Big Rapids, Mich. - Ferris State University senior two-sport standout and former Michigan Mr. Basketball honoree DeShaun Thrower (Muskegon) will throw out the first pitch this Thursday (July 12) evening during the Bulldog Football program's second annual "Friends, Family & Alumni Night" prior to the West Michigan Whitecaps game at Fifth Third Ballpark in Comstock Park.
Thrower, who played a key role on the Bulldogs' 2018 NCAA Division II National Championship men's basketball squad, also was a valuable contributor last fall for the national quarterfinalist FSU football team.
The FSU Football "Friends, Family & Alumni Night" event, which is being organized by Ferris State Football in conjunction with FSU Athletics, will celebrate the Bulldogs' success and also pay tribute to the men's basketball national championship team as Ferris State joins the West Michigan Whitecaps for an evening of Minor League Baseball action.
The Whitecaps, will are a minor league affiliate of the Detroit Tigers, will square off against the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers with the opening pitch slated for 7:05 p.m. (ET).
The family night event continues an outstanding partnership between the Bulldogs and the Whitecaps. Along with the summer game, the Bulldogs will face Michigan Tech this fall at Fifth Third Ballpark on Saturday, Oct. 6, at 2 p.m. (ET) with additional game details and ticket information to be announced soon.
In addition, Ferris State will also partner with Whitecaps Community Foundation for a free youth clinic in Grand Rapids for kids ages 6-14 on Thursday (July 12) prior to the family night event.
This past winter, Thrower played in 36 games for the Bulldog hoops squad under head coach Andy Bronkema as FSU matched an all-time NCAA Division II record with a 38-1 overall record en route to the national championship. He averaged more than eight points per game and played big down the stretch, including scoring 20 points in FSU's NCAA-II Midwest Regional Championship game victory over Findlay at Jim Wink Arena.
On the gridiron, Thrower earned Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) Special Teams Player of the Week laurels last fall and finished the campaign with a pair of blocked kicks on special teams while also seeing time in the defensive backfield.
The Bulldog football squad will begin its 110th season of varsity competition this coming fall with their sights set on making a fifth consecutive trip to the NCAA Division II Playoffs. FSU has made back-to-back NCAA Division II National Quarterfinal appearances and is one of only five teams in all of college football to win at least 11 games each of the past four years. The Bulldogs along with Northwest Missouri State are the only programs in Division II football to make the playoffs each of the past four seasons.
In six seasons under head coach Tony 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 GLIAC since his arrival. Last summer, Hero Sports picked FSU as Michigan's Best College Football program regardless of division.
Ferris State will return nearly 50 letterwinners for the 2018 campaign.