The 16-team NAIA football playoff field was announced this evening.
Only four of the 16 teams have a shot to complete an undefeated season with a run to hoist the trophy - Morningside (IA), Marian (IN), Bethel (TN), and Kansas Wesleyan. Of those three, Morningside (IA), Marian (IN), and Bethel are all on the same side of the bracket and will have to battle it out.
The two-time defending national champion Saint Francis (IN) will look for a three-peat after beating Baker in 2016 and Reinhardt in 2017. Both Baker and Reinhardt have opportunities to set up a rematch if they can make it out of their side of the bracket.
By my estimation, the NAIA level has experienced perhaps the most parity compared to any other level of college football. Dating back to 2009, 11 different teams have appeared in the national championship game. Of those 11 teams - St. Francis, Baker, Reinhardt, Marian, Southern Oregon, Grand View, Cumberlands, St. Xavier, Carroll, Sioux Falls, and Lindenwood - only Carroll, Lindenwood, Sioux Falls, and Southern Oregon aren't in this year's field.
You can't say this with most playoff fields, but this really could be anyone's year.
The National title game will take place December 15th (the earliest national title game in college football) at Daytona Stadium, FL.
See the full bracket below (via @NAIAFBall).