This week is the ninth installment of MAC Blogger Roundtable. Each week one MAC blog posses questions to the other blogs and gathers the answers into a digest post. This gives us a chance to get the skinny from many different blogger’s/team’s perspective and better understand the issues facing other teams on a weekly basis. This week’s questions are from the MAC blog, Hustle Belt.
Below the fold you’ll find the questions that were posed to us and our answers, so read on…
1. It’s rivalry week with Bowling Green taking on Toledo and Miami taking on Ohio. What is the best rivalry in your opinion in the MAC and why?
The best rivalry in the MAC is the Battle of I-75 between Toledo and BGSU. With few exceptions, both programs have been consistently good throughout their history. While Ohio and Miami have had some really good seasons, they have also fallen prey to some dreadful years as well. The Toledo vs BGSUcks rivalry matches up two schools, separated by just 25 miles, that genuinely dislike one another and is, by far, the top rivalry in the MAC.
2. NIU has opened up in the 18 spot in the last-first BCS standings, albeit behind Fresno State. If both teams manage to win out, should both teams bust the BCS or just one of them and which one? (put aside the MAC bias for a moment)
At this point, neither team has played an opponent that is generally perceived as a strong team. NIU beat Iowa and Purdue but those teams are a combined 5-9. NIU won’t be tested again until the end of the season against Ball State and possibly Toledo. Fresno’s most prominent win is against a 5-2 Boise State team. If both teams can remain healthy and are undefeated at the end of the season, we think the BCS game could go to Fresno instead of NIU, but if either team gets an invite, we’d be surprised.
3. What has been your biggest surprise/storyline thus far this season and why?
Up to the Navy game, the biggest story line for Toledo has been that our spread offense has featured a very strong and productive running game. Fluellen’s contributions to the effort to this point in the season cannot be overstated. He’s put the offense on his back, at times, and run with it. He has also made his presence known by adding a bevy of receptions along the way. During the Navy game, the story shifted to injuries. First, we saw Fluellen go down, then Russell, then Voss. In the end, Russell was able to return to the game but Fluellen’s injury may keep him from the BG game and Voss will lose the rest of the season with a broken arm. If Fluellen cannot return immediately, the question will be whether the Rockets can survive without their most potent weapon and if the receiving corp and young backs can pick up the slack.