Western Michigan tabbed MAC favorite by coaches

The Detroit News

Western Michigan's men's basketball team has been tabbed as the favorite to win the Mid-American Conference West Division and tournament championship in a preseason coaches' poll. Buffalo has been picked to win the East Division. Eastern Michigan was picked to finish fourth and Central Michigan sixth in the West by head coaches in the same poll.

Thomas Wilder

WMU, which received 22 of 30 possible first-place votes, return 10 four starters from last season's team that went 16-16 under coach Steve Hawkins, who returns for his 15th season.

Broncos senior guard Thomas Wilder was also named to the preseason All-MAC West Team. He averaged 19.3 points and 4.3 rebounds in his junior season to earn First Team All-MAC last season.

MAC West Division Preseason Poll (first place votes)

1. Western Michigan, 169 points (22)

2. Ball State, 156 points (8)

3. Toledo, 107 points

4. Eastern Michigan, 103 points

5. Northern Illinois, 57 points

6. Central Michigan, 38 points

MAC East Division

1. Buffalo, 166 points (24)

2. Kent State, 139 points (2)

3. Ohio,127 points (3)

4. Akron, 84 points (1)

5. Bowling Green, 82 points

6. Miami, 32 points

MAC Tournament Champion

1. Western Michigan (10)

2. Buffalo (9)

3. Ball State (5)

4. Kent State (2)

5. Toledo (2)

6 Bowling Green (1), Miami (1)

MAC West Preseason All-MAC Team

Thomas Wilder, WMU

James Thompson IV, Eastern Michigan

Tayler Persons, Ball State

Jaelan Sanford, Toledo

Eugene German, Northern Illinois

MAC East Preseason All-MAC Team

C.J. Massinburg – Buffalo

Nick Perkins – Buffalo

Jaylin Walker – Kent State

Jordan Dartis – Ohio

Jason Carter – Ohio