Big Rapids, Mich. - The Ferris State University men's and women's basketball squads will both begin preparations for the 2011-12 campaign by holding their first official practices Saturday (Oct. 15) in FSU's Jim Wink Arena at Big Rapids, Mich.
The Bulldog men's basketball team, which is guided by 10th-year head coach Bill Sall, welcomes back eight letterwinners from last year's Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) North Division Championship squad that reached the NCAA Division II Sweet Sixteen.
Meanwhile, 14th-year head coach Tracey Dorow of the FSU women's basketball team also returns eight letterwinners this season.
The Bulldog women's basketball squad wrapped up the 2010-11 campaign with a 13-13 overall record. Last year marked the 14th time in the last 15 seasons the Bulldogs have registered double-digit wins in a campaign.
The Ferris State men concluded the 2010-11 season by reaching the NCAA Division II Sweet Sixteen and the Midwest Regional Championship Game in Louisville, Ky. The Bulldogs also captured the GLIAC North Division Championship and hosted the GLIAC Tournament Semifinals and Finals. They earned runner-up laurels in both the conference and NCAA regional tournaments, where they were defeated by eventual Division II National Champion Bellarmine (Ky.) before a sellout crowd on the Knights' home floor.
FSU's 24-8 overall men's hoops mark last year was the program's best since posting a 24-7 record and also reaching the regional final in 2004-05. Overall, the 24 wins recorded by the Bulldogs was tied for the third-highest total in school history and FSU's 16 league regular-season victories was best in the conference and tied for the most GLIAC wins in Bulldog annals.
The Bulldog men's basketball squad will take on perennial Division I power Michigan State in an exhibition contest on Sunday, Oct. 30, at the Breslin Center in East Lansing, Mich. Tipoff is slated for 2 p.m. (ET). FSU will also play men's exhibition contests this year at home against Grace Bible (Nov. 2) and on the road at Calvin (Nov. 8).
In addition to the exhbitition matchup against the Spartans, the Bulldogs' first two regular-season games will be road contests at Division I members Michigan and Central Michigan. Ferris State will visit Crisler Arena to square off with the Michigan Wolverines in the first official regular-season contest on Friday, Nov. 11, at 7 p.m. (ET) in Ann Arbor. The following night, on Saturday, Nov. 12, the Bulldogs travel to nearby Mt. Pleasant to battle the Chippewas inside McGuirk Arena also at 7 p.m. (ET).
The Bulldog women's basketball squad will hit the court for the first time with an exhibition game at NCAA Division I Oakland on Saturday, Oct. 29, in Rochester Hills, Mich. FSU will then host Calvin in an exhibition contest on Nov. 8 before officially opening the 2011-12 season by hosting Lewis (Ill.) on Saturday, Nov. 12, in a 6 p.m. (ET) non-league tilt at Wink Arena.
The Bulldog men will play a 26-game regular season schedule while the women have 25 contests on tap. The two teams will open their 19-game league schedules on the road versus Tiffin on Thursday, Dec. 1, in Tiffin, Ohio.
The FSU men presently have 16 players on their preseason roster with 14 listed for the women's squad.