TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — The Florida A&M football team will not compete for a national title this year, as the Rattlers were left out of the FCS Playoffs. The Rattlers were the 24th ranked team in the country entering Saturday's match-up against Bethune Cookman, a game they won. Head coach Willie Simmons was pretty confident that a win Saturday would ensure their spot in the postseason, that wasn't the case, a nine game win streak was not strong enough to seal up an at-large bid for the FCS Playoffs.
Jermaine Truax is the chair of the FCS Selection Committee, and cited FAMU's overall body of work a reason why they didn't get in during Sunday's FCS selection show.
"Our goal is to get the best teams in the field regardless of what conference they're in, to make the championship as competitive as possible, and again, that's why scheduling is important, winning the games on your schedule, where you go and play, how you perform in those games, having cross conference match-ups when you have the opportunity," he said. "For us, it's about getting the best teams in, regardless of conference."
Simmons spoke with the media Monday, and talked about what they can do to make sure they aren't left out in the future.
"I just think that it's unfair and I don't think we should be forced to make that decision because at the end of the day, eight FCS wins is enough to go to the playoffs," he said. "Most of the teams in that field don't have eight FCS wins. We do. My job is to coach these young men, and continue to push and develop them to be the best they can be. Hopefully our leadership, other Universities leadership, the commissioner of the conference, I hope they all see this and feel the need to talk this to a higher level."
Truax also cited the Rattlers playing a Division II team as a weakness in their schedule. He said their loss to Jackson State was a quote "data point this year for the committee to look at, and we did."
The Rattlers have the 108th strongest schedule in the country.