GRR: Illinois State
The finalists for the 2021 Great Midwest Conference both won in their conference openers this week.
Illinois State had to work for it against Illinois-Chicago 21-5.
The men's DII college season was marked by the emergence and growth of several varsity and school-supported programs, and that emergence might obscure the accomplishments of some of the more traditional club teams.
In a tight, hugely physical match that lived up to expectations, Illinois State held off a determined Northern Iowa team 27-23 to win the Great Midwest.
Both teams move on to the national playoffs and both will take Round of 16 berths. but ISU gets the bigger trophy.
The South division of the Great Midwest Conference shook things up with Northern Iowa and Illinois State both winning semifinals Saturday.
That sets up a championship final November 6 in Cottage Grove, Wisc., while Wisconsin-Whitewater and Marquette will battle for this.