NCF Nation: Ian McGarvey
Offense: Tulsa QB G.J. Kinne. Had 344 yards of total offense and three touchdowns in a 28-25 win over Houston. He had the fourth-highest rushing game in Conference USA this year and the third-highest total ever by a quarterback with 190 yards and one touchdown on 31 carries. Kinne also completed 65 percent of his passes for 154 yards and two scores.
Defense: Tulsa DB Marco Nelson. Starting his ninth game as a true freshman, Nelson had seven tackles and tied single-game school and conference records with three interceptions at Houston.
Special teams: Rice KR Charles Ross. Broke the school record with 261 yards on seven kickoff returns against Tulane. His effort sparked the Owls to a conference record total of 344 yards on 10 kickoff returns, bettering the mark of 303 set by East Carolina earlier this year.
Offense: Miami WR Nick Harwell. Caught 10 passes for 125 yards and one touchdown in a 24-21 win over Bowling Green. He has 43 receptions for 600 yards over the last five games, after making just two catches (15 yards) in his first five games.
Defense: Bowling Green LB Dwayne Woods. Had 13 tackles in a loss to Miami. The 13 tackle effort marked his fifth double digit tackle performance this season.
Special teams: Miami K Trevor Cook. Came back from a knee injury to kick the 33-yard game-winning field goal at Bowling Green.
Offense: Northern Illinois QB Chandler Harnish. Had 311 yards of total offense in a 65-30 victory over Toledo. Harnish completed 11 of 16 passes for 162 yards and one touchdown, and ran for 149 yards on 13 carries with a rushing touchdown.
Defense: Ball State S Sean Baker. Intercepted two passes and returned a fumble 26 yards for a touchdown in Ball State's 20-3 win at Buffalo.Baker is now the school's career interceptions leader with 16.
Special teams: Ball State K Ian McGarvey. Became the school's all-time leading scorer at Buffalo with 284 points. McGarvey made field goals of 40 and 32 yards and made two extra point attempts.
Co-Offense: BYU WR Luke Ashworth, UNLV RB Tim Cornett. Ashworth had four receptions for a career-high 113 receiving yards and four touchdowns in BYU's 49-10 win at Colorado State. All four scores came in the first half, making Ashworth the first player in BYU history to tally four touchdowns in the first 30 minutes of action. Cornett had 82 all-purpose yards and four touchdowns in a a 42-16 victory over Wyoming. He was him the first Rebel to score four touchdowns in a game since 1994.
Defense: BYU S Andrew Rich. Had a team-high nine tackles (three solo stops), an interception and a forced fumble in the win over Colorado State.
Special teams: BYU K Mitch Payne. Made all seven of his point-after attempts, tying his season high.
Offense: North Texas RB Lance Dunbar. Had the best rushing performance in the nation this week, with 226 yards on 36 carries with one touchdown in a 23-17 win at Middle Tennessee. Dunbar had a total of 272 all-purpose yards. He went over the 1,000-yard rushing mark, making him the second back in school history to have back-to-back 1,000-yard rushing seasons.
Defense: FIU DB Anthony Gaitor. Limited top Sun Belt all-purpose player Jerrel Jernigan to 32 receiving yards in a win over Troy. Also had eight tackles.
Special teams: North Texas K Zach Olen. Went 3-for-3 on field goal attempts and 2-for-2 on PAT attempts for a total of 11 points in the victory.
Offense: Nevada quarterback Colin Kaepernick. Had 324 yards and two touchdowns in a 35-34 win at Fresno State. Kaepernick completed 16-of-26 passes for 171 yards and rushed for 153 yards and two touchdowns on 16 carries.
Defense: Louisiana Tech safety Javontay Crowe. Had a team-high nine tackles, including six solo, and his first career interception in a win at New Mexico State.
Special teams: Boise State punt returner Chris Potter. Returned a punt 76 yards for a touchdown within the first minutes of the game at Idaho. He ended the night with four punt returns for a total of 106 yards.
Offense: UCF quarterback Jeff Godfrey. Went 15-of-19 for 294 yards and a pair of touchdowns and rushed for 105 yards and a touchdown, giving him 399 yards of total offense in a 40-33 win against Houston. It was just the second 100-yard rushing game by a UCF quarterback in school history.
Defense: UCF linebacker Josh Linam. Had 17 tackles, 1.5 for a loss and a pass breakup against Houston. It more than doubled his previous career-high of seven.
Special Teams: Tulsa kick returner Damaris Johnson. Totaled 322 all-purpose yards and scored three touchdowns in a 57-27 victory against Rice. Johnson became the Conference USA record-holder for career kickoff return yards with 3,054 yards and needs only 64 yards to become the NCAA’s all-time kick-off return leader.
Offense: Temple quarterback Mike Gerardi. Threw for 368 yards and two touchdowns in a 28-10 win at Kent State. In four games, Gerardi has three starts and is 54-of-81 for 871 yards and eight touchdowns.
Defense: Ohio defensive lineman Stafford Gatling. Recorded six tackles, including 1.5 sacks and two tackles for loss with a forced fumble in a 34-17 win against Buffalo.
Special teams: Kent State punter Matt Rinehart. Averaged 48.4 yards on seven punts in a 28-10 loss to Temple. Rinehart had a pair of punts downed inside the 5-yard line as the Flashes averaged an impressive 48.1 net average.
Offense: Ball State receiver Jack Tomlinson. Had a career day with seven catches for 175 yards and three touchdowns in a 37-30 double overtime win against Akron.
Defense: Central Michigan linebacer Armond Staten. Recorded 11 tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss, one sack and three forced fumbles in a 26-22 win against Western Michigan.
Special teams: Ball State kicker Ian McGarvey. Made three field goals and four extra points against Akron.
Offense: TCU quarterback Andy Dalton. Went 21-of-26 for a career-high 355 yards and three touchdowns in a 47-7 win at No. 5 Utah. His 93-yard touchdown pass to Josh Boyce marked the second-longest play in MWC history.
Co-Defensive Players: TCU linebacker Tanner Brock and San Diego State linebacker Miles Burris. Brock had a career-high 12 tackles, an interception and a pass breakup in the win against Utah. Burris had a career-high 10 tackles, four tackles for loss, two sacks and two forced fumbles in a 24-19 victory against Colorado State.
Special teams: New Mexico kicker James Aho. Kicked a 38-yard field goal as time expired to help New Mexico stop a nine-game losing streak with a 34-31 win against Wyoming. He also made a career-best 51-yard attempt.
Offense: FIU receiver T.Y. Hilton. Had 291 all-purpose yards, scoring four touchdowns in a 42-35 win in double overtime against ULM. He had two receiving touchdowns, one rushing touchdown and one kickoff return for a touchdown.
Defense: Arkansas State linebacker Demario Davis. Had seven tackles and a career-high two interceptions in a 51-24 victory against Middle Tennessee.
Special teams: Hilton. Had 168 kick return yards, including 95 on a touchdown return. The return was his fourth-career return for touchdown, tying him for first all-time at FIU.
Offense: Boise State quarterback Kellen Moore. Went 30-of-37 for a career-high 507 yards and three touchdowns in a 42-7 win against Hawaii. The 507 yards are the second most by any player in the nation this year.
Defense: Utah State linebacker Bobby Wagner. Tied a career-high with 17 tackles in a 27-22 win against New Mexico State.
Special teams: Louisiana Tech return specialist Phillip Livas. Returned seven kickoffs for 225 yards, including a 95-yarder for a touchdown, and a punt for another 29 yards in a loss to Fresno State.
DETROIT -- The first half of the Mid-American Conference Championship hasn't turned out to be the offensive affair that many -- including the coaches and players -- expected it to be.
Ball State had a terrible first quarter and a decent second quarter to take a 10-7 lead into halftime. Ian McGarvey made a 47-yard field goal as time expired in the first half to give the Cardinals the lead.
Buffalo was just the opposite. It had a great first quarter, jumped out to a 7-0 lead, and then tanked in the second quarter. The personal foul (helmet-to-helmet) penalty set up the Cardinals' first score and a fumble by James Starks in his own zone set up the field goal.
So, neither team has put its best work on the field so far tonight, but at least it's made for a close and interesting game.
Both teams have done a good job of trying to mix up their offensive schemes. The running games have been good for both teams and the passing game has been decent. Neither team has attempted many deep passes and there was probably a record set for the most screen passes in a half.
Both teams are playing it close to the vest and capitalizing on mistakes, but one team will have to open it up if it wants to take control of this game.