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Thursday, April 13, 2006

MAC football may finally get what it deserves: more recognition & more bowl games

The popular Mid-American Conference sports fan site, VanDelaySports.com, is reporting that the MAC may finally get a 3rd bowl tie-in this fall and possibly a 4th as well. Nick Gerogosian, the head man over at VanDelay Sports, is reporting that in a conversation with MAC Commish Rick Chryst he was told that ESPN is backing both bowl games which could match the MAC up with opponents from the Big East and Conference USA.

MAC football has long been underrated and this announcement should make fans of MAC schools very happy. Once a one-bowl league, the MAC is the home of the 1998 Miami RedHawks and the 2000 Toldeo Rockets. Both teams went 10-1 during those respective seasons without a bowl bid. Last year's "last team out" was the Northern Illinois Huskies, the Champions of the MAC West. NIU Head Coach Joe Novak led his team to a 7-4 record (6-2 MAC), finally beat their nemesis in Toledo, yet watched as the Rockets received a bid to the GMAC Bowl while the Huskies went on to a loss in the MAC Championship game to the up and coming Akron Zips. As a result, Novak & Company were left to sit at home in DeKalb while the Rockets and Zips went bowlin'. And let us not forget the Western Michigan Broncos or Miami RedHawks of 2005 either. WMU surprised many after an 0-2 start by running off 7 wins in their next 8 games and finished the season at 7-4. Meanwhile, Miami also started the season 0-2 and finsihed 7-4. Any one of these three teams could have represented the MAC respectfully in a bowl game in 2005.

So finally it seems as though the Mid-American Conference may have caught a break. Or is it that they're finally getting what they deserve? After years of being underrated and underappreciated, a 3rd bowl tie-in can be huge for the football programs in the MAC in terms of both fan support and recruiting. While MAC football recruits seem to be better every year according to VanDelay Sports, an additional opportunity for postseason national TV exposure and additional bowl payouts can only help the conference as a whole.

4 Comments:

  • At 4/14/2006, Blogger Hilltop 75 said…

    The bowl tie in's are great having
    3 bowls to go to are great. Now the MAC needs to get 3 teams in the NCAA Basketball each year.
    They need to add Western Kentucky in all sports and get Temple to commit to more than just Football
    That would bring you to 14.
    If you want to go to the 16 Team B UMASS and App State.

    MAC North
    Umass
    Buffalo
    Temple
    CMU
    EMU
    WMU
    Akron
    Kent State

    MAC SOUTH
    NIU
    Toledo
    BGSU
    Ohio
    Miami
    Ball State
    WKU
    APP State

     
  • At 4/17/2006, Blogger dwhit said…

    I'd be shocked if UMass was interested in leaving the A10 for the MAC. As a MAC fan I think this is the better conference, but I know many outsiders who would disagree with me.

    Also, I don't know how crazy the MAC would be about bringing in UMass from a travel perspective. Buffalo is a bad enough trip.

     
  • At 4/17/2006, Blogger Luke said…

    I do not see any reason why Appalachian State would benefit the MAC at all.

    I know that Southern Illinois was mentioned in the past as a strong possible MAC expansion school, but my guess is the emergence of the MVC this past year would remove any thought of them wanting to leave their b-ball affiliation with the MVC, and without their b-ball the MAC should not be interested. Of course the same could be said for Temple...

     
  • At 4/18/2006, Blogger dwhit said…

    I agree with Luke. I'm really not interested in seeing the MAC built into a super-conference of the mediocre.

     

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