MAC Men's Basketball Daily (3-2-12)
MAC Men's Basketball Daily - Friday, March 2
Akron (20-10, 12-3 MAC) at Kent State (20-9, 10-5 MAC)
7 p.m. • Kent State leads series 69-64
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•Kent State closes out the regular season at home against Akron as one of the biggest rivalries in the Mid-American Conference is once again brought to the national spotlight. The Golden Flashes have already secured a bye into the upcoming MAC Tournament quarterfinals, their 13th 20 win season in the last 14 years and a 14th consecutive year with at least 10 league wins. Kent State will be honoring seniors Justin Greene, Michael Porrini, Carlton Guyton and Justin Manns who will be playing in their final home game looking to give the program an undefeated MAC home record for just the fourth time in school history (1990, 2002, 2008)...Akron has lost two straight following a 74-70 set back to Buffalo on Wednesday. The Zips can clinch the MAC regular season outright with a win. Akron can tie the 2006-07 and the 1997-98 squads for the second-most wins in MAC play in program history (13). Both seasons also mark Akron’s only two MAC East titles.Zeke Marshall leads eight players averaging at least six points with a team high 10.2 ppg.
Ohio (23-7, 10-5 MAC) at Miami (9-19, 5-10 MAC)
7 p.m. • Ohio leads series 97-91
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• The Bobcats are currently one game behind Buffalo for the No. 2 seed, which also serves as a bye to the MAC Tournament semifinals. Ohio is tied with Kent State and currently holds the tie-breaker against the Golden Flashes. Bowling Green and MAC West Division champion Eastern Michigan are each one game behind the ‘Cats. Ohio has reached the 20-win mark for the 13th time in program history and second time under current Head Coach John Groce.D.J. Cooper is now two assists shy of breaking the Ohio all-time mark which has stood since 1990 (Dennis Whitaker, 651). The junior already owns Ohio’s top two single-season marks (263 in 10-11, 218 in 2009-10)...In addition to averaging league-leading 16.9 ppg and 9.1 rpg in a league-most 37.3 minutes per game, Julian Mavunga is also helping to get his teammates shots, averaging 4.3 assists per game in MAC play, which ranks eighth among league leaders.One of the hottest hands as of late for the RedHawks has been sophomore forward Jon Harris. He has gone 21-of-32 from 3-point range in the RedHawks’ last seven games, as sizzling 65.6 percent accuracy from long range.
Western Michigan (12-18, 6-9 MAC) at Central Michigan (9-20, 4-11 MAC)
7 p.m. • Western Michigan leads series 89-50
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•Central Michigan will look to send its seniors out with the Michigan MAC Trophy on Friday night when the Chippewas host the rival Western Michigan Broncos in the regular season finale. Tipoff in McGuirk Arena is set for 7 p.m. The winner of the game will earn the 2012 Michigan MAC Trophy, a traveling award that the three in-state Mid-American Conference schools compete for each year in both football and men’s and women’s basketball. A Chippewa victory would give CMU a 3-1 record against WMU and Eastern Michigan this season while a WMU win would cause a three-way tie as each team would be 2-2 against the group. In the event of a tie, the award remains with the previous holder until one of the other rivals claims the title outright. Western Michigan currently holds the trophy and would retain it with a victory over CMU. he Broncos won the earlier meeting this season in Kalamazoo, 64-61. CMU had the final possession but was unable to hit a game-tying 3-pointer. Regardless of the outcome of this game, the Broncos will host a first round game in the MAC Tournament on Monday; their opponent will be either Ball State or Miami, dependent upon the outcome of this weekend’s games