Football Game Notes: NMU (Oct. 16)

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* This Week:
The Ferris State football team hits the road this week and will square off against Northern Michigan in Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) action this Saturday, Oct. 16, inside NMU's Superior Dome in Marquette, Mich.  Kickoff is at 1 p.m. (EDT).

* Ticket Information: Tickets will be available at the gate or for more information, contact the NMU Ticket Office at (906) 227-2839.

* 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 webcast will be available thru America One (formerly B2 Networks) 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 Twitter scoring updates.  Visit www.twitter.com/ferrisathletics to follow the tweet-by-tweet coverage with periodic scoring updates.

* Five In A Row: Ferris State treated its fans to a "homecoming" victory on Saturday (Oct. 9) afternoon as the Bulldogs won their fifth consecutive contest with a 23-10 triumph over Findlay at FSU's Top Taggart Field. With the win, the Bulldogs improved to 5-1 overall and remain unbeaten in GLIAC play with a first-place tying 5-0 league mark.  Ferris trailed 10-6 at halftime, but outscored Findlay 17-0 in the final half.

* Coming Up Next: Ferris is back at home next week hosting archrival and nationally top-ranked Grand Valley State in the Anchor-Bone Classic at FSU's Top Taggart Field.  Kickoff will be at 2 p.m. (EDT).

* Streak Reaches Five: The Bulldogs' current five-game winning streak is their longest overall since winning their final two games of the 2007 season along with their opening three contests of the 2008 campaign for five in a row.  It marks the first time the Bulldogs have won five consecutive games over the course of a single-season since winning five-straight in 2004.  FSU has not won six games in a row since winning seven in a row during their most recent NCAA-II Playoff appearance in 1996.

* The GLIAC Standings: Ferris State and Grand Valley State remain as the GLIAC's only unbeaten teams in league play heading into week seven of the season.  Both teams hold 5-0 conference marks.  The Lakers host Lake Erie in conference play this week.  Three other teams currently have only one conference loss including Hillsdale, Michigan Tech and Wayne State.

* The Records: Ferris State is presently 5-1 overall and 5-0 in the GLIAC after posting a 1-10 overall mark in 2009, including an 0-10 league record.  Ferris previously registered a 6-5-0 overall record in 2008 and placed seventh in the GLIAC with a 5-5 mark.
  
Northern Michigan is currently 3-3 overall and 3-2 in the GLIAC this campaign after a 28-7 league road setback to Grand Valley State this past Saturday (Oct. 9) evening.  The Wildcats tied for fourth overall in the league last year with both a 6-4 overall and conference record.  

* The Coaches: Ferris State  – Jeff Pierce (Ferris State, 1979), 16th season, 96-75-0 (.561) – (11-4-0 vs. NMU).  Pierce is 47-41 (.534) overall in road contests at FSU and he owns a 34-31-0 (.523) record in October contests to date.  Pierce, who played at Ferris (defensive back) from 1974-77, is the 12th head coach in Ferris State's history.
   
Northern Michigan – Bernie Anderson (Northern Michigan, 1978), 5th season, 19-27-0 (.413); Career: 23rd season, 112-123-0 (.477) - (7-14-0 vs. Ferris State). Anderson is the dean of GLIAC football coaches and left Michigan Tech in summer 2006 as the school's all-time winningest coach. He was the 2004 GLIAC Coach of the Year and had a 6-11-0 coaching mark versus Ferris while at MTU.

* The 102nd Season: The 2010 campaign represents the Bulldogs' 102nd 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.  Ferris has posted an all-time record of 372-419-40 (.472) to date.

* Common Foe: Ferris and Northern Michigan have played one common opponent this season in Findlay. The Wildcats beat the Oilers 49-10 at home on Sept. 11 in the first week of league play (week two of the season) with FSU topping Findlay 23-10 in this past Saturday's homecoming game.

* Inside The Dome: The Bulldogs will be making their second-straight trip to NMU's Superior Dome on Saturday.  FSU suffered a 34-0 setback to NMU in last year's (9/26/09) trip to the dome, which was the Bulldogs' first visit to Marquette since a 42-24 win over the Wildcats in 2006 (9/30). The Bulldogs are 4-2 in the last six meetings in Marquette, but have had mixed scoring success.  FSU has twice scored more than 40 points, but has also been held to under 10 points three times in its last six visits to the Superior Dome. Overall, the Bulldogs own an all-time mark of 6-6 inside the dome and have won six of the last nine matchups in the facility.

* FSU Earns Votes: For the first time this year, Ferris State received votes this week in the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) Division II Top 25 Poll.  FSU was listed among the other teams receiving consideration with a total of five votes.  Grand Valley State holds down the nation's number one ranking with another GLIAC member in Hillsdale listed eighth.  Wayne State also received votes with six in this week's rankings.

* Indoor Games: Ferris sports a 5-6 record in enclosed dome facilities since 1995.  Last year's 34-0 loss at Northern Michigan (9/26) was FSU's first game played indoors since a 42-24 league road triumph at NMU in 2006 (9/30).  FSU is 2-2 in its last four dome-type venues, including a 17-14 overtime win at NMU in 2004 (10/16) and a 44-7 setback to North Dakota in 2005 (10/8) at the Alerus Center in Grand Forks, N.D.

* Great Success: FSU head coach Jeff Pierce has compiled more wins against Northern Michigan than any other team he's faced in his 16-year head coaching career. The Bulldogs are 11-4 overall to date versus the Wildcats under Pierce and have won nine of the last 12 meetings, including five of the last six to date.

* Milestone Win: FSU head coach Jeff Pierce registered his 50th career home win at Top Taggart Field with Saturday's win over Findlay.  Pierce presently owns a 50-33 (.602) mark in home games played at FSU.  Additionally, he's only four victories shy now of notching his 100th win overall as he enters Saturday's contest with a 96-75 (.561) all-time mark.

* Homecoming Notes: A crowd of 3,533 fans were on hand for the homecoming game …….. Ferris won its homecoming game for the first time since 2006 ……. FSU improved to 11-10 all-time versus Findlay and avenged a 43-7 setback on the road in last year's meeting …… This year marked the fourth-straight year the Bulldogs played an out-of-state foe in the homecoming game ...... Ferris faced Findlay for the fourth time in its homecoming game, but it was the first meeting between the two teams since 1971 on homecoming.

* Shutting Them Down: Ferris State gave up a season-low 210 yards of total offense to Findlay in Saturday's win.  The Oilers recorded only 21 yards of total offense and a single first down in the second half of play.  It marked the second consecutive contest in which the Bulldog defense gave up only 10 points.

* Posting Big Numbers: Ferris State has currently tallied 300 yards of total offense or more in each of the last four contests, which marks the first time the Bulldogs have accomplished the feat since posting 300 or more yards in four consecutive games of the '08 season versus Ashland, Findlay, Grand Valley State and Northern Michigan (Sept. 6-27, 2008).

* Growing Up Quickly: In the first four games of the season, the Bulldogs' defense gave up more than 200 yards passing three times.  However, in the last two games, FSU has held the opposition to less than 100 yards passing both times with only 90 at Lake Erie (Oct. 2) and 77 versus Findlay (Oct. 9).  The Bulldog secondary presently features two redshirt freshmen, a first-year junior college transfer and a sophomore in its starting four positions.

* Shutout Setback: Last year's 34-0 loss at Northern Michigan (9/26) marked the Bulldogs' first shutout setback since dropping a 45-0 decision at North Dakota in 2004 (10/9).  FSU was limited to only 13 total rushing yards on 22 attempts in last season's loss at the Superior Dome.

* Coming Back: The opposition has scored first in four of FSU's six contests this campaign, but the Bulldogs own a 3-1 mark in those games to date with the lone loss coming in the season opener at Hillsdale (9/3).

* National Rankings:
Ferris State presently ranks 13th nationally in sacks allowed (1.00 pg.), among the NCAA Division II leaders (as of Oct. 12).  FSU is also 17th in sacks (3.00 pg.), 29th in rushing offense (187.67 ypg.), 31st in punt returns (13.2 ypr.), 32nd in passing efficiency (144.55) and 37th in rushing defense (113.0 ypg.).  Senior LB Matt Ryan (Howell) ranks tied for eighth nationally in total tackles (11.2 pg.) while senior DT Jacob Moreno (Holt) is tied for 18th nationally in total sacks (0.92 pg.) and sophomore DE Jordan Morgan (Chicago, Ill./Mt. Carmel) comes in tied for 26th in sacks (.83 pg.).  Junior WR Damien Miller (Elsie/Ovid-Elsie) is listed 13th in punt returns (15.70 ypr.).

* Keeping It Close: Ferris owns a 3-0 mark this year in games determined by 10 points or less.  Overall, Ferris has presently emerged victorious in 11 of its last 13 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 last year to nationally top-ranked Grand Valley State (9/19/09).  Three of the victories have came in recent weeks versus Saginaw Valley State, Ohio Dominican and Lake Erie.

* Good At Close Calls: Two of FSU's victories this season have been decided by seven points or less.  In 2008, five of Ferris' six wins were also decided by seven points or less. The Bulldogs scored the go-ahead TD in the final 37 seconds of four of those contests - at Ashland (Sept. 6), vs. Northern Michigan (Sept. 27), at Indianapolis (Oct. 11) and vs. Northwood (Oct. 25). Seven of FSU's 10 outings in '08 were determined by 14 points or less and the Bulldogs finished 6-1 in those contests. Ferris was 5-0 in games decided by seven points or less in '08.

* Tough Road Ahead: Following last Saturday's game versus Findlay, the Bulldogs have played five league games versus teams in the bottom half of the current overall conference standings.  The schedule will toughen as FSU's remaining five GLIAC games will all come against teams found in the top eight this week, including four of the top six overall.

* GLIAC Leaders: The Bulldogs currently lead the GLIAC in rushing defense (113.0 ypg.) and total sacks (18) this season ......... Senior DT Jacob Moreno leads the GLIAC in sacks (5.5) and is tied for sixth in tackles for loss (7.5) ....... Senior Matt Ryan leads the conference in total tackles (11.2 pg.).

* GLIAC Stats Notes: Sophomore defensive end Jordan Morgan is tied for second in sacks (5.0) and tied for 11th in tackles for loss (6.0) ....... FSU sophomore cornerback Antwian Windmon (Chicago, Ill./Morgan Park) ranks second in passes defended (1.50 pg.) after six games ....... Junior defensive back William Miles (Stockton, Calif./Tokay) is fourth in passes defended (1.17 pg.) ........ Sophomore defensive end Brad Iskow (Bad Axe) is tied for third in tackles for loss (8.5) and tied for eighth in sacks (3.0) ........ Junior QB Tom Schneider (Jerome/Addison) is listed fifth in passing efficiency (145.5), eighth in total offense (217.7 ypg.) and eighth in yards passing (175.2 ypg.).  He also ranks fourth with 10 touchdown passes this year and is second in passing completion percentage (70.4%) ........ Junior Shawn Snoor (Diamondale/Holt) is eighth in punting (37.2 avg.) ....... Junior WR Mike Ryan (Howell) ranks tied for sixth in pass receptions (4.7 pg.).

* More Stats Notes: FSU ranks third in punt returns (13.8 ypr.) among the league leaders ....... Ferris senior fullback Leon Curry (Detroit/Warren Fitzgerald) is second in the GLIAC in average yards per rush (7.4 avg.) ...... Junior receiver Damien Miller is first with 157 total punt return yards this season among the GLIAC leaders ...... Sophomore linebacker Tayo Moss (South Rockwood/Monroe St. Mary's Catholic) is tied for ninth in the league in total tackles (8.5 pg.) ...... As a team, Ferris ranks third in the GLIAC in total sacks allowed (6) and third down conversions (47.4%) ...... The Bulldogs are first in the GLIAC with only one pass interception thrown all season ..... Ferris also ranks fourth in red zone offense (20-25).

* One Block Away: Ferris sophomore DE Jordan Morgan notched the fourth blocked kick of his career and third of the season in FSU's win at Lake Erie (Oct. 2).  Morgan is one block shy of matching former All-America defensive tackle Jake Visser's career mark of five set from 2004-08.  Visser also owns the single-season mark with four in '08.

* Scoring Trends: The Bulldogs have outscored their opponents 60-17 in the fourth quarter of games to date this season and also own a 51-43 edge in points scored during the second period.  On the flip side, FSU trails 35-30 in third quarter scoring and 35-28 in the first stanza.  Overall, FSU has outscored its opponents 169-130 this year.

* Good Month: The Bulldogs have compiled a 52-32-1 (.618) record in October contests since 1990. FSU is 26-19-0 (.578) on the road and 25-14-1 (.638) at home during that span in the month of October.

* Sack Opposites: Ferris' defense leads the GLIAC with 18 sacks this season in six games.  Conversely, the Bulldogs are also third overall in the league as they've allowed only six sacks to date this season.

* Big Offensive Numbers: The Bulldogs rolled up 456 yards of total offense in last Saturday's win over Findlay, which marked the third time this year FSU has netted more than 400 yards.  Ferris also topped the 400-yard mark in back-to-back games with 412 yards at Ohio Dominican (Sept. 18) and 479 yards versus Tiffin (Sept. 25).  That stretch represented the first time the Bulldogs had totaled 400 or more yards in back-to-back games since posting 412 yards and 420 yards at home in 2007 versus Hillsdale (9/22) and Northern Michigan (9/29), respectively.

* Last Buckeye Foe: Last week's game against Findlay concluded a four-game stretch for FSU against schools from the state of Ohio - Ohio Dominican, Tiffin, Lake Erie and Findlay.  All resulted in FSU wins.  The Bulldogs made two trips to the Buckeye state in the last four weeks with their first-ever trips to league newcomers ODU and Lake Erie.

* Change Of Fortunes: The Bulldogs' current five-game win streak is perhaps the program's longest coming off a double-digit losing skid.  From 1966 to 1968, Ferris went nearly two years between wins before winning seven-straight in the historic unbeaten 1968 campaign.  However, the 15-game winless stretch featured three ties, including the '68 season opener.  If the ties are not counted, the current stretch represents FSU's most consecutive wins after a 10-game or more losing streak in history.

* Bouncing Back: FSU claimed a second-straight second half comeback win with Saturday's victory over Findlay.  The Bulldogs trailed the Oilers 10-6 at the break before outscoring UF 17-0 in the final half.  Ferris' win at Lake Erie (Oct. 2) represented the first time the Bulldogs had trailed at halftime and came back to win since a 31-24 home triumph over Northern Michigan in 2008 (9/27).  FSU trailed Lake Erie 9-7 at the break, but took the lead for good with the lone score in the third quarter.  

* Leading The League: FSU senior defensive tackle Jacob Moreno presently leads the GLIAC in sacks with 5.5 to date (-29 yards) in six games (0.92 pg.) this season.  His efforts have helped the Bulldogs defense record a league-best 18 sacks for -120 yards in six outings.  Moreno is also tied for sixth overall in tackles for loss among the league leaders with 7.5 for -36 yards (1.25 pg.).

* Another GLIAC Leader: Ferris senior linebacker Matt Ryan presently is first among the GLIAC leaders list in total tackles this campaign.  Ryan has a total of 67 tackles with 30 unassisted stops in six contests for an average of 11.2 stops per game.

* Here's The Offense: The Bulldogs' seven touchdowns against Tiffin (Sept. 25) was nearly half of their TD total from all of last season when FSU netted only 15 touchdowns in 11 outings.  Additionally, in six games to date this season, the Bulldogs have scored a total of 169 points and have already topped their entire scoring total from a year ago when they finished with 122 points over the 11 games.  Twenty-one of FSU's 23 touchdowns this season have came on the offensive side of the ball with one each from special teams and the Bulldog defensive unit.

* Red Zone Offense: The Bulldogs have ranked near the GLIAC leaders in red zone offense all year as they've converted 20-of-25 (.800) times inside the opponents' 20-yard line this year.  The total includes 16 touchdowns and four field goals.  FSU was perfect inside the red zone over a recent three-game stretch with a combined 12-of-12 total versus Ohio Dominican, Tiffin and Lake Erie (Sept. 18-Oct. 2) prior to a four-of-seven showing in last week's win over Findlay.

* Miscellaneous Notes: Last Saturday's contest versus Findlay represented FSU's first home game played in the afternoon this season ....... The Bulldogs are among seven conference teams with two league road wins to date this season.

* No Running: The Bulldogs have allowed only 678 total rushing yards in six contests or an average of 113.0 yards per game this season.  Last year, the Bulldogs allowed 253.5 yards per game on average rushing.  FSU ranks first in the league to date this season in rushing defense.  Three of FSU's six opponents have been held to 74 yards or less on the ground this season.

* Run Ferris Run: Ferris State tallied a season-high 337 rushing yards on 42 attempts (8.0 avg.) in its home win over Tiffin (Sept. 25). The 337 yards mark FSU's highest rushing output since posting 381 yards on 49 carries in a 48-41 overtime home win over Northwood in 2007 (11/3/07).

* Yearbook Available Online: The 2010 Ferris State University Football Yearbook is available to view as an online publication. It features 2010 player rosters, season outlook, player biographies, coaching staff information, 2009 season statistics, career and season statistical records, series records, game records, etc.  Visit www.ferrisstatebulldogs.com to find it online.

* The "Bulldog Beat" Football Show: A special internet talk show on FSU football will air each week this fall as the "Bulldog Beat" Football Show hits the web airwaves on Thursday nights throughout the season. The talk show, which will be powered by a service called Blog Talk Radio, will be co-hosted by FSU Associate Athletics Communications Director/Football SID Rob Bentley and local journalist Sandy Gholston. The approximate 60 to 90-minute show will take place Thursday evenings starting at 9 p.m. (ET) and can be heard live by visiting: www.blogtalkradio.com/ferrisathletics.  

* 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.

* Follow The Bulldogs: A live video and audio webcast is slated to be offered for all 2010 Bulldog home football games and selected road games via an agreement with America One (formerly B2).  Visit the FSU Athletics Website (www.ferrisstatebulldogs.com) and click on the B2 icon.

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