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Samford received the No. 6 national seed in the NCAA FCS football playoffs. The Bulldogs will have a bye in the first round and play a home game in the second round.

The Bulldogs will play the winner of Idaho at Southeastern Louisiana on December 3 at 2 p.m. at Bobby Bowden Field at Seibert Stadium. It will be the first time that Samford has ever hosted a FCS playoff game. Idaho (7-4) and Southeastern Louisiana (8-3) will meet in a first-round game on Saturday.

“I’m very excited for our program,” Samford head coach Chris Hatcher said. “Our team has played exceptionally well, week in and week out this season and is very well-deserving of a national seed. It gives us a bye week, which we desperately need after having played a gauntlet of a schedule here at the very end, with two ranked teams back-to-back. We’re very excited, and one thing about the playoffs is, you get to play teams from different regions. We don’t know much about the opponents we’ll be playing in the second round, but we’ll be excited and ready to play, and we are extremely thankful that we get to play at home.”

Samford finished the regular season with a 10-1 record and won the school’s first outright Southern Conference football championship. The Bulldogs' final record ties the 1991 team for the best single-season record in program history. The Bulldogs completed the regular season with a 50-44 double overtime win over Mercer on Saturday.

Southeastern Louisiana and Samford have played three times with the most recent meeting coming in 2013. Southeastern Louisiana’s top two quarterbacks are Vestavia Hills High product Eli Sawyer and former South Alabama quarterback Cephus Johnson. The Lions are one of two teams to beat Jacksonville State this season, topping the Gamecocks, 31-14, on October 22 in Jacksonville. Idaho, the No. 4 team from the Big Sky Conference, has never played Samford in football.  

To connect with the author of this story, or to comment, email steve.irvine@1819news.com.

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