The Colonels find themselves in an unfavorable position with three weeks left in the regular season.

And they are well-aware of that.

"We don't control our own destiny right now," EKU coach Mark Elder said.

A loss last week at home in over time to Austin Peay dropped the Colonels (5-4, 3-2 OVC) into fourth place in the league standings.

That setback, however, didn't entirely eliminate them from contention for an Ohio Valley Conference title.

It did, though, make the path to a championship much more difficult.

"If we look at it one game at a time, we still have a chance to get a piece of the OVC championship," EKU sophomore offensive lineman Christopher Anthony said. "First things first, though. We've got to beat SEMO."

The Colonels will likely have to win all their remaining games, and get some help, to stay in the for a title.

Two of their final three games are on the road, beginning with a trip to No. 17 Southeast Missouri State (6-3, 4-1 OVC).

Game time is set for 2 p.m. today in Cape Girardeau, Mo.

"If we go out there and play well and find a way to win the remaining games ... then we will have a lot to be proud of and I think we will have something to play for," Elder said. "I really do."

The Colonels were in a three-way tie for second place heading into last week's match-up with Austin Peay at Roy Kidd Stadium. EKU rallied from an 11-point deficit to force overtime, but suffered a 28-21 loss to the Governors (6-3, 4-1 OVC).

The Colonels had almost 200 yards rushing, but also had three turnovers.

"There were a lot of guys who were disappointed," Elder said. "There were a lot of guys with hurt feelings. We just made too many mistakes."

The outcome of several games had a big impact on the OVC standings.

In addition to Peay beating EKU, UT-Martin (5-1) topped Jacksonville State and SEMO beat Tennessee State.

Those results left UT-Martin a half game ahead of Peay and SEMO.

This week's games will almost certainly also shake up the standings as the top four teams are all set to meet.

First-place UT-Martin travels to Austin Peay and EKU takes on SEMO.

"We are just going to rally the troops and get back to work," EKU sophomore defensive lineman Tre Turner said.

That won't be easy, of course.

The Redhawks have won three-straight games and are 4-0 at home this season.

SEMO handed UT-Martin its only OVC loss two weeks ago, then beat Tennessee State, 32-13, last Saturday in Nashville.

"They are very well-rounded," Elder said of SEMO. "They are very explosive at wide receiver. The quarterback does a great job. They are very physical upfront. Defensively, they are stout up front. Zach Hall was the national defensive player of the year last season. He is a big-time player."

Senior Kristian Wilkerson is third in the OVC in receiving yards a game (92.3) and sixth in receptions a game (4.6). Sophomore Aaron Alston is eighth in the league at 60.7 receiving yards a game.

Hall, a senior, has 79 tackles (third-most in the OVC) and sophomore D.J. Coleman is third in the OVC in sacks (5.0).

SEMO is first in the OVC in red zone scoring (91.7 -- just ahead of EKU) and leads the conference in turnover margin (+8).

Turnovers played a big role in EKU's loss to the Governors.

Redshirt freshman quarterback Parker McKinney had three interceptions, the final of which led to a touchdown drive that put Peay in front 14-10 in the third quarter.

The Colonels were a -2 in turnover margin last Saturday.

They've had more giveaways than takeaways twice this season against OVC opponents -- and they've lost both games.

"We look at turnover margin a lot," Elder said. "There's been 24 OVC games (this season). There's been four where there was an even turnover margin. In the other 20 games, the team with the positive turnover margin is 18-2. That's a pretty hard-hitting stat."

EKU topped SEMO 23-14 last season at home.

The Colonels lead the all-time series with the Redhawks, 25-4, including 12-2 in Cape Girardeau, Mo.

SEMO beat EKU, 29-10, in 2017 at home.

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