1982 season, while the Missouri Valley Conference stopped sponsoring football prior to the 1985 season. In 1991, the Big East recruited several independents and began sponsoring football, becoming a major conference. In 1996, Conference USA (C-USA), formed the previous year by the merger of the non-football Metro and Great Midwest Conferences, also began sponsoring football. That same year, the Southwest Conference dissolved, and four of its former members joined with the Big 8 to form the Big 12 Conference. In 1999, eight schools broke away from the WAC to form the Mountain West Conference (MW). Prior to the 2000 season, the Big West stopped sponsoring football. The Sun Belt Conference began sponsoring football in 2001. After periods of conference realignment in 2005 and the early 2010s that saw the expansion of the ACC, Big 10, SEC, and Pac-10 (which changed its name to the Pac-12), the WAC reorganized as a non-football conference and the Big East split into the American Athletic Conference and a new non-football conference that retained the Big East name.
Most of the 130 FBS schools are members of an FBS conference, but there are also a small number of independent schools. Since the Western Athletic Conference discontinued football sponsorship prior to the 2013 season, there have been ten conferences in the FBS. All of the FBS conferences have between ten and fourteen members, although independent Notre Dame has a scheduling agreement with the fourteen-member ACC. The ten conferences are split into two groups for the purposes of the College Football Playoff. The "Power Five conferences" consist of most of the largest and best-known college athletic programs in the country. A school from one of the Power Five conferences won every BCS National Championship Game (which operated from 1999 to 2014), and has won every College Football Playoff National Championship. The remaining five conferences are known as the "Group of Five."Any conference may split its teams into two divisions, and only the Big 12 Conference does not use divisions. As of the 2018 season, all conferences hold a championship game that determines the conference champion. The Sun Belt was the last conference to launch a championship game, as well as the most recent to split into divisions for football, with both the title game and the divisional alignment debuting in 2018. That conference chose to form football divisions despite having only 10 football members.
|American Athletic Conference||The American (official) |
|1979||12||22||Providence, Rhode Island|
|Atlantic Coast Conference†||ACC||1953||14||26||Greensboro, North Carolina|
|Big 12 Conference†||Big 12||1996||10||21||Irving, Texas|
|Big Ten Conference†||Big Ten, B1G||1896||14||28||Rosemont, Illinois|
|Conference USA||C-USA||1995||14||19||Irving, Texas|
|Division I FBS Independents||6|
|Mid-American Conference||MAC||1946||12||23||Cleveland, Ohio|
|Mountain West Conference||MW (official)|
|1999||12||19||Colorado Springs, Colorado|
|Pac-12 Conference†||Pac-12||1915||12||24||San Francisco, California|
|Southeastern Conference†||SEC||1932||14||20||Birmingham, Alabama|
|Sun Belt Conference||Sun Belt||1976||10||18||New Orleans, Louisiana|
† "Big Five" or "Power Five" conferences with guaranteed berths in the "access bowls" associated with the College Football Playoff
Liberty University began the FBS transition process on July 1, 2017. The NCAA granted the school a waiver from its normal transition rules that require an invitation from an FBS conference before beginning the transition. The Flames played in the Big South Conference in 2017 but were not eligible for the FCS playoffs. For 2018 and beyond, the Flames became an FBS independent. The school initially intended to remain a Big South member in other sports until it received an invitation to an FBS conference,but instead joined the non-football ASUN Conference in 2018.
The most recent school to complete an FBS transition is Coastal Carolina University, which completed its FBS transition for the 2018 season. The Chanticleers' transition began with the school's move from the Big South to the Sun Belt Conference on July 1, 2016. Coastal competed as a non-football Sun Belt member in 2016–17, with the football team playing the 2016 season as an FCS independent. The school then joined Sun Belt football in 2017, playing a full conference schedule.
The FBS has experienced several realignments since its formation in 1978, with many teams changing conferences, dropping out of the FBS, or moving up from the FCS. In 1982, the size of the division was cut considerably, and the Southern Conference and the Ivy League were demoted to the FCS.In 1985, the Missouri Valley Conference stopped sponsoring football. In the 1980s and 1990s, several independents joined conferences, dropped football, or joined the FCS. In the 1996 NCAA conference realignment, the Southwest Conference dissolved, and four Texas teams from that conference joined with the Big 8 schools to form the Big 12 Conference. The Western Athletic Conference expanded to sixteen members, but half of the schools left in 1999 to form the Mountain West Conference. Conference USA (C-USA) formed from a merger of the Metro Conference and the Great Midwest Conference, two conferences which had not sponsored football. The Big West stopped sponsoring football after the 2000 season, and was essentially replaced by the Sun Belt Conference, which added former Big West members and began sponsoring football in 2001. In the mid-2000s, the Big East added former basketball-only member Connecticut, while Temple left the conference (before eventually returning in 2013). During another phase of realignment in 2005, three schools jumped from the Big East to the ACC. The Big East responded by adding schools from Conference USA.
College football underwent another major conference realignment in the first half of the 2010s. Members of the Big East left the conference to join the Big 12 and ACC. The Big 12 lost members to the SEC, the Pac-12, and the Big Ten, while the Big Ten also gained one former ACC member. The remaining members of the Big East split into two conferences: the American Athletic Conference ("The American") and a new conference that assumed the Big East name but does not sponsor football. The American added several schools from C-USA, but lost one school each to the ACC and Big Ten after its first season. In turn, C-USA added FCS schools and schools from the Sun Belt Conference. The Sun Belt Conference replenished its membership by adding FCS schools and schools from the Western Athletic Conference. The Mountain West lost schools to the Big 12, Pac-12 and the FBS independent ranks, and added several schools from the WAC. After several defections, the WAC dropped its sponsorship of football.
The early-2010s realignment cycle also affected the FBS independent ranks. BYU left the MW in 2011 for football independence and the non-football West Coast Conference. In 2013, Idaho and New Mexico State, the last two football-sponsoring schools in the WAC, became FBS independents, but would return to their former football home of the Sun Belt Conference as football-only members the following year. Also in 2013, Notre Dame became a full but non-football member of the ACC, entering into a scheduling agreement with that conference that calls for the Fighting Irish football team to play five games each season against ACC schools, and to play each other ACC school at least once every three years. Finally, in 2015, Navy became a football-only member of The American, ending more than a century of football independence.
Realignment has continued to this day, though at a considerably lower level. The 2016 season saw FCS Coastal Carolina join the Sun Belt Conference for non-football sports while beginning a transition to FBS football; the football team joined the Sun Belt in 2017. That season was also the last for Idaho and New Mexico State as Sun Belt football members. After 2017, New Mexico State returned to independent status, while Idaho downgraded to FCS football—becoming the first program ever to voluntarily do so—and added football to its all-sports membership in the Big Sky Conference. Also in 2016, UMass went independent after turning down an offer of full membership in the Mid-American Conference.
Several awards are given each year to players and coaches in the FBS. Although all college football players are eligible for many of these awards (such as the Heisman Trophy), FBS players usually win these awards, and other awards (such as the Walter Payton Award) exist to honor players in other divisions and the FCS. In addition to the national awards listed below, FBS conferences also have their own awards, and several organizations release a yearly College Football All-America Team. In 1951, the National Football Foundation established the College Football Hall of Fame. Notable individual awards include:
The NCAA does not officially name a national champion, but several other organizations name national champions and all conferences participate in the College Football Playoff in order to determine a champion. The winner of the College Football Playoff receives the College Football Playoff National Championship Trophy. The AP awards the AP National Championship Trophy, while the American Football Coaches Association awards the AFCA National Championship Trophy. The AFCA trophy was previously awarded to the winner of the BCS National Championship Game (a predecessor of the College Football Playoff National Championship game), which operated from 1999 to 2014. The Football Writers Association of America awards the Grantland Rice Trophy, and the National Football Foundation awards the MacArthur Bowl. Since the disputed end of the 2003 season, the various organizations have been able to agree on a single national champion.
2018 Map of Teams
1991 Map of Teams
1956 Map of Teams
1927 Map of Teams
Schools that have transitioned to the FBS
The Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) is a collegiate athletic conference in the United States of America in which its fifteen member universities compete in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA)'s Division I, with its football teams competing in the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS), the highest levels for athletic competition in US-based collegiate sports. The ACC sponsors competition in twenty-five sports with many of its member institutions' athletic programs held in high regard nationally. Current members of the conference are Boston College, Clemson University, Duke University, Georgia Institute of Technology, Florida State University, North Carolina State University, Syracuse University, the University of Louisville, the University of Miami, the University of North Carolina, the University of Notre Dame, the University of Pittsburgh, the University of Virginia, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, and Wake Forest University.
National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Football Bowl Subdivision independent schools are four-year institutions whose football programs are not part of an NCAA-affiliated conference. This means that FBS independents are not required to schedule each other for competition like conference schools do.
The BCS National Championship Game, or BCS National Championship, was a postseason college football bowl game, used to determine a national champion of the NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS), first played in the 1998 college football season as one of four designated bowl games, and beginning in the 2006 season as a standalone event rotated among the host sites of the aforementioned bowls.
In college football, the term Power Five conferences refers to five athletic conferences whose members are part of the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) of NCAA Division I, the highest level of collegiate football in the United States. The conferences are the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC), Big Ten Conference (B1G), Big 12 Conference, Pac-12 Conference, and Southeastern Conference (SEC). The term "Power Five" is not defined by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), and the origin of the term is unknown. It has been used in its current meaning since at least 2006. The term is also used in other college sports.
The teams that participate in the National Collegiate Athletic Association's Division I Football Bowl Subdivision earn the right to compete in a series of post-season games called bowl games. As of 2017, there are 40 bowl games, and all are contractually obligated to offer bids to specific conferences, a situation known as a "tie-in". The "top" six bowl games in the nation select their teams as part of the College Football Playoff (CFP), which was put into place for a minimum of 12 years, beginning with the 2014 season. Prior to 2014, the top five games in the country were chosen under the system known as the Bowl Championship Series. The bowls outside of the CFP, have individual contracts with the conferences to offer preferential bids to teams from those conferences. As long as teams are bowl eligible, they may be selected by these bowls to meet these contracts.
Bowl eligibility in college football at the NCAA Division I FBS level is the standard through which teams become available for selection to participate in postseason bowl games. When a team achieves this state, it is described as "bowl-eligible".
The Appalachian State Mountaineers football team is the college football team at Appalachian State University in Boone, North Carolina. The Mountaineers have competed in the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) and the Sun Belt Conference since 2014. Appalachian plays its home games in Kidd Brewer Stadium, named after former head coach Kidd Brewer, whose 1937 squad was unbeaten and unscored upon during the regular season.
The Western Kentucky Hilltoppers (WKU) football program is a college football team that represents Western Kentucky University. The team competes at the NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision level and represents the university as a member of Conference USA in the Eastern division. The program has 1 national championship (FCS/I-AA), 13 conference championships and 3 FBS-level Bowl wins. The team's current head football coach is Tyson Helton. The Hilltoppers play their home games at Houchens Industries–L. T. Smith Stadium in Bowling Green, Kentucky.
The Old Dominion Monarchs football team is the college football program for Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia. The first iteration of the team created in 1930 was known as the William & Mary Norfolk Division Braves. The current Monarchs team founded in 2009 competed at the FCS level as an unaffiliated team for their first two seasons. In the 2011 season, they joined the Colonial Athletic Association of the FCS and added conference games to their schedule, playing there until 2013. On July 1, 2014, Old Dominion football joined the FBS's Conference USA.
The 2011 NCAA Division I FCS football season, part of college football in the United States, was organized by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) at the Division I Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) level. The season began on September 1, 2011, and concluded with the 2012 NCAA Division I Football Championship Game on January 7, 2012, at Pizza Hut Park in Frisco, Texas. North Dakota State won their first FCS championship, defeating Sam Houston State by a final score of 17–6.
The 2012–13 NCAA football bowl games were a series of college football bowl games. They concluded the 2012 NCAA Division I FBS football season, and included 35 team-competitive games and four all-star games. The games began on Saturday December 15, 2012 and, aside from the all-star games, concluded with the 2013 BCS National Championship Game in Miami Gardens, Florida that was played on January 7, 2013.
The College Football Playoff (CFP) is an annual postseason knockout tournament to determine a national champion of the NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS), the highest level of college football competition in the United States. The inaugural tournament was held at the end of the 2014 NCAA Division I FBS football season which was won by Ohio State. Four teams play in two semifinal games, and the winner of each semifinal advances to the College Football Playoff National Championship game.
The 2013–14 NCAA football bowl games were a series of college football bowl games. They concluded the 2013 NCAA Division I FBS football season, and included 35 team-competitive games and three all-star games. The games began on Saturday December 21, 2013 and, aside from the all-star games, ended with the 2014 BCS National Championship at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena that was played on January 6, 2014.
The 2014 NCAA Division I FBS football season was the highest level of college football competition in the United States organized by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA).
The 2014–15 NCAA football bowl games were a series of college football bowl games. They completed the 2014 NCAA Division I FBS football season, and included 39 team-competitive games and four all-star games. The games began on December 20, 2014 and, aside from the all-star games, ended with the 2015 College Football Playoff National Championship which was played on January 12, 2015.
The 2015–16 NCAA football bowl games were a series of college football bowl games. They completed the 2015 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The games began on December 19, 2015 and, aside from the all-star games, ended with the 2016 College Football Playoff National Championship which was played on January 11, 2016.
The 2016 NCAA Division I FBS football season was the highest level of college football competition in the United States organized by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). The regular season began on August 26, 2016 and ended on December 10, 2016. The postseason concluded on January 9, 2017 with the 2017 College Football Playoff National Championship, where the Clemson Tigers defeated the Alabama Crimson Tide for their second national title in school history. The championship game was a rematch of the 2016 edition won by Alabama.
The 2017–18 NCAA football bowl games was a series of college football bowl games which completed the 2017 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The games began on December 16, 2017, and aside from the all-star games ended with the 2018 College Football Playoff National Championship which was played on January 8, 2018.
The 2018–19 NCAA football bowl games were a series of college football bowl games completing the 2018 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The games began on December 15, 2018, and, aside from the all-star games that follow, ended with the 2019 College Football Playoff National Championship, which was played on January 7, 2019.