There was not much drama in deciding the top seeds in the MAC Tournament. Buffalo cruised through the conference schedule and finished at 15-3 with a two game lead atop the standings. The Bulls will be the favorites to win it all in Cleveland as a result.
Despite a season ending loss to Eastern Michigan, Toledo locked down the No. 2 seed in the conference tournament. Their 13-5 record kept them two games clear of third place. The Rockets lead the field of challengers looking to spoil Buffalo’s season.
How to Watch
First Round (March 5 @ Campus Sites); ESPN3
Game 1: No. 9 Bowling Green vs. No. 8 Central Michigan, 7 p.m. ET
Game 2: No. 12 Northern Illinois vs. No. 5 Kent State, 7 p.m. ET
Game 3: No. 10 Ohio vs. No. 7 Miami (OH), 7 p.m. ET
Game 4: No. 11 Akron vs. No. 6 Western Michigan, 7:45 p.m. ET
Quarterfinals (March 8); ESPN3
Game 5: Winner of Game 1 vs. No. 1 Buffalo, 12 p.m. ET
Game 6: Winner of Game 2 vs. No. 4 Ball State, 2:30 p.m. ET
Game 7: Winner of Game 3 vs. No. 2 Toledo, 6:30 p.m. ET
Game 8: Winner of Game 4 vs. No. 3 Eastern Michigan, 9 p.m. ET
Semifinals (March 9); CBS Sports
Game 9: Winner of Game 5 vs. Winner of Game 6, 6:30 p.m. ET
Game 10: Winner of Game 7 vs. Winner of Game 8, 9 p.m. ET
Championship (March 10); ESPN2
Winner of Game 9 vs. Winner of Game 10, 7 p.m. ET
Buffalo has been dominant for much of the season and there isn’t a reason to think that won’t continue into the conference tournament. The Bulls did slip up in a few road games to teams they probably should have beaten. But the good news for Buffalo is that they won’t have to play on the road again. I expect the Bulls to win this tournament.
Buffalo’s top competition appears to be second seeded Toledo. The two teams met only once to open up conference play. Buffalo secured the win at home that day, but much has changed since January 2nd. Maybe Toledo could make the adjustments necessary to win now.
However, Toledo would likely have to get by Eastern Michigan to get into the finals. The Eagles come into the tournament hot, having won six in a row. Among those six wins were two against Toledo, making Eastern Michigan a threat to reach the finals on their side of the bracket.