Postgame Press Conference
Big Rapids, Mich. - The Ferris State University football squad advanced to the NCAA Division II National Semifinals for the second time in three years as the Bulldogs claimed the Super Region Three Championship with a decisive 37-14 road triumph over top-seeded Ouachita Baptist on Saturday (Dec. 1) in Arkadelphia, Ark.
FSU rolled up 357 yards rushing and built a 27-0 halftime lead en route to moving to 14-0 overall this year.
With the win, the Bulldogs will advance to face Minnesota State on the road next Saturday (Dec. 8) in the D2 National Semifinals. The four remaining semifinal teams were reseeded with the pairings announced late Saturday evening. Kickoff is slated for 3 p.m. (ET) in Mankato, Minn.
In Saturday's win, the Bulldogs welcomed back Harlon Hill Trophy finalist Jayru Campbell at quarterback and he completed 10-of-16 throws for 128 yards. He also ran for 47 yards and directed a balanced FSU offensive attack that spread the ball around.
Ferris State went six-of-seven in the redzone and limited ODU to 281 total yards in the contest while beating the Tigers in the playoffs for the second consecutive season.
FSU was making its third-straight D2 National Quarterfinal appearance and claimed the regional crown for the second time in three years. The Bulldogs are the only D2 team in the nation to reach the quarterfinals each of the last three seasons.
The Bulldogs opened the scoring late in the first period when senior back Derrick Portis scored on a 14-yard carry to finish a five-play, 79-yard drive.
The lead grew soon after as FSU capitalized on a blocked punt and found the endzone again only 28 seconds into the second period when senior back Robert Thomas raced in from six-yards away to finish a short 27-yard drive.
The Bulldogs increased their lead again late in the opening half with a pair of scores. The first came on sophomore Marvin Campbell's two-yard burst with 2:27 to go, wrapping up a 15-play, 66-yard-march. The second took place with only six seconds left in the half when redshirt freshman Sy Barnett caught a short two-yard TD throw fro Campbell.
Ferris State added three more points midway thru the third when junior kicker Jackson Dieterle hit a 26-yard field goal, but OBU finally found the scoring column slightly more than a minute later when Allie Freeman hauled in a 43-yard scoring throw from Brayden Brazeal, making it a 30-7 game in FSU's favor.
The Bulldogs pushed the margin to 37-7 when redshirt freshman quarterback Evan Cummins leaped into the endzone with 6:49 to go in the game. The final points came when the Tigers reached the endzone with only 12 seconds left on Brazeal's four-yard throw to Lamar Haynes.
Marvin Campbell led FSU on the ground with 75 yards rushing while Barnett caught a team-high four passes for 51 yards in the win. Linebacker Sam Heyboer led the FSU defense with seven solo tackles and an interception.
Stay tuned to FerrisStateBulldogs.com for additional playoff information coming soon!