It’s time for the next installment of the 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 bloggers’/teams’ perspective and better understand the issues facing other teams on a weekly basis. This week’s questions are from the MAC blog, Hustle Belt.

MAC Roundtable

Below the fold you’ll find the questions that were posed to us and our answers, so read on…

1. NIU’s win over Toledo has opened up the West where four teams are all within a game of the MAC West divisional lead. Do you think the parity of the West is better for the conference, or races like the East - where the winner was pretty much decided with three weeks to go - are better for the MAC?

As frustrating as it is, a race like the MAC West is better for the conference. The log jam keeps fans interested and gives everyone hope that their team will do what’s necessary to pull ahead. If the divisional race is decided week’s earlier, it’s less exciting for the fans (and players, we would imagine) to watch their teams compete down the stretch.

2. With the return of weeknight games comes the debate over their merits. Does the national TV exposure balance out the barren stands many teams around the MAC see for these evening games in November?

This is a complex issue. We love watching our team on national TV so the mid-week games give us that opportunity, but we hate the later-than-usual kickoffs and seeing the stands nearly empty. Mid-week games are difficult to attend for season ticket holders that may have work/family obligations and for students to attend who may have class or work/family obligations as well. The decreased ticket sales are off-set by the revenue from the TV contracts, but shots of the empty stands are broadcast to potential commits across the country and does not fairly represent the game day atmosphere that is present at most regularly scheduled (read: 7pm kickoff, Saturday) Toledo football games. All things being equal and from a pure fan perspective, we like our football games on Saturdays where they belong.

3. In case you missed it, Deadspin just ripped commissioner Jon Steinbrecher for his handling of questions about the MAC’s 13-year deal with ESPN. What are your initial thoughts on this article and the accompanying video with the interview referenced in the story?

Commissioner Steinbrecher should be able to discuss the details of the deal and provide clarification for the rational behind the decision and how it benefits the conference. As a representative of the conference, he should able to provide complete transparency into the negotiation process and why this deal is in the best interest of the conference and each of the member schools. Full disclosure is the only acceptable way to approach these questions.

4. Rank ‘em up

Toledo with a healthy QB on the roster would be higher, but here’s where we see things currently:

  • NIU
  • Toledo
  • BGSU
  • WMU
  • Ohio
  • CMU
  • Buffalo
  • UMass
  • Ball State
  • Akron
  • EMU
  • Miami
  • Kent State

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