Kent State and Miami are locked into a rather big MAC East race. Central Michigan and Western Michigan fight to stay bowl eligible with respective games at Eastern Michigan and Buffalo. As for Akron and UMass ... someone's going to win their first FBS game.
|Time (ET)||Away||Home||Watch It|
|1:00 p.m.||Central Michigan||3-6, 1-4||Eastern Michigan||1-8, 0-5||MAC Digital Network|
The second leg of the Michigan MAC Trophy/Aluminum Compass hits Ypsilanti where a victory for EMU knocks the Chippewas out of contention for not only this triumvirate rivalry unlockable, but also bowl consideration and, in this blogger's opinion, Dan Enos' tenuous grip on the head coaching position up there.
Despite the record (and the beating Ohio laid on them last Thursday), Bronson Hill is developing as a difficult running back to stop. That'll be CMU's key to victory, essentially.
|1:00 p.m.||Kent State||8-1, 5-0||Miami (OH)||4-5, 3-2||SportsTime Ohio/ESPN3|
We've been drumming up attention for this ultimate BGSU-Kent State showdown next Saturday, but maybe we should slow our roll here. Miami is still swinging at the precipice of MAC East contention with a very thick rope, and doing a very Miami thing by claiming victory a game they probably shouldn't win (for the second time in three games) would keep them in the hunt.
They needed a big rally to beat Akron, which doesn't say a lot other than it was a seventh straight win. The eighth one is not a certainty, although given their ascent up the ranks of MAC power rankings, they've gone from a nice story to being a team expected to win games like this. If they can limit the damage Zac Dysert and poke away some passes in the secondary, they should be in the clear.
|2:00 p.m.||UMass||0-9, 0-5||Akron||1-9, 0-6||MAC Digital Network|
Bold prediction: somebody wins their first FBS game. Bolder: it's going to be UMass.
Now just watch this be the most entertaining game of the year. It has all the makings: two teams proverbially beat up over the course of the season, both of whom will see an opportunity for a victory. Akron's goal all year has been to win two games (Terry Bowden's words, not mine) while UMass desperately wants to get off the winless table.
Just picture it. A close game at the end. Everybody playing with an extra half-step in their stride. Each play more important than the next. Someone makes a big play, and it's the highlight of their season, making all the losses and angst completely worth it.
Going to feel bad for the losing team, though.
|3:30 p.m.||Western Michigan||4-6, 2-4||Buffalo||2-7, 1-4||MAC Digital Network|
A true story: I had blood drawn Tuesday morning and to keep my mind off the needle, I recited all the MAC schools. I went alphabetically, and then I got to Western Michigan. I thought about Western Michigan, then I thought about Bill Cubit. And then I thought about his job status and thinking if he'll be fired. It was at this point that I started getting dizzy, my vision faded, everything got quiet and I very nearly passed out. It's a metaphor for Western Michigan football for the last five years. I'm sure of it.
The Broncos are also on the cusp of not going to a bowl game, and BEWARE THE BUFFALO BULLS. Not a joke. That 2-7 record is a smokescreen. Toledo should know that. Miami definitely ought to know that. They're beatable, sure, but it's not easy. While WMU's defense is much improved from years past, especially against the run, it's all up to Tyler VanTubbergen to not throw the ball away, or to someone wearing blue.
(Also: good news. The lab called and said I'm not pregnant.)