Pioneer-Football.org
The Pioneer Football League Report: FCS Playoffs (Round 1)

Wednesday, November 24, 2021
by Cody Bush, PFL Media Relations

AHEAD IN ROUND 1

Davidson at Kennesaw State, 2 p.m.
Broadcast: ESPN+
Location: Kennesaw, Georgia
Stadium: Fifth Third Bank Stadium
Series: First Meeting)

NOTES & NOTABLY

DAVIDSON CLAIMS BACK-TO-BACK TITLES
Seven months after winning its first Pioneer Football League title, Davidson clinched its second-straight championship with a home victory against Drake in the regular season’s final week. Davidson becomes the fifth different PFL program to win back-to-back titles, and it is the 16th time overall a team has claimed consecutive championships.

SAN DIEGO TIES PFL RECORD
With its victory at Stetson in its regular-season finale, San Diego clinched its 12th PFL trophy. The Toreros’ dozen titles ties the record set by Dayton. Since 2010, San Diego has won nine PFL championships, including a streak of six straight (2014-19).

PFL AWARD CALENDAR
The 2021 Pioneer Football League awards will be announced Nov. 29-Dec. 1. The 2021 PFL Major Award winners will be released Monday, Nov. 29, followed the next day by its 29th All-PFL Teams. The league’s 29th Academic All-PFL team and its Scholar-Athlete of the Year will be announced Wednesday, Dec. 1.

BYRD ENDS SEASON AS FCS’ TOP RECEIVER, PAYTON AWARD FINALIST
Morehead State senior receiver BJ Byrd ended the season as the FCS’ top receiver. He led the subdivision with 1,313 receiving yards, 90 receptions, and 8.2 receptions per game in 2021. Byrd also ranked second in touchdown receptions (13) and receiving yards per game (119.4 ypg) during the season. He had eight 100-yard receiving performances in 11 games, including a 223-yard, four-touchdown day against Stetson. Byrd was named one of 25 finalists for the Stats Perform FCS Walter Payton Award.

CHISHOLM ALSO A PAYTON AWARD FINALIST
Dayton all-purpose back Jake Chisholm also earned a nod on the Stats Perform FCS Walter Payton Award Watch List. He is the FCS’ No. 2 all-purpose runner in 2021 averaging 163.90 all-purpose yards per game. Chisholm was ranked among the FCS Top 12 in rushing yards (1,033), rushing touchdowns (an FCS best 14), and rushing yards per game (103.3). He also tacked on 245 yards in kick returns, averaging 20.4 yards per return (54th in the FCS).

MOREHEAD STATE’S TAYLOR GETS BUCHANAN AWARD NOD
Morehead State defensive lineman Vaughn Taylor Jr. is one of 25 finalists for the Stats Perform Buck Buchanan Award. The senior ranked second among FCS defenders with 2.1 tackles for loss per game in 2021, finishing the season with 23.0 tackles for loss. Taylor Jr. also had 9.5 sacks (six solo) during the season and 71 tackles (30 solo).

WITCHER, ONE OF FCS’ TOP RECEIVERS, ON RICE AWARD LIST
Presbyterian freshman wide receiver Jalyn Witcher finished the season as one of the nation’s top receivers and earned a spot on the Stats Perform FCS Jerry Rice Award list. He finished 2021 ranked among the FCS top five in receiving yards (1,121), receptions per game (7.3), receiving yards per game (101.9), and touchdown receptions (12). Witcher was the only FCS freshman to record 1,000 receiving yards during the regular season and one of two freshmen to post double-digit touchdown receptions.

CARUSO ON ROBINSON AWARD LIST
St. Thomas' Glenn Caruso was named one of 17 finalists for the Stats Perform FCS Eddie Robinson Award. The Tommies head coach led his team through a reclassification from Division III to Division I, while also dealing with a year off due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Upon their return to the field, St. Thomas posted a 7-3 record and finished tied for third in the PFL race with a 6-2 record.

 

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