James Madison and North Dakota State will square off Saturday in the NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision championship game. Former Loudoun standouts Adeeb Atariwa and Brandon Polk both play key roles for James Madison.
Atariwa, a Dominion High School alum, is a redshirt junior defensive lineman. He's made 14 starts at nose guard this season, recording 46 tackles (20 solo, 26 assisted).
In addition, Atariwa forced a fumble, recovered a fumble and blocked a kick in 2019. He ranks third on the team with 12 tackles for a loss.
Polk, a Briar Woods alum, transferred to James Madison in 2019 after spending four seasons at Penn State. He earned second-team All-Colonial Athletic Association honors as a wide receiver.
The redshirt senior is James Madison's leading receiver with 73 receptions for 1,173 yards and 11 touchdowns. Polk ranks second in JMU single-season history for receptions, receiving yards and receiving touchdowns.
James Madison (14-1) will make its third appearance in the national championship game since 2016 and fourth overall. The Dukes won national titles in 2004 and 2016.
Following a 20-13 loss at West Virginia to open the season, James Madison has reeled off 14 consecutive wins. The No. 2 ranked Dukes won home playoff games over Monmouth, Northern Iowa and Weber State by a combined score of 113-35 to earn a spot in the championship.
Top-ranked North Dakota State (15-0) has won seven national titles since 2011. The lone playoff blemish during that dominant span was a 27-17 semifinal loss to James Madison in 2016.
North Dakota State avenged that loss in the 2017 national championship game, defeating James Madison 17-13.
NCAA Division I FCS national championship
Who: No. 2 James Madison (14-1) vs. No. 1 North Dakota State (15-0)
When: 12 p.m., Saturday
Where: Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas