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MAC Bowl Season Open Chat: Playing in the Poinsettias and Battlin' Birds in Mobile

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MAC powerhouse NIU will take on Mountain West power Boise State, while Bowling Green and Georgia Southern bring different styles to the gridiron.

Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

You can tell that MAC teams are used to that weeknight action; the MAC as a conference won not one, but both bowl games yesterday.

The Akron Zips (8-5, 5-3 MAC) won a bowl game for the first time in program history, but not before having to take a couple deep breaths in the late going on the way to a 23-21 win over Utah State in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl. In Florida, the Toledo Rockets (10-3, 6-2 MAC) exorcised some demons against Temple, pounding the Owls with an explosive offense in the poring rain, winning 32-17.

This puts the MAC at 2-1 in bowl season, with two games tonight, a game on Christmas Eve, and a game on the 28th to go. Ohio lost to Appalachian State in the Camellia Bowl by two points.

Two Group of Five powerhouses meet at the Poinsettia Bowl to determine who would win in a fight between a Huskie and Bronco. Boise State, a media darling in the old BCS era is now a chronic favorite to win the Mountain West and potentially crack the New Year's Six. However, Boise flew off the rails this season, going 8-4 and finishing 4th in their division. NIU (8-5, 6-3 MAC) had a similar road, having a bumpy ride through their non-conference schedule before tearing apart the MAC to get to the Championship Game, although they would need help to get there and ultimately lost badly.

In the nightcap, two different bird teams will engage claws in a fight of two very different styles of football. Bowling Green (10-3, 9-1 MAC) and Georgia Southern (8-4, 6-2 Sun Belt) are literal opposites in just about every way. BGSU's colors are bold, GASO, muted. BGSUs uniforms are sleek and new, GASO's, classic. BGSU relies on the nation's best passing offense to spread the defense out and score as many points as possible; GASO yields one of the best rushing attacks in the nation and wears down teams that don;t see the triple option often. It should be an exciting game to watch if you're a football fan with a pulse.

Here is the schedule of the games tonight:

Time MAC Representative Opponent TV/Stream
4:00 PM Northern Illinois Boise State ESPN/ESPN3
7:00 PM Bowling Green Georgia Southern ESPN/ESPN3

Our amateur prognosticators in Pick 'Em didn't get either pick right yesterday, but they keep on trying anyways. Here are the numbers for tonight:

Boise State over NIU 75% to 25%.

Bowling Green over Georgia Southern 87% to 13%.

Remember: drink in the spirit of #MACtion and don't be that guy in the comments section.