Saturday MAC Review: The Shrinking Middle Class

Three teams scored 0, 6, and 7 points. Two others had 56 and 42 points each. There were blowouts of 46, 42, 24, and 21 points. At least Toledo and Ball State had the decency to make it a close one.

But there really is no middle ground here; you were either great or you stunk. This may be one of the most polarizing MAC seasons in recent memory. Hope you're on the rich side, because it's not very pretty in the cellar. Chalk it up to injuries, inexperience, or incompetence, but after last week's slate of exciting games, the blowouts were just about everywhere.

Although, hey, Eastern Michigan almost took down an ACC team. Giggle.




Oof. No amount of MIchael Reghi energy was able to pump any sort of life into the UB circulatory system. They tried interviewing Naaman Roosevelt at halftime to discuss his game-winning touchdown against Temple two years ago. They talked up Davonte Shannon possibly becoming the fourth ever four-time All-MAC player. They discussed Alex Zordich's great high school career. Yeah, none of that worked. Temple was just steamrolling.

Some Stats: Bernard Pierce and Matt Brown had over 100 yards each, and Buffalo had 63 as a team ... Mike Gerardi had an erratic day in his first start of the season, going 9-for-15 with 131 yards, three touchdowns, and two picks … Buffalo has scored a total of three points in the first and fourth quarters … COMBINED. They're the only FBS school yet to score in the fourth ... Temple's last shutout was in 1992, when they blanked Boston University 35-0.




Temple's starting to come back to form, but how scary does OHIO look all of a sudden? This was a destruction of Miami at the molecular level, although some of that can be attributed to mental errors for Miami. Nick Harwell's DeSean Jackson moment, for example. He shed some tackles en-route to an 81 yard reception ... but the 82nd yard would've been in the end zone. Instead, Harwell dropped the ball in celebration at the 1-yard line, at which point the ball rolled out of the end zone for a touchback. It's almost as puzzling as the lack of Phil Bates in this game. What will happen to BOO BATES?

Some Stats: Senior running back Vince Davidson had 103 yards rushing, his first career 100-yard game on the ground ... Donte Harden and Boo Jackson each ran for two touchdowns ... Harwell's 219 yards on 11 catches is a school record for a single game Miami had 11 net rushing yards, featuring 49 yards worth of negative plays ... all three field goal attempts in this game were missed or blocked ... OHIO has won five straight against Miami.

 



 

And it's officially unwatchable in BG. Bad defense, bad offense. Other than Booboo Gates' freaky kickoff return for touchdown — in which he fell on a Kent State defender, but was never ruled down, rolled back onto his feet and down the field — they had nothing happening. The last time the Falcons scored six or fewer points was in 2006 against ... yep, Kent State (38-3). This was very much a similar game, as that Doug Martin-led team was average but the offense just had their way.

Some Stats: Spencer Keith had a fun day, going 26-for-32 with 223 yards and two touchdowns ... Jacquise Terry had 94 yards on the ground on 22 carries ... Tyshon Goode rounded out the trifecta with 158 yards on 12 receptions and two touchdowns ... hope you had Kent State's defense on your fantasy team this week: 6 sacks, two picks, one fumble recovery, and zero points allowed. (Oh, and a blocked PAT, if they count those.)

 




Nope. Not even close. You might've wondered why Akron was only down seven in the first quarter. The truth is, nobody's quite sure. Perhaps something to do with the waxing and waning of the moon. But the game was eventually broken open. The Zips are being throttled by adequacy. I don't know if they have a win in them, and I say this knowing they play Ball State.

Some Stats: Alex Carder had some passing jubilation, going 17-for-24 with 372 yards and five touchdowns ... the recipients of those yards went mostly to Jordan White (8/168/2 TD) and Juan Nunez (6/192/3 TD) ... this was Carder's second five-touchdown game, the other one coming against Nicholls State ... Akron's touchdown came on Brian Wagner's 54-yard fumble recovery return ... Dervon Wallace had a 91-yard kickoff return for touchdown in the second half, immediately after Wagner's score.

 



 

Okay, now have NIU proven themselves? Probably not, as the detractors and self-deprecating Huskies fans might point out that they had four field goals in this game from 25 yards or shorter, meaning they were on the goal line four times and didn't punch it in. Dude, it's a 33-7 win. That's a good thing. Stop nit-picking. Also, CMU is officially a lower-tier football team until further notice.

Some Stats: Those four field goals were kicked by Michael Cklamovski, who missed two from 40+ yards ... Chad Spann, no big deal, had another three touchdowns on 23 carries for 101 yards ... CMU's defense remained extremely weary as their offense didn't have a single four-minute drive ... CMU hasn't been held to single-digit points in a MAC game since a 36-6 loss to Buffalo in 2004 ... NIU has outscored MAC teams 159-52 this year.




You might've spat your energy drink out at the third quarter score. The Eagles were freaking in this game through 40 minutes, but they seemed to hit E on the tank, giving the Cavs their first FBS win. Break a losing streak one week, start another right away.

Some Stats: Freshman Javonti Greene had a coming-out game with 168 yards from scrimmage and two touchdowns ... EMU had more penalty yards (10 for 86) than passing yards (7 completions for 64).



 

Check to make sure the Rockets are being given the correct start time, m'kay? They were down 17-0 in the first quarter this week, and behind 14-0 to Kent State last week in the same time frame. And yet they came back and won both times. Maybe next week they'll try to win after digging themselves a 21-0 hole! And then so on until the deficit becomes ridiculously unrecoverable.

Some Stats: Ball State's Jack Tomlinson had 5 catches for 89 yards, including both touchdown passes in the first quarter ... MIQUALE MAN! MiQuale Lewis rode the thin depth chart for 96 yards on 19 carries ... Eric Page had 110 yards of his own on just five receptions, including a touchdown ... the beautiful Adonis Thomas ran for 130 yards and a score on 19 carries ... Austin Dantin had two rushing touchdowns and was 14-for-18 passing, although two of those incompletions were interceptions.

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