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GVSU, Ferris State, and Davenport all earn playoff bids

It's the first ever playoff appearance for the Panthers.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Grand Valley State, Ferris State and Davenport all had amazing football seasons. In fact, the Panthers and Lakers played for the GLIAC championship on the final day of the regular season. All three programs earned invitations to the postseason and two will see each other in the first game.

The #1-ranked Lakers (11-0) received the top seed in Super Region 3 and will get a first-round bye in the NCAA Playoffs. GVSU will be making its 21st appearance all-time in the NCAA playoffs. 

The Lakers won their 18th league championship all-time, following their 10th undefeated regular season.

Ferris State University received the school's eighth consecutive NCAA Division II Playoff appearance as the Bulldogs (9-1) were chosen as the number two seed in Super Region Three. The Bulldogs will host a first-round matchup on Saturday, Nov. 19, at FSU's Top Taggart Field against Davenport at 1pm. 

The game will be a GLIAC rematch from two weeks ago, when the Bulldogs beat the Panthers 28-7 in a game played in soggy conditions.

Credit: WZZM
Ferris State head coach Tony Annese hugs Davenport head coach Sparky McEwen after the Bulldogs 28-7 win over the Panthers on November 5, 2022.

The Panthers historic season continues. Following their first 8-0 start in program history, the team lost its last two games of the season to its rivals GVSU and Ferris State to finish the year with an 8 and 2 record. That was good enough to earn the program's first ever Div. 2 playoff appearance. The Panthers were selected as an at-large pick in Super Region Three.

"This is another historic moment for our program," said head coach Sparky McEwen. "There has been a tremendous amount of time, energy, and effort by this University and administration to put our program on the Division II map. Our coaches and student-athletes have worked extremely hard over the past five years to put us in the position we are today. We are thankful to be part of the toughest NCAA Division II conference in America."  

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