College Insider Dot Com, powered by CBS Sports, has a women’s mid-major basketball poll. You can see the entire poll here. Our beloved Buffalo Bulls moved up to number 2. Our other beloved sweet 16 team, the Central Michigan Chippewas moved up to 5. Both schools have a loss, however both schools still firmly on their way to possibly making the MAC a two bid league in the NCAA women’s tournament again this year. The interesting rankings, at least to me, are farther down the list, or more to the point, not on the list.
Miami, which was undefeated until last night’s loss to top 5 AP ranked Louisville, didn’t make the top 25. I felt this was a slight. Megan Duffy really has this Lauren Dickerson team motoring right along. They got blasted early by the Cardinals, and then did a good job righting the ship. I am leaning toward thinking Miami deserves AP top 25 votes, so certainly they should be ranked in the Mid-Major poll.
Ohio got 15 votes. While I don’t think the 5-0 Bobcats are AP ranking worthy just yet, they are impressive. They also have Purdue coming up in a couple of games, and if they keep winning, are a legit AP top 25 contender. With Miami and Ohio, I feel like this particular poll isn’t doing are beloved MAC enough justice.
The Eastern Michigan Eagles got 2 votes. They are 3-1 with an acceptable loss to Iowa State. However, what is most impressive about this ranking is that the Eagles were complete trash two years ago, and their record kind of made them look like trash last year, in a loaded MAC West. This particular ranking gives me faith that this poll wasn’t just throwing darts at boards. Fred Castro has done some amazing things in Ypsilanti recently, even though the record may not reflect the improvement of his team.
Now for the enigma. Northern Illinois is 2-2. There is certainly talent on this roster, but I just can’t justify this particular team getting 8 votes, at least not yet. Mikayla Voigt, Janae Poisson, and Courtney Woods and company could compete for a MAC title this year, but I think these votes are a little premature.
Western Michigan and Toledo have both shown some promise, and I am sure I am missing some other teams, as the season is still young. This conference is more loaded than last season, when it sent two teams to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA tournament. With the depth of talent across multiple teams, and the broad range of great player, I think it is safe to say the MAC is now a women’s basketball conference.