Big Rapids, Mich. - For the second time this season, Ferris State University redshirt freshman quarterback Jason Vander Laan (Frankfort, Ill./Chicago Christian) has earned Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) Offensive Player of the Week accolades after leading the Bulldogs to a win over a nationally-ranked opponent.
Vander Laan keyed the Bulldogs 56-49 upset of nationally 22nd-ranked Michigan Tech on Saturday (Oct. 20) at FSU's Top Taggart Field. He threw for a career-high 357 yards on 20-of-28 passing and accounted for five touchdowns in the Bulldogs' win over the Huskies, which snapped a nine-game series' losing streak and was Ferris State's first win over Michigan Tech in 10 years.
The 6-4 rookie toosed three TD passes and ran for two more scores in addition to picking up 72 yards on 14 carries. His totals included a 42-yard touchdown run in addition to two TD passes of 48 yards or more. His play helped the Bulldogs generate 601 yards of total offense against the league's top defensive unit.
Vander Laan also earned the honor two weeks ago for this play in leading the Bulldogs to their first victory over rival Grand Valley State in 13 years on Oct. 6 at Lubbers Stadium in Allendale.
Presently, Vander Laan is third in the league in rushing (111.8 ypg.) and scoring (9.5 ppg.) along with sixth in total offense (245.5 ypg.) to date this season. Earlier this year, he established new school records for most yards rushing by a quarterback in a single-game and most yards ever gained in a contest by a freshman with 214 yards on the ground at Saginaw Valley State (Sept. 29).
Behind Vander Laan's efforts, the Ferris State offense has gained 2,454 yards on the ground in six outings to date this season and is only 84 yards shy of surpassing the school single-season record of 2,538 rushing yards in a campaign, which was established in 1995.
As a team, the Bulldogs are first in the GLIAC in rushing (306.8 ypg.) and second in total offense (483.9 ypg.). FSU is fifth in the country in rushing and 12th in total offense to date.
The Bulldogs currently own a 5-3 overall record to date this season and are 4-3 in GLIAC action.
FSU hits the road this Saturday, Oct. 27, to face defending NCAA Division II National Runner-Up Wayne State in Detroit. Kickoff is slated for 12 p.m. (ET) at Adams Field in the Motor City.
Saturday's game will be aired live by Sunny 97.3 FM and the Bulldog Sports Network starting with the Meijer Pregame Show at 11:30 a.m. (ET).