Big Rapids, Mich. - A busy offseason continues for the Ferris State University football program as the Bulldogs will officially start preparations for the 2013 campaign this Friday, March 22, by beginning their annual spring practice drills.
Second-year head coach Tony Annese and his Bulldog staff will have the NCAA-allotted total of 15 practices, which will include the annual Crimson and Gold Spring Game on Saturday, April 13, at FSU's Top Taggart Field. Opening kickoff is slated for 12 p.m. (EDT).
The Bulldogs' first practice of the spring will take place at Top Taggart Field on Friday starting at 3 p.m. (ET).
FSU will conduct a varied spring practice schedule that runs over the course of four weeks from March 22 to April 20. The spring schedule is subject to change depending on the weather and most practices are slated to take place at Top Taggart Field.
Practices times will also vary with sessions both during the day along with morning workouts. Three practices are also scheduled the week following the spring game with a final practice for the spring scheduled for Saturday, April 20.
More information on the spring game will be available soon.
In his first season at the Bulldog helm last fall, Annese guided Ferris State to a 7-4 overall mark and FSU ranked among the nation's top teams in both rushing offense and total offense. For his efforts, he was a national semifinalist in voting for the prestigious Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year Award.
In 2012, the Bulldogs recorded several impressive wins under Annese's direction, including beating archrival Grand Valley State in the Anchor-Bone Classic for the first time since 1999, snapping a 10-year losing streak to Michigan Tech and topping defending national runner-up Wayne State for the first time in five years. FSU also managed to win seven games for only the second time in the past decade despite facing one of the nation's two toughest schedules in Division II football during the regular-season, according to the Massey Ratings.
Besides putting together an impressive debut season with the Bulldogs, Annese and his staff also recently inked what many consider to be one of the nation's top incoming recruiting classes in Division II football.
2013 Spring Practice Schedule:
Practice #1 - Friday, March 22, 3-5:15 p.m.
Practice #2 - Saturday, March 23, 11 a.m.-1:15 p.m.
Practice #3 - Sunday, March 24, 3-5:15 p.m.
Practice #4 - Tuesday, March 26, 7-9 a.m.
Practice #5 - Thursday, March 28, 11 a.m.-1 p.m.
Practice #6 - Tuesday, April 2, 7-9 a.m.
Practice #7 - Thursday, April 4, 7-9 a.m.
Practice #8 - Friday, April 5, 3:30-5:30 p.m.
Practice #9 - Sunday, April 7, 5:30 p.m.
Practice #10 - Tuesday, April 9, 7-9 a.m.
Practice #11 - Thursday, April 11, 7-9 a.m.
Practice #12 - Saturday, April 13, 12 p.m. (Crimson & Gold Spring Game)
Practice #13 - Tuesday, April 16, 7-9 a.m.
Practice #14 - Friday, April 19, 3-5:30 p.m.
Practice #15 - Saturday, April 20, 12:30 p.m. (Final Spring Practice)
NOTE -- All Eastern (ET) start times and locations are subject to change.