Click Here For Final AFCA Poll (PDF)
Big Rapids, Mich. - For the second consecutive year, the Ferris State University football squad finished fifth nationally in the final American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) National Poll as the organization unveiled its last rankings for the 2017 campaign today.
The Bulldogs earned a top five national ranking in the final poll following a second-straight national quarterfinal appearance this year under head coach Tony Annese.
Ferris State placed the highest of all schools in Super Region Three along with the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) in the final rankings of the season as determined by member head coaches across the country.
The top five consisted of national champion Texas A&M Commerce (#1) followed by national runner-up West Florida (#2), Indiana, Pa. (#3), Minnesota State (#4) and FSU (#5). The second five included Harding (#6), Central Washington (#7), Fort Hays State (#8), Assumption (#9) and Ashland (#10).
The Bulldogs and Ashland were the only two schools from the GLIAC found in the top 25 in this season's final poll.
This year represents the fourth consecutive year in which the Bulldogs have closed the season ranked among the top 12 teams in the nation and the third-straight season in which FSU has been in the top six overall. After a 12th-place ranking to close the 2014 campaign, FSU placed sixth in 2015 before back-to-back number five finishes in 2016 and 2017.
For more information on the AFCA and its programs, visit www.afca.com.
Under Annese, Ferris State finished the recent 2017 campaign with an 11-2 overall record. FSU's 11 wins this season marked the fourth consecutive year in which the Bulldogs had achieved the feat, which represents the first time in school history in which FSU has done so over four-straight years.
This fall, the Bulldogs also made their fourth consecutive trip to the NCAA Division II Playoffs and reached the national quarterfinal round for the second-straight year after making a D2 National Semifinal appearance in 2016. Ferris State hosted its first-ever home playoff game in the month of December this fall.
A year ago, Annese led FSU to a 12-3 overall record in 2016 while advancing to the NCAA Division II National Semifinals for only the second time in school history. In 2016, the Bulldogs also posted a school-record tying 12 victories. Ferris State received the program's third-straight NCAA Football Playoff berth and captured the Super Region Four Championship by beating archrival Grand Valley State during a memorable postseason run. The 15-week campaign, which included three postseason playoff wins, was the school's longest in 109 years of Bulldog Football.
Over the last four seasons at Ferris State, the Bulldogs have compiled a 45-7 overall record and made four consecutive NCAA Playoff appearances, claimed two conference championships, posted two unbeaten regular-seasons, twice made the national quarterfinals, captured a regional title and reached the national semifinals. Ferris State has also accumulated two Harlon Hill National Player of the Year trophies, twice had a student-athlete tabbed as the nation's National Scholar-Athlete of the Year and won six postseason games.
In the six seasons under Annese, the Bulldogs have become a national power on the Division II level. FSU has posted a 60-14 overall mark in the last six years and the Bulldogs have also posted the best winning percentage of all 21 collegiate programs in the state of Michigan along with the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) since his arrival. Twice he's been tabbed as the Super Region Coach of the Year at Ferris State.
Overall, Annese has won 83% of his games as a head coach on the collegiate and prep levels and owns 285 wins to date, which is the most of any current GLIAC member head coach at all levels.