MAC Power Rankings: Week 6
By Jon Coffey
After making history by becoming the first MAC team ever to beat two Big Ten teams in one season this fall, Northern Illinois has provided us with more evidence that suggests it is the cream of the conference crop. Quarterback Jordan Lynch still is playing at a fervent pace and looks like he’s on a mission to make sure his Huskies go undefeated.
Ball State and Toledo’s showdown in the MAC West last weekend ended in a 31-24 win for the Cardinals at home, making them the frontrunner for the distinction of being “best team other than NIU” in their division.
Bowling Green currently holds the best record in MAC conference play, having already defeated Akron and Kent State this season, but the Falcons will be tested in two weeks when they travel to Mississippi State to take on the Bulldogs.
This week’s game of the week goes to the rematch of last year’s conference championship game between Northern Illinois and Kent State. Although I don’t expect this one to be quite as thrilling as the 44-37 double-overtime win for Northern Illinois last season, the return of running back Dri Archer for the Golden Flashes should make it interesting.
Here are the Power Rankings heading into Week 6:
1. Northern Illinois (4-0, 0-0)
After a dominant and historic win over Purdue, this is no surprise. The Huskies are rolling.
Next Game: at Kent State
2. Ball State (4-1, 2-0)
Beating division foe Toledo solidifies the Cards as my No. 2 in the conference.
Next Game: at Virginia
3. Bowling Green (4-1, 2-0)
It doesn’t get any better than two wins in two conference games for BGSU.
Next Game: vs. Massachusetts
4. Ohio (3-1, 0-0)
First conference game after three straight wins. Bobcats building momentum.
Next Game: at Akron
5. Toledo (2-3, 1-1)
Tough loss to Ball State, but all is not lost for the Rockets.
Next Game: vs. Western Michigan
6. Buffalo (2-2, 0-0)
A quiet 2-2 after a monster win over UConn. Watch out for the Bulls.
Next Game: vs. Eastern Michigan
7. Kent State (2-3, 1-1)
The return of Archer spells hope for the Golden Flashes.
Next Game: vs. Northern Illinois
8. Eastern Michigan (1-3, 0-1)
Coming off of a brutal stretch in the schedule, the Eagles might be able to settle down and win some games.
Next Game: at Buffalo
9. Central Michigan (1-4, 0-1)
The Chips are without their starting QB and RB, but hey, it could be worse (See teams No. 11-13).
Next Game: at Miami (Ohio)
10. Akron (1-4, 0-1)
A shocker at No. 10. The Zips are not going away and could be contender-crashers by the end of the season.
Next Game: vs. Ohio
11. Western Michigan (0-5, 0-1)
Not the start that head coach Fleck and the Broncos had hoped for, but the season isn’t over.
Next Game: at Toledo
12. Miami (Ohio) (0-4, 0-0)
Things are bad and not looking to improve any time soon in Miami. The Redhawks have been outscored, 157-35, this season.
Next Game: vs. Central Michigan
13. Massachusetts (0-4, 0-0)
The best thing for UMass is that there are no expectations and only one direction to go. It just might take a while.
Next Game: at Bowling Green