Warhawks to face Lakeland College
It’s NCAA Division III football playoff time, and Lakeland College of Sheboygan is the first up for unbeaten UW-Whitewater.
The Warhawks (10-0, 7-0), Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference champions for the fifth straight year, host the Muskies (6-4) at noon on Saturday at Perkins Stadium.
Whitewater is making its eighth postseason appearance since joining the NCAA Division III in 1980. The Warhawks are aiming for the a fifth straight trip to the Amos Alonzo Stagg Bowl—the national championship game—in Salem, Va.
The Warhawks won the national title, 31-21 over Mount Union (Ohio), in 2007. Mount Union defeated Whitewater in the championship game three of the last four years, including a 31-26 victory last season.
Mount Union and Whitewater again have been ranked No. 1-2, respectively, in the American Football Coaches Association and d3football.-com polls throughout this season. They also again are in opposite brackets for the playoffs, setting up the prospect for a fifth straight title showdown on Saturday, Dec. 19.
Whitewater’s first-round opponent will provide a familiar look for at least one member of the staff. Jim Zebrowski, the Warhawks’ offensive coordinator, was Lakeland’s head coach when Whitewater won four straight nonconference games from the Muskies in 2004-07.
Lakeland clinched its playoff berth Saturday by winning Northern Athletics Conference championship. The Muskies advanced to the postseason by defeating Aurora, 28-0, and taking advantage of a Concordia (Ill.) loss to Benedictine.
The Muskies lost a 2005 first-round game to Augustana (Ill.) in their only previous NCAA playoff appearance.
Whitewater clinched its spot in this year’s 32-team field with a 41-13 victory over UW-Stevens Point on Nov. 7. The Warhawks then completed a perfect regular season by rolling over UW-La Crosse, 58-21, on Saturday.
NCAA Division III Playoffs
Washington & Jefferson (9-1) at Mount Union (10-0), 11 a.m.
Maine Maritime (9-1) at Montclair State (9-1), 11 a..m.
Albright (9-1) at Alfred (8-1), 11 a.m.
Susquehanna (8-2) at Delaware Valley (9-1), 11 a.m.
North Carolina Wesleyan (8-2) at Wesley (10-0), 11 a.m.
Johns Hopkins (8-2) at Hampden-Sydney (10-0), 11 a.m.
DePauw (7-2) at Thomas More (10-0), 11 a.m.
Trine (9-1) at Case Western Reserve (10-0), 11 a.m.
Mount St. Joseph (9-1) at Wittenberg (10-0), 11 a.m.
Wabash (9-1) at Illinois Wesleyan (9-1), noon
Mississippi College (8-2) at Huntingdon (8-2), noon
Lakeland (6-4) at UW-Whitewater (10-0), noon
Coe (9-1) at St. John’s, Minn. (10-0), noon
St. Thomas (9-1) at Monmouth, Ill. (10-0), noon
Mary Hardin-Baylor (9-1) at Central, Iowa (10-0), noon
Cal Lutheran (8-1) at Linfield (10-0), 2 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 28
Washington & Jefferson/Mount Union winner vs. Maine Maritime/Montclair State winner
Albright/Alfred winner vs. Susquehanna/Delaware Valley winner
North Carolina Wesleyan/Wesley winner vs. Mississippi College/Huntingdon winner
Johns Hopkins/Hampden-Sydney winner vs. DePauw/Thomas More winner
Lakeland/UW-Whitewater winner vs. Wabash/Illinois Wesleyan winner
Trine/Case Western Reserve winner vs. Mount St. Joseph/Wittenberg winner
Coe/St. John’s, Minn. winner vs. St. Thomas/Monmouth, Ill. winner
Mary Hardin-Baylor/Central, Iowa winner vs. Cal Lutheran/Linfield winner
Saturday, Dec. 5
Saturday, Dec. 12
Amos Alonzo Stagg Bowl
Saturday, Dec. 19
At Salem, Va.
Seminfinal winners, 10 a.m. (ESPN2)