|Head Coach Bill Sall speaks to the media during Thursday's GLIAC Basketball Media Day Teleconference At Jim Wink Arena|
The Ferris State University men's basketball team was picked to finish fifth in the 2008-09 Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) Men's Basketball North Division Preseason Poll, which was announced Thursday (Oct. 30) during the league's second annual media day teleconference.
Ferris head coach Bill Sall was joined by local media representatives inside FSU's Jim Wink Arena for the teleconference and media members had an opportunity to conduct one-on-one interviews following the call.
The poll was chosen for the second year in a row by selected members of the media and the GLIAC's Sports Information Directors. The 30-member group tabbed defending champions Grand Valley State and Findlay to win the conference's North and South Division titles, respectively.
The Bulldogs totaled 69 points in the balloting while finishing fifth in the North Division. Grand Valley State earned 29 of a possible 30 first-place votes and led the division with 179 points. Michigan Tech placed second with 133 points and tallied the final first-place vote followed by Lake Superior State with 102 overall points in third place. Saginaw Valley State claimed fourth place (93 points), FSU was fifth and Northern Michigan came in sixth (54).
Findlay earned 29 first-place votes in the South Division and led the way with 169 total points. Hillsdale came in second (141) and had one first-place vote while Ashland finished third (110).
In addition to the preseason media poll, the league also released a Preseason All-GLIAC Team, which was chosen by the conference's head coaches. Findlay senior forward Josh Bostic was chosen as the GLIAC's Preseason Player of the Year. FSU sophomore center Justin Keenan (Grand Rapids/Ottawa Hills), who averaged 15.9 points and 6.9 rebounds per contest in his initial collegiate season a year ago, picked up Preseason All-GLIAC North Division kudos.
"We're looking forward to it all and it's good to be back rolling once again," said Sall, now in his seventh season at the helm. "We're happy with the progress we've made in the offseason and our guys have dedicated themselves to getting it done."
The Bulldog men's basketball team welcomes back eight letterwinners from last campaign. All eight men's returnees all started at least one contest a year ago when FSU posted a 10-19 overall record. Ferris previously advanced to the NCAA Division II Tournament in both 2004-05 and 2005-06 after claiming back-to-back league titles in 2003-04 and 2004-05 under Sall's direction. FSU reached the NCAA-II Sweet Sixteen in 2004-05.
The Bulldog men's basketball squad first hits the hardwood with an exhibition contest Thursday, Oct. 30, against Cornerstone with tipoff set for 5 p.m. (EST) at Jim Wink Arena. Ferris will then take on West Michigan opponent Calvin in the second game of an exhibition doubleheader Tuesday, Nov. 11, at 8 p.m. (EST) inside Wink Arena.
FSU's first official men's contest will be Saturday, Nov. 15, when the Bulldogs travel to Great Lakes Regional opponent Northern Kentucky for a 1 p.m. (EST) afternoon clash. The game will be the first official regular-season contest in NKU's new 10,000-seat state of the art Bank of Kentucky Center at Highland Heights, Ky. The Norse are ranked fourth nationally in the Division II Bulletin Preseason Poll along with sixth in the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) Division II Preseason Coaches Poll.
Findlay is the nation's consensus preseason number one team in both polls while GVSU is also ranked nationally by both sources. The Bulldogs received 18 points and are listed second among other teams receiving votes in the NABC Preseason National Poll released today (Oct. 30).
The following is the complete 2008-09 GLIAC Men's Basketball Preseason Media Poll with first-place votes in parenthesis.
1. Grand Valley State (29) - 179 points
2. Michigan Tech (1) - 133 points
3. Lake Superior State - 102 points
4. Saginaw Valley State - 93 points
5. Ferris State - 69 points
6. Northern Michigan - 54 points
1. Findlay (29) - 169 points
2. Hillsdale (1) - 141 points
3. Ashland - 110 points
4. Northwood - 89 points
5. Wayne State - 79 points
6. Tiffin - 36 points
The following is the complete 2008-09 GLIAC Men's Basketball Preseason All-Conference Team (chosen by the head coaches).
Grand Valley State - Pete Trammell (F/Sr.)
Ferris State - Justin Keenan (F/So.)
Lake Superior State - Ryan Kuhl (C/Sr.)
Michigan Tech - Robby Springborn (G/Sr.)
Saginaw Valley State - Lawrence Ross (G-F/Sr.)
Ashland - Kale Richardson (F/So.)
Findlay - Josh Bostic (F/Sr.)
Findlay - Morgan Lewis (F/Sr.)
Hillsdale - Tony Gugino (C/Sr.)
Northwood - Mark Barnes (F/Sr.)
Preseason Player of the Year
Findlay - Josh Bostic (F/Sr.)