In a conference where teams beat up on each other, MAC Basketball could go to form or be completely chaotic. Here is a preview of a potentially fun tournament.
This season the two divisions of MAC Basketball have been mirror images of each other record-wise. Both the East and West have a pair of teams that separated themselves from the rest, then there are three teams that spent the final week of the season jockeying for the best seed possible heading into the conference tournament, and a final team that finished a bit behind.
In the East, Bowling Green (21-10,12-6) was the best team in the division for most of the season but enters the tournament as the No. 2 seed after being overtaken by the Akron Zips (24-7,14-4) for the No. 1 seed in the tournament. Once the tournament field is set, the teams are seeded 1-12 independent of where they finished in the division.
So, despite losing the West division he final day, the Northern Illinois Huskies (18-13,11-7) will enter the tournament as the No. 4 seed. Defending champ Buffalo (20-11, 11-7) are the No. 5 seed. Teams that finished were sixth through eleventh were separated by a total of three games and Miami-Ohio (12-19, 5-13) finished in last and will be the No. 12 seed in the tournament.
All season long the Mid-American has done a bit of beating up on each other, leading to a large group of teams being bunched in the middle of the conference standings. But, that also means how things shake out in the postseason can be unpredictable. 12 teams will be vying for the league’s auto-bid and whoever survives the chaos in Cleveland will have earned it.