The Sam Houston State Bearkats punched their ticket to the Football Championship Series semifinals with a 34-16 win over Montana State Friday in Bozeman. The Bearkats will again travel northwest, facing the second-seeded Eastern Washington Eagles at Roos Field in Cheney, Washington. Eastern Washington defeated Illinois State 51-35 Saturday. In the other semifinal, the top-rated defending champions from North Dakota State will host Georgia Southern. The semifinals are scheduled for December 14-15.
This is Sam Houston State's second consecutive trip to the FCS final four. In 2011, the Bearkats defeated Montana in the semifinal before losing to North Dakota State in the championship. Eastern Washington, which failed to make the FCS Playoffs in 2011, won the 2010 National Championship. The Eagles are led by former SMU quarterback Kyle Padron, who tied a school record with six touchdown passes in Saturday's win. Padron completed 19 of 33 attempts for 358 yards against the Redbirds. He threw for 2016 yards and 11 touchdowns on the season.