Though the league’s regular season schedule continues into Friday, the only #MACtion that counts is mid-weeknight #MACtion and it wraps up tonight. While Akron is playing for its second MAC East championship, everyone else is in a different situation.
At Bowling Green, Mike Jinks is wrapping up his second season with a second straight empty December. A Falcons program that went 18-9 with two MAC East titles and one MAC championship in two seasons under Dino Babers has slipped to 6-17 under Jinks. Jinks had no college head coach or coordinator experience before he was hired away from Texas Tech, but Bowling Green chose him as a continuance of Babers’s offensive expertise. An offense that ranked sixth nationally in scoring as recently as 2015 has slipped to 92nd this fall.
Bowling Green competes against Eastern Michigan and head coach Chris Creighton. Creighton is just 4-7 this season after going 7-6 with a Bahamas Bowl appearance a year ago. However, considering Eastern Michigan had all of one all-time bowl appearance before last season, Creighton has rock-solid support in Ypsilanti.
As Akron looks to wrap up the MAC East, Kent State is wrapping up its fifth straight bowl-less season. Kent State has long been a MAC bottom-feeder — Darrell Hazell was hired away to Purdue after producing the program’s only bowl trip in 40 years after the 2012 season — but the program hasn’t progressed under Paul Haynes. Haynes is a Kent State alum and former Flashes assistant, but he’s 14-44 in five seasons and would need an upset of Akron to complete his third straight 3-9 campaign.
The final MAC game of the night is the conclusion of the season for both Ball State and Miami (Ohio). The Cardinals are just 2-9 after going 4-8 last season — they went 3-9 in Pete Lembo’s final season — but Mike Neu is an alum, and it would be a surprise if Ball State did not give him a third season.
Chuck Martin wraps up his fourth season at Miami (Ohio) and has mostly struggled during his time in Oxford. He carried a 5-25 mark as RedHawks head coach until a surprise 6-game winning streak took the program into the St. Petersburg Bowl, a 1-point loss to Mississippi State. The program did not carry its 2016 momentum into 2017, though, slipping to a 4-7 mark heading into Tuesday night.
It’s going to be one of the busiest weeks of the year in college football, starting with what shapes up to be an impactful #MACtion finale.