Football Opens Fall Camp August 5th

Sophomore quarterback Tom Schneider (Photo Courtesy Zeke Jennings - Big Rapids Pioneer)
Sophomore quarterback Tom Schneider (Photo Courtesy Zeke Jennings - Big Rapids Pioneer)

The Ferris State University football program will begin official preseason preparations for the 2009 campaign next Wednesday (Aug. 5) as the squad's freshmen report to campus for the first time.

The Bulldogs' returning veterans will report Thursday (Aug. 6) with the squad's first official practice set for Friday (Aug. 7) morning. FSU will hold 25 workouts along with two scrimmages prior to the team's season opener on Aug. 29.

Ferris' three-week training camp period will not only feature practices and scrimmages, but also meetings, lifting, conditioning, testing and various orientation sessions. Practices will be held both on the FSU practice fields along with selected ones on the Mondo Ecofill artificial surface at Top Taggart Field.

FSU's initial preseason scrimmage is set for Saturday, Aug. 15, at 9:30 a.m. (EDT). The final scrimmage will be held prior to FSU's annual media/photo day activities on Friday, Aug. 21. The scrimmage will begin at 9 a.m. (EDT) with the media/photo day taking place at 1 p.m. (EDT).

"We're excited about the season and what's in front of us," said FSU head coach Jeff Pierce. "Our student-athletes have committed themselves again during the offseason and that should help prepare us for the challenges ahead.

"The goal in our program is to be a contender every year and we'll have an opportunity to be successful if we're prepared to play and at the top of our game each time we take the field."

Ferris State registered its fifth winning season in the last six years with a 6-5 overall record in 2008. It represented the program's ninth winning campaign in 14 years under Pierce and marked the 14th time in the last 20 years the Bulldogs have finished above .500 for the year. FSU was an even 5-5 in Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) action during the '08 campaign, which represented the program's 100th season of varsity competition.

Ferris State will kickoff its 101st season of varsity competition Saturday, Aug. 29, against the Tiffin (Ohio) Dragons in a 7 p.m. (EDT) non-conference contest at Top Taggart Field. The game will take place during FSU "Welcome Week" activities and be part of a true "Community Football Day" atmosphere as Big Rapids High School will also open its 2009 season versus Holton earlier in the day (2:30 p.m.) in the same facility and a rocket football contest will be part of the FSU halftime events.

The Bulldogs, who will play an 11-game regular-season schedule, open GLIAC action the following Saturday, Sept. 5, at home versus the Ashland Eagles with kickoff also set for 7 p.m. (EDT). The game will be part of the area's annual Riverdays Festival with the traditional Fireworks Night festivities taking place following the contest.

A highlight of the Bulldogs' 2009 campaign will come on Saturday, Oct. 3, when FSU takes on Michigan Tech in the "Battle At The Ballpark", which will be played on the home field of Minor League Baseball's West Michigan Whitecaps at Fifth Third Ballpark in Comstock Park, Mich., starting at 7 p.m. (EDT).

Tickets for all home games can be purchased at the game or for more information please contact the FSU Athletics Ticket Office at (231) 591-2888.