THIS WEEKEND: A key Conference USA matchup opens Week 6 on Friday night as Southern Miss (3-2, 1-0 C-USA) travels to Marshall (4-1, 1-0 C-USA), where the Herd has won 17 of their last 18 games at home. The other five C-USA games, including four league contests, are on Saturday. The 65th meeting of rivals 100 miles apart will be renewed as Middle Tennessee (2-3, 1-0 C-USA) heads to WKU (4-1, 2-0 C-USA) for a key East Division game. Louisiana Tech (3-2, 1-1 C-USA) plays at UTSA (1-4, 1-0 C-USA) in a West Division tilt. Rice (2-3, 1-1 C-USA) is at Florida Atlantic (1-3, 1-0 C-USA) and UTEP (2-3, 0-1 C-USA) is at FIU (2-3, 0-1 C-USA). In the only non-conference game, Portland State is at North Texas (0-4, 0-2 C-USA ).
All six games in the MAC are conference contests on Saturday, including a pair of rivalry games as Central Michigan (2-3, 1-0 MAC) is at Western Michigan (1-3) in the 86th “Battle for the Cannon” and Miami (1-4, 0-1 MAC) goes to Ohio (4-1, 1-0 MAC) for the 92nd “Battle of the Bricks”. No. 24 Toledo (4-0, 1-0 MAC), which broke into the AP Top 25 this week, hosts Kent State (2-3, 1-0 MAC). The other three games has UMass (1-3) at Bowling Green (3-2, 1-0 MAC), Akron (2-3, 0-1 MAC) travels to Eastern Michigan (1-4, 0-1 MAC) and Ball State (2-3, 1-1 MAC) is at Northern Illinois (2-3, 0-1 MAC).
POLLING PLACE: Toledo entered the Associated Press Top 25 at No. 24 and the undefeated Rockets (4-0) are also receiving votes in the USA Today Coaches’ Top 25 poll this week.
FALCONS TANDEM LEAD NATION: The Bowling Green passing offense ranks second in FBS with 418.6 passing yards per game. Sophomore WR Roger Lewis leads the nation in receiving yards with 760 in five games while senior QB Matt Johnson leads the nation in total passing yards with 2,084.
TOP DOG: Louisiana Tech senior RB Kenneth Dixon has scored a touchdown in 33 of 41 career games (five shy of Tim Tebow’s NCAA record), while he needs just seven rushing yards for 4,000 career. He also climbed up the NCAA record books to fifth in career TDs (69) and 10th in career rushing TDs (59).
MAC PILING UP BIG WINS: With one non-conference game remaining, the MAC has 12 FBS wins vs. non-conference opponents (four vs. Power Five schools), the third most for the MAC since 2000.
C-USA vs. MAC: The six-game 2015 regular-season set of games between Conference USA and the MAC ended in a 3-3 tie as UMass defeated FIU 24-14 last Saturday.
CONFERENCE USA/MAC STANDINGS
#PASSPORTTOKICKOFF: #PassportToKickoff is not only our hashtag, but a reminder that all U.S. citizens must have a valid passport to travel to the Bahamas & the Popeyes Bahamas Bowl. For passport info: passports.state.gov.
WEEK 6 SCHEDULE
Friday, October 9
* Southern Miss at Marshall (CBSSN)
Saturday, October 10
* UTEP at FIU (ASN)
* Middle Tennessee at WKU (FSN)
* Rice at Florida Atlantic (FCS)
Portland State at North Texas (C-USADN)
* Louisiana Tech at UTSA (ASN)
Saturday, October 10
* Central Michigan at Western Michigan (ASN/ESPN3)
* Miami at Ohio (BCSN/TWSC/ESPN3)
* UMass at Bowling Green (ESPN3)
* Akron at Eastern Michigan (ESPN3)
* Kent State at Toledo (ESPN3)
* Ball State at Northern Illinois (ESPN3)
* – conference games
(TV/digital network in parentheses)
ASN – American Sports Network
CBSSN – CBS Sports Network
C-USADN – C-USA Digital Network (online)
ESPN3 – ESPN3.com (online)
FCS – Fox College Sports
FSN – Fox Sports Net
TWSC – Time Warner SportsChannel
WEEK 5 RESULTS
Friday, October 2
Temple 37, Charlotte 3
Saturday, October 3
UMass 24, FIU 14
* Marshall 27, OId Dominion 7
* WKU 49, Rice 10
Louisiana Tech 43, Louisiana-Lafayette 14
Vanderbilt 17, Middle Tennessee 13
* Southern Miss 49, North Texas 14
* UTSA 25, UTEP 6
Saturday, October 3
* Ohio 14, Akron 12
* Central Michigan 29, Northern Illinois 19
* Toledo 24, Ball State 10
* Bowling Green 28, Buffalo 22
* Kent State 20, Miami 14
UMass 24, FIU 14
No. 8 LSU 44, Eastern Michigan 22
* – conference games
WEEK 5 INDIVIDUAL HONORS
QB Nick Mullens, Southern Miss: The junior completed 27 of 36 passes for 325 yards, four TDs and rushed for another score in a 49-14 win over North Texas for C-USA Offensive Player of the Week honors.
S Michael Egwuagu, UTSA: The junior returned an interception for a TD, scored on a lateral and had eight tackles in a 25-6 win at UTEP for C-USA Defensive Player of the Week honors.
K Jonathan Barnes, Louisiana Tech: The sophomore scored 11 points, including a 50-yard field goal in a 43-14 win over Louisiana-Lafayette for C-USA Special Teams Player of the Week recognition.
WR Roger Lewis, Bowling Green: The sophomore caught 10 passes for 201 yards and a TD in a 28-22 win at Buffalo for MAC East Division Offensive Player of the Week honors.
LB Quentin Poling, Ohio: The sophomore had 11 tackles (two for loss), a sack and an interception in a 14-12 win at Akron for MAC East Division Defensive Player of the Week honors.
K Robert Stein, Akron: The senior scored all 12 points, including four field goals in a loss to Ohio for MAC East Division Special Teams Player of the Week honors.
RB Terry Swanson, Toledo: The sophomore rushed 24 times for 139 yards in a 24-10 win at Ball State for MAC West Division Offensive Player of the Week honors.
LB Tim Hamilton, Central Michigan: The senior had 11 tackles (one for loss), an interception and a fumble recovery in a 29-19 win over Northern Illinois for MAC West Division Defensive Player of the Week honors.
K Brian Eavey, Central Michigan: The junior kicked three field goals in a 29-19 win over Northern Illinois for MAC West Division Special Teams Player of the Week honors.
“POWER FIVE” VICTORIES
A list of Conference USA and MAC victories over “Power Five” opponents (teams from the ACC, Big Ten, Big XII, Pac-12 and SEC)
C-USA/MAC Team vs. Opponent — Score
Sept. 3: WKU (C-USA) vs. Vanderbilt (SEC) — 14-12
Sept. 6: Marshall (C-USA) vs. Purdue (Big Ten)– 41-31
Sept. 12: Bowling Green (MAC) vs. Maryland (Big Ten) — 48-27
Sept. 12: Toledo (MAC) vs. No. 18 Arkansas (SEC) — 16-12
Sept. 19: Toledo (MAC) vs. Iowa State (Big XII) — 30-23 (2 OT)
Sept. 26: Bowling Green (MAC)vs. Purdue (Big Ten) — 35-28
FROM SATURDAYS TO SUNDAYS
During the NFL’s 2015 Kickoff Weekend, both Conference USA and MAC were well-represented on rosters (active, practice squad or injured reserve) across the 32 teams. C-USA had 79 players on NFL rosters (Louisiana Tech led with 11), while the MAC had 78 players among the current 13 institutions (Toledo – 12).
POPEYES BAHAMAS BOWL MEDIA PROJECTIONS
Media Organization (Reporter) – Date: C-USA vs. MAC Matchup
USA Today (Erick Smith) – Oct. 7: Louisiana Tech vs. Bowling Green
10thYearSeniors.com (John Marc Nutt) – Oct. 5: Middle Tennessee vs. Bowling Green
The Sporting News (Bill Bender) – Oct. 5: UTSA vs. Northern Illinois
CollegeFootballNews.com (Pete Fiutak) – Oct. 5: Marshall vs. Northern Illinois
Bleacher Report (Bryan Fischer) – Oct. 5: WKU vs. Bowling Green
ESPN.com (Brett McMurphy) – Oct. 4: Marshall vs. Ball State
ESPN.com (Mark Schlabach) – Oct. 4: Middle Tennessee vs. Northern Illinois
SB Nation (Jason Kirk) – Oct. 4: Old Dominion vs. Ohio
CBSSports.com (Jerry Palm) – Oct. 4: Middle Tennessee vs. Bowling Green
Orlando Sentinel (Brant Parsons) – Oct. 1: FIU vs. Bowling Green
SI.com (Zac Ellis) – Sept. 1: Rice vs. Western Michigan
FOXSports.com (Stuart Mandel) – Aug. 25: Middle Tennessee vs. Western Michigan
Phil Steele Magazine (Phil Steele) – July 20: WKU vs. Western Michigan
Athlon Sports (Steven Lassan) – July 7: Middle Tennessee vs. Northern Illinois
Associated Press (Ralph Russo) – June 9: Middle Tennesse vs. Ball State
Each week in 2015, the Popeyes Bahamas Bowl will spotlight an alumni player from each of our partner conferences, Conference USA and the MAC.
BRETT FAVRE (SOUTHERN MISS)
Former star NFL quarterback Brett Favre played his college career at Southern Miss from 1987-90.
Favre started as a 17-year-old freshman, and he became one of the school’s all-time greats. He led the Golden Eagles to 29 victories including road wins over Alabama, Auburn and Florida State during his career.
He ranks second at Southern Miss in passing yards (7,695), is tied for second in touchdown passes (52) and is second in total offensive yards (7,606). He had five 300-yard passing games and five three-TD games, while his 7,695 regular-season pass yards ranked him among the top 30 of all-time NCAA passers.
Favre was the MVP of the 1990 All-American Bowl in a loss to North Carolina State, and he was also named MVP of the 1991 East-West Shrine Game.
He was a second-round pick in the 1991 NFL Draft by the Atlanta Falcons and was traded to Green Bay before the 1992 season.
Favre played 16 seasons from 1992-2007 with the Packers. He was a three-time consecutive Associated Press NFL Most Valuable Player (1995-97), a three-time All-Pro, an 11-time Pro Bowl participant and he led the Packers to the Super Bowl XXXI title.
He holds NFL records for completions (6,300), pass attempts (10,169) and passing yards (71,838). His 508 passing touchdowns, a NFL record at the time of his 2010 retirement, is now second in league history. He also holds the NFL mark for consecutive starts with 297 in the regular season (321 including playoffs).
He finished his career with one season (2008) with the New York Jets and two years (2009-10) with the Minnesota Vikings.
POPEYES BAHAMAS BOWL PARTICIPANT SELECTION
The highest-ranked conference champion by the College Football Playoff Selection Committee from the American Athletic, Conference USA, Mid-American, Mountain West or Sun Belt will play annually in one of the College Football Playoff bowls (VIZIO Fiesta and Chick-fil-A Peach bowls for the 2015 season) if it is not selected for the Playoff Semifinals.
C-USA has 2015 tie-ins with the Popeyes Bahamas, Arizona, Gildan New Mexico, Miami Beach, R&L Carriers New Orleans, St. Petersburg and Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas bowls, with a secondary tie-in with the Camping World Independence Bowl (if either the ACC or the SEC does not have enough eligible teams). There is no set selection order among C-USA’s bowl partners
The GoDaddy Bowl has first choice of a MAC bowl-eligible team, and the remainder of the selections will follow, with no set selection order among the MAC’s bowl partners. The MAC has 2015 tie-ins with Popeyes Bahamas, Boca Raton, Famous Idaho Potato, GoDaddy and Raycom Media Camellia bowls, with secondary tie-ins with the San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl (if Army is not bowl eligible), various ESPN owned-and-operated bowls and the Quick Lane Bowl (if either ACC or Big Ten does not have enough eligible teams).
The 2015 Popeyes Bahamas Bowl participants will be announced Sunday, December 6.
ESPN Events, a division of ESPN, owns and operates a large portfolio of collegiate sporting events worldwide. The roster includes three Labor Day weekend college football games; 13 college bowl games, 10 college basketball events and two college award shows, which accounts for approximately 250-plus hours of programming, reaches almost 64 million viewers and attracts over 700,000 attendees each year. With satellite offices in Boca Raton, Boise, Birmingham, Dallas-Fort Worth, Albuquerque, St. Petersburg and Las Vegas, ESPN Events builds relationships with conferences, schools and local communities, as well as providing unique experiences for teams and fans.
ESPN Events also manages the Big 12 Corporate Partner Program.
AdvoCare Texas Kickoff (Houston); AdvoCare V100 Texas Bowl (Houston); Birmingham Bowl (Alabama); Celebration Bowl (Atlanta); Famous Idaho Potato Bowl (Boise); Gildan New Mexico Bowl (Albuquerque); Hawai’i Bowl (Honolulu); Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl (Dallas-Fort Worth); Marmot Boca Raton Bowl (Florida); MEAC/SWAC Challenge presented by Disney (Orlando, Fla.); Orlando Kickoff (Florida); Popeyes Bahamas Bowl (Nassau); Raycom Media Camellia Bowl (Montgomery, Ala.); Royal Purple Las Vegas Bowl (Nevada); St. Petersburg Bowl (Florida); The Home Depot College Football Awards (Atlanta) and Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl (Dallas-Fort Worth)
AdvoCare Invitational (Walt Disney World Resort near Orlando, Fla.); Armed Forces Classic (Marine Corps Base Camp Smedley D. Butler, Okinawa, Japan); DIRECTV Wooden Legacy (Orange County, Calif.); College Basketball Awards Presented by Wendy’s (Los Angeles); Gildan Charleston Classic (South Carolina); Hawaiian Airlines Diamond Head Classic (Honolulu); Jimmy V Men’s Classic Presented by Corona (New York City); Jimmy V Women’s Classic Presented by Corona (Hartford/Storrs, Conn.); NIT Season Tip-Off (Brooklyn, N.Y.); Puerto Rico Tip-Off (San Juan) and State Farm Champions Classic (Chicago)