I have often thought about simply making a Saturday deadline and excluding all Thu/Fri games throughout the season; however, I think there would be more of a stink about that then the early deadline. Also, the deadline is as such, because I simply don't have the time to keep track of which picks are in on time and which aren't and don't have the time (or even remember) to adjust the form to remove choices from games that have started. That is the reasoning for the deadline always being the start of the first game of the "weekend", and since this was a "qualifying" game (even if nobody was picking Chattanooga over Illinois), the deadline was this first game.
All the above said, you are still in the game (it is double-week elimination), AND you now have an 8 team advantage (teams available to pick for the remainder of the season) over all other players. Of course, this is negated somewhat by the fact that others could make up/distance some correct picks from you, but I think as the season goes on, this might even itself out. I am hopeful you will continue playing and comeback and show all of us your FCS knowledge.