November 5, 2009

Football Game Notes: SVSU (Nov. 7)

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* This Week: The Ferris State University football team will take the field for the final time during the 2009 season as the Bulldogs square off with nationally-ranked Saginaw Valley State in the season finale on Saturday (Nov. 7) at SVSU’s Harvey Randall Wickes Memorial Stadium in Univ. Center, Mich. The Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) game will kick off at 12 p.m. (EDT).

* Ticket Information: Tickets for the game will be available on gameday at the stadium or for more info, please contact the SVSU Ticket Office at (989) 964-7300.

* Media Coverage: Saturday’s game will be carried live locally by WYBR (102.3 FM) with Rob Bentley handling the play-by-play duties for the game and Sandy Gholston offering color commentary. It will also be streamed live online. A live video and webcast will be available through SVSU’s Athletics Website along with live statistics. Links for all available media can be found by clicking on the “upcoming events” scoreboard tab on FSU's Athletics Website at www.ferrisstatebulldogs.com.

* Follow On Twitter: In addition to radio and internet coverage, Bulldog fans can also follow Saturday’s contest and all other FSU games this year with live scoring via Twitter. Please visit www.twitter.com/ferrisathletics to follow the tweet-by-tweet coverage with periodic scoring updates.

* Last Time Out: Halloween turned out scary for Ferris last Saturday (Oct. 31) afternoon as the Bulldogs suffered a 59-14 GLIAC setback to the nationally-ranked Hillsdale Chargers in its regular-season home finale at FSU’s Top Taggart Field. The 22nd-ranked Chargers grabbed the early momentum with two first-quarter scores and cruised to the decisive win under eighth-year head coach Keith Otterbein, who previously helped establish the Bulldogs’ league dominance during the 1990’s in his stint as Ferris’ head coach. The victory was Otterbein's first in Big Rapids since leaving the FSU program. The Bulldogs were paced by freshman Skyler Stoker’s (Jackson/Grass Lake) 62 rushing yards on 24 attempts. As a team, the Bulldogs were limited to 38 rushing yards on 36 attempts. Ferris turned the ball over three times and was only two-of-11 on third down conversion tries.

* November Games: The Bulldogs have currently compiled a 21-10-0 (.677) record in November contests since 1995. FSU is 11-3-0 (.786) on the road and 10-7-0 (.588) at home during that span. Ferris won both of its November games in 2007, but suffered a 26-14 home loss to Saginaw Valley State in its lone November contest last campaign (11/8/08) at Top Taggart Field.

* The Records: Ferris State (1-9, 0-9 GLIAC) is currently midst a nine-game losing streak. FSU owns a current 0-4 road mark this season. Ferris registered a 6-5-0 overall record in 2008 and placed seventh in the GLIAC with a 5-5 mark. SVSU is presently 8-2 overall and 7-2 in the GLIAC this season after last Saturday’s (Oct. 31) 24-16 league home win over Findlay. The Cardinals are 3-1 at home this campaign. SVSU recorded a 7-3 overall and league mark in 2008 while placing tied for third in the GLIAC.

* The Coaches: Ferris State – Jeff Pierce (Ferris State, 1979), 15th season, 91-73-0 (.555) – (8-6-0 vs. SVSU). Pierce is 45-39 (.536) overall in road contests at FSU and he owns a 21-10-0 (.677) record in November contests to date. Pierce, who played at Ferris (defensive back) from 1974-77, is the 12th head coach in Ferris State’s history. Saginaw Valley State – Jim Collins (Wittenberg, 1988), 2nd season, 15-5-0 (.750); Career: 16th season, 85-82-0 (.509) – (1-0-0 vs. Ferris State). Collins is in his second season at SVSU after spending 11 years at NCAA-III Capital (Ohio) where his team was 44-13 over the final five years. He was a graduate assistant at Central Michigan in 1989-90.

* Senior Day Contest: Fifteen Ferris State seniors made their final career appearance at Top Taggart Field versus Hillsdale last Saturday – Brad Bammert, Nick Butler, Leon Curry, Kory Deering, Joe Doman, Santino Favot, Ron Hardy, Marvin Hicks, David Johnson, C.J. Lee, Joe Morrow, Joe Parrinello, Kyle Parrish, Chad Schoen, Kevin Ward and Angelo Williams. FSU recognized the 15 seniors along with student assistant coach/former player Travis “Snoop” Eising prior to the contest.

* Season Finales: The Bulldogs are 16-9-0 (.640) in regular-season finale contests dating back to 1985, which includes a 11-8-0 (.579) mark since 1990. The Bulldogs have won two of their last three season finales, but fell to SVSU by a 26-24 count last year (11/8/08) at home. Ferris had dropped four-straight season finales prior to back-to-back wins over Wayne State to close 2006 and 2007. FSU earned a hard-fought 17-13 triumph (11/10/07) over Wayne State in its most recent season finale on the road two years ago in Detroit, Mich. Ferris also faced SVSU to close the 2005 campaign (11/5) and its 39-32 season-ending setback to the Cardinals was later changed to a forfeit win.

* Cardinals Ranked: SVSU is ranked 22nd this week in the American Football Coaches Association Division II poll, marking the second-straight week the Bulldogs have faced the nation’s No. 22 team as Hillsdale held the same spot in last week’s rankings.

* Parrish Closing In: FSU senior quarterback Kyle Parrish (Garden Grove, Calif./Santiago) currently is listed in 13th place on the school’s all-time passing chart heading into his final game and is only 37 yards away from tying former Bulldog signal caller Sparky McEwen for 12th place. Parrish currently has thrown for 2,146 yards in his two-year career. He’s twice thrown for more than 300 yards in a game.

* Bulldog Milestones: FSU senior linebacker Nick Butler (Midland) enters Saturday’s game needing three tackles to notch his 100th career stop in a Bulldog uniform ...... Senior linebacker Matt Ryan (Howell) topped the 100-tackle mark for the season last week (106 tackles) .... Junior DT Jacob Moreno’s (Holt) 11 tackles against Hillsdale marked a career-high.

* First TD Pass: FSU redshirt freshman quarterback Robert Banaszak (Rockford) threw the first TD pass of his career with a 16-yard scoring throw to sophomore receiver Mike Ryan (Howell) in the fourth quarter of Saturday’s loss to Hillsdale. The scoring reception gave Ryan his first touchdown of the year and third of his two-year career to date.

* Scoring Output: Ferris’ 14 points versus Hillsdale were the squad’s most since the first two games of the year. FSU had been held to 10 points or less in seven-straight outings prior to scoring twice in the fourth quarter on Saturday.

* Last Meeting At SVSU: In the last meeting between FSU and SVSU held in University Center (9/15/07), FSU fell to SVSU by a 24-13 count at Wickes Memorial Stadium. The Bulldogs led 13-7 following three quarters of action, but the Cardinals rallied to score 17 points in the final frame to earn the league victory. The Bulldogs’ hopes were thwarted by two costly interceptions in the fourth quarter of the game. Saginaw Valley State posted a 25-16 edge in first downs and netted 422 total yards, including 320 in the air on 29-of-46 attempts. The Bulldogs compiled 299 yards with 166 on the ground and 133 in the air. Ferris quarterback C.J. Van Wieren was 15-of-31 for 133 yards, but was sacked four times. The Bulldogs also lost a fumble. Robert Miller had six catches for 35 yards to lead the Bulldog receiving crew. He also led the Bulldog ground game as well with 100 rushing yards on eight carries. Following the 2007 season, this game was one of four contests the Cardinals forfeited, giving Ferris a win in the official league record books.

* Ranking Upset: The Bulldogs last faced a ranked SVSU team in 2006 and Ferris upset the then fifth-ranked Cardinals 26-23 at Top Taggart Field in Big Rapids (9/16/06). The win lifted the Bulldogs into the national rankings for the first time in 2006 as FSU was listed 14th in the Don Hansen’s Football Gazette Division II Top 40 Poll after the surprising upset win. In addition, the win helped the Bulldogs to 3-0, which represented the program’s best season start since 1996.

* Number Eleven: Saturday’s game against SVSU represents FSU’s 11th game of the season. The Bulldogs have registered a 9-6 (.600) mark in the 11th game of the year dating back to 1990.

* Team Captains: FSU’s team captains for the 2009 campaign are senior right tackle Brad Bammert (Flushing) and senior quarterback Kyle Parrish on the offensive side along with senior middle linebacker Nick Butler and senior safety Chad Wilson (Howell) on the defensive side.

* Another Home TD: Redshirt freshman Tyler Thomas (Jackson) scored on a 27-yard TD run versus Hillsdale, which gave him his fourth rushing TD his season. All have come in home games as he’s scored in four of FSU’s five outings at Top Taggart Field this fall.

* Freshman Among Leaders: FSU freshman punter Mitchell Voss (Valparaiso, Ind./Wheeler) currently ranks third in the GLIAC in punting average (38.59 avg.) and now ranks 40thth nationally this campaign. His current average represents the seventh-best seasonal figure in FSU history going into the final game.

* Solid Pass Defense: Ferris ranks second among the GLIAC leaders and 11th nationally in pass defense this season (143.60 ypg.) heading into the final week of the regular-season.

* League Stat Notebook: Bulldog linebacker Matt Ryan currently ranks fifth among the GLIAC leaders in tackles (10.6 tpg.) while fellow senior linebacker Nick Butler is 10th (7.7 tpg.). Ryan is 19th in the nation in tackles ...... Senior cornerback Angelo Williams (Jackson) comes in 13th among the league leaders in passes defended (0.67 breakups per game) ...... Sophomore Shawn Snoor (Diamondale/Holt) is listed seventh in field goals (6-8) ....... Senior Kyle Parrish ranks 10th in passing (123.5 ypg.).

* In The Red Zone: To date this year, the Bulldogs have converted 16-of-22 times (.727) inside the opponents’ 20-yard line. FSU has scored 11 touchdowns and made five field goals in its scoring trips to the red zone.

* The 101st Season: The 2009 campaign represents the Bulldogs’ 101st season of varsity competition. The program actually began in 1900, but no football was played in 1908-09, 1917-18, 1932 and from 1942-45 for various reasons. Additionally, no scores are available from either the 1912 or 1916 seasons. FSU has an all-time record of 367-417-40 (.470).

* Keep An Eye On: Bulldog senior cornerback Angelo Williams was among 13 GLIAC players listed as “Others To Watch” in the 2009 D2 Football Preview Magazine published by d2football.com. The first-year magazine included 11 players each named to both the first-team preseason all-conference offensive and defensive teams in addition to three specialists and those listed in the others to watch category.

* Season For Firsts: The Bulldogs had 23 players make their first game appearance in a FSU uniform during the season-opener against Tiffin (Aug. 29). The total included five true freshmen ....... Nine different players started their first games in a Bulldog uniform against Tiffin in week one. The total included five on the defensive side of the ball and four on offense ...... FSU’s initial road trip this season to Findlay (Sept. 12) featured 28 players making their first-ever appearance on the team’s travel roster.

* Good Streak: The Bulldogs have presently emerged victorious in eight of their last 10 games determined by a touchdown or less dating back to a thrilling 44-41 league home win (9/22/07) over Hillsdale. FSU had won seven-straight such contests prior to its home loss this year to Grand Valley State (Sept. 19).

* Football Banquet: FSU will hold its annual awards banquet on Sunday, Nov. 8, at the Holiday Inn Hotel and Conference Center in Big Rapids, Mich. Festivities will begin at 12:30 p.m. (EST) with lunch to be served at 1 p.m. (EST) and the awards program set to start at 2 p.m. All Bulldog fans and parents are invited and encouraged to attend the annual event. The cost is $20 per person and payment will be accepted at the door on the day of the banquet. Please RSVP by e-mail to Assistant Coach Allen Curtiss (curtisa3@ferris.edu) or call (231) 591-2860 for more info.

* Bulldog Gameday:
Complete information on every Bulldog home and road contest this year can be found by visiting the Bulldog Gameday page on the FSU Athletics Website at www.ferrisstatebulldogs.com (click on football and then Bulldog Gameday).  The Gameday information, which will be updated several days prior to each game, includes links to all pertinent notes and statistics for both teams as well as links for the respective broadcast and internet media coverage available for the contest.

* Yearbook Available Online:
The 2009 Ferris State University Football Yearbook is available to view online in a PDF format. The 68-page publication features such information as 2009 player rosters, season outlook, player biographies, coaching staff information, 2008 season statistics, career and season statistical records, series records, game records, etc.  Visit the FSU athletics website at www.ferrisstatebulldogs.com to find the publication online.

* Follow The Bulldogs:
Bulldog fans now have the ability to catch Ferris State in action even when they can't be at the stadium.  A live video and audio webcast is slated to be offered for all 2009 Bulldog home football games via an agreement with B2 Networks.  In addition, selected road games at B2 partner schools will also be available.  For more information, visit the FSU Athletics Website (www.ferrisstatebulldogs.com) and click on the B2 broadcast icon.

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