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The BG News
BG24 Newscast
November 30, 2023

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Around the MAC: A recap of MAC football in week four


Buffalo running back Jaret Patterson rushes the ball in a game against Bowling Green on Tuesday, Nov. 17 at Doyt L. Perry Stadium. 

MACtion continued to roll forward in week four, with all games being played on Friday and Saturday. Buffalo and Western Michigan are the conference’s only two remaining unbeaten teams, and control their own destiny for getting to the MAC Championship game in December.

Ball State 27, Toledo 24

With Caleb Huntley out due to injury, the Cardinals found a way to win over the Rockets and move to 3-1 on the season. Toledo fell to 2-2 with the loss. Ball State Quarterback Drew Plitt threw for over 300 yards and accounted for three touchdowns (2 passing, 1 rushing) to lead the Cardinal attack which saw wide receivers Yo’Heinz Tyler and Justin Hall combine for 15 catches for over 200 yards and a pair of scores. Toledo got a valiant effort out of their quarterback Eli Peters, throwing for 363 yards and two touchdowns but struggled to get anything going on the ground, with the usually-dependable junior running back Bryant Koback getting just 33 yards on 13 carries.

Northern Illinois 27, Western Michigan 30

The Huskies (0-4) nearly pulled off the major upset over the undefeated Broncos (4-0). Northern Illinois got it done by leaning on quarterback Ross Bowers, who is starting to grow as a passer in the MAC accounting for 230 yards and three touchdowns through the air. Wide Receiver Tyrice Ritchie continued his monster receiving pace as well, nabbing 12 catches for 131 yards and a score. Quarterback Kaleb Eleby only completed 12 passes for the Broncos but managed 210 yards and two total touchdowns. Wide Receiver D’Wayne Eskridge continued his monster season, with seven catches for 134 yards while also running for 27 yards and a kick-return score.

Bowling Green 10, Ohio 52

Ohio running back De’Montre Tuggle ran for 185 yards and three touchdowns, as the now 2-1 Bobcats routed the 0-4 Falcons in Athens. Bowling Green continues to be one of the worst defensive units in the country, as they allowed 45 first half points in a game that was never close. Running back Andrew Clair ran the ball 15 times for 118 yards for the Falcons, who struggled mightily through the air as their signal caller Matt McDonald threw three picks. Wide Receiver Ryan Luehrman caught two touchdowns as well for Ohio.

Kent State 41, Buffalo 70

It was all Bulls running back Jaret Patterson today, and that was the end of it for the Golden Flashes who fell to 3-1 with the loss. Patterson ran for an astounding 409 yards on 36 carries and eight, count them eight, touchdowns. Patterson has made himself the clear best player in the conference, and should receive plenty of NFL draft buzz come this spring. That is also not to take away from the Bulls other big rusher, as Kevin Marks reached the end zone twice and nearly ran for 100 yards himself. Quarterback Dustin Crum and the Golden Flashes offense were good all day, and accounted for nearly 600 total yards with Crum accounting for over 400 of those yards by himself and Isaiah McKoy and Ja’Shaun Poke having big days receiving. In the end, the defense wasn’t enough for Kent State as Buffalo moved to 4-0 and took the clear first-place lead in the MAC East with two games to go.

Miami 38, Akron 7

Miami got their star quarterback Brett Gabbert back Saturday after missing the team’s last game against Buffalo with injury, and it showed how dangerous the RedHawks are at full strength as they moved to 2-1 with the victory. Gabbery was 18 of 27 passing for 308 yards and four touchdowns, and he hooked up on all four touchdowns with his wide receiver Jack Sorenson who put up a stat line of eight receptions for 177 yards and four touchdowns on a day where Miami really struggled to run the ball. But it did not matter, as behind Gabbert, Sorenson and a defense that allowed four, yes four, rushing yards to the Zips who fell to 0-4 with the loss. Akron quarterback Zach Gibson had a decent game in a contest filled with an Akron beatdown, throwing for 141 yards and a score.

Central Michigan 31, Eastern Michigan 23

Central Michigan moved to 3-1 after completing a wild fourth quarter comeback to down the Eagles who fell to 0-4. Central Michigan lost their starting quarterback, Daniel Richardson, who was carted off in the third quarter, but his backup Ty Brock provided a steady hand for the Chippewas. Running back Lew Nichols ran for 196 yards on 29 carries and two touchdowns while his backfield mate Kobe Lewis ran for 106 yards on 18 carries and a touchdown to lead a dominant Chippewas running attack. Eastern Michigan quarterback Preston Hutchinson threw for 365 yards, and added in two rushing touchdowns, but he threw three interceptions, one of them late in the fourth quarter which proved costly for the Eagles.

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