Mid-American Conference: What to watch for in Week 2

The Mid-American Conference largely struggled in week 1, going 4-8, missing out on numerous winnable opportunities against Power 5 opponents. All 12 teams are in action this week, starting with a Friday nationally televised game. Most games will be online with ESPN3.

Friday, September 8

Ohio at Purdue 8 pm FS1
Purdue is coming off a heartbreaking loss to Louisville, where it looked like Purdue might have had enough moxie to pull off the upset. They are going to want to take their frustrations out on Ohio, who defeated FCS school Hampton 59-0. Ohio is a run heavy offense but is going to need to utilize the passing game more to keep the stronger Purdue defense on their heels. Pick: Purdue

Saturday, September 9

Buffalo at Army 12 pm CBSS
Army had 0 passing yards in their first game. Zero. None. Buffalo knows what Army is all about and that is the running game. Ahmad Bradshaw absolutely tore apart Fordham last week and is expected to do the same against Buffalo, who lost 17-7 to Minnesota last week in a game that a better team would have won. Pick: Army

UAB at Ball State 3 pm ESPN3
UAB is the feel good story of the year, even before the season started. The Blazers are back and are on a mission to prove their relevance. They already won their first game back after the school cut the program in a controversial move. Ball State lost at Illinois last week in another missed opportunity for the MAC to pick up a Power 5 win. Pick: UAB

Eastern Michigan at Rutgers 3:30 pm BTN
EMU got a steady win over FBS newbie Charlotte last week and travel to New Jersey to play Rutgers in another MAC vs Power 5 matchup. Rutgers lost to a good Washington team last week and is looking to try to get this program back on track. Rutgers has largely struggled since joining the Big Ten. Pick: Rutgers

Western Michigan at Michigan State 3:30 pm BTN
This is the matchup of the week in the Mid-American Conference. Western Michigan played hard against ranked USC last week but came up short. Michigan State beat up on MAC member Bowling Green. Brian Lewerke was a one man wrecking crew and should carry the team again, but this is against much better competition. Pick: MSU

Eastern Illinois at Northern Illinois 3:30 pm ESPN3
Northern Illinois dropped the ball against Boston College at home. They get an opportunity to reset their season with an in-state FCS opponent. This is the type of matchup EIU players are salivating for, so NIU can expect a spirited game. Pick:
NIU

Howard at Kent State 3:30 pm ESPN3
This is not the matchup Kent State could have envisioned when the schedule came out. The Golden Flashes got blown out 56-3 to Clemson and now have to play Howard. Who is Howard? Howard is now known as the team who won last week against UNLV despite being a 45 point underdog. The Bison are led by Caylin Newton, brother of NFL quarterback Cam Newton. Pick: Howard

Austin Peay at Miami 3:30 pm ESPN3
Miami let one get away against former conference mate Marshall last week. Austin Peay already played an FBS school but fell to Cincinnati. Peay struggled on offense and gives Miami an opportunity to continue to air it out. Pick: Miami

Central Michigan at Kansas 4 pm FSN
Central Michigan needed 6 interceptions to beat FCS Rhode Island. Kansas’ Peyton Bender is a bit turnover prone, but he can throw for a lot of yards. CMU is going to need some of that magic to stay in this game. Pick: Kansas

South Dakota at Bowling Green 6 pm ESPN3
Bowling Green is coming off a loss at Michigan State and they host South Dakota, who is riding high after a 77-7 torching of Drake on the road. The Falcons were offensively challenged and could not get a running game established. The Falcons will have their hands full as South Dakota has proven very able to put up a lot of points. Pick: South Dakota

Arkansas Pine-Bluff at Akron 6:30 pm ESPN3
Akron was beaten badly last week by Penn State 52-0. One of the best teams to get that bad taste out is Arkansas Pine-Bluff, who is traditionally one of the worst teams in FCS year in and year out. Pine-Bluff did get a week 1 one by beating Division II Morehouse, but Akron could arguably repay the favor Penn State gave them. Pick: Akron

Toledo at Nevada 7 pm ESPN3
Toledo hits the road and goes west to face the Mountain West’s Nevada. Nevada lost against Northwestern and will be looking for someone to take out that frustration on. Toledo won easily against FCS Elon and should be able to continue their offensive onslaught. Pick: Toledo

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