Take a look around you. Not here in Columbus, but just a little bit farther. It’s right down 33 in Athens. It’s right up I-71 in Kent. It’s in Toledo, Miami and Bowling Green.
It’s MAC football, and it’s without a doubt the best college football in the country outside of the BCS conferences. And this year it might be better football then some of the BCS conferences (look at the Big Ten).
Eric Adelson of Yahoo! reminds us that you don't have to look to hard to find a former MAC guy on an NFL roster. As of two months ago there were 84 on NFL rosters and 15 played in Super Bowl 46. And you know the names. Ben Roethlisberger, Antonio Gates (who didn't even play football at Kent), Greg Jennings, James Harrison, Josh Cribbs, Lance Moore, Michael Turner, and the list goes on.
Currently the SEC has seven bowl eligible teams to lead all D-I conferences. The MAC is next with six and four of those schools are here in Ohio. The overall strength-of-schedule argument doesn't need to be discussed. That's obvious. But Frank Solich had Ohio ranked for the first time since 1968 and he opened his season with a win at Penn State. The Nittany Lions were on a five game winning streak before losing to Ohio State last week. Kent State just knocked off a ranked Rutgers team. Toledo recently beat a ranked Cincinnati team. And Northern Illinois beat Kansas and only lost to Iowa by one point in the season opener at Soldier Field. The MAC has four teams with just one loss (Kent State, Ohio, Northern Illinois, Toledo). Naturally it creates a bigger gap between the top of the conference and the bottom, but it's evident that half-a-dozen of these teams can hang with most BCS programs.
We've even seen a MAC coach come out this week and utter the words "Heisman candidate" about one of his players. NIU coach Dave Doeren was referring to his QB Jordan Lynch. In reality he's not going to have a seat in NYC but his numbers aren't anything to sneeze out. He's the Braxton Miller that nobody pays attention to. He leads the nation with 3,169 yards of total offense and 32 total touchdowns. He's second in the nation in rushing yards with 1,185. And he has the record for QBs with seven straight 100-yard rushing days.
No, the MAC isn't EVER going to win bragging rights over the SEC or some of the other big boys (Not talking . But you should wear your MAC colors with pride.