DURHAM, N.H. – The University of New Hampshire has earned a bid to the NCAA Division I Football Championship for the seventh consecutive season, the longest current streak in the nation. The 7-4 Wildcats will visit Bethune-Cookman University (10-1), champions of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference, in a second-round game Saturday, Dec. 4, in Daytona Beach, Fla.
"You just think of all the hard work you've put in from last January through right now, to get an opportunity to keep playing it's just tremendous," head coach Sean McDonnell said. "It's fun to be a college football player and to get an opportunity to play somewhere in December."
The UNH Wildcats have never faced the Bethune-Cookman Wildcats, though New Hampshire is 3-0 all-time against Hampton University, the only MEAC school it's ever faced. That includes a 41-38 road victory in the first round of the 2006 NCAA D-I Championship.
New Hampshire has earned opening-round victories in five of the past six postseasons, including a 49-13 triumph against McNeese State of the Southland Conference in 2009. With the tournament field expanded to 20 teams this season, UNH receives a first-round bye.
Bethune-Cookman earned the automatic bid as MEAC regular-season champions one day after suffering its first loss of the season, 38-27, at the hands of Florida A&M in the 31st annual Florida Classic. B-CU last appeared in the NCAA playoffs in 2003. Game time will be announced at a later date.