Let’s see where the teams landed in this week’s MRO Power Rankings. Records are as of Monday (before this week’s action).
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2. Toledo Rockets (6-2, 3-1 MAC) – They did it again! UT stumbled at home, losing to Ohio, which had not won in Toledo since the 1960s. The Rockets are still a very talented bunch. They still need to beat Western at season’s end, but there is now even less margin for error.
3. Ohio Bobcats (6-3, 4-1 MAC) – It’s been quite a roller coaster for the ‘Cats this season. Beating UT at the Glass Bowl just makes that earlier loss to Eastern Michigan at home that much more of a head scratcher. In any case, last week’s carnage allowed OU to jump up three spots in this week’s rankings.
4. Central Michigan (5-4, 2-3 MAC) – Really, had there not been so many losses at the top, CMU might have dropped more than one spot. The Chips have lost two straight and still need a win for bowl eligibility. They hit the road this week to meet Miami, which knocked off Eastern Michigan last week as the Eagles were seeking their own “bowl eligibility” win.
5. Akron Zips (5-4, 3-2 MAC) – The Zips had one of the more disappointing performances last week. Akron has given up 41 points twice in the last three games – once to the No. 17 Western Michigan Broncos and once to the Not-So-No. 17 Buffalo Bulls. Okay, there is no “D” in either “Akron” or “Zips,” but UA is usually better than 41 points!
6. Eastern Michigan Eagles (5-4, 1-3 MAC) – The Eagles drop two slots after losing at home to Miami. They happened to catch the RedHawks on the upswing, but they better take care of that sixth win pretty soon.
7. Northern Illinois Huskies (2-6, 2-2 MAC) Anthony Maddie and Joel Bouagnon have the Huskies offense moving. The latter leads NIU in rushing yards with 510, but Maddie is averaging 6.8 ypc on 68 carries for 465 yards. Throw in Jordan Huff’s 65 trips for 432 yards (6.6 ypc) and it obvious that the Huskies have plenty of weapons for running the football.
8. Ball State Cardinals (4-4, 1-3 MAC) – If BSU is going to turn this thing around, it needs to turn off the turnovers.
9. Miami RedHawks (3-6, 3-2 MAC) – The RedHawks have won three straight since quarterback Gus Ragland moved into the lineup. He appears to be getting more comfortable and the RedHawks are getting healthier. Kenny Young has given MU big plays in each of the three wins. JT Jones is a leader on defense and earned MAC East Defensive Player of the Week honors after Miami’s win Saturday at Eastern Michigan.
10. Kent State Golden Flashes (3-6, 2-3 MAC) – KSU pulled off a dramatic win over Central Michigan last week. Kent State’s defense allows it to hang in there with a lot of teams, and the offense just keeps on grinding.
11. Buffalo (2-6, 1-3 MAC) – Pulling off the upset of Akron allowed UB to pull itself out of the 12th spot. It was an impressive performance. There’s some talent there, so opponents will need to properly prepare lest they end up a Bulls victim.
12. Bowling Green (1-7, 0-4 MAC) -- The Falcons have not won since Sept. 10. Defense and turnover issues have been two of the culprits in their slide.