January 14, 2014

PREVIEW: Ferris State Ventures North To Michigan's Upper Peninsula This Week

Live Bulldog Sports Network Audio Broadcast     
Live PPV Video Webcast  (Thursday)
Live PPV Video Webcast  (Saturday)

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Click Here For Complete Game Notes (PDF)


Big Rapids, Mich. - The Ferris State University men's basketball continues its four-game Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) road stretch this week as FSU ventures north to Michigan's Upper Peninsula.

The Bulldogs will face Michigan Tech on Thursday (Jan. 16) starting at 7:30 p.m. (ET) inside MTU's Student Development Complex Gymnasium at Houghton. Ferris State then wraps up the trip by squaring off against Northern Michigan on Saturday (Jan. 18) at 1 p.m. (ET) inside NMU's Berry Events Center in Marquette.

Both games will be broadcast locally by Sunny 97.3 FM and the Bulldog Sports Network starting with the Meijer Pregame Show a half-hour prior to the women's tipoff. Rob Bentley will call the action. In addition, a live audio broadcast and pay-per-view video webcast will also be accessible along with live internet statistics. For a full listing of links, please visit FerrisStateBulldogs.com.

Ferris State and Michigan Tech currently midst a three-way tie with identical 5-3 league records in the GLIAC North Division standings entering this week's trip. Lake Superior State leads the race with a 7-1 mark followed by Grand Valley State at 6-2 in the GLIAC. The Bulldogs opened league play with a 5-0 mark this year, which represented FSU's best conference start since the 2005-06 season.

Saturday's meeting against Northern Michigan in Marquette will be the Bulldogs' first of two matchups this season against Wildcat head coach Bill Sall, who previously spent the last 11 years as Ferris State's head coach. During his Bulldog tenure, Sall directed Ferris State to four GLIAC North Division Championships and three trips to the NCAA Tournament, including twice to the Sweet Sixteen. Current FSU head coach Andy Bronkema spent the last six years as one of his assistant coaches prior to taking over the Bulldog program.

Ferris State (6-6, 5-3 GLIAC) enters Thursday's game at Michigan Tech with a 6-6 overall record to date this season. The Bulldogs have dropped their last three contests after previously winning six games in a row. Last week, Ferris State opened its four-game road stretch with a 86-75 setback against Malone on Thursday (Jan. 9) followed by a 94-71 loss on Saturday (Jan. 11) against GLIAC South leader Walsh in FSU's first-ever visit to both schools in Canton, Ohio.
   
Michigan Tech (9-3, 5-3 GLIAC) has won five of its last six outings to date this year, but is coming off a narrow 71-70 league road loss at Ashland on Saturday (Jan. 11). The Huskies own a current 5-3 GLIAC record with the other two losses both on the road early in the conference season at Walsh (Dec. 7) and at Findlay (Dec. 12).

Northern Michigan (3-9, 2-6 GLIAC), which hosts Grand Valley State on Thursday before meeting the Bulldogs, returned from the holiday break to post back-to-back league home wins over Tiffin and Ohio Dominican (Jan. 2 & 4) for its first two conference wins under Bill Sall. Last week, the Wildcats fell 72-56 on the road at Ashland (Jan. 9) followed by a 89-82 setback at Lake Erie (Jan. 11).

The Bulldogs trail Michigan Tech 58-54 in the all-time series although FSU has won 11 of the last 21 games heading into Thursday's 113th series meeting. Ferris State and MTU split a pair of meetings last season with the Bulldogs winning 74-66 at home (Jan. 10) followed by a 64-55 setback in Houghton (Feb. 7). In recent history, FSU won two of three matchups in 2010-11 including a victory in the GLIAC Tournament Semifinals, but the Huskies came back to win three matchups the following year in 2011-12 and ended the Bulldogs' season with a home win in the conference tourney quarterfinals.

Ferris State holds a 56-64 all-time series record against Northern Michigan entering Saturday's matchup in Marquette, but have claimed 21 of the last 24 series' contests. Ferris State compiled a 21-3 record against the Wildcats under Bill Sall's direction the last 11 years. FSU has won the last 11 matchups to date with the last loss coming Jan. 24, 2008, by a 71-57 score in Marquette. A year ago, Ferris State beat NMU 51-41 in Big Rapids (Jan. 12) and 69-63 in Marquette (Feb. 9).

Following this week's trip, Ferris State returns home next week for a pair of league home contests inside Jim Wink Arena. The Bulldogs host Northwood on Thursday, Jan. 23, at 8 p.m. (ET) before squaring off against GLIAC North leader Lake Superior State on Saturday, Jan. 25, starting at 3 p.m. (ET) in Big Rapids.

Click Here For Complete Game Notes (PDF)

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