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2010 Nick’s Picks – MAC Preview & Review (Week #13)

 

MAC & Team Notes:

  • Northern Illinois clinched the West Division title on Saturday with a 59-21 win at Ball State. This will mark the Huskies first visit to the MAC Football Championship game since 2005.
  • Ohio and Miami are tied for first place in East Division with 6-1 conference records. Ohio can clinch with either an Ohio win or Miami loss. Miami can clinch with a Miami win and an Ohio loss. Miami hosts Temple on Tue., Nov. 23 at 7 pm ET (ESPN2) and Ohio travels to Kent State on Fri., Nov. 26 at 11 am ET (ESPNU).
  • Three MAC games on national television this week. Temple at Miami on Tue., Nov. 23 at 7 pm ET (ESPN2); Ohio at Kent State on Fri., Nov. 26 at 11 am ET (ESPNU) and Central Michigan at Toledo on Fri., Nov. 26 at 2 pm ET (ESPN3.com).
  • Northern Illinois is on the verge of cracking the Top 25 in several national polls. The Huskies received 72 points in the AP Top 25 Poll, 67 points in the USA Today Coaches Poll and 94 votes in the Harris Poll.
  • Miami has won six more game this season than last year for the most improved team in college football; Miami is already bowl eligible and are tied for first place in the MAC East Division following a 19-14 win at Akron to improve to 7-4 overall. Last season, the RedHawks finished 1-11 in Mike Haywood’s first year as head coach.

 

Player Notes:

  • Ohio RB Vince Davidson had an extremely impressive game against Temple’s stingy defensive front in Ohio’s 31-23 win in Philadelphia. The Dayton, N.J. native piled up 100 yards and two touchdowns on 16 carries (6.2 per carry)
  • EMU’s Dwayne Priest scored all three Eastern Michigan touchdowns and rushed for a career-high 192 yards on 35 carries in a 21-17 win at Buffalo
  • Northern Illinois QB Chandler Harnish completed 15-of-22 passing for 247 yards and two touchdowns in a 59-21 win at Ball State; Harnish added 21 yards on the ground on eight carries
  • Miami RB Thomas Merriweather posted a career-high 141 yards rushing and one touchdown in a 19-14 win at Akron; it marked his second 100-yard rushing performance this season
  • Western Michigan RB Brian Fields rushed 13 times for a career high 132 yards and one touchdown in a 38-3 win over Kent State; Fields added a career-long 74 yard run in the first half
  • Toledo RB Adonis Thomas had a career night with 24 carries for 163 yards and one touchdown in a 33-14 win over Bowling Green. Thomas had a career-long 81 yard touchdown run and topped the century mark for the third time this season; Thomas finished with 235 yards of total offense
  • Temple WR Michael Campbell hauled in a career-high 11 receptions for 137 yards and two touchdowns in a 31-23 loss to Ohio. It marked the fourth 100-yard game of his career
  • Akron RB Alex Allen added his second consecutive 100-yard performance with 134 yards and one touchdown in a 19-14 loss to Miami

 

 

 

This Week’s MAC Schedule

 

Tuesday, November 23

Temple at Miami, 7:00 pm ET (ESPN2/ESPN2 HD)

 

Friday, November 26

Ohio at Kent State, 11:00 am ET (ESPNU/ESPNU HD)

Northern Illinois at Eastern Michigan, Noon ET (All MACcess)

Central Michigan at Toledo, 2:00 pm ET (ESPN3.com)

Western Michigan at Bowling Green, 2:00 pm ET (BCSN/All MACcess)

Buffalo at Akron, 2:00 pm ET (SportsTime Ohio/ESPN3.com)


Nick’s Picks for Week #13

 

Temple (8-3, 5-2 MAC) at Miami (7-4, 6-1 MAC)

Tuesday, November 23, 2010 • 7:00 pm ET • Oxford, Ohio • Yager Stadium (24,286)

ESPN2

Notes:

Temple is aiming for its second consecutive nine win season for the first time in program history...Temple ranks 13th in the nation in total defense (309.45 ypg), 14th in scoring defense (18.73 ppg) and 15th in pass defense (180.27 ypg)...DT Muhammad Wilkerson is tied for 16th in the country with 8.5 sacks. Redshirt freshman Austin Boucher made his first career start at quarterback for Miami last week at Akron, replacing injured starter Zac Dysert (lacerated spleen)...RB Thomas Merriweather responded with a career high

141 yards rushing in win at Akron... Miami ranks 13th in the nation in time of possession (32:14).

Nick’s Pick: Temple 24 – Miami 21

Comment: Expect a tightly fought game with a lot of quality defensive plays in this contest. Overtime is a possibility too.

 

 

Central Michigan (3-8, 2-5 MAC) at Toledo (7-4, 6-1 MAC)

Friday, November 26, 2010 • 2:00 pm ET • Toledo, Ohio • Glass Bowl (26,248)

ESPN3.com

Series: Central Michigan leads 18-17-3

Notes:

Chippewas QB Ryan Radcliff ranks eighth in the nation in passing yards per game (276.0 ypg), eighth in total passing yards (3,036) and 12th in completions per game (23.09 cpg)... Central Michigan ranks 16th in the country in pass offense (280.55 ypg). Toledo WR Eric Page ranks eighth in the nation in receptions per game (7.45 rpg), 19th in total receiving yards (954) and 20th in receiving yards per game (86.7 ypg)...Rockets LB Archie Donald ranks eighth in the country with 121 total tackles (11.0 tpg)...Toledo leads the MAC with a +11 turnover differential.

Nick’s Pick: Toledo 36 – Central 23

Comment: Toledo has a nice shot at finishing 8-4 and becoming an attractive team for a lower-tiered bowl.

 

 

Ohio (8-3, 6-1 MAC) at Kent State (4-7, 3-4 MAC)

Friday, November 26, 2010 • 11 am ET • Kent, Ohio • Dix Stadium (25,000)

ESPNU

Series: Ohio leads 38-22-2

Notes:

The Bobcats have won seven consecutive games...Ohio has won eight consecutive road conference games dating back to last season...Bobcats rank 13th in the nation in rush defense (112.73 ypg)...Jumped out to a 17-10 lead at the half last week at Temple, program is 22-7 when leading at the half under Frank Solich. Kent State ranks eighth in the nation in rush defense (101.45 ypg) and 18th in total defense (317.91 ypg)...DT Roosevelt Nix ranks tied for 16th in the country in sacks (8.5), tied for sixth in tackles for loss (18.5) and tied for tenth in forced fumbles (4)...DB Norman Wolfe ranks tied for 14th in the nation with five interceptions.

Nick’s Pick: Ohio 31 – Kent State 17

Comment: The Bobcats are on their way to another bowl under Solich while this will be the last game for Coach Doug Martin at KSU.

 


 

 

Northern Illinois (9-2, 7-0 MAC) at Eastern Michigan (2-9, 2-5 MAC)

Friday, November 26, 2010 • Noon ET • Ypsilanti, Mich. • Rynearson Stadium (30,200)

All MACcess Web Streaming via www.mac-sports.com

Series: Northern Illinois leads 24-14-2

Notes:

RB Chad Spann ranks 18th in the nation in rushing (104.6 ypg) and tied for eighth in scoring (18 TDs, 9.82 ppg)...QB Chandler Harnish ranks 20th in the country in passing efficiency (152.77)...Huskies rank 11th in the nation in rush offense (255.09 ypg) and 19th in scoring offense (36.36 ppg). Eastern’s RB Dwayne Priest rushed for a career-high 192 yards and three touchdowns in last weeks 21-17 win at Buffalo...Priest ranks second in the MAC in rushing yards per game (82.1 ypg)...Eagles rank third in the MAC in rush offense (175.5 ypg) and fifth in total offense (349.2 ypg).

Nick’s Pick: NIU 45 – Eastern 20

Comment: Eastern continues to improve but the Huskies are on a mission to be nationally ranked by season’s end.

 

 

Buffalo (2-9, 1-6 MAC) at Akron (0-11, 0-7 MAC)

Friday, November 26, 2010 • 2:00 pm ET • Akron, Ohio • InfoCision Stadium Summa Field (30,000)

SportsTime Ohio/ESPN3.com • Announcers: Matt Underwood, Frank Stams

Series: Akron leads 8-3

Notes:

Buffalo’s Domonic Cook ranks tied for fifth in the country in interceptions (6) and 16th in passes defended (12)...DB Davonte Shannon is two tackles shy of the school record for career tackles...Buffalo ranks second in the MAC in pass defense (180.4 ypg) and fifth in total defense (341.8 ypg). Akron RB Alex Allen had his second consecutive 100-yard rushing performance with 134 yards vs. Miami...Akron defense blocked its second field goal attempt of the year vs. the RedHawks...LB Brian Wagner ranks 15th in the nation with 116 total tackles.

Nick’s Pick: Akron 19 – Buffalo 17

Comment: The Bulls are very disappointing this season; most experts figured this team could win five games. Akron is trying to avoid a 0-12 season.

 

 

Western Michigan (5-6, 4-3 MAC) at Bowling Green (2-9, 1-6 MAC)

Friday, November 26, 2010 • 2:00 pm ET • Bowling Green, Ohio • Doyt L. Perry Stadium (24,000); BCSN • All MACcess web streaming via www.mac-sports.com

Series: Bowling Green leads 31-15-3

Notes:

Western Michigan rushed for a season-high 259 yards in last week’s 38-3 win over Kent State...In the win, freshmen running backs Brian Fields rushed for 132 yards and Tevin Drake added 102 yards and became the first two runners to top the century mark against Kent State this season. BGSU’s Eugene Cooper’s 71-yard punt return last week at Toledo marked his second punt return for a touchdown this season, and became

the first player in program history to accomplish this feat...Cooper also ranks 20th in the nation in punt return average (11.56 avg.)...WR Kamar Jorden ranks fourth in the nation in receptions per game (8.0 rpg).

Nick’s Pick: Western 35 – BGSU 21

Comment: The Broncos have an outside shot for a bowl bid if they can become bowl eligible this weekend…the Falcons are one or two years away from making some noise.

 

> Buy Kent State apparel & merchandise online through VanDelay Sports!

Nick’s Picks went 4-2 last week and now stand 76- 22 YTD

Nick’s Pick: Temple 27 – Ohio 17

Actual Score: Ohio 31 - Temple 23

Comment: Bobcats beat the Owls for what will likely be the divisional title game for the second straight year.

 

Nick’s Pick: Miami 34 – Akron 16

Actual Score: Miami 19 - Akron 14

Comment: Injuries to Miami’s starting QB is the only reason why this contest was close.

 

Nick’s Pick: Toledo 38 – BGSU 23

Actual Score: Toledo 33 – BGSU 14

Comment: Rockets avenge three straight years of losing to their most bitter rival.

 

Nick’s Pick: NIU 44 – Ball State 27

Actual Score: NIU 59 - Ball State 21

Comment: The Huskies are proving they are a top-25 team.

 

Nick’s Pick: Buffalo 23 – Eastern 21

Actual Score: Eastern Michigan 21 - Buffalo 17

Comment: Kudos to the Eagles for getting their second win on the season.

 

Nick’s Pick: Western 36 – Kent State 27

Actual Score: Western Michigan 38 – Kent State 3

Comment: Turnovers killed the Golden Flashes – again.

 

 

> Buy Akron apparel & hats online through VanDelay Sports!

 

 

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