The Mid-American Conference Tournament starts next week and the final three rounds will be held at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland. So, here’s where every team in the conference stands headed into the last week of play by seedings.
Records only reflect conference play.
No. 1 Buffalo (14-2)
Buffalo has been at the top of the MAC since the start of the season. As of Monday, the Bulls are back inside the top-20 of the AP poll. With an experienced team led by possible MAC Player of the Year C.J. Massinburg and Naismith College Coach of the Year late year candidate Nate Oats, Buffalo is the clear favorite to storm through Cleveland.
No. 2 Bowling Green (12-4)
Coach Michael Huger has made the Falcons the story of the season. After being in the basement of the MAC for the past few years, Huger’s recruiting has finally kicked in and has made Bowling Green a threat to the Bulls’ throne.
No. 3 Toledo (11-5)
Yet again, the Rockets have positioned themselves to be in the mix for a MAC Championship. Coach Tod Kowalczyk has Toledo currently on a three-game winning streak at just the right time. Nate Navigato is averaging 12.4 points per game and is a threat from beyond the arc.
No. 4 Central Michigan (9-7)
While the Chippewas have had one of their better seasons, they’ve still yet to lock up a first-round bye straight to Cleveland. Central Michigan will have to pick up wins against Northern Illinois and at Western Michigan this week.
No. 5 Kent State (9-7)
The senior duo of Jaylin Walker and Jalen Avery has set the Golden Flashes up for success in this second half of the season. With the possibility of still grabbing a first-round bye, Kent State still has a lot to play for.
No. 6 Eastern Michigan (8-8)
For what has seemed like a mediocre year, the Eagles have slipped into a top-6 position and could cause trouble in Cleveland. With three players averaging in double digits and coming off a win at Northern Illinois, Eastern Michigan is picking up steam when it needs it most.
No. 7 Miami (7-9)
After a slow start to the season, the RedHawks have picked up momentum, one of the turning points being a win at home in the “Battle of the Bricks.” If coach Jack Owens can get his athletic team to play well at the right time, the RedHawks are talented enough to hang with every team in the conference.
No. 8 Akron (7-9)
After a strong start to MAC play, the Zips were ripped at The JAR this past Saturday by Ohio. Coach John Groce will have to get his team right before the conference tournament to make sure they’re not forced to hit the road in the first round.
No. 9 Northern Illinois (6-10)
After a promising home win against Buffalo, the Huskies have seem to hit a bump in the road. Eugene German was suspended for a game last month, and Northern Illinois will not finish over .500 for the third straight year.
No. 10 Ball State (6-10)
With a talented senior class the Cardinals were supposed to finish in the top half of the league. Now, they’ll have to win both games this week to try and secure a home game in the first round. The veteran leaders they have on the roster make it a possibility for a final push down the stretch.
No. 11 Ohio (5-11)
Ohio’s begun to pick up steam entering its last two weeks of play, winning two of its last three games. The shooting has started to click and the defense, which has been strong all season, is showing signs of growth. For the first time since the new year, the Bobcats are looking like a team others don’t want to play.
No. 12 Western Michigan (2-14)
The Broncos have locked up the bottom spot in the MAC and will play the No. 5 seed in the first round on the road.