Mid-American Conference football rundown: Week 7

<p>As the 12 Mid-American Conference football programs move through their respected 2017-18 campaigns, The Daily News will give a recap and preview every week, running through the teams' previous opponents and looking ahead to the following week. <strong>MAC, Photo Provided</strong></p>

As the 12 Mid-American Conference football programs move through their respected 2017-18 campaigns, The Daily News will give a recap and preview every week, running through the teams' previous opponents and looking ahead to the following week. MAC, Photo Provided

MAC Standings

East Division

Akron – 4-3 (3-0 MAC)
Ohio – 5-2 (2-1 MAC)
Buffalo – 3-4 (1-2 MAC)
Kent State – 2-5 (1-2 MAC) 
Bowling Green – 1-6 (1-2 MAC)
Miami – 2-5 (1-2 MAC)

West Division

Toledo – 5-1 (2-0 MAC)
Northern Illinois – 4-2 (2-0 MAC)
Western Michigan – 4-3 (2-1 MAC)
Central Michigan – 3-4 (1-2 MAC)
Ball State – 2-4 (0-2 MAC) 
Eastern Michigan – 2-4 (0-2 MAC)

Each week throughout the football season, The Daily News runs through the Mid-American Conference, recapping the previous week and looking ahead to this week’s games.

As several Mid-American Conference teams began the second half of the 2017-18 college football season, three teams still have unbeaten conference records while five teams are above the .500 season mark.

Akron leads the East Division, winning three straight games within the conference while Toledo and Northern Illinois round out the top two spots in the West Division. 

Here’s the MAC Rundown for week seven of the college football season: 

Akron Zips 

Season record: 4-3, 3-0 MAC   
Week 7 matchup: Western Michigan (W, 14-13)
Week 8 matchup: Toledo (5-1, 2-0 MAC)

After the road test was pushed back to due a torrential downpour, Akron remained in Kalamazoo, Michigan, until Sunday to beat Western Michigan. Going into halftime, the Zips were up 14-3 and nearly gave up their lead by giving up 10 fourth-quarter points.

Akron remains one of three teams with perfect conference records, but it will be playing another perfect MAC team in Toledo this weekend. As of publication, Toledo is coined as 15 points favorites, averaging more than 484 yards per game on offense up to this point.

Ball State 

Season record: 2-4, 0-2 MAC
Week 7 matchup: Bye Week
Week 8 matchup: Central Michigan (3-4, 1-2 MAC)

Ball State has a bye week in week seven of the regular season.

Health remains the question for Ball State as it plays host to Central Michigan on Homecoming. While there's no official word on the status of junior quarterback Riley Neal, the freshman offensive combination of running back Caleb Huntley and wide receiver Justin Hall have been the catalyst of the Cardinals offense in recent weeks.

Bowling Green 

Season record: 1-6, 1-2 MAC   
Week 7 matchup: Ohio (L, 48-30)
Week 8 matchup: Northern Illinois (4-2, 2-0 MAC)

Offense wasn't the problem for Bowling Green against Ohio this week, as the offense put up 421 total yards. It was the four turnovers, however, that led to the Falcons' sixth loss of the season.

This week, Bowling Green hosts Northern Illinois, one of the three remaining teams with a perfect conference record. Bowling Green's defense – which gives up 515 yards per game – will need to step up if it hopes to stop Northern Illinois. 


Season record: 3-4, 1-2 MAC   
Week 7 matchup: Northern Illinois (L, 14-13)
Week 8 matchup: Miami (2-5, 1-2 MAC)

Buffalo suffered another tight loss this weekend against Northern Illinois. Kicker Adam Mitcheson hit a 22-yard field goal late in the first half to bring the score to 14-13 in favor of Northern Illinois, but those would be the last points of the game, despite Buffalo making it into Northern Illinois' red zone in the fourth quarter.

Buffalo has lost two straight games after winning three in a row earlier this season. Buffalo will get another chance to pick up its second conference win this weekend against Miami.

Central Michigan 

Season record: 3-4, 1-2 MAC   
Week 7 matchup: Toledo (W, 30-10)
Week 8 matchup: Ball State (2-4, 0-2 MAC)

It took to until the end of the third quarter for Central Michigan to find its first points of the game, kicking a 23-yard field goal. By the games end, Toledo had 399 yards of offense compared to Central Michigan's 244.

Central Michigan travels to take on Ball State, which is on a three game losing streak, in week eight. On paper, the two teams appear to be even, but Central Michigan will need to step up its offensive performance if it wants to win.

Eastern Michigan 

Season record: 2-4, 1-3 MAC   
Week 7 matchup: Army (L, 28-27)
Week 8 matchup: Western Michigan (4-3, 2-1 MAC)

After starting off 2-0 this season, Eastern Michigan has suffered four straight losses, all of which came by less than a single score. This week's loss came by way of a one-point defeat from Army.

Eastern Michigan takes on in-state rival Western Michigan this week in what should turn out to be a competitive game. The Eagles host the visiting Broncos, who lost its first game in five weeks against Akron.

Kent State 

Season record: 2-5, 1-2 MAC   
Week 7 matchup: Miami (W, 17-14)
Week 8 matchup: Ohio (5-2, 2-1 MAC)

Kent State won its first conference game of the season, mounting a two-touchdown rally in the third quarter in order to pull off the win. George Bollas, Kent State backup quarterback, came into the game in the third quarter, which seemingly sparked the Golden Flash offense.

This week, however, Kent State enters as heavy underdogs against an Ohio team that has only lost one out of its last five games this season. The Bobcats offense has average more than 414 yards per game this season while putting up nearly 40 points per game.

Miami (Ohio) 

Season record: 2-5, 1-2 MAC    
Week 7 matchup: Kent State (L, 17-14)
Week 8 matchup: Buffalo (3-4, 1-2 MAC)

After putting up 14 second-quarter points, Miami was unable to hold off Kent State, who went on to score 14 unanswered points for its first conference win of the season. The dagger ended up being an 84-yard touchdown reception from Mike Carrigan last in the third quarter.

On paper, Buffalo and Miami appear to be two similar teams in terms of offensive and defensive production. With identical conference records up to this point, it may come down to whether or not Miami can feed off its home crowd.

Northern Illinois 

Season record: 4-2, 2-0 MAC   
Week 7 matchup: Buffalo (W, 14-13)
Week 8 matchup: Bowling Green (1-6, 1-2 MAC)

Northern Illinois survived a tight win against Buffalo this week in a game where it did not score any second half points. The Huskies held off the Bulls from a few late game drives to win its second conference game of the season.

Northern Illinois will travel to face Bowling Green this weekend. As of publication, Northern Illinois is dubbed as 13-point favorites, winning both of it conference games this season. Going up against a defense that gives up 515 yards per game, Northern Illinois will look to take advantage.


Season record: 5-2, 2-1 MAC    
Week 7 matchup: Bowling Green (W, 48-30)
Week 8 matchup: Kent State (2-5, 1-2 MAC)

It was the Nathan Rourke show Saturday against Bowling Green. The sophomore quarterback picked up his third straight 100-plus yard rushing game, picking up three rushing and one passing touchdown in the dominating win.

Ohio will look to feed off its 18-point win in week seven as it hosts Kent State this weekend. One win away from bowl eligibility, the Bobcats will continue to rely on its prolific offense to try and secure another win this week.


Season record: 5-1, 2-0 MAC    
Week 7 matchup: Central Michigan (W, 30-10)
Week 8 matchup: Akron (4-3, 3-0 MAC)

From the beginning of the game, Toledo dominated Central Michigan, putting up 17 first half points along with a pair of fourth quarter touchdowns to win. Logan Woodside only passed for 89 yards and no touchdowns, in part of the heavy rain that hit many Midwest states.

This week, Toledo hosts an Akron team that is on a three game win streak in the MAC. Akron is also just one of three undefeated conference teams, along with Toledo. While the Rockets are favored in this game, the Zips have proven to be dangerous against conference teams this season.

Western Michigan 

Season record: 4-3, 2-1 MAC    
Week 7 matchup: Akron (L, 14-13)
Week 8 matchup: Eastern Michigan (2-4, 0-2 MAC)

It's not often that one sees a MAC game on a Sunday, but that's exactly what happened when Western Michigan took on Akron due to the field flooding a day before. After going down 14-0 early, the Broncos attempted to bounce back, coming within one point in its eventual first conference loss of the season.

Western Michigan is on the road this week to take on in-state opponent Eastern Michigan. While the Eagles are on a four game losing streak, they have played tight games all season, never losing by more than seven points.


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