The MAC was established in 1946 and its headquarters is currently located in Cleveland, Ohio. In 2009 Jon Steinbrecher took over the commissioner role from Rick Chryst, who spent 10 years holding that title.
Currently the MAC holds 12 full-time members in its conference and is divided into two divisions, the east and west. In the East Division sits; the University of Akron, Bowling Green State University, State University of New York at Buffalo, Kent State University, Miami University and Ohio University. Making up the West Division is; Ball State University, Central Michigan University, Eastern Michigan University, Northern Illinois University, the University of Toledo and Western Michigan University.
Despite its 12 full-time members, the MAC also holds affiliate members who participate in MAC play in certain sports. In 2012, the MAC welcomed in Missouri University, the University of Northern Iowa and Old Dominion as wrestling affiliates. Making up the other affiliates are; the University of Massachusetts for football, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville and West Virginia University for men’s soccer, Appalachian State University in field hockey and Binghamton University for men’s tennis. Missouri State University, Longwood University and the University of Evansville round out the affiliate group.
The Mid-American Conference participates in 23 total sports; 12 women’s and 11 men’s. The men’s sports are; baseball, basketball, cross country, football, golf, soccer, swimming, tennis, track and field (indoor and outdoor) and wrestling. Making up the group of women’s sports are; basketball, cross country, field hockey, golf, gymnastics, soccer, softball, swimming, tennis, track and field (indoor and outdoor) and volleyball.
Over the years the MAC has gained a reputation as a great conference to groom NFL talent. Recent, notable players to reach the NFL and succeed include quarterback Ben Roethlisberger (Miami), wide receivers Antonio Brown (CMU) and Julian Edelman (KSU,) linebacker Khalil Mack (UB) and running back Kareem Hunt (Toledo.)
In football, Miami University leads all MAC teams with a .598 winning percentage while Kent State sits dead last all-time with a .389 percentage.
Despite the great winning percentage, Miami has only made the MAC Championship Game, which started in 1997, four separate times while Northern Illinois leads the pack with seven appearances, going three and four in those seven. The game is currently played at Ford Field in Detroit, Michigan and has been that way since 2004.
The only overtime game in a MAC Championship came in 2012 when Kent State, in their only ever appearance, lost to Northern Illinois in a double-overtime classic which saw a score of 44-37. That win gave the Huskies their second-straight MAC Championship win and their would-be second of three in four years.
Since 1987, the conference has inducted former athletes or staff members into their Hall of Fame. Among those inducted are Thurman Munson (KSU,) Nate Thurmond (BGSU,) Bo Schembechler (Miami) and Jack Lambert (KSU.)
Television partners for the conference include Sports Time Ohio, Fox Sports Ohio and ESPN.