James Madison will not be eligible to make the College Football Playoff this season, as the NCAA on Wednesday denied the school’s request for a postseason waiver.
The Dukes (10-0) are in their second season of the required two-year transition period from the Football Championship Subdivision to the Football Bowl Subdivision. They are currently ranked No. 21 in the AP Top 25 but aren’t in the College Football Playoff rankings due to being ineligible.
James Madison asked for the waiting period for full bowl eligibility to be sliced to one year, but the NCAA refused.
The ruling also affects Jacksonville State (7-3), in its first season in the FBS and Tarleton State (8-3), in its first season in the FCS.
“We’re obviously disappointed in the outcome of the NCAA’s review of our request for bowl relief,” the James Madison administration said in a statement. “We’re saddened for our university community and, in particular, we’re devastated for our football program, the coaches and student-athletes who have orchestrated an amazing season and earned the opportunity.”
James Madison and Jacksonville State could still wind up in bowl games if not enough teams finish with records of .500 or better to stock the 41 bowl games.
The Dukes also are ineligible to compete in the Sun Belt Conference championship game, even though they lead the East Division with a 6-0 league record.
James Madison has an 18-3 record across its first two years at the FBS level.