Hustle Belt's MAC Football Preseason Poll: Ohio, Toledo Are Favorites

Last week the Mid-American Conference released its annual football preseason poll. T'was mightily inconclusive as to who the favorite in either division woul be. Toledo was a slight preference overall with the most MAC Championship picks. The East, however was a veritable Three Stooges routine where Ohio, Miami, and Temple were comically trying to push through the door simultaneously.

Fifteen people voted in that poll. So we had 11 vote in ours.

And our conclusion: Okay, we have no idea who's going to win the East either, and the West outlook looks even murkier.

Poll results below the jump.

MAC East Champion
1. OHIO (67) (4 first place)
2. Miami (66) (5 first place)
3. Temple (61) (2 first place)
4. Bowling Green (38)
5. Kent Sate (31)
6. Buffalo (28)
7. Akron (17)

MAC West Champion
1. Toledo (61, 7 first place)
2. Northern Illinois (57, 4 first place)
3. Western Michigan (44, 1 first place)
4. Central Michigan (30)
5. Ball State (22)
6. Eastern Michigan (17)

Well, the MAC West filled out according to form. Almost identical, really. As for the East, it's Ohio by a nose over Miami, even though the RedHawks have more first-place votes. The inverse is true in the MAC media poll. And less consequently, BGSU and Kent State flip spots for fourth and fifth.

MAC Championship Winner:
Toledo (4)
Northern Illinois (4)
Miami (2)
WMU (1)

Still little-to-no real belief that Ohio can pull off the entire championship. But people favor one of the three MAC West cerberus heads to win no matter what. Much like last year.

Here's the lesson from this poll: The conference is bisected into two distinct groups: six gladiators and seven challengers. If the laws of luck are any indicator, one of those challengers is going to be at least in the hunt for a division. Last year it was Miami. In 2009 it was OHIO. In 2008, Temple. And so on. Dress appropriately.

And just for fun:

Last place votes (per division) and your official list of possible surprise picks:
Akron (7)
EMU (7)
Ball State (3)
Buffalo (2)
Kent State (1)
Bowling Green (1)
Central Michigan (1)

I got a tiny kick out of this: only two humans predicted Akron would finish better than sixth and EMU better than fifth. And they were the same two people. Kudos, optimists!

Voters (thanks to everybody, including myself): Matt Sussman, Geeves, Culby, Rovitz, Phil Friend, Laplanck, Brown And Gold, BroncosFightOn, cmadler (Eagle Totem), Mike Breese (Red and Black Attack), Tim Riordan (UB Bull Run)

And now a word from our sponsor.

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