The other big game: WMU vs. Toledo

Western Michigan head coach P.J. Fleck leads his team onto the field before an NCAA college football game against Buffalo, Saturday, Nov. 19, 2016, in Kalamazoo, Mich. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)


KALAMAZOO, Mich. (WOOD) — The Michigan-Ohio State game may be the one making the most headlines this week, but there’s another college football game coming up featuring teams from Michigan and Ohio that will have conference championship implications.

It’s the matchup between Western Michigan and Toledo at Waldo Stadium in Kalamazoo on Friday.

Western is an undefeated 11-0, but still hasn’t clinched a spot in the MAC championship game. To do that, they have to beat Toledo.

Toledo has won three straight and is looking for a little revenge. They were in first place in the conference going into their game against Western last year, but the Broncos knocked them off and out of the MAC championship.

The shoe is on the other foot this time around, and Western Michigan head coach P.J. Fleck sees other similarities.

“It is a spitting image of each other,” Fleck said. “They got three receivers. We got three receivers. They’ve got a quarterback, we’ve got a quarterback. They’ve got runnings backs, we’ve got runnings backs. They’re offensive line is talented, ours is talented. Look at their defense. Same style defense. When you look at it across the board, they’ve got great players. It’s a unique matchup. It’s probably the best team we’ve played all year. It’s going to be a heck of a matchup. It’s what you want for the MAC West championship, two of the best teams playing each other. It is amazing — you’re 11-0 and you still haven’t wrapped up your division in your side. But that’s the MAC.”

“It’s a one-game season. This game isn’t smaller or bigger than the past, because when you sit there and look at it, if we don’t win games in the past, this game is not that meaningful, so one-game season,” Fleck added. “There’s just a lot on the line, but there’s been a lot on the line for us all year, and that expectation of pressure we’ve put on ourselves since January, our players are used to that.

Kickoff is at 5 p.m. Friday. The game will air on ESPN2.