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‘Battle-tested’ UAlbany football meets Idaho in FCS quarterfinal

'Battle-tested' UAlbany football meets Idaho in FCS quarterfinal
'Battle-tested' UAlbany football meets Idaho in FCS quarterfinal

No. 5 seed University at Albany (UAlbany) football program, seeking their first semifinal appearance, will take on No. 4 seed University of Idaho (Idaho) Vandals in a crucial FCS quarterfinal matchup at the Kibbie Dome on Saturday, December 10th.

UAlbany enters the game as the ‘battle-tested’ team, having already faced several tough opponents this season.

“We’re battle-tested,” said UAlbany head coach Greg Gattuso. “We’ve played in some tough environments this year, and we know what it takes to win on the road. We’re not going to be fazed by going across the country to play Idaho.”

UAlbany boasts the nation’s best run defense, allowing only 75.9 yards per game. They also lead the nation with 49 sacks. This stout defense will be put to the test against Idaho’s high-powered offense, led by redshirt sophomore quarterback Gevani McCoy and junior wide receiver Hayden Hatten, who has 81 catches for the season.

On the other side of the ball, UAlbany’s offense is led by quarterback Vincent Testaverde Jr., who has thrown for 2,221 yards and 25 touchdowns this season. Testaverde Jr. will need to be sharp against Idaho’s defense, which ranks 17th in the FCS in scoring defense.

This matchup is a clash of styles, with UAlbany’s stingy defense facing off against Idaho’s potent offense. The outcome of the game will likely come down to which team can execute their game plan more effectively.

Here are some additional key factors to watch for in the game:

  • The quarterback matchup: UAlbany’s Testaverde Jr. vs. Idaho’s McCoy is a battle between two of the best quarterbacks in the FCS. Whoever wins this matchup will likely lead their team to victory.
  • The battle in the trenches: UAlbany’s offensive line will need to protect Testaverde Jr. from Idaho’s pass rush. Meanwhile, UAlbany’s defensive line will need to contain McCoy and the Idaho running game.
  • Special teams: Special teams can often be the difference in close games. Both teams have talented kickers and punters, so it will be important for them to perform well.

The winner of this game will advance to the FCS semifinals, where they will face the winner of the game between No. 1 seed North Dakota State and No. 8 seed Montana State.

UAlbany is looking to make history in this game. They are seeking their first FCS quarterfinal victory and their first trip to the FCS semifinals. With a win, they would become the first UAlbany team to reach the semifinals of any NCAA Division I football tournament.

Idaho is also looking to make a deep run in the FCS playoffs. They have reached the quarterfinals in three of the last four years, but they have not been able to advance any further. A win over UAlbany would put them one step closer to their ultimate goal of winning the FCS national championship.

This is a game that college football fans will not want to miss. It is a matchup between two evenly matched-teams that are both capable of making a run to the FCS national championship.

Here are some additional details about the game:

  • Date: Saturday, December 10, 2023
  • Time: 7:00 PM ET
  • Location: Kibbie Dome, Moscow, Idaho
  • TV: ESPN+
  • Radio: UAlbany Sports Network

I am excited to see how this game unfolds. I believe that it will be a close and exciting contest. I am predicting a 24-21 victory for UAlbany.

Go Great Danes!