Springs Interview (Windows Media File)
Dennis Springs Interview (MP3 File)
Big Rapids, Mich. - A special guest was present during local radio station WBRN's halftime coverage of Ferris State's Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) men's basketball contest between the Bulldogs and the Hillsdale Chargers on Saturday (Dec. 12) at Jesse Philips Arena in Hillsdale, Mich.
Dennis Springs, a four-year starting point guard for the Bulldogs from 2002 to 2006, attended Saturday's game and discussed his days as a collegiate player at FSU along with his current professional basketball career at halftime with FSU Associate Athletics Communications Director and play-by-play announcer Rob Bentley.
Since his graduation, Springs has enjoyed an outstanding professional basketball career at various levels. Springs spent each of the last two winter seasons playing overseas in Sweden where he averaged nearly 30 points and eight assists per game for Boras/Marbo Basket in the Swedish Basketettan League in its six-month season during his rookie year with the club in 2007-08.
Additionally, Springs received International Basketball League (IBL) All-Star honors with the Michigan-based Holland Blast three consecutive seasons and ranked as one of the league's assists and scoring leaders during his tenure with the summer league franchise, including scoring 26.8 points per game over 17 games in his final season with the club in 2008. Springs presently ranks 10th all-time in IBL league history with 1,305 points over his three campaigns.
Currently, Springs is finalizing plans to head back overseas to play in the European country of Cyprus starting this January.
"My professional career has been great and I've been able to rank among the top five leaders in scoring and assists everywhere I've been," Springs said. "I've been blessed to be able to do the things I've done. I took a little break to try the nine to five thing, but I'm looking forward to going back in January.
"There's always higher leagues to play in and my goal is to try to continue to move up every year," he added.
Springs' opportunity in Sweden wasn't the first time he'd been experienced to international competition as a professional player. He also spent a portion of one season with a Mexican League team in Cancun and traveled to Germany with an American Tour team.
Springs, who concluded his collegiate eligibility by leading FSU to its second consecutive NCAA Division II National Tournament appearance in March 2006, finished his Bulldog career earning all-region honors by being named to the 2005-06 National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) Great Lakes Region All-District First Team and Daktronics All-Great Lakes Region Second Team. He was also recognized as both Ferris State's Most Valuable Player and Defensive Player Award recipient during the 2005-06 campaign along with being chosen as Ferris' 2005-06 Dean Davenport "Bulldog of the Year" Award recipient for the school's most outstanding male student-athlete.
Springs, who led the GLIAC in assists (5.74 apg) as a senior and ranked as the league's third-leading scorer (16.8 ppg), was honored as a first-team All-GLIAC North Division selection in 2005-06. Springs’ career average of 6.2 assists per game ranked tied for 17th place all-time in NCAA Division II history and was the GLIAC’s top career performance average for all games played upon graduation. His 713 career assists not only ranked as the school's top figure, but was also listed 13th on the all-time NCAA Division II assists leaders list.
"I was able to make memories that will last forever at Ferris," Springs said. "The guys I played with were together for four years and winning the championships we did along with the bond we had helped create memories that we still share to this day."
The two-time (2003-04 & 2004-05) GLIAC North Division Second Team honoree compiled 28 double-figure scoring outings his final year and currently is listed among the school's all-time performers in five statistical categories, including ninth in scoring with 1,504 career points. He earned GLIAC North Division Player of the Week Award honors three times in his final campaign. Springs also received GLIAC North Division All-Defensive Team kudos for the third-straight season and picked up GLIAC All-Tournament Team recognition as a senior.
Springs, who attained NCAA-II Great Lakes Region All-Tournament Team kudos as FSU advanced to the NCAA-II Sweet Sixteen during the 2004-05 campaign, was chosen as the Grand Rapids Press' Player of the Year in 2005-06. He was the conference's assists leader three of his four collegiate seasons and dished out 10 or more assists 14 times in his playing career.
During his playing career, Springs led Ferris to back-to-back GLIAC North Division Championships (2003-04 & 2004-05), guided FSU to a runner-up league regular-season finish as a senior and directed the Bulldogs to consecutive NCAA-II Great Lakes Regional Tournament appearances his final two campaigns under head coach Bill Sall.
"It was great to watch the program grow from my freshman year when Coach Sall first came in and nobody really respected us to my junior year when we went to the Sweet Sixteen," Springs said. "That is one of the biggest highlights of my career and something I hope the current guys get a chance to experience."
For the complete six-minute radio interview, please visit the links below:
Dennis Springs Interview (Windows Media File)
Dennis Springs Interview (MP3 File)