Buffalo looks to continue an exciting run in hopes of making their first ever NCAA Tournament, and Eastern Michigan looks to continue a surprising stretch of play as the MAC Tournament in Cleveland is into the quarterfinals.
The two top seeds -- Akron and Ohio -- still haven't had a chance to play, as they were given triple byes into the semifinals. The two games Thursday will determine who they face, with the winner of Kent State-Buffalo heading on to play Akron and the winner of the Eastern Michigan vs. Western Michigan game playing Ohio.
6:30 p.m., ESPN3: No. 4 Kent State (19-12, 9-7) vs. No. 8 Buffalo (14-19, 7-9 MAC)
The Bulls needed overtime just to beat Central Michigan in the 8-9 play-in game, but they moved past No. 5 Ball State Wednesday thanks to Will Regan hitting five-of-seven threes and finishing with 36 points. Buffalo nearly knocked off Kent State in the last matchup, leading by 11 with about 11 minutes to go, but the Golden Flashes pushed the game to overtime behind 28 points from Randal Holt -- he had 27 points in the other game between these two -- and Kent State won, 83-81, in overtime.
9 p.m., ESPN3: No. 3 Western Michigan vs. No. 7 Eastern Michigan
The Eagles -- participants in the worst game ever -- won their first-round game, 45-44, over NIU on a Jalen Ross buzzer-beater, then kept it moving by beating Miami, 58-47. Both matchups between these teams were ugly, but competitive: a 63-59 win for the Broncos and a 50-49 overtime affair -- yes, 50-49 in overtime -- won by the Eagles.