The fun factor of this conference is through the roof this basketball season. Trying to make sense of the results is a hair pulling affair. The reality is that there is not much separating 2 through 12. These rankings are more a reflection of which teams had the hot hand recently, or was ice cold, than the actual talent on the court. They all have the talent.
#12 Western Michigan Broncos
(6-14 overall, 0-7 MAC)
The Broncos had the talent, they have just been riddled with injuries. Seth Dugan continues to impress, however, putting up 15.6 points and 8.8 rebounds. Michael Flowers is filling in well for departed Thomas Wilder, scoring 15.6, grabbing 4.5 rebounds, and dishing 3.5 assist. Even though the Broncos have yet to win a conference game this season, don’t sleep on them. They gave Toledo and Buffalo scares. As the season moves along, they will figure out the rotation that works, and will win some games.
#11 Ball State Cardinals
(11-9 overall, 2-5 MAC)
You play to win the game. The Cardinals are not doing a good job of that so far this season. I still believe this team has the talent to compete at the highest level. Do not be shocked if they give Buffalo a came in their next outing.
#10 Eastern Michigan Eagles
(9-11 overall, 3-4 MAC)
This was a tough team to rank. They have shown some flashes in conference play that convince me they can play with anyone. Sadly, they have also had some really bad offensive performances. Like Ball State, the talent is there so they may make a run at any time.
#9 Ohio Bobcats
(11-8 overall, 3-4 MAC)
The Bobcats are a year away from being really good. This year, they are going to be streaky.
#8 Miami RedHawks
(11-9 overall, 3-4 MAC)
Just when I was starting to write off Miami, they decided to go on a 3 game win streak. Much like Ohio, they have young talent, but struggle to fit the pieces together properly. As Bowling Green found out, the RedHawks have teeth.
#7 Central Michigan Chippewas
(14-6 overall, 3-4 MAC)
Did the real Chippewas stand up? Or sit down? This team that had a lot of doubters went on a three game losing streak. I am not convinced they are that bad, but I did knock them down a bit. If they go back to their winning ways, and quickly, I will have problem jumping them back up the rankings.
#6 Northern Illinois Huskies
(11-9 overall, 4-3 MAC)
I think the Huskies are a bubble bye team. The conference season really is all about getting one of the 4 byes for the conference tournament. This team is on the cusp. Eugene German continues to impress, averaging over 20 points per game, and Levi Bradley is the type of player every team can use. The question is will anyone step up from a little deeper on the bench? If that happens, I’ll move them in the top 4.
#5 Akron Zips
(12-8 overall, 4-3 MAC)
Rapper Chuck D should sponsor this team, because that’s what they do. Chuck it up, and play some D. With this style, there will be an equal amount of amazing wins and amazing losses.
#3 (tie) Kent State Golden Flashes
(15-5 overall, 4-3 MAC)
Coach Senderoff might have the steadiest squad. Their losses in conference play have come against Bowling Green, Buffalo, and Eastern Michigan. Buffalo and Bowling Green are above them in the rankings, and Eastern Michigan shot lights out in their win.
#3 (tie) Toledo Rockets
(16-4 overall, 4-3 MAC)
The Rockets had a gaudy non-conference record, only to drop their first two conference games. They have made me a believer again with their only other conference loss a close one against the steady Flashes. It was a tough call between the Rockets and Flashes, so I called it a tie.
#2 Bowling Green Falcons
(14-6 overall, 6-1 MAC)
The Falcons dropped their first game of the conference season. They scored more than 79 points in each of their conference games until only putting up 53 in the loss to Miami. I am not worried, even the best teams have off nights.
#1 Buffalo Bulls
(18-2 overall, 6-1 MAC)
Speaking of best teams having an off night, the Bulls dropped a game to Northern Illinois and had a close one against Kent. The Bulls are the best team in the conference, but that does not take away from the Huskies, or even Kent. Both of those teams are talented, and if Buffalo has an off night, they can lose to anyone in this conference. If they are playing pretty good, they could still lose to quite a few teams, because this conference really is deep.