October 28, 2010

Football Game Notes: Indianapolis (Oct. 30)

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* This Week:
The Ferris State University football team returns to the road to face the Indianapolis Greyhounds this Saturday, Oct. 30, in Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) action at Key Stadium in Indianapolis, Ind.  Kickoff is scheduled for 6 p.m. (ET).

* Ticket Information: Tickets for the game will be available on gameday at the stadium or for more info, please contact the Indianapolis Athletis Office at (317) 788-3412.

* 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.  A live audio & video webcast will be available thru Indianapolis along with live statistics. Links for all available media can be found by clicking on the "upcoming events" scoreboard tab on FSU's 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.  

* Anchor-Bone Setback: Nationally top-ranked Grand Valley State proved worthy of its ranking as the Lakers rolled to a 41-0 shutout victory over Ferris State in the Anchor-Bone Classic on Saturday (Oct. 23) afternoon at FSU's Top Taggart Field.The visiting Lakers scored on four of their first five offensive drives and built a 24-0 halftime edge in the West Michigan rivalry game played before a crowd of 3,256 fans under drizzly conditions with a share of first place in the GLIAC on the line.

* The GLIAC Race: With last Saturday's win, Grand Valley State took a two-game lead over FSU in the GLIAC North Division standings as they improved to 8-0 overall and 7-0 in the conference.  Ferris State remains tied for second place in the league with a 5-3 overall and 5-2 GLIAC recor heading into this weekend.  The Bulldogs are one of four teams with only two losses in league play.

* Strong In Five: This year's 4-1 mark after five games represented the 18th time in 100 seasons the Bulldogs have won four of their initial five outings, including the third time in the last five years. Ferris has accomplished the feat seven times under head coach Jeff Pierce and went on to win at least seven games in five of the six previous times under Pierce.

* Under The Lights: Ferris is 36-50-4 (.422) in evening games going back to 1961. The Bulldogs are 12-25-2 (.333) on the road and 24-25-2 (.490) at home during that period. Indianapolis has won four of the five night games ever played between FSU and the Greyhounds.

* The Records: Ferris State is presently 5-3 overall and 5-2 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.
    
Indianapolis is currently 4-4 and 3-4 in the GLIAC this campaign after a narrow 6-5 league road win at Northern Michigan last Saturday (Oct. 23).  The Greyhounds posted a 4-7 overall record to go with a 3-7 GLIAC mark a year ago.  

* The Coaches: Ferris State  – Jeff Pierce (Ferris State, 1979), 16th season, 96-77-0 (.555) – (6-5-0 vs. Indy).  Pierce is 47-42 (.528) overall in road contests at FSU and he owns a 34-33-0 (.507) 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.
    
Indianapolis – Bob Bartolomeo (Butler), 1st season, 4-4-0 (.500); Career: 1st season, 18-11-1 (.617) - (0-3-0 vs. Ferris State). The former six-year Indianapolis defensive coordinator is midst his first season as the program's head coach, but has more than 35 years of experience as a coach at every level in Indiana.  He was the head coach at Butler from 1990-92.

* 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 372-421-40 (.471) to date.

* We Meet Again: First-year Indianapolis head coach Bob Bartolomeo posted a 14-7-1 record as Butler's head coach from 1990-92.  He led Butler to a share of the Midwest Intercollegiate Football Conference (MIFC) crown in 1992 and a number five national ranking.  However, Bartolomeo was winless (0-3) against Ferris State.

* Nice Win Streak: The Bulldogs' five-game winning streak prior to their current two-game skid was 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 marked the first time the Bulldogs had won five consecutive games over the course of a single-season since winning five-straight in 2004.

* Coming Up Next: The Bulldogs host Michigan Tech in their home finale on Saturday, Nov. 6, at Top Taggart Field.  The annual Senior Day tilt starts at 2 p.m. (ET) and is also billed as FSU Parents Appreciation Day.

* Interesting Note: The Bulldogs and Greyounds will meet again on Saturday for the third-straight year after not squaring off against each other in either 2006 or 2007 due to the GLIAC's scheduling system.  Ferris won two years ago (10/11/08) by a 31-24 count at Indianapolis, Ind.  However, the Greyhounds responded with a 34-7 victory in Big Rapids last year (10/10/09).  The two teams split the six series' meetings held from 2000 to 2005.

* Milestone Win: FSU head coach Jeff Pierce registered his 50th career home win at Top Taggart Field versus Findlay (Oct. 9).  Pierce presently owns a 50-34 (.595) mark in home games played at FSU.  Additionally, he's only four victories shy of notching his 100th win overall as he enters Saturday's contest with a 96-77 (.555) all-time mark.

* Last Trip To Indy: Ferris received a big offensive lift from an unlikely source as the Bulldogs recorded a 31-24 league road win over the Indianapolis Greyhounds at UI's Key Stadium (10/11/08) two years ago. Former FSU quarterback Kyle Parrish came off the bench to set a new school record with 477 total offensive yards in the win.  Parrish came in after starting QB Tom Schneider went down with an injury in the first quarter and threw for a career-high 404 yards passing with four touchdowns on 26-of-41 attempts.  He also ran for a team-high 73 rushing yards on nine carries (8.1 avg.).  Parrish threw three touchdown passes of 44 yards or more, including a game-winning 44-yard scoring pass to receiver Seth Hubbard with only 18 seconds left in the contest after directing the Bulldogs on a 75-yard march in a two-minute drill situation.

* Records Fall In Indy: Former Bulldog Kyle Parrish was named the GLIAC Offensive Player of the Week after the meeting two years ago in Indianapolis when he came off the bench to set a new school record with 477 total offensive yards. The 6-1 Parrish threw three touchdown passes of 44 yards or more in the game ........ His 477 total offensive yards compiled in the game eclipsed the previous school record of 433 yards.  Parrish led the Bulldogs to five scores and two missed field goals in his 10 drives directing the offense at Indy ....... Parrish's 404 yards passing at Indy was the fourth-highest single game total in school history.

* Posting Big Numbers: Ferris State had tallied 300 yards of total offense or more in five-straight contests prior to a season-low 118 yards versus Grand Valley State.  The 300-yard streak marked the first time the Bulldogs had accomplished the feat since posting 300 or more yards in five consecutive outings during the 2004 season.  

* Scoring Trends: The Bulldogs have outscored their opponents 60-27 in the fourth quarter of games to date this season, but trail in the other three periods.  FSU has been outscored 58-35 in the first period, 60-58 in the second stanza and 48-36 in the third frame. Overall, FSU had outscored its opponents 189-152 this year prior to last week's loss.

* Back To Back At The Dome: Ferris and Indianapolis both visited the Superior Dome in back-to-back weeks to face Northern Michigan with both games being determined by two points or less.  FSU fell to NMU 22-20 two weeks ago (Oct. 16) with the Greyhounds beating the Wildcats by a 6-5 score this past Saturday (Oct. 23).

* Other Common Foes: Besides Northern Michigan, the Bulldogs and Indianapolis have played three other common foes this year with mixed results.  FSU defeated Saginaw Valley State and Findlay with a loss to Grand Valley State.  Meanwhile, the Greyhounds went 1-2 against those same three schools with a win over Findlay combined with losses to both GVSU and SVSU.

* Facing Number One: This year marked the second consecutive year Grand Valley State had been ranked number one nationally in the AFCA Division II poll heading into Big Rapids.  A year ago, the Bulldogs nearly upset the top-ranked Lakers in a 17-10 home setback.

* The Final Three: FSU has three games left this year. Ferris has won at least two of its final three games of a year 14 times in the last 20 seasons dating back to 1990, including two of the last four years to date. The Bulldogs have won 53% (32-28) of their final three games of a campaign since 1990, but the figure jumps to 62% (37-23) counting regular-season games only and not playoff action.

* Game Number Nine: Saturday's game against Indianapolis represents FSU's ninth game of the season. The Bulldogs have registered a 14-6 (.700) mark in the ninth game of the year dating back to 1990.

* National Rankings: Ferris State presently ranks tied for 33rd nationally in total sacks (2.63 pg.), among the NCAA Division II leaders (as of Oct. 25).  FSU is also 41st in punt returns (11.50 ypr.) along with 51st in total defense (327.50 ypg.).  Senior LB Matt Ryan (Howell) ranks tied for 11th nationally in total tackles (10.6 pg.) while sophomore DE Jordan Morgan (Chicago, Ill./Mt. Carmel) is tied for 21st nationally in total sacks (0.81 pg.).  Junior WR Damien Miller (Elsie/Ovid-Elsie) is listed 22nd in punt returns (12.77 ypr.) with sophomore linebacker Tayo Moss (South Rockwood/Monroe St. Mary's Catholic) coming in tied for 28th in tackles (9.25 tpg.).

* Keeping It Close: Ferris owns a 3-1 mark this year in games determined by 10 points or less.  Overall, Ferris has presently emerged victorious in 11 of its last 14 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 came this year versus Saginaw Valley State, Ohio Dominican and Lake Erie prior to FSU's loss at Northern Michigan two weeks ago.

* 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.

* Road Gets Tougher: Following FSU's most recent home outing versus Findlay (Oct. 9), the Bulldogs had played five league games versus teams in the bottom half of the overall conference standings.  The schedule has toughened as FSU's final five GLIAC games (starting Oct. 16) all come against teams found in the top eight this week, including two of the top four overall.

* GLIAC Leaders: The Bulldogs currently lead the GLIAC in total sacks (21) this season ......... Sophomore DE Jordan Morgan leads the GLIAC in sacks (6.5) and is eighth in tackles for loss (1.06 pg.).

* GLIAC Stats Notes: Senior LB Matt Ryan ranks second in total tackles (10.6 tpg.) ........ FSU sophomore cornerback Antwian Windmon (Chicago, Ill./Morgan Park) and junior defensive back William Miles (Stockton, Calif./Tokay) both are tied for third in passes defended (1.12 pg.) ........ Sophomore defensive end Brad Iskow (Bad Axe) is tied for third in tackles for loss (1.19 pg.) ........ Senior DT Jacob Moreno (Holt) is fourth in sacks (5.5) and tied for 15th in tackles for loss (0.94 pg.) ....... Junior QB Tom Schneider (Jerome/Addison) is listed fifth in passing efficiency (143.0), ninth in total offense (194.0 ypg.) and ninth in yards passing (159.5 ypg.).  He also ranks tied for fifth with 12 touchdown passes this year and is second in passing completion percentage (70.8%) ........ Junior Shawn Snoor (Diamondale/Holt) is eighth in punting (38.3 avg.) ....... Junior WR Mike Ryan (Howell) ranks seventh in pass receptions (4.5 pg.).

* More Stats Notes: Ferris senior fullback Leon Curry (Detroit/Warren Fitzgerald) is fourth in the GLIAC in average yards per rush (6.7 avg.) ...... Junior receiver Damien Miller is third among the GLIAC leaders in punt returns (12.8 avg.) ...... Sophomore linebacker Tayo Moss is fifth in the league in total tackles (9.2 pg.) ...... As a team, Ferris ranks second in rushing defense (130.0 ypg.), third in red zone offense (21-26) and third in fewest penalties (38.9 ypg.) ...... Senior receiver Chris Wilson (Hingsville, Ga./Long County) is 12th in the league in yards per catch (13.6 ypc.).

* 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.

* Sack Opposites: Ferris' defense leads the GLIAC with 21 sacks this season in six games.  Conversely, the Bulldogs were also third overall in sacks allowed prior to allowing six to Grand Valley State last week.

* Good Month: The Bulldogs have compiled a 52-34-1 (.603) record in October contests since 1990. FSU is 26-20-0 (.565) on the road and 25-15-1 (.622) at home during that span in the month of October.

* Big Offensive Numbers: The Bulldogs rolled up 456 yards of total offense versus Findlay (Oct. 9), 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.

* Out of State Foes: FSU will face another out-of-state foe in Indianapolis this week.  FSU's outings versus Northern Michigan and Grand Valley State the last two weeks followed 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 with their first-ever trips to league newcomers ODU and Lake Erie.

* Change Of Fortunes: The Bulldogs' five-game win streak prior to its loss at Northern Michigan (Oct. 16) was perhaps the program's longest ever 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 most recent stretch represented 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 its over Findlay (Oct. 9).  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 sophomore defensive end Jordan Morgan presently leads the GLIAC in sacks with 6.5 to date (-57 yards) in eight games this season.  His efforts have helped the Bulldogs defense record a league-best 21 sacks for -134 yards in eight outings.  Senior teammate Jacob Moreno is second in total sacks (5.5).  Three Bulldog players currently rank among the league's top 15 performers in tackles for loss this year.

* Close To The Top: Ferris senior linebacker Matt Ryan presently is second this week among the GLIAC leaders list in total tackles this campaign.  Ryan has a total of 85 tackles with 39 unassisted stops in seven contests for an average of 10.6 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 seven games to date this season, the Bulldogs have scored a total of 189 points and have already topped their entire scoring total from a year ago when they finished with 122 points over the 11 games.  Twenty-four of FSU's 26 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 21-of-26 (.808) times inside the opponents' 20-yard line this year.  The total includes 17 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).

* No Running: The Bulldogs have allowed only 1,040 total rushing yards in eight contests or an average of 130.0 yards per game this season.  Last year, the Bulldogs allowed 253.5 yards per game on average rushing.  FSU ranks second in the league to date this season in rushing defense.  Three of FSU's eight 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).

* 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.

* 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.

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