For the seventh time in program history, Ashland University's football team will play in the NCAA Division II postseason.
The No. 10-ranked, Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference champion and 10-1 Eagles will take a 10-game winning streak into their Super Region Three quarterfinal contest vs. No. 18 Northwest Missouri State on Saturday (Nov. 18) at a time to be announced at Jack Miller Stadium/Martinelli Field. Ashland is the super region's No. 3 seed, while the Bearcats (9-2) are the No. 6 seed.
Ashland's lone loss in 2017 came in the season-opener at Indiana, Pa., which is the No. 1 seed in Super Region One. The Eagles won their third GLIAC title in the last six seasons, earned the program's fourth 10-win campaign in its near 100-season history, and has won 22 consecutive regular-season home games.
Northwest Missouri State has won the last two D-II national titles, three of the last four and four since 2009. The Bearcats are 5-1 away from home this season, and earlier this fall, had their 38-game winning streak snapped.
One of the top team matchups in the first-round playoff game is Ashland's offense, which has scored at least 30 points in seven games in a row, against a Northwest Missouri State defense which ranks No. 1 in the country in yards allowed per game (207.6) and scoring defense (8.3 ppg.).
Ashland has made six previous NCAA Division II postseason appearances – 1986, 1997, 2007-08, 2012 and 2015. The Eagles have played host to three previous playoff games – in 2008 at Community Stadium, and in 2012 and 2015 at Jack Miller Stadium/Martinelli Field.
Super Region Three is made up of teams from the GLIAC, Great Lakes Valley Conference, Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletic Association and the Great American Conference. Also on Saturday, No. 2 Indianapolis (11-0) will play host to No. 7 Harding (8-3), while No. 4 Ferris State (9-1) will be at home vs. No. 5 Ouachita Baptist (9-2).
Top-seeded Fort Hays State (11-0) will have a first-round bye and play host to a second-round game on Nov. 25.
The NCAA Division II national championship game will be played on Dec. 16, at 6 p.m., at Children's Mercy Park in Kansas City, Kan., and will be broadcast live on ESPN2 HD/ESPN3.com.
Information on tickets for Saturday's playoff game will be released on Monday (Nov. 13) at 2 p.m. at GoAshlandEagles.com and on the athletic department's social media platforms.