Football Game Notes: Tiffin (Sept. 24)
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* This Week: The Ferris State University football team hits the road for a Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) contest against the Tiffin Dragons on Saturday, Sept. 24, at Frost-Kalnow Stadium in Tiffin, Ohio. Kickoff is set for 1:30 p.m. (ET) and will represent the Bulldogs' first afternoon contest of the 2011 campaign.
* Ticket Information: For information on ticket sales for Saturday's game, please contact the Tiffin Athletics Department at (419) 448-3334. Single-game and season tickets for all FSU home contests are now on sale and can be purchased by calling the FSU Athletics Ticket Office at (231) 591-2888. Visit www.FerrisStateBulldogs.com for more information.
* Media Coverage: Saturday's game will be carried live locally by the Bulldog Sports Network and Sunny 97.3 FM with Rob Bentley handling the play-by-play duties and Sandy Gholston offering color commentary. The broadcast begins with the "Meijer Bulldog Football Pregame Show" starting at 1 p.m. (ET). It will also be webcast online. 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 FSU games this year with live scoring updates via Twitter. Please visit www.twitter.com/ferrisathletics to follow the tweet-by-tweet coverage with periodic scoring updates.
* Offensive Explosion: FSU put together its most complete performance of the year as the Bulldogs rolled past Ohio Dominican by a 35-13 score last Saturday (Sept. 17) night in GLIAC action at Top Taggart Field. The Bulldogs rolled up 617 yards of total offense in the game and freshman kicker Victor Bodrie (Northville) connected on a school-record tying five field goals. The 617 offensive yards were the school's most since racking up 619 yards against Northwood in 2007 (11/3).
* GLIAC Weekly Award: Freshman kicker Victor Bodrie was named this week's GLIAC Special Teams Player of the Week after kicking a school-record tying five field goals in his collegiate debut versus Ohio Dominican. He connected from 25, 20, 22, 22 and 28 yards in the win and also hit two PAT kicks.
* Coming Up Next: The Bulldogs return home next week on Saturday, Oct. 1, to host Lake Erie at 7 p.m. (ET) in the final night game of the year at Top Taggart Field. It will represent FSU's Hall of Fame Game and a special world record attempt will be held prior to the contest as FSU attempts to put over 2,000 flying discs into the air at one time as part of an effort to "Paint Big Rapids Pink" and support breast cancer research.
* The Records: Ferris State is currently 2-1 overall this year after a 35-13 home win over Ohio Dominican last Saturday (Sept. 17). FSU posted a 5-6 overall mark in 2010 and was 5-5 in GLIAC play. The Bulldogs won five of their initial six games of the campaign and saw a four-game improvement over the 2009 season. Tiffin is currently winless at 0-3 overall and 0-2 in the GLIAC this campaign. TU posted a 1-10 overall record and 0-10 GLIAC slate in 2010.
* The Coaches: Ferris State – Jeff Pierce (Ferris State, 1979), 17th season, 98-81-0 (.547) – (3-0-0 vs. TU). Pierce is 47-45 (.511) overall in road contests at FSU and he owns a 41-28-0 (.594) record in September contests to date. Pierce, who played at Ferris (defensive back) from 1974-77, is the 12th head coach in Ferris State's history.
Tiffin – Gary Goff (Valdosta State, 1996), 1st season, 0-3-0 (.000); Career: 1st season, 0-3-0 (.000) – (0-0-0 vs. Ferris State). Goff is midst his first season at Tiffin after serving as offensive coordinator at three schools, including West Virginia Wesleyan, New Mexico State and Iowa Wesleyan. He played at Valdosta State and also coached at Princeton.
* Against Ohio Schools: Ferris holds a 34-43 (.442) all-time record against teams from the state of Ohio in school history. The Bulldogs have played 12 schools from the Buckeye state and have fared the best against those teams now competing in the GLIAC. FSU holds a 11-10 mark versus Findlay and is 9-13 overall against Ashland. The Bulldogs also own four wins (4-6) over Ohio Northern, are unbeaten versus Cedarville (2-0), Tiffin (3-0) and Ohio Dominican (2-0) and have topped Wilmington, Lake Erie along with Defiance once each in the program's history. Ferris' worst mark is against Central State, which owns a 7-0 record against the Bulldogs although the two teams have not met since '86.
* Ohio Slate: Last Saturday's game against Ohio Dominican was the first of four in a row for the Bulldogs versus Ohio schools. FSU swept the same four teams (ODU, Tiffin, Lake Erie & Findlay) last season.
* Visit Number Two: Ferris' trip to Tiffin will represent only its second visit ever to Frost-Kalnow Stadium. In FSU's only other road game against the Dragons, the Bulldog offense scored two early touchdowns and the defense came up with a big stop on a potential game-winning field goal attempt late in the fourth quarter as FSU escaped with a narrow 14-12 victory in the first-ever series' meeting to open the 2008 campaign (8/30/08) at Frost-Kalnow Stadium.
* Sunny 97.3: This season marks the debut of a new broadcast partnership between FSU Athletics and Sunny 97.3 FM. Rob Bentley and Sandy Gholston will call the action starting with the "Meijer Bulldog Football Pregame Show" show at 1 p.m. Sunny 97.3 and the Bulldog Sports Network will carry all home and away football contests with the broadcasts streamed live online at www.FerrisStateBulldogs.com.
* Bulldog Sports Network: Fans can follow all the action of Ferris State football live online via a new Bulldog Sports Network multimedia portal which launched this season. A live audio and video pay-per-view webcast will be offered for all home games with free audio for all road contests. The package also includes live stats, live chat and a live blog. Visit www.FerrisStateBulldogs.com for more info.
* Career Day For Schneider: Ferris State senior quarterback Tom Schneider (Jerome/Addison) threw for a personal career-high 315 yards in the loss at Saginaw Valley State two weeks ago (Sept. 10) on 28-of-34 passing. Schneider has now throw for 300 plus yards in back-to-back games as he had 306 yards passing versus Ohio Dominican in only three quarters of action.
* Coach To Cure MD: Ferris State will join an important national cause once again by helping support "Coach to Cure MD" during this Saturday's (Sept. 24) GLIAC contest at Tiffin. The entire Bulldog coaching staff, including head coach Jeff Pierce, will join thousands of others from the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) by wearing "Coach to Cure" MD arm patches for the game. "Coach to Cure MD", a national charity project of the AFCA, helps bring coaches nationwide together from all levels of collegiate football to raise awareness and research funding for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, the most prolific genetic killer diagnosed in childhood. This year marks the fourth year of the program.
* Familiar Foes: Ferris State Offensive Coordinator Chris Boden and first-year Tiffin head coach Gary Goff are no strangers as Goff played at Valdosta State in the 1990's under legendary head coach Hal Mumme. Boden formerly served as a VSU assistant coach.
* School Record Holder: FSU junior defensive end Jordan Morgan (Chicago, Ill./Mt. Carmel) tied former standout defensive tackle Jake Visser's career record of five blocked kicks with his block against Saginaw Valley State this year and is only one away from owing the record outright. Morgan had a single-season record tying four blocks a year ago.
* Welcome Back: The Bulldogs return 19 starters and more than 40 letterwinners from last season. Eight of the starters back are on the offensive side of the ball with nine on defense and both specialists.
* Lone Win In '09 Over Tiffin: Ferris' lone win of the 2009 season came in its opener (8/29/09) versus Tiffin at FSU's Top Taggart Field as the Bulldogs beat the Dragons 34-14 in a non-league game. A crowd of 3,407 fans braved drizzly conditions throughout the contest to watch the Bulldogs roll to the season-opening win. FSU scored 20 points in the final 4:24 of the first half to take a 27-7 halftime advantage. The Bulldogs forced four turnovers, including a 65-yard interception return for a touchdown, and totaled 322 yards of total offense in the game.
* First Bulldog Touchdown: Freshman receiver Jake Lampman (East Lansing/Haslett) scored the first touchdown of his Bulldog career on a two-yard scoring run with 4:20 to play in the fourth quarter against Ohio Dominican.
* Important Fact: Ferris' 52-point scoring output in last year's home win over Tiffin was its highest production since a 62-42 home win over Northern Michigan in 2005.
* Team Captains: FSU's team captains for the 2011 campaign are senior quarterback Tom Schneider and senior guard Jake Hancock (Big Rapids) on the offensive side of the ball along with senior defensive tackle Muneer Bawayeh (Dearborn/Fordson) and junior defensive end Jordan Morgan defensively.
* All-GLIAC Returners: Ferris State returns five players who received GLIAC postseason accolades in 2010. The list includes senior lineman Jake Hancock, who earned second team offensive honors. Junior defensive end Jordan Morgan was an All-GLIAC Second Team honoree as well a year ago. Meanwhile, senior QB Tom Schneider, junior defensive back William Miles, junior defensive end Brad Iskow (Bad Axe) and senior receiver Mike Ryan were all honorable mention picks a season ago for the Bulldogs.
* Week One Win: Ferris State rallied from a 10-point third quarter deficit to beat preseason nationally 18th-ranked Hillsdale by a 20-17 count in the season opener on Friday, Sept. 2, before a "Community Day" crowd of 3,453 fans at FSU's Top Taggart Field. The Bulldogs took advantage of two Charger turnovers in the second half en route to the win.
* Week Two Setback: The Bulldogs suffered a heartbreaking 30-27 loss in their GLIAC opener at Saginaw Valley State in week two (Sept. 10) at Wickes Memorial Stadium in the "Red Feather" Classic. FSU took a 27-24 lead in the fourth quarter before SVSU drove 55 yards in 10 plays to score with only 4:25 left in the game to earn the victory. It was the first night game played in SVSU history before 8,173 fans.
* Pick Two: FSU junior defensive back Jaime Berrera (Fremont, Calif./Washington) had an interception in both of the Bulldogs' first two games of the 2011 campaign. He's in his first season on the field at Ferris after missing all of last year due to injury following a JUCO stint.
* Opening Day Win: The Bulldogs have now won 14 of their last 23 season openers to date, which includes seven of their last 15 overall after this year's win over Hillsdale. Head coach Jeff Pierce improved to 9-8-0 in his career in season-opening contests. Ferris has claimed five of its last six season openers to date.
* Big Catch Mike: Bulldog senior receiver Mike Ryan (Howell) tallied his 100th career catch in FSU's setback at Saginaw Valley State, becoming only the 11th player in school history to reach the mark. He currently ranks 11th all-time in school history with 1,342 career receiving yards.
* Near Top Of GLIAC Charts: Ferris State currently leads the GLIAC in first downs (25.7 pg.) and is second in total offense (475.3 pg.) along with turnover margin (+5). Junior linebacker Tayo Moss is the GLIAC's leading tackler (12.0 tpg.) to date while senior Will Frazier is second in punt return average (10.4 pr.). Senior QB Tom Schneider ranks third in passing (235.0 ypg.) with junior tailback Skyler Stoker listed fourth in rushing (110.3 ypg.).
* Preseason All-Americans: A trio of Ferris State players received preseason acclaim as three Bulldogs were chosen to the 2011 Consensus Draft Services (CDS) Preseason All-America Teams. Senior center Jake Hancock was tabbed as a 2011 CDS Preseason First Team All-American with junior defensive end Jordan Morgan and senior cornerback William Miles, who was injured this spring, claiming honorable mention status on the preseason All-America team. CDS picked both a first and second team offensive and defensive unit with various honorable mention recipients at each position. The 6-2 Hancock was one of four players from a GLIAC school honored as a first team preseason All-America pick.
* Good Works Team Nominee: Ferris State senior quarterback Tom Schenider is among the nominees for the 2011 American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) Good Works Team, which is sponsored by Allstate Insurance Company. The award recognizes the selfless contributions to volunteerism and community service made by college football student-athletes across the nation. This year marks the program's 20th year honoring college football players at all levels of competition who stand out for their "good works" in the community. Since 1992, selection to the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team has become the gold standard for off-the-field character and leadership for college football players. The honor is widely considered the sport's pre-eminent community service award.
* GLIAC Contenders: The Bulldogs were listed as one of the possible contenders in the GLIAC race in the 2011 Sporting News College Football Preview Issue, which hit various news stands nationwide this summer. The annual publication compiled a preseason list of the nation's top 25 teams, which included three from the GLIAC in second-ranked Grand Valley State, number nine Wayne State and Hillsdale, which was listed 19th in the preseason poll. Additionally, the magazine offered a brief conference outlook of each Division II league and included the Bulldogs among the possible contenders in the GLIAC along with Michigan Tech and Ashland. The article, which was written by Greg Dewalt of the Florence (Ala.) TimesDaily, noted "With 19 returning starters, including fourth-year starting QB Tom Schneider, Ferris State could be ready to challenge for the conference title."
* Preseason All-GLIAC: A total of six Ferris State players received preseason All-GLIAC acclaim this year on the JBS D2 Preseason All-Conference listing. The list was compiled by the Josh Buchanan scouting service (www.jbscounting.com). Senior lineman Jake Hancock was tabbed to the offensive first team with junior defensive end Jordan Morgan pegged as a first-team pick on the defensive side. Four others were named as Players To Watch, including senior quarterback Tom Schneider, senior receiver Mike Ryan, junior defensive end Brad Iskow and junior cornerback Antwian Windmon (Chicago/Morgan Park).
* Preseason All-Americans: Ferris State senior lineman Jake Hancock earned his second first team preseason honor of the year as he was named to the he 2011 Collegiate Development Football League (CDFL) Preseason All-American Football Team. The selections were made by the CDFL and the D2 vs. NAIA Senior Bowl selection committee. The D2 vs. NAIA Senior Bowl is a postseason game showcasing the talent of senior players from the NCAA Division II and the NAIA levels. It will be played Dec. 3, 2011, in the New York City metro area. Nine GLIAC student-athletes were named to the 2011 CDFL Preseason All-American Football Team, which is a preseason listing of the top potential players who could be asked to play in the D2 vs. NAIA Senior Bowl later this fall.
* First Touchdown: Bulldog sophomore tight end Jace Heneveld (Zeeland/East) notched the first touchdown of his collegiate career by catching a four-yard scoring toss from quarterback Tom Schneider in the third quarter of FSU's loss at Saginaw Valley State (Sept. 10). Heneveld added another touchdown catch in the win over Ohio Dominican.
* Climbing The Chart: FSU quarterback Tom Schneider surpassed the 2,000 career yards passing figure with 252 yards in the air versus Findlay a season ago (Oct. 9). He currently has 3,361 career yards and moved into eighth place on the school's all-time list against Saginaw Valley State. He's also eighth in total offense with 4,425 yards in his career and topped the 4,000 career yards mark two weeks ago.
* Passing Up The List: Senior quarterback Tom Schneider's 1,741 passing yards last season represented the 18th-best single season performance in school history. He came up only 259 yards shy of being only the 13th player in Bulldog history to throw for 2,000 yards or more in a single campaign.
* New Faces On Staff: The Bulldogs have two new faces on the coaching staff this season, but both are familiar with the program. Former Ferris State defensive back Kyle Williams takes over as the DB's coach after previously having served as a student assistant coach at Ferris State each of the last two campaigns. He fills the shoes left by the departure of former position coach Gary McGraw, who accepted a job as an assistant coach at NCAA Division II Midwestern State (Texas). Additionally, former Bulldog standout kicker Doc Proctor has joined the staff this year and is working with the FSU kickers and punters.
* Training Camp Notes: Ferris' officially opened fall camp Wednesday, Aug. 10, as the squad's freshmen reported to campus for the first time. The Bulldogs' returning veterans reported Thursday, Aug. 11, with the squad's first official practice held Friday, Aug. 12. Prior to the Hillsdale game, FSU will have held 25 total workouts along with two scrimmages. Ferris' three-week training camp period not only has featured practices and scrimmages, but also meetings, lifting, conditioning, testing and various orientation sessions. FSU's final preseason scrimmage was held Aug. 26. Classes at Ferris State University began on Aug. 29.
* Did You Know?: Ferris has had a winning season in 14 of its last 22 seasons and in nine of head coach Jeff Pierce's 16 years at FSU. The Bulldogs won five consecutive conference championship titles from 1992-96 and were league co-champions with Northwood in the 1999 season.
* GLIAC Preseason Poll: The Ferris State University football team was selected to finish sixth in the 2011 GLIAC Football Coaches Preseason North Division Poll, which was released in mid-August in conjunction with the launch of the GLIAC Football Media Day website. The Bulldogs received 37 points in the balloting, which was conducted by the conference's 14 head coaches. This year marks the first time the league's preseason gridiron poll has been seperated by divisions. Grand Valley State and Wayne State were picked as the North and South Division favorites, respectively.
* Bulldog Figures: Senior receiver Mike Ryan's (Howell) 657 receiving yards last year was the 19th-highest seasonal mark in FSU history ...... Senior defensive back William Miles (Stockton, Calif./Tokay) became only the 17th player in Bulldog history to record five or more interceptions in a campaign a year ago ........ Junior defensive end Jordan Morgan's eight sacks last year tied for the 18th-best single-season mark in Bulldog history ....... Morgan has 14 career sacks to date and is two sacks away from tying former FSU defensive line coach Whitney Bell for 15th place on FSU's career leaders list ..... Junior linebacker Tayo Moss (South Rockwood/Monroe St. Mary's Catholic) has been the Bulldogs' leading tackler and reached a double-digit total in each of the first three games.
* Pierce Approaching 100th Win: FSU head coach Jeff Pierce needs only two wins to notch his 100th career victory. He registered his 50th career home win at Top Taggart Field last year against Findlay (Oct. 9). Pierce presently owns a 52-35 (.598) mark in home games played at FSU.
* Strong In Five: Last year's 4-1 mark after five games represented the 18th time in 100 seasons the Bulldogs had 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 years under Pierce.
* Return Leaders: Senior receiver Damien Miller (Elsie/Ovid-Elsie) is eighth all-time in career kick return yardage at Ferris State. He has 52 career kick returns for 881 total yards to date. Miller is also eighth in punt return yards (243).
* Kicking Leaders: FSU senior kicker Shawn Snoor (Diamondale/Holt) currently ranks tied for 12th in school history with seven made field goals. He's also listed 12th overall with 2,163 career punting yards.
* 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 2011 Ferris State University Football Yearbook is available to view as an online publication. The publication features such information as 2011 player rosters, season outlook, player biographies, coaching staff information, 2010 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.
* Red Zone Offense: The Bulldogs ranked near the GLIAC leaders in red zone offense most of last year and converted 31-of-40 (.775) times inside the opponents' 20-yard line. The total included 26 touchdowns and five field goals. FSU was perfect inside the red zone over a three-game stretch with a combined 12-of-12 total versus Ohio Dominican, Tiffin and Lake Erie (Sept. 18-Oct. 2) a season ago. This year, Ferris is currently 15-of-18 (.833) inside the 20 this year, including 8-of-8 against ODU last week.