The Kent State Golden Flashes haven’t turned their luck around since the last power rankings. In the past two weeks, the Flashes have gone 0-3. They have yet to pull off a conference win or to get their third win of the season. There isn’t much hope for the Flashes to recover during the rest of this season.
#11 Northern Illinois (#10 in last ranking)
The Huskies are in much the same situation as Kent State. In the last power rankings they were ranked at No. 10 for having five wins in the season. Since those rankings, they haven’t won a single game and are now sitting at 0-7 in conference play. Their luck doesn’t look like it will improve soon either. Northern Illinois has yet to play Kent or Ohio, which gives them some chance to bump up in the rankings; however, they are not by any means in championship contention.
#10 Ohio (#8 in last ranking)
Teams that were previously ranked higher continue to slide as Ohio moves from No. 8 to No. 10. In two weeks they have lost to the top three teams. Although their 0-7 conference standing isn’t pretty, there is more hope for Ohio than Kent and NIU to improve their season. Ohio is recruiting strongly and will likely improve in the years to come, but as of the 2012-2013 season, it doesn’t look very promising for the Bobcats.
#9 Western Michigan (#11 in last ranking)
Simply put, the Western Michigan Broncos have not improved since the last time we evaluated them; they do not stand out statistically in almost any ranking. They were able to overcome Akron several weeks ago, but they also lost to Northern Illinois.
#8 Eastern Michigan (#9 in last ranking)
The Falcons are currently sitting at 3-5 in MAC play, and are four games behind all other teams in the MAC West division. Since the last rankings, Eastern Michigan has been able to pull off two conference victories against Kent State and Northern Illinois. These victories are enough to cement EMU at the No. 8 spot, but if they aren’t able to defe t top ranked opponents soon, they will not likely be in the running for the conference championship.
#7 Buffalo (#6 in last ranking)
In the last ranking, I mentioned that Buffalo’s fate in these power rankings rests in the games against Miami, Akron and Bowling Green. Buffalo defeated Miami while losing to Akron and has yet to play Bowling Green. Thus, Buffalo still stands a good chance to move up in the remaining weeks and has moved only one spot back. The Bulls still do not stand out in any major statistical area, making it difficult to believe they are serious contenders for the championship unless they can overcome some more of the top contenders in the regular season.
#6 Bowling Green (#4 in last ranking)
Bowling Green probably had the best win of all MAC teams; They knocked off Central Michigan, giving them their first MAC loss. The unfortunate thing for the Falcons is that they lost to the Akron Zips in a close game last Thursday. In all practicality, BGSU is probably tied with Akron when it comes to championship potential, but Akron beating the Falcons last week gives them a slight edge.
#5 Akron (#2 in the last ranking)
Though Akron still ranks rather high in overall scoring offense (first) and field goal percentage (second), the Zips have fallen considerably in the past couple weeks. Since the last rankings where the Zips’ 12-4 start awarded them the No. 2 rank overall, the Lady Zips have gone 1-3 in MAC match-ups, losing to top-ranked Central Michigan and Toledo, and losing to bottom-ranked Western Michigan. The losing streak ended with a surprising win over Bowling Green, which also prevented them from plummeting further in the power rankings. The Zips still have considerable talent – senior guard Taylor Ruper and junior forward Sina King are still ranked near the top of many MAC statistics. To move up in the rankings, Akron will need to prove themselves in the upcoming weeks when they take on Ball State and Miami.
#4 Miami (#5 in last ranking)
The Miami Redhawks are currently leading the MAC East Division. They are ahead of Akron by only one game, and are scheduled to face the Zips twice before the end of the season. The Redhawks, of any team in the MAC, have the greatest potential to move up and down. If Miami hopes to keep their championship dreams alive, they’re going to have to play tough basketball in the next couple of weeks.
#3 Ball State (#7 in last ranking)
Ball State is the school that improved the most in these rankings. Most MAC teams improved (at most) one or two spots, but Ball State has shocked the conference by winning four straight games since the last rankings. This week will be do or die for the Redhawks as they will face No. 1 Central Michigan.
#2 Toledo (#3 in the last ranking)
Toledo has further solidified their case as to why they deserve to be viewed as legitimate MAC championship contenders. Since the last rankings, Toledo has defeated every conference opponent except Central Michigan. However Toledo has a difficult schedule ahead of them, facing Ball State and Miami in the next week.
#1 Central Michigan (#1 in last ranking)
The Lady Chippewas have yet to lose to a MAC opponent. Central Michigan has already defeated two of the other top teams (Akron and Toledo) and looks to continue that success against Ball State this weekend. With the immense talent that Central Michigan has on both the offensive and defensive sides of the ball, the Chippewas are the obvious favorite for MAC champion this season.