Will Victor. E. Bull be celebrating come Friday? - Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

MAC Football Week 14 Coverage: The Final Countdown

With this marking the final week of the regular season, and only the MAC Championship, and the bowls remaining after this, we've finally arrived at the end of the road for many of our MAC Football teams. We have just one mid-week game this week (NIU vs. WMU) on Tuesday, and a handful of games on Friday, including the MAC East title game between Bowling Green and Buffalo.

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Final Football Scores and Standings Roundup

The regular season is finally over with. The Huskies and Falcons win their respective divisions and Central Michigan is bowl eligible. Let's see how everybody did before we start handing out report cards.


Where Does Jordan Lynch Stand In The Heisman Race?

The 2013 college football regular season came to a close Saturday night, which means the Heisman race got a little clearer. AJ McCarron lost Saturday night, and Andre Williams got hurt tossing a wrench into the race. To make things simpler, I took the liberty of updating the Heisman race standings with only the most pertinent information. You're welcome.


BGSU Captures MAC East With 24-7 Win At Buffalo

For 30 minutes, Buffalo's defense matched that of Bowling Green punch-for-punch, allowing their offense to build a 7-3 halftime lead. In the second half, the Falcons' defense reigned supreme, and as a result, BGSU is headed to Detroit for a date with NIU.


Tipton and the Chips Beat Down EMU 42-10

Zurlon Tipton destroyed the EMU Eagles as the Chippewas smoked Eastern Michigan 42-10.


Ohio Seals Winning Season, Beats UMass 51-23

Only three teams have had winning seasons each of the last five seasons: Northern Illinois, Toledo and the Ohio Bobcats. The Green and White sealed off a winning season on Friday with a 51-23 win over Massachusetts.

Ohio came out hot against their 1-10 foes knowing it would be the difference between a winning season and merely going .500. It only took the 'Cats two plays on their first possession to find the end zone as Beau Blankenship busted up the middle for 50 yards putting Ohio up 7-0 early. Blankenship finished the game with 122 rushing yards making i only the second time he hit the century mark on the season.

Ohio would force a three and out on UMass' next possession and marched down the field adding to their lead as Tyler Tettleton hit Chase Cochran in the back left corner from two yards out to make it 14-0.

UMass added a field goal but before the end of the first quarter the Minutemen commenced their first comeback attempt. The Massachusett's defense forced Tettleton to put the ball on the turf right before the change in quarters and six plays later freshman running back Shadrach Abrokwah would get UMass six making it 14-0. Abrokwah was a bright spot for the Minutemen finishing with 110 yards and one touchdown.

UMass forced another stop on D and looked primed to take a stab at the lead, but with just over seven minutes to play in the half Massachusetts' quarterback A.J. Doyles pass was picked off by sixth-year senior cornerback Travis Carrie and taken 66 yards back for a score. The bad luck continued for the Minutemen as they muffed the ensuing kickoff which led to a Ryan Boykin six yard touchdown run. Josiah Yazdani would add a field goal before halftime giving Ohio a 31-10 lead at the break.

UMass started Act II of attempting to make a comeback at the start of the third quarter. Defensive lineman Kevin Byrne batted a Tettleton pass up in the air to himself to get UMass great field position. One play later, Doyle threw a strike to Tajae Sharpe who fought off two Bobcat defenders for a score. On the ensuing kickoff, it was Ohio's turn to make a mistake as return man Nathan Carpenter put the ball on the carpet allowing UMass to add a field goal making it 31-20.

Ohio regained control of the game later in the quarter when Tettleton marched the offense down the field finishing off the drive with a touchdown pass to Landon Smith to put the 'Cats back up 38-20. Tettleton finished the contest 18-of-27 for 243 yards and two scores.

Yazdani and UMass kicker Brendon Levengood traded field goals as the fourth quarter wound down and Ohio maintained the 21-point lead they held at half time. As UMass took one last stab at a comeback, Doyle would be picked off once again by Carrie, who once again took it home for six giving Ohio their first victory since October.

With the win, Ohio improved to 7-5 on the season and now will have to wait to see if a bowl bid is in their future. UMass finishes the season 1-11 and will not have to wait to see if a bowl bid is in their future.


Final Update: Ohio 51, Massachusetts 23

When we last left our heroes, the Ohio Bobcats held a 21-point lead heading into the second half. UMass tried early on to claw their way back into the contest giving Ohio faithful the "not again" feeling.

On Ohio's first possession of the second half, Massachusetts defensive lineman Kevin Byrne batted a Tyler Tettleton pass to himself to give the Minutemen great field position. One play later A.J. Doyle heaved a bomb up to Tajae Sharpe who fought off two Ohio defenders for a diving touchdown grab.

On the ensuing kickoff, it was Ohio's turn to turn it back over to the kicking team when Nathan Carpenter put the ball on the turf only to end up in UMass' lap. Brendon Levengood's second field goal of the game made it 31-20 early in the third quarter.

The Bobcats built their lead back up starting with a four yard touchdown pass from Tettleton to Landon Smith. From that point, it was field goal after field goal from both teams. Josiah Yazdani added two more to his first half kick making him a perfect 12-for-12 on the seaosn. Levengood added one more in the second half giving him three on the day.

When Ohio's lead was at 21 and with the clock running down, the Bobcats added one more score. Doyle would be picked off one last time, once again by sixth-year senior Travis Carrie who would return it for his second touchdown of the game.

Tettleton finished the game with 243 yards and two touchdowns. Beau Blankenship finished with over 100 yards on the ground for only the second time this season.

Freshman Shadrach Abrokwah rushed for 110 yards and a score giving Minutemen fans hope for the future.


Final: Ball State Cardinals 55, Miami RedHawks 14

Keith Wenning continued to rewrite Ball State's record book today in Muncie, passing for a total of six touchdowns to lead the Cardinals to a 55-14 win over Miami. (He had previously been tied with three other players at five touchdowns in a game.) His 27/33, 445-yard performance was, if anything, an understatement -- he probably could have gone for 500 yards and seven touchdowns if he wanted to. The RedHawks were just that bad, allowing the Cardinals a season-high 581 yards of offense.

And Wenning spread those passing yards around: Jordan Williams, Willie Snead, and Jamill Smith each had 100-yard receiving games, with Smith hauling in a career-high three touchdown passes. Williams averaged an eye-popping 32.2 yards per catch, breaking a few long runs, including a highlight-worthy 72-yard touchdown in the game-breaking second quarter.

For Miami, the second half was kinder than the first, though it was clear that Ball State had taken its foot off the pedal somewhat. In the third quarter, Drew Kummer hit Dawan Scott for a 58-yard touchdown catch, and the RedHawks followed up with one of their best drives of the season, an 11-play, 75-yard march that ended in a rushing touchdown for Austin Gearing. Miami finished with a respectable (for Miami, anyway) 281 yards of offense.

But there's no question: Keith Wenning was the story today, just like he has been this season. His final appearance at Scheumann Stadium was one for the ages. Here's hoping he draws the eyeballs he richly deserves during the Cardinals' bowl game.


CMU blasts EMU 42-10

Zurlon Tipton and the Central Michigan Chippewas blasted the Eastern Michigan Eagles 42-10.The victory allows the Chips to get control of the coveted Michigan MAC trophy.

Tipton scored four times. His longest run of the game was an 86 yard touchdown which was also a career long touchdown run.

The Eagles had seized control of momentum late in the second quarter behind star running back Bronson Hill. However, Courtney Williams stole momentum back for the Chips with a 84 yard touchdown return to start the second half.

The Eagles were proficient between the twenty yard lines and actually out gained the Chippewas at the half. However, the CMU defense came up with several big plays to thwart any effort by EMU to score in the second half. No play was bigger for the CMU defense than senior Avery Cunningham's Pick 6 in the fourth quarter that put the game out of reach. Cunningham streaked down the sidelines after intercepting EMU quarterback Brogan Roback and raced 75 yards for a touchdown. CMU now has Pick 6's in its last three games.

CMU now has to wait to see if it gets a bowl invitation after improving its record to 6-6. The hapless Eagles fall to 2-10 with the loss.


FINAL -- Bowling Green Falcons 24, Buffalo Bulls 7

In today's winner-take-all game at Ralph Wilson Stadium, we have a winner!  The Bowling Green Falcons have defeated the Buffalo Bulls 24-7 to win the Mid-American Conference Eastern Division.  The Falcons move on to their first MAC Championship Game since 2003 (and their first ever in Detroit) and will face the Northern Illinois Huskies.  With a win next Friday, BGSU would capture their first MAC championship in 21 years.

The Falcons also assured themselves a bowl bid with their victory today.

Bowling Green struggled early and often on offense in the first half but dominated play after the teams returned from halftime.  In the fourth quarter, the Falcons drove 81 yards for their final score of the game.  The drive was finished by a seven-yard run by quarterback Matt Johnson.

BGSU posted over 300 yards of total offense in the second half and ended the game with 490 overall.  Buffalo finished the contest with 236 yards of offense, but much of that came late in the fourth quarter, when the game was no longer in doubt.

The difference in the game was Bowling Green's ability to run the ball and stop Buffalo's running game.  The Falcons piled up 260 yards on 48 carries and limited the Bulls to just 15 yards on 24 attempts.  Buffalo also had two turnovers in the second half.  And, in a complete reversal from the first half, the Bulls were just 1-for-8 on third down whereas the Falcons were 5-for-9.

Travis Greene finished the game with 129 yards on 30 carries.  He will need just 23 yards in BGSU's final two games to break the Falcons' all-time single-season rushing record.  William Houston added 47 yards on the ground, while Johnson 302 total yards (72 rushing, 230 passing).  Shaun Joplin, who had a big drop in the first half, came back to have a huge game.  He was the only Falcon to bring in multiple receptions, and he caught six balls for 149 yards and a touchdown.

Branden Oliver rushed for 46 yards in Buffalo's losing effort.  Joe Licata threw for 221 yards but completed only 21 of 45 passes and lost 30 yards on five rushing attempts (mostly sacks).  Alex Neutz led Bulls' receivers with six catches for 66 yards.  On defense, Khalil Mack set the NCAA career record for tackles-for-loss during the game.

Buffalo falls to 8-4 overall and 6-2 in the MAC.  They are still very likely to earn a bowl bid but will have to wait until next Sunday to find out where they (might) go.

Bowling Green is 9-3 overall and 7-1 in the MAC.  As Eastern Division champs, they'll play NIU next Friday night at Ford Field in Detroit, then (win or lose) will await their bowl destination later next weekend.


Zurlon Tipton is running all over EMU

Courtney Williams took the opening kickoff of the second half and streaked 84 yards down the sidelines for a touchdown. The opening score of the second half gave the Chips a 28-10 lead.

Zurlon Tipton has scored four touchdowns for CMU. His 44 yard touchdown run has given the Chips  the 35-10 lead that they enjoy going in to the fourth quarter.


End of Third Quarter: Bowling Green 17, Buffalo 7

One more quarter left until we know who will face Northern Illinois next Friday night in the Mid-American Conference Championship Game, and the Falcons lead that race over Buffalo, 17-7.

As they have done all year, the Falcons absolutely dominated the third quarter.  They posted two long scoring drives with huge plays from Matt Johnson on each.  Johnson threw a touchdown pass to Shaun Joplin on the first drive, then Travis Greene scored a touchdown of his own on the following possession.  His TD capped a 93-yard march for the Falcons.

Buffalo could get nothing going on offense and has just 109 yards for the entire game.  Bowling Green had over 200 yards of offense in the quarter and stands at 365 for the game.  Greene has 121 yards rushing, while Johnson has added 71 yards on the ground and 158 passing yards.  Joplin has four catches for 77 yards.  Buffalo's Branden Oliver has only 39 yards on 15 carries, and Joe Licata has completed just nine of 21 passes for 87 yards.  Alex Neutz leads the Bulls with three receptions for 29 yards.

More at the conclusion of the game...


Brogan Roback has made it a game for EMU v CMU

Eastern Michigan scored a late touchdown on a ten yard pass from Brogan Roback to Cole Gardner with 0:06 left in the half to tighten things up after CMU had streaked to a 21-0 lead.

Zurlon Tipton has scored three touchdowns for the Chips. Tipton has eclipsed 100 yards rushing and has a career long 84 yard touchdown run. After CMU went up 21-0, the momentum has shifted to EMU as it has begun to rely on its star running back Bronson Hill. Hill has scorched the CMU defense for several long runs in the second quarter and has been the difference maker for EMU.

The EMU defense has forced the CMU offense to sputter by causing a fumble and throttling a late Chippewa drive. The Eagles have out gained the Chips 223 yards to 208 yards. Brogan Roback led the Eagles on a 8 play scoring drive with only 0:55 left in the half to make things suddenly very tight at Kelly/Shorts Stadium.


Halftime: Ohio 31, Massachusetts 10

Even riding a three-game losing streak, Ohio couldn't lose to 1-10 UMass, right?

The 'Cats came out explosive needing only two plays on their first offensive drive when Beau Blankenship slashed straight through the Minutemen defense for a 50-yard score putting Ohio up 7-0 early. After a UMass three-and-out, Tyler Tettleton marched Ohio 54 yards down the field putting the Bobcats up 14-0 with a 2-yard flip to Chase Cochran.

UMass looked to make it a game as the quarters changed. Right before the end of the first quarter, the Minutemen forced a fumble immediately after putting their first points on the board via a field goal. Six plays later, running back Shadrach Abrokwah plunged it in from three yards out to make it 14-10.

Ohio finally caught the break they needed when Travis Carrie picked off UMass quarterback A.J. Doyle taking it 66 yards to the house. Massachusetts muffed the ensuing kickoff allowing Ohio to score again two plays later on a Ryan Boykin six-yard scamper to make it 28-10.

Just before the half, Ohio added another three points off the toe of Josiah Yazdani, who is a perfect 10-for-10 this seson on field goal attempts. Yazdani's kick makes it 31-10 at intermission.

Blankenship has been the highlight for the 'Cats offensively. Through one half, he's over the century mark which is only the second time this season he's hit 100+ yards. That resulted in a win over Miami, Ohio's last victory.

As for Massachusetts, Abrokwah's been strong with 58 yards and a score on the ground. Doyle is 3-of-7 with 71 yards and one interception.

Sitting at 6-5, Ohio is playing for a winning season and are still hopeful for a bowl bid. An impressive win could help their case. UMass will start with the ball in the second half down 21.


Halftime Update: Buffalo 7, Bowling Green 3

They've reached halftime in the winner-take-all game between the Buffalo Bulls and Bowling Green Falcons.  Buffalo has taken a 7-3 lead into the locker room.

Neither team has been able to move the ball consistently, as defenses dominated the half.  The Falcons were able to maneuver for a 40-yard field goal by Tyler Tate on their second drive of the game but could not score after that.  They turned the ball over on downs inside Buffalo territory on one drive, then punted on their final three possessions.  Meanwhile, Buffalo gained just 25 yards on their first three drives before finally getting things going in the second quarter.  Joe Licata led a 66-yard drive that was capped by a two-yard Branden Oliver run on third-and-goal for a touchdown.

Bowling Green ended the half with 152 yards.  Buffalo, despite having 66 yards on one drive, will begin the second half with just 93 yards from scrimmage.  In their last six quarters, Bowling Green has given up a TOTAL of 158 yards.  BGSU has 130 rushing yards but just 22 passing, while Buffalo has 64 passing and just 29 rushing.  Buffalo is 4-for-9 on third down, while the Falcons are just 1-for-8.

Travis Greene has 16 carries for 105 yards and needs just 47 yards to break Bowling Green's record for rushing yards in a single season.  Matt Johnson is just 3-for-12 passing for 22 yards.  Those completions went to three different players -- Heath Jackson has one for 11 yards, Shaun Joplin one for ten, and Greene has a one-yard catch.

Oliver has 13 carries for 35 yards and the game's only touchdown.  Licata is 6-for-16 for 64 yards, and those completions went to five different receivers.  Fred Lee is the only player with multiple catches (two for 12 yards).  Devin Campbell, who has the game's only turnover, had a huge 30-yard third-down reception on the touchdown drive.

More after the third quarter...


CMU ahead of EMU 14-0 after one quarter

Zurlon Tipton scored two touchdowns on short runs as the Chippewas have taken the early lead. The first score by CMU came courtesy of a fumble by the Eagles after they had begun to move the ball.

CMU took possession at its own 29 yard line on its second scoring drive and marched methodically on an eleven play drive that took 5:56 off the clock. EMU took possession on the ensuing kick and has managed to cross the 50 yard line as the quarter ended.


End of 1st Quarter: Bowling Green 3, Buffalo 0

As many expected, defense dominated the first 15 minutes at Ralph Wilson Stadium, and Bowling Green heads to the second quarter with a 3-0 lead.

Travis Greene has 74 yards rushing on seven carries -- all other players combined have 36 total yards.  Matt Johnson and Joe Licata combined are just 2-for-8 for just 6 yards.  Buffalo has just 25 yards in three possessions, and Branden Oliver accounts for 24 of those.

More at halftime...


Half: Akron 17, Toledo 10

Kyle Pohl has 193 passing yards and a TD, Jawon Chisholm has 56 yards and the score, and the Akron Zips have the Toledo Rockets reeling after the first 30 minutes, taking a 17-10 lead into the locker room.

The Zips have outgained the Rockets offensively 274 to 136, and much of that lands in the lap of Terrance Owens: the Toledo QB has thrown for 7/15 for 60 yards and a score early in the game to Dwight Macon. Without David Fluellen or Damion Jones-Moore, Kareem Hunt has been the sole rusher, he's carried the ball 63 yards on 13 touches.

Akron took the lead on their final drive of the half, a drive that started back on their 10 yard line, and was kept alive by a run on a fake punt that went 16 yards. Pohl would connect with L.T Smith, Fransohn Bickley, and Zach D'Orazio to get down the field, and Chisholm would cap it off on a 2 yarder to put the Zips up by 7.


Partial Sellout at the Ralph

The crowd for the MAC East Championship Game is..interesting...

Will Buffalo have a home-field advantage?

Our gut says no.


Black Friday MAC Football Open Chat

Black Friday, a time for shopping, eating leftovers and watching MAC Football. Join us as we discuss today's action.


Toledo Missing Two Running Backs Today vs Akron

This doesn't come as a huge surprise, but...

Kareem Hunt now becomes a very important player in today's game.  Not counting Terrance Owens, Hunt is the only healthy Toledo back with more than 20 carries this season.

Owens will also likely need to have a good passing day, so Bernard Reedy and Alonzo Russell with have to step it up.


How To Watch Buffalo vs. Bowling Green

For the Falcons and Bulls, throw the first 11 games of the season out the window. Now, this is the only one that matters. Win, and you guarantee yourself a bowl bid and a spot in the MAC Championship Game. Lose? Losing isn't an option.


Charley Molnar To Return As UMass Coach In 2014

The embattled head coach will get a third season to try and turn UMass into a competitive FBS program.


Can Toledo Bounce Back Against A Tough Akron Team?

After a loss in the biggest game of the season the Toledo Rockets look to rebound against the better-than-their-4-and-7-record Akron Zips on Friday.


Ohio Looks To Finish Above .500 In Finale vs UMass

Ohio looks to end the season with a winning record. UMass is at the end of yet another horrid season in MAC play. This will be fun.


Preview: CMU vs EMU

Will the Chippewas run away with their third straight win to be bowl eligible, or with the Eagles make it a clean sweep to keep the Michigan MAC trophy in Ypsilanti for the third straight year?


Miami vs. Ball State: Game Preview

The Cardinals are playing for position in the MAC's pecking order of bowl-eligible teams. The RedHawks are trying to avoid a big goose-egg in the wins column for the 2013 season. Which team will come away the victor in Muncie on Friday afternoon?


The Turkey Awards: Honoring the Worst of the Worst

We at Hustle Belt want to wish you a Happy Thanksgiving, so to do so we've created some awards in honor of the holiday.


Bowling Green vs. Buffalo: Game Preview

We're just hours away from the Black Friday Clash at the Ralph. The Bulls and Falcons square off in a winner-take-all tilt for the MAC East and a spot in Detroit for next Friday's title game. Who's going to take it all?


Bowling Green vs. Buffalo: Five Years Ago

The Bulls and Falcons have a rather short and uneventful series of games, but one in particular stands out. Five years ago, the two played on a cold November night with everything on the line and had a game for the ages. Let's look back...


What's With Ohio's Struggles In November?

November is a troublesome month for Ohio. Well, at least it has been for the last two years. But is there a larger issue?


Black Friday MAC Football TV Schedule

The MAC Football regular season concludes Friday with five games for your viewing pleasure.


Jordan Lynch On The Dan Patrick Show

Dan Patrick loves himself some #MACtion, so after watching Jordan Lynch's record-breaking performance DP decided to have the talented QB on his show this morning. The pair talked Heisman voting, personnel grouping, and the just how good Lynch could be as a running back in the SEC.


NIU Runs All Over WMU 33-14

Jordan Lynch re-breaks the single-game rushing record by a quarterback in his quest to travel to both New York City and Glendale, Arizona.


NIU Runs Over WMU in Their 33-14 Season Finale

He broke his own record.

Jordan Lynch, who had 229 rushing yards at the end of the first half, finished the day with 321 rushing yards on 27 carries for three touchdowns. This beats Lynch's old record of 316 rushing yards when the Huskies beat Central Michigan earlier this year. Through the air, Lynch was 0-for-3 in the second half, finishing the day 5-for-17 for 39 yards with a touchdown to Juwan Brescacin.

For Western Michigan, Zach Terrell still played fairly well, considering who they had to go up against. Completing 13 out of his 26 passes for 139 yards, Tyler Van Tubbergen saw the field in the fourth quarter, throwing 2-for-5 for 24 yards.

Antoin Scriven is responsible for Western Michigan's other touchdown of the day for the Broncos. The senior, who played in his fifth game this year, ran the ball nine times and picked up 33 yards.

After a bad outing last week at Toledo, NIU kicker Mathew Sims was 2-for-3 in field goals with a long of 34 and made 3 out of 4 extra point attempts.

NIU finishes their perfect regular season with a 12-0 (8-0 Mid-American Conference) record.

WMU ends their season with a 1-11 (1-7 MAC) record.


HALFTIME: NIU Rolling Over WMU 20-7

Jordan Lynch is putting on quite a show tonight.

Carrying the ball 17 times, Lynch rushed for 229 yards (13.5 avg) with two touchdowns. Yes, that's over 200 rushing yards in the first half alone! He also has a passing touchdown, completing 5 of his 14 attempts for 39 yards. All five of Lynch's completions were to different receivers. Aregeros Turner has the longest reception for 23 yards.

Western Michigan only has 185 offensive yards. Zach Terrell, with the lack of protection from his offensive line, isn't playing half bad. He's 11-for-22 in the air for 124 yards, hitting Kendrick Roberts four times for 64 yards. Bronco's season-leading receiver Corey Davis has three receptions for 28 yards. The team's lone touchdown came from Dareyon Chance in the second quarter. Chance has 11 rushes for 32 yards.

Both kickers, Andrew Haldeman for WMU and Mathew Sims for NIU, have yet to make a field goal.



WMU vs. No. 14 NIU Open Chat

WMU and NIU square off on ESPN2 tonight at 7, and we'll be live chatting the game and some MAC Hoops action all night long.


Jordan Lynch: The MAC's Heisman

The odds are a litte more in the NIU QB's favor after 13 weeks. He is certainly deserving of the award as well. So basically, if you don't vote for him, you suck. Kidding aside, get this kid to New York!


WATCH: NIU Gets New 'Dark Dog' Uniforms

The Huskies will be sporting a new look for senior night.


The Huskies Are Rewriting History 1 Win At A Time

The last the NIU started a season 10-0 was a long, long time ago. Fifty years to be exact. And now, the 2013 Huskies have surpassed the 1963 Huskies and look to make their own legacy in DeKalb.


Diesel, the NIU Husky, Is Retiring After 9 Years

Tonight isn't just the last time NIU fans will see the senior class at home, it's the last time they'll see their beloved husky, a dog named Diesel, gracing their sidelines in DeKalb.


Spread Offense: Week 14 MAC Football Odds

The authority on Mid-American Conference football betting notches an improbable 10th consecutive winning week against the Vegas spread. You're welcome.


Mid-Major Top 10 Poll, Week 14: Fresno Still No. 1

For the 7th straight week Fresno State sits atop the Mid-Major poll, and NIU is a close second.


How To Watch WMU vs. No. 14 NIU

The Huskies host the Western Michigan Broncos Tuesday night in another nationally televised game.


NIU Welcomes WMU Into The Huskies' Den Tuesday

The Northern Illinois Huskies host the Broncos on Tuesday night and look to stay perfect.


Updated Mid-American Conference Bowl Projections

It's safe to say that we all expected Northern Illinois to get another nice bump from the BCS computers this week after their victory at Toledo.

It's also safe to say that we (or I, anyway) did not anticipate that they would receive such a bump that they would be in the top 10 of every BCS computer ranking and that they would vault Fresno State in the BCS standings.

Now that those events have, in fact, taken place, it's prudent to update our MAC bowl projections.

The biggest change, obviously, is that everyone gets bumped up the ladder.  However, it does not mean that the MAC will get an extra team.  Rather, the dominoes outside of the MAC's primary and secondary bowl agreements will fall somewhat differently.  Unfortunately for Central Michigan, they will still likely be on the outside looking in.

Here are our new projections:

BCS Fiesta Bowl: Northern Illinois (vs. Oklahoma State)
Little Caesars Bowl: Bowling Green (vs. Pittsburgh*)
GoDaddy.com Bowl: Ball State (vs. Western Kentucky)
Famous Idaho Potato Bowl: Buffalo (vs. San Diego State)
Poinsettia Bowl: Toledo (vs. Boise State)
BBVA Compass Bowl: Ohio (vs. Middle Tennessee State)
* - replacement for Big Ten team)
Eligible but no bowl: Central Michigan

As you can see, the teams are shuffled around a bit, and one of the opponents are different.  I've moved Toledo to the Poinsettia because the MAC, Mountain West, and the bowl itself are going to all want a marquee team to go up against someone like Boise State.  I also don't believe that the GoDaddy.com Bowl (which has second selection) will pass up Ball State and Keith Wenning.

Meanwhile, if the Little Caesars Bowl can't get Northern Illinois, I believe it will want a local team for its final game (like it got with Central Michigan last year).  Bowling Green would fit that bill perfectly.  As for Buffalo, this means that they'll probably get stuck out in Boise.  While it would be nice for them to get to play in the Pinstripe, it doesn't appear that it would happen if NIU makes the BCS.  Now, I have placed Notre Dame in the Pinstripe.  Ohio remains in the BBVA Compass Bowl.

As for the changed opponent, the Mountain West will be able to fill all of its bowl obligations if Fresno State does not make it into the BCS.  So, instead of Buffalo facing a replacement (probably Washington State), they'll get San Diego State out of the MWC instead.  I should also note that the Little Caesars Bowl could end up with a Sun Belt team instead of Pittsburgh.  If that happens, the matchup would probably be Bowling Green against Arkansas State.

Once again, here's our (revised) projections for the entire bowl lineup:

New Orleans Bowl: Tulane vs Louisiana-Lafayette
Las Vegas Bowl: Fresno State vs UCLA
New Mexico Bowl: UNLV vs Arizona
Famous Idaho Potato Bowl: Buffalo vs San Diego State
Beef O'Bradys Bowl: Houston vs North Texas
Hawaii Bowl: Florida Atlantic vs Utah State
Little Caesars Pizza Bowl: Pittsburgh vs Bowling Green
Poinsettia Bowl: Toledo vs Boise State
Military Bowl: Maryland vs Marshall
Texas Bowl: Michigan vs Kansas State
Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl: Brigham Young vs Washington
Belk Bowl: Cincinnati vs Georgia Tech
Russell Athletic Bowl: Louisville vs Miami-Florida
Pinstripe Bowl: Rutgers vs Notre Dame
Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl: Iowa vs Texas Tech
Holiday Bowl: Texas vs Oregon
Armed Forces Bowl: Navy vs Colorado State
Alamo Bowl: Oklahoma vs USC
Music City Bowl: North Carolina vs Vanderbilt
AdvoCare V100 Independence Bowl: Boston College vs Washington State
Sun Bowl: Virginia Tech vs Arizona State
Liberty Bowl: East Carolina vs Mississippi
Chick-fil-A Bowl: Duke vs Georgia
Gator Bowl: Minnesota vs South Carolina
Heart of Dallas Bowl: Rice vs Texas State
Outback Bowl: Nebraska vs Missouri
Capital One Bowl: Wisconsin vs Texas A&M
Rose Bowl: Ohio State vs Stanford
Fiesta Bowl: Oklahoma State vs Northern Illinois
Sugar Bowl: Central Florida vs Auburn
Cotton Bowl: Baylor vs Louisiana State
Orange Bowl: Clemson vs Michigan State
BBVA Compass Bowl: Middle Tennessee State vs Ohio
GoDaddy.com Bowl: Ball State vs Western Kentucky
BCS Championship Game: Florida State vs Alabama


Northern Illinois Ranked No. 14 In Latest BCS Poll

After a second consecutive impressive nationally televised win the Huskies move up two spots to No. 14, ahead of Fresno State, UCF, and Louisville.


MAC Football Power Rankings: Week 14

With one week left in the regular season, the final picture is starting to take shape. But with a huge MAC East showdown happening on Black Friday, the image could still undergo some serious modifications.


NIU No. 20 In Latest Coaches Poll, No. 18 In AP

After another strong showing on national TV against a good opponent, NIU finally got some positive momentum in the AP and Coaches polls, albeit only slightly.


MAC Bowl Outlook: Week 14 Edition

Time is short, as just 14 days remain until bowl pairings are set in stone. Did anything change for the MAC's bowl hopes this week?

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