Media selects Northern Illinois to win MAC again
DETROIT -- The Mid-American Conference's annual Football Media Day started Tuesday with the announcement of the results of the league's preseason media poll, and the consensus of the 25 voters is that Northern Illinois will win its third straight MAC title.
The Huskies received 16 first-place votes in the West Division and 14 to win the title game to be played at Ford Field. Ohio got 15 first-place votes and finished 10 total voting points ahead of Bowling Green in the East Division voting.
Toledo got five first-place votes and was picked second in the West, ahead of Ball State (3 first-place votes) and Central Michigan (1). Western Michigan was picked fifth and Eastern Michigan sixth.
Third-place Kent State and fourth-place Buffalo each got one first-place vote in the East. Miami-Ohio was voted fifth, Akron sixth and UMass seventh.
Toledo and Ohio each received three votes to win the MAC title. Bowling Green and Ball State each got two, and Central Michigan got one.
Northern Illinois defeated Kent State in last year's title game and became the first MAC team ever to play in a BCS game when it was picked for the Orange Bowl. Under first-year head coach Rod Carey, NIU will again be led by senior quarterback Jordan Lynch, who rushed for 1,815 yards and 19 rushing touchdowns and threw for 3,138 yards and 25 touchdowns last season.
Seven MAC teams played in bowl games last season.