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Villanova Football is still alive, 2015 playoff fate likely rests with selection committee

A massive win over Richmond kept them alive

Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Last week, we detailed the possible scenarios for Villanova to win the CAA and get the conference's autobid to the FCS Playoffs. The good news is that both things that needed to happen came to fruition on Saturday. The Wildcats staged a last-minute drive to stun #9 Richmond at Villanova Stadium, and William & Mary took care of business at home against Towson.

That sets up an incredible final Saturday for the conference. Here are the standings entering the final week of the season.

William & Mary 6-1 0.857 8-2 0.800 W6
James Madison 5-2 0.714 8-2 0.800 W1
Richmond 5-2 0.714 7-3 0.700 L2
Villanova 5-2 0.714 6-4 0.600 W3
New Hampshire 4-3 0.571 6-4 0.600 W3
Towson 4-3 0.571 6-4 0.600 L1
Elon 3-4 0.429 4-6 0.400 W1
Maine 3-4 0.429 3-7 0.300 L3
Stony Brook 2-5 0.286 4-5 0.444 W2
UAlbany 2-5 0.286 3-7 0.300 L1
Delaware 2-5 0.286 3-7 0.300 L3
Rhode Island 1-6 0.143 1-9 0.100 L4

The biggest game with direct title implications is Richmond-William & Mary. Win, and the Tribe are the undisputed champions. Lose, and it sets up a 3-way tie for the crown. At the exact same time (12:00pm ET), Villanova will travel to James Madison, where the winner will get a shot at the title of CAA co-champions.

If Richmond can knock off the Tribe and Villanova wins as well, the Wildcats will get a part of the CAA Championship. It can't be understated just how impressive that is considering what this team has gone through this season. Normally, that'd be enough to get in to the playoffs, but the team's 4 losses (and bad, bad loss to Penn) could hurt them.


In the above scenario, the conference's auto-bid should come down to Jeff Sagarin's "ELO_CHESS" computation, which according to Reddit may no longer be published. We've asked the CAA for clarity.

There is plenty of precedent for a 7-win CAA team to make the playoffs with an at-large bid, so not all is lost yet. No matter what happens on Saturday, it's been an incredible turnaround by the team after a devastating injury to John Robertson.

Andy Talley, his coaches, and most importantly the players deserve a ton of credit for what has transpired over the last 2 months, and these seniors deserve thei shot at the playoffs that seemed like a formality at the beginning of the season.