Sieler, Thomas to Anchor Stout Ferris State Defense

BIG RAPIDS – With its offense ranking as one of the best in the nation a year ago, the Ferris State football program is looking to duplicate that success on the defensive side of the ball.

Ferris State returns a majority of its starters on defense, including a pair of First Team All-America selections in Zach Sieler and Tavierre Thomas.

A year ago, Sieler, a defensive end, set a program record for tackles for loss (29.5) and sacks (19.5) in a season, while Thomas recorded a career-high six interceptions in the secondary.         

“There’s a bunch of guys back there that are fifth-year guys and that’s a key to our secondary,” coach Tony Annese said. “Zach Sieler’s going to make his plays, Chris Okoye is going to make his plays. We have multiple guys that have really played a lot.”

With the experience and skill returning, the Bulldogs have high expectations for the defense.

“It’s nice seeing those guys out there battling,” Sieler said. “We had our defense split in half, but they didn’t even skip a beat. They’re all meshing together, flowing well. So it’s nice to see them out there together”

Ferris State is set to kick off its 2017 season the first weekend in September against an opponent to be determined.