Big Rapids, Mich. - The Ferris State University Athletics
Department, in conjunction with the Bulldog Sports Network, has
announced a new multi-year broadcasting and promotional agreement
with local radio station WDEE (97.3 FM).
The multi-year agreement, which will commence with the 2011-12 athletics season, will make Sunny 97.3 FM the "Home of the Bulldogs" and the flagship station of the Bulldog Sports Network while offering a consistent and high-quality voice on the local airwaves. The partnership is also expected to enhance listenership along with marketing and promotional opportunities between the two entities.
The Bulldog Sports Network and Sunny 97.3 will initially air all football, hockey and men's basketball contests live per the agreement. In addition to being carried live on the local radio airwaves, the agreement also allows for live internet broadcasts thru the Bulldogs' new multimedia audio and video portal, which will launch this fall thru Stretch Internet at www.FerrisStateBulldogs.com.
The new deal will bring an end to the Bulldogs' play-by-play broadcast relationship with Mentor Partners as the radio home for FSU Athletics. Sunny 97.3 seized the opportunity to partner with Ferris State Athletics when the previous agreement came to an end.
In addition to the local radio voice, the agreement will also allow live streaming audio and video for all home contests in the three sports with live internet audio offered for all road games. Video, which will be produced in conjunction with the university's Television and Digital Media Production Program, will be carried on a pay-per-view basis with all audio streamed live free of charge. Broadcasts will also be available via on-demand.
All broadcasts, home or away, will be proceeded by the 30-minute "Bulldog Pregame" show, which features a preview of the game, comments from the coaches and news from around the conference. The broadcasts will also include a "Bulldog Postgame" show recapping the event.
The first broadcast is scheduled for Friday, Sept. 2, when the Bulldog football team hosts preseason nationally-ranked Hillsdale in the season opener at Top Taggart Field. Pregame coverage is slated to begin at 7 p.m. (ET) with kickoff scheduled for 7:30 p.m. (ET).
Veteran play-by-play announcer Rob Bentley will provide the play-by-play coverage for all Bulldog Football contests this fall with local media personality Sandy Gholston offering color commentary. The duo has been part of the Ferris State football broadcast team for more than five years and is also expected to serve as part of the basketball broadcast team again this winter with Dominic Hennig calling the hockey action for the third consecutive season.
Sunny 97.3 is the area's number one oldies station and offers news, sports along with weather from its downtown Big Rapids location. They have also been the local radio affiliate of the Detroit Red Wings, Detroit Tigers and Minor League Baseball's West Michigan Whitecaps. The station, which is licensed to Reed City with studios in Big Rapids, operates at 2,850 watts and can be heard thru various large portions of the four-county area consisting of Mecosta, Newaygo, Osceola and Lake Counties.
Ferris State Athletics and Sunny 97.3 FM previously teamed up to carry the Bulldog men's basketball team's march to the NCAA Division II Sweet Sixteen this past March.
For more information on supporting Bulldog broadcasts, please contact Sunny 97.3 at (231) 796-9730 and ask for a sales representative.
"What they are saying about the new partnership"
Perk Weisenburger - FSU Athletics Director
"We're excited about moving forward with Sunny 97.3 as the Home of the Bulldogs. This broadcast partnership and creation of a true flagship station is an aspect of our multimedia package that our athletic department has been in search of and is one that both entities, Sunny 97.3 and Bulldog Athletics, can build on in the years to come."
Steve Masters - Sunny 97.3 FM Owner
"We’re excited about this new partnership and are looking forward to a long and successful relationship between Ferris State Athletics and Sunny 97.3."
Jeff Pierce - Head Football Coach
"I'm thrilled our fans will have an opportunity to listen to Bulldog Football on Sunny 97.3. They've been an active participant in the community over the years and I think our product will only continue to grow on their airwaves."
Jon Coles - Associate Athletics Director
"Sunny 97.3 will further supplement and enhance the growth that we have seen over the past few years in terms of local and regional sponsors finding new ways to partner with Ferris State, our quality student-athletes and promising athletics department."
Bill Sall - Men's Basketball Head Coach
"Sunny 97.3 did an outstanding job in carrying and promoting our postseason coverage last season and it will be wonderful to have our team back on a local station full-time this coming year."
Bob Daniels - Head Hockey Coach
"It’s an exciting time to have Ferris State Athletics, and Bulldog Hockey in particular, on the air live in the Big Rapids and Reed City areas on Sunny 97.3. We look forward to a great partnership with them."
Rob Bentley – Athletics Communications/Play-By-Play Announcer
"I’m excited about the opportunity to help call the action on Sunny 97.3 FM. It will be a welcome addition for our fans to have one consistent home on the dial in which to listen to Ferris State Athletics."
Tom Schneider - Bulldog Football Senior Quarterback
"It’s important to give our fans the opportunity to listen both on the radio and over the internet. It will be exciting to have our games showcased on Sunny 97.3 and the Bulldog Sports Network."