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2008 MAC Schedule Breakdown
Kent State RB Eugene Jarvis
Kent State RB Eugene Jarvis
CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Mar 30, 2008


The MAC is loaded with experience and talent this year, so it all comes down so the schedules. Who's is toughest?

2008 MAC Team Schedule 

- 2008 SEC Composite Schedule & Top Games

Toughest schedules
Based on home games as well as who the teams play. when

East
1. Temple
2. Bowling Green
3. Kent State
4. Ohio
5. Buffalo
6. Miami Univ.

West
1. Ball State
2. Toledo
3. Central Michigan
4. Northern Illinois
5. Eastern Michigan
6. Western Michigan

East Division

Akron

Realistic best case record with this schedule: 8-4
Barring total disaster worst case record: 3-9
Realistic record: 6-6
 
It'll be an interesting tale of two seasons with two weeks off giving the Zips time from mid-October to early November to heal up. The final three games will make or break the East season playing Buffalo, at Ohio and at Temple, while the Bowling Green showdown is at home. In a strange and bizarre twist, the Zips don't play defending East champion Miami University. Playing Eastern Michigan from the West is a plus. The non-conference schedule isn't all that bad outside of the opener at Wisconsin. Syracuse and Army aren't going to be special, and the Cincinnati game is at home.

Aug. 30 at Wisconsin
Sept. 6 at Syracuse
Sept. 13 Ball State
Sept. 20 at Army
Sept. 27 Cincinnati
Oct. 4 at Kent State
Oct. 11 Bowling Green
Oct. 18 at Eastern Michigan
Oct. 25 OPEN DATE
Nov. 1 OPEN DATE
Nov. 5 Toledo
Nov. 13 Buffalo
Nov. 22 at Ohio
Nov. 28 at Temple

- Almost certain win
- Likely loss
- Could go either way


Bowling Green
Realistic best case record with this schedule: 8-4
Barring total disaster worst case record: 3-9
Realistic record: 7-5

The Falcons start out tough at Pitt, against Minnesota and at Boise State and Wyoming, but things ease up in a big way. The Miami University showdown is at home, while playing Eastern Michigan and Northern Illinois from the West is a huge bonus. Going to Ohio and Akron will likely make or break MAC title hopes, while a mid-November off week comes just before the finishing kick against Buffalo and at Toledo. Considering the early open date, the Falcons don't play two straight weeks on the road.

Aug. 30 at Pitt
Sept. 6 Minnesota
Sept. 13 at Boise State
Sept. 20 OPEN DATE
Sept. 27 at Wyoming
Oct. 4 Eastern Michigan
Oct. 11 at Akron
Oct. 18 Miami Univ.
Oct. 25 at Northern Illinois
Nov. 1 Kent State
Nov. 8 at Ohio
Nov. 15 OPEN DATE
Nov. 21 Buffalo
Nov. 28 at Toledo

- Almost certain win
- Likely loss
- Could go either way


Buffalo
Realistic best case record with this schedule: 8-4
Barring total disaster worst case record: 2-10
Realistic record: 5-7

The Bulls will know where they stand in MAC play right off the bat with a mid-September game against a veteran Temple team and a road trip to Central Michigan. Playing the Chippewas and Western Michigan from the West isn't a plus, but getting Miami University at home is nice. UTEP is a bit off the wall for an opener, but it's at UB while non-conference road games at Pitt and Missouri have to be seen as tune ups for the conference season. There's a nice stretch of three weeks in October without going on the road, but back-to-back November away dates at Akron and Bowling Green might ruin any dreams of a huge year.

Aug. 28 UTEP
Sept. 6 at Pitt
Sept. 13 Temple
Sept. 20 at Missouri
Sept. 27 at Central Michigan
Oct. 4 OPEN DATE
Oct. 11 Western Michigan
Oct. 18 Army
Oct. 28 at Ohio
Nov. 4 Miami Univ.
Nov. 8 OPEN DATE
Nov. 13 at Akron
Nov. 21 at Bowling Green
Nov. 28 Kent State
 
- Almost certain win
- Likely loss
- Could go either way


Kent State
Realistic best case record with this schedule: 8-4
Barring total disaster worst case record: 3-9
Realistic record: 5-7

Forget about the first two weeks of the season against Boston College and at Iowa State. It's all about a key five-week stretch starting with Delaware State and ending with Ohio that will set the tone for the year before what should be a desperately needed week off. And then comes the defining point of the season with back-to-back road games against Miami University and Bowling Green before another off week. In past years getting Temple and Buffalo in November would be a plus, but that might not be the case this season wrapped around a date with Northern Illinois.

Aug. 30 Boston College
Sept. 6 at Iowa State
Sept. 13 Delaware State
Sept. 20 at UL Lafayette
Sept. 27 at Ball State
Oct. 4 Akron
Oct. 11 Ohio
Oct. 18 OPEN DATE
Oct. 25 at Miami Univ.
Nov. 1 at Bowling Green
Nov. 8 OPEN DATE
Nov. 12 Temple
Nov. 18 Northern Illinois
Nov. 28 at Buffalo

- Almost certain win
- Likely loss
- Could go either way


Miami University
Realistic best case record with this schedule: 9-3
Barring total disaster worst case record: 3-9
Realistic record: 6-6

MU gets six home games for the first time in its history starting off with Vanderbilt and finishing with Ohio in what could be the game for the East title. A non-conference snoozer against Charleston Southern is forgivable considering the other three non-MAC dates are against BCS teams including road trips to Michigan and Cincinnati. Missing Akron from the East is odd while getting a strong Ball State team in Oxford is a good break. Unfortunately, going to Northern Illinois and Toledo from the West will make a sixth East title in seven years tough. The key will surviving a mid-season stretch of three road trips in four weeks.

Aug. 28 Vanderbilt
Sept. 6 at Michigan
Sept. 13 Charleston Southern
Sept. 20 at Cincinnati
Sept. 27 OPEN DATE
Oct. 4 Temple
Oct. 11 at Northern Illinois
Oct. 18 at Bowling Green
Oct. 25 Kent State
Nov. 4 at Buffalo
Nov. 11 Ball State
Nov. 15 OPEN DATE
Nov. 21 at Toledo
Nov. 28 Ohio

- Almost certain win
- Likely loss
- Could go either way


Ohio
Realistic best case record with this schedule: 8-4
Barring total disaster worst case record: 3-9
Realistic record: 5-7

It's a strange schedule with a three-game October road trip to Western Michigan, Kent State and Temple wrapped around VMI and Buffalo. Getting through the first chunk of the season will be tough with six road games in the first eight. Two off weeks in November will be a huge help wrapped around a key date against Bowling Green, but playing Central Michigan and at Western Michigan from the West is as tough as it gets. The non-conference slate isn't too nasty considering two of the road dates are at Northwestern and Wyoming, but the Ohio State game won't help the team's confidence.  

Aug. 30 at Wyoming
Sept. 6 at Ohio State
Sept. 13 Central Michigan
Sept. 20 at Northwestern 
Sept. 27 VMI
Oct. 4 at Western Michigan
Oct. 11 at Kent State
Oct. 21 at Temple
Oct. 28 Buffalo
Nov. 1 OPEN DATE
Nov. 8 Bowling Green
Nov. 15 OPEN DATE
Nov. 22 Akron
Nov. 28 at Miami Univ.

- Almost certain win
- Likely loss
- Could go either way


Temple
Realistic best case record with this schedule: 7-5
Barring total disaster worst case record: 2-10
Realistic record: 5-7

Because of all the returning experience, this should be the best Temple team, by far, in several years, but the schedule won't provide any help with seven road games in the first ten including a lamb for the slaughter date at Penn State and back-to-back trips to face 2007 MAC title game combatants Miami University and Central Michigan. Winning the MAC home dates will be a must against Western Michigan, Ohio, Eastern Michigan and Akron. Closing out the regular season with the Eagles and Zips should help.

Aug. 29 at Army
Sept. 6 Connecticut
Sept. 13 at Buffalo
Sept. 20 at Penn State
Sept. 27 Western Michigan
Oct. 4 at Miami Univ.
Oct. 11 at Central Michigan
Oct. 21 Ohio
Oct. 25 OPEN DATE
Nov. 1 at Navy
Nov. 8 OPEN DATE
Nov. 12 at Kent State
Nov. 22 Eastern Michigan
Nov. 29 Akron

- Almost certain win
- Likely loss
- Could go either way


Western Division

Ball State

Realistic best case record with this schedule: 9-3
Barring total disaster worst case record: 3-9
Realistic record: 7-5

The Cardinals have the rare MAC non-conference schedule that's completely winnable. Consider it a major disappointment if they can't beat Northeastern, Navy and at Western Kentucky, and with a high-powered passing game, there's a puncher's chance of winning at Indiana. The MAC slate is brutal with games against, arguably, the league's three best teams (outside of BSU): Toledo, Miami and Central Michigan. Oh yeah, and all three games are on the road with the battles with the RedHawks and Chippewas coming in back-to-back weeks in November. On the plus side there are two off weeks in the middle of the season to refresh and rejuvenate before the nasty finishing kick.

Aug. 28 Northeastern
Sept. 5 Navy 
Sept. 13 at Akron
Sept. 20 at Indiana
Sept. 27 Kent State
Oct. 4 at Toledo
Oct. 11 at Western Kentucky
Oct. 18 OPEN DATE
Oct. 25 Eastern Michigan
Nov. 1 OPEN DATE
Nov. 5 Northern Illinois
Nov. 11 at Miami Univ.
Nov. 19 at Central Michigan
Nov. 25 Western Michigan

- Almost certain win
- Likely loss
- Could go either way


Central Michigan
Realistic best case record with this schedule: 9-3
Barring total disaster worst case record: 5-7
Realistic record: 7-5

The two-time defending MAC champion will get some big chances to see just how good it really is early on. As if dealing with a good Ohio team on the road on September 6th wasn't enough, that's sandwiched in between road trips to Georgia and Purdue. If that wasn't enough for a non-conference schedule, there's a trip to Indiana to kick off November. On the flip side, the conference schedule couldn't be too much better with Western Michigan, Ball State and Northern Illinois coming to Mount Pleasant to offset a tough West date against Toledo.

Aug. 28 Eastern Illinois
Sept. 6 at Georgia
Sept. 13 at Ohio
Sept. 20 at Purdue
Sept. 27 Buffalo
Oct. 4 OPEN DATE
Oct. 11 Temple
Oct. 18 Western Michigan
Oct. 25 at Toledo
Nov. 1 at Indiana
Nov. 8 OPEN DATE
Nov. 12 Northern Illinois
Nov. 19 Ball State
Nov. 28 at Eastern Michigan

- Almost certain win
- Likely loss
- Could go either way


Eastern Michigan
Realistic best case record with this schedule: 7-5
Barring total disaster worst case record: 2-10
Realistic record: 4-8

The non-conference games at Michigan State and Maryland will be too tall an order for the Eagles, but Indiana State and at Army are manageable. Playing five road games in six after September would be tough for anyone, but there's a little bit of a break getting two weeks off between the trip to Western Michigan and the date at Temple. Going to Bowling Green, Ball State and WMU means EMU has to pull off home upsets against Toledo and Central Michigan to have any real dreams of a winning season.

Aug. 28 Indiana State
Sept. 6 at Michigan State
Sept. 13 Toledo
Sept. 20 at Maryland
Sept. 27 Northern Illinois
Oct. 4 at Bowling Green
Oct. 11 at Army
Oct. 18 Akron
Oct. 25 at Ball State
Nov. 1 at Western Michigan
Nov. 8 OPEN DATE
Nov. 15 OPEN DATE
Nov. 22 at Temple
Nov. 28 Central Michigan

- Almost certain win
- Likely loss
- Could go either way


Northern Illinois
Realistic best case record with this schedule: 8-4
Barring total disaster worst case record: 3-9
Realistic record: 5-7

The new era of NIU football starts out with four road trips in the first five games, highlighted by a key West date at Western Michigan, and then comes the meat of the MAC season. Battling league powers Miami University, Toledo and Bowling Green before going to Ball State would be hard enough, and then there's the date against Central Michigan. Win four of those five and the West title is possible. Win three of them and a bowl dream is still alive. The conference slate ends in mid-November with an off week before finishing with Navy.

Aug. 30 at Minnesota
Sept. 6 at Western Michigan
Sept. 13 OPEN DATE
Sept. 20 Indiana State
Sept. 27 at Eastern Michigan
Oct. 4 at Tennessee
Oct. 11 Miami Univ.
Oct. 18 Toledo
Oct. 25 Bowling Green
Nov. 5 at Ball State
Nov. 12 Central Michigan
Nov. 18 at Kent State
Nov. 22 OPEN DATE
Nov. 25 Navy

- Almost certain win
- Likely loss
- Could go either way


Toledo
Realistic best case record with this schedule: 9-3
Barring total disaster worst case record: 4-8
Realistic record: 7-5

With one of the toughest MAC non-conference schedules (at Arizona, Fresno State and at Michigan to go along with a layup against FIU), the Rockets have an uphill battle. And then there's the problem of four road trips in five games and only one off week the entire year after starting the season on September 6th instead of August 30th. The MAC road trips against Eastern Michigan, Northern Illinois, Western Michigan and Akron aren't awful, and getting Bal State, Central Michigan, Miami and Bowling Green at home is a major plus. Win those four and split the road games and the West title is possible.

Aug. 30 OPEN DATE
Sept. 6 at Arizona
Sept. 13 at Eastern Michigan
Sept. 20 Fresno State
Sept. 27 FIU
Oct. 4 Ball State
Oct. 11 at Michigan
Oct. 18 at Northern Illinois
Oct. 25 Central Michigan
Nov. 1 at Western Michigan
Nov. 8 OPEN DATE
Nov. 11 at Akron
Nov. 20 Miami Univ.
Nov. 28 Bowling Green

- Almost certain win
- Likely loss
- Could go either way


Western Michigan
Realistic best case record with this schedule: 9-3
Barring total disaster worst case record: 4-8
Realistic record: 7-5

It's not all that bad considering there's only one span of back-to-back road trips (at Buffalo and at Central Michigan in mid-October), and while there's a stretch of three road games in four weeks, it's followed up by an off-week. The key will be getting off to a hot start with a tough November to deal with. The final month begins with what should be the easiest MAC game of WMU's season, Eastern Michigan, before playing Illinois in Detroit, hosting Toledo, and finishing up with a trip to Ball State after another off-week. The battle with the Illini and the opening day trip to Nebraska will be tough, but the other two non-conference games at Idaho and at home against Tennessee Tech are almost certain wins.


Aug. 30 at Nebraska
Sept. 6 Northern Illinois
Sept. 13 at Idaho
Sept. 20 Tennessee Tech
Sept. 27 at Temple
Oct. 4 Ohio
Oct. 11 at Buffalo
Oct. 18 at Central Michigan
Oct. 25 OPEN DATE
Nov. 1 Eastern Michigan
Nov. 8 Illinois (Detroit)
Nov. 15 Toledo
Nov. 22 OPEN DATE
Nov. 25 at Ball State

- Almost certain win
- Likely loss
- Could go either way