February 6, 2014

PREVIEW: Ferris State Hosts Upper Peninsula Foes In GLIAC Men's Hoops Action

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Big Rapids, Mich. - The Ferris State University men's basketball team returns home to host Michigan Tech and Northern Michigan in Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) play this week. FSU hosts MTU on Thursday (Feb. 6) at 8 p.m. (ET) before meeting NMU on Saturday (Feb. 8) at 3 p.m. (ET) inside Jim Wink Arena.

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 and Sandy Gholston will call the action. In addition, a live audio broadcast will be accessible along with a pay-per-view video webcast along with live internet statistics. For a full listing of links, please visit FerrisStateBulldogs.com.

Thursday's game is designated as "Resident Appreciation and Healthy Hearts Night".  The first 500 students in the door receive a free t-shirt or color change cup. Prizes will also include a flat-screen TV raffle, coupons for free pizzas, Starbucks gift cards, free meal passes to the Rock and more.

This Saturday's contest will mark the return of former Bulldog head coach Bill Sall, who is now the head coach at Northern Michigan. He previously directed the Bulldog program for 11 years from 2002-13 and current Ferris State head coach Andy Bronkema served on his FSU staff for six years before taking the helm. Sall led the Wildcats to a 61-59 win over FSU in the first meeting between the two teams in Marquette (Jan. 18).

Ferris State home basketball tickets for this week's games can be purchased in advance thru the FSU Athletics Ticket Office by calling (231) 591-2888 or visit FerrisStateBulldogs.com for more information. They can also be bought online via StarTickets.com. Adult general admission tickets are $7 or the cost is $5 for FSU faculty/staff, seniors ages 65 and up or students age 3 thru 12th grade. FSU students are admitted free with a valid student ID card.

Ferris State (6-12, 5-9 GLIAC) will be looking for its first victory since early January this week as FSU hosts Michigan Tech and Northern Michigan. Prior to the current stretch, the Bulldogs had won six games in a row around the holiday break.
   
Michigan Tech (14-5, 10-5 GLIAC) has split its last four games overall, but is coming off a 69-58 league home win over rival Northern Michigan on Monday (Feb. 3) evening in Houghton. The Huskies topped Northwood at home 82-57 last Thursday (Jan. 30) before falling 79-78 against Lake Superior State on Saturday (Feb. 1).

Northern Michigan (4-15, 3-12 GLIAC) has lost five-straight contests since beating the Bulldogs in Marquette on Jan. 18. They fell 69-58 at Michigan Tech on Monday (Feb. 3) and are 0-8 on the road to date this season. NMU visits Grand Valley State Thursday prior to facing FSU.

The Bulldogs trail Michigan Tech 59-54 in the all-time series although FSU has won 11 of the last 22 games heading into Thursday's 114th 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. MTU was a 74-64 winner earlier this year (Jan. 16) in Houghton.

Ferris State holds a 56-65 all-time series record against Northern Michigan entering Saturday's matchup in Big Rapids, but have claimed 21 of the last 25 series' contests. Ferris State compiled a 21-3 record against the Wildcats under Bill Sall's direction the last 11 years. FSU had won the last 11 matchups prior to this year's 61-59 loss on Jan. 18 in Marquette. Prior to that loss, the last setback had came on 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).

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