The Ferris State Bulldogs are looking to reclaim last year's magic which put them in the national championship game before dropping a tough game against Boston College. Ferris currently is in fifth place in the CCHA with a 6-5-1-0 league mark and 7-6-3 overall mark. They are winless in three games (which oddly enough started after a win against Michigan), going 0-2-1 in their last 3 contests. Ferris State was swept by Western Michigan last weekend (4-2, 2-1).
Ok, everyone knows that when things aren't working out too well, it's time to change up the superstitions. These previews have usually always been out by Thursday (if not before then). I'm fairly certain this is the first one that I've done on a Friday. In addition, I'll poke fun (albeit sometimes lamely) at the other school. Well, we're going to brag Ferris State up today. All in hopes that this is the mojo change. And yes, I'm well aware that no matter what I do - it doesn't impact the performance of the hockey team.
Ferris State started the season somewhat stronger than Michigan State. Ferris State beat Miami (shut them out). Ferris State also shut out Michigan. Ferris State went to the Frozen Four last year (and the national championship). Ferris State is the defending CCHA Champions (people might not remember this). Ferris State is coached by a Spartan (Bob Daniels). Ferris State is ranked 19th in the country.
Michigan State holds a 66-30-15 all-time record against Ferris State, and this includes a 38-16-6 edge at Munn. Ferris State has won four straight against MSU.
The game can be seen on Comcast Ch. 900 or heard on the Spartan Sports Network or 1240 AM. The puck is scheduled to drop at 5:05 pm on Saturday. This is the only game between the two teams this weekend. MSU will break for the holiday after this game - and return in action at the GLI on December 29th against Western Michigan.
Stats that make you go Hmmm...: This is the longest winless streak for Michigan State since a six-game winless streak from January 17, 2009 to February 6th 2009.. That streak saw MSU go 0-5-1. That streak was snapped with a 1-0 victory over........Ferris State.
Ferris State Leading Scorers:
Kyle Bonis 8 goals, 13 points
Garrett Thompson 6 goals, 12 points
Travis Ouellette 4 goals, 11 points
Cory Kane 4 goals, 10 points
Justin DeMartino 3 goals, 10 points
Jason Binkley 1 goal, 10 points
C.J. Motte 7-6-3, 2.20 GAA, .930 save %
Historically - this is not the type of team that lends themselves to helping you break out of an offensive slump. They will like to play a grind-it-out type game, a trap game, and if at all possible - a 2-1 game. That doesn't mean they don't have talent up front, but you usually don't see them in many 6-5 type games (reverse jinx!). This is a game where MSU will have to be patient - get traffic in front - and don't be afraid to pepper the goalie (but with traffic in front). They need to grind out some garbage type goals. First goal in this game will be huge - because it might be the only goal scored (reverse jinx!). I just don't see the offensive slump ending this weekend and don't be surprised if Motte puts up a shutout or a strong one GA game (I'm working under the theroy that this is like a no-hitter in baseball.....).
And I don't consider myself THAT superstitious. (wink, wink)