Toreros to Play Northern Iowa Saturday in FCS Playoffs First Round

USD football players watch in anticipation of learning who they'll play in the first round of the FCS Playoffs.Quarterback Reid Sinnett and the University of San Diego football team will open the FCS Playoffs against Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls, Iowa on Saturday, Nov. 30. Kickoff is 11 a.m. PT/1 p.m. CT.

After winning its sixth straight Pioneer Football League championship, San Diego will travel to face Northern Iowa on Saturday, Nov. 30, (11 a.m. PT/1 p.m. CT, ESPN3) in the first round of the FCS Playoffs, the selection committee announced Sunday morning.

The winner of the USD (9-2) and UNI (8-4) matchup will face No. 7 seed South Dakota State on December 7 (11 a.m. PT/1 p.m. CT, ESPN3).

San Diego football players, coaches, athletics administrators, staff and supporters gathered in the Jenny Craig Pavilion's Warren Hospitality Suite to hear the 9:30 a.m. FCS Playoffs selection show on ESPNU. Cheers erupted in the room when San Diego's name was unveiled as Northern Iowa's opponent.
The Toreros and the Panthers will square off in the UNI Dome (capacity: 16,324) in Cedar Falls, Iowa. The game can be seen on ESPN3 and heard here. It is the first-ever meeting between the two schools.
The Toreros reached their fourth straight FCS Playoffs and fifth overall in program history after turning in a dominant conference season. USD went undefeated for the fourth consecutive campaign, a first in the PFL, by outscoring its opponents by a combined 218-point margin (359-141) over the eight-game schedule. It also only trailed for less than 25 minutes of total game action (24:46) and did not trail for the last 272:15 of the season.
The perfect 8-0 conference record extended San Diego's active winning streak in league play to 37 games, the second-longest streak in FCS history and fourth-longest in Division I.
The matchup between the Toreros and Panthers will showcase one of the nation's top offenses against one of the top defenses. San Diego boasts the second-best total offense in the country, averaging 498.8 yards per game, and third-best scoring offense, with 41.7 points per contest. Defensively, UNI is 11th in total defense (307.3) and 14th in the nation in scoring defense (19.6 points).
USD starting quarterback Reid Sinnett, who is second in the country in passing efficiency and fifth in total offense, will be playing close to home in the first round of the FCS Playoffs. The redshirt senior and first-year starter is from Johnston, Iowa, which is about 120 miles from Cedar Falls.
A consistent postseason participant, San Diego is one of six teams to make the FCS Playoffs in each of the last four years, joined by North Dakota State, South Dakota State, James Madison, Weber State and Wofford.
A total of 24 teams gained spots in the FCS Playoffs, with the top eight seeds earning first-round byes. In addition to 10 automatic qualifying spots, one of which was earned by San Diego, 14 at-large teams were chosen by the selection committee. The 24 teams are each vying for one of the two spots in the 2020 FCS Championship, to be held at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas on January 11, 2020 (12 p.m. ET, ABC).
2019 Division I Football Championship Dates
First Round (8 games)
Saturday, Nov. 30 — San Diego vs. UNI
Cedar Falls, Iowa | 11 a.m. PT/1 p.m. CT
Second Round (8 games)
Saturday, Dec. 7 — Winner of San Diego/UNI vs. No. 7 seed South Dakota State
Brookings, S.D. | 11 a.m. PT/1 p.m. CT
Quarterfinal Round (4 games)
Friday, Dec. 13, and Saturday, Dec. 14
Semifinal Round (2 games)
Saturday, Dec. 21
2020 FCS Championship Game
Saturday, Jan. 11 — noon Eastern time, Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas on ABC


Chris Kutz, Associate Athletics Director, Strategic Communications
(619) 260-7930