With the teams having had, or approaching, half a dozen games, the picture on how the conference race is slightly clearer. One team sits at the top, with a few others not far behind. Then there is the rest of the conference that has all shown potential once they start to gel. In a relatively few amount of games, there have been quite a few ranked, or nearly ranked opponents, too. In an interesting twist, the top half of the conference is in the East, while the bottom half is in the West.
#12 Toledo Rockets (1-3)
The Rockets are an experienced team with talent across the roster. Their problem is with scoring points. In their one win, they scored 74 points. The only other time they scored that many, in their most recent outing, their defense failed them for the first time. I do see this group of veterans, with a veteran coach, climbing out of the cellar to be a middle of the road MAC squad.
#11 Eastern Michigan Eagles (2-3)
I am still high on Coach Castro’s team and see a similar outlook as the Rockets. I thought they would be great this year, but I probably jumped the gun, however the ceiling is still high for this balanced team.
#10 Central Michigan Chippewas (1-3)
Coach Oesterle has a great player in Micaela Kelly but she is trying too hard at the moment. That is understandable, considering the loss of talent over the last couple of seasons. Has she finds her rhythm and gains faith in a new set of starters, I believe this team will actually contend with the teams at the top. That’s the broadness of the depth of the league.
#9 Northern Illinois Huskies (2-3)
I never thought I would type this, but once the Huskies figure out how to score, they will be a very dangerous squad. A team I am used to seeing average 80 points a game has put together a balanced team, and I have to believe they will get the ball in the basket at a high rate soon enough.
#8 Western Michigan Broncos (2-2)
Coach Shane Clipfell’s squad is like the other teams already mentioned, and trying to find their way. They have Breanna Mobley as an anchor, and a solid group of talent around her. Like the Chippewas and Huskies, I do believe this team will be in contention late. But then again, I believe that about every team in this conference at the moment.
#7 Ball State Cardinals (3-2)
Maybe I am a little too high on their recent win against Butler, but this team looks to be the cream of the MAC West early. Life can come at you fast in this conference, and I feel like I will have a good grasp of this team after their upcoming games against Lehigh and Wisconsin.
#6 Bowling Green Falcons (3-1)
The Falcons are certainly improved under coach Fralick’s tutelage, but how much so will be determined once they have a few more games under their belt.
#5 Kent State Golden Flashes (4-2)
The Golden Flashes have shown more in their losses than their wins. After a solid game against a solid Ohio State team, my opinion is shifting from a good team to a really good team.
#4 Miami RedHawks (4-2)
How Lauren Dickerson plays is going to be a good indicator of how good this team is. Luckily for the Miami faithful, she is quite the player, though a bit streaky. That will make for an exciting season. This last week she was MAC East Player of the Week, and their fortunes were favorable.
#3 Akron Zips (4-1)
A relatively untested squad, the Zips were impressive in their loss to a ranked Michigan squad.
#2 Buffalo Bulls (4-2)
After starting the season 4-0, the Bulls dropped their last two. However, I have seen enough of this team over the last couple of years to give them the benefit of the doubt, especially since one of those losses was to Stanford, where the Bulls held their own in the first half.
#1 Ohio Bobcats (4-1)
After a loss to a ranked Syracuse squad in the opener, the Bobcats rattled off 4 straight wins. Quite frankly, take out a huge run by the Orange in the second quarter, and the Bobcats are likely ranked themselves at this point in the season.