Vander Laan Becomes Greatest Rushing QB Of All-Time As Ferris State Beats Ohio Dominican

Vander Laan Becomes Greatest Rushing QB Of All-Time As Ferris State Beats Ohio Dominican

Postgame Press Conference
ESPN Gameday Mention
Game Highlights
Vander Laan ESPN Interview
Vander Laan Record-Breaking Play

Big Rapids, Mich. - On a historic day, the Ferris State University football squad avenged last year's NCAA Playoff defeat by beating Ohio Dominican in a Saturday showdown at FSU's Top Taggart Field by a 38-17 score.

Bulldog senior quarterback Jason Vander Laan officially claimed the title of college football's greatest rushing quarterback of all-time on a 53-yard touchdown run up the home sideline early in the second quarter to push FSU in front for good. With the win, he became the leading career-rushing QB in the history of college football at any level.

Vander Laan ran for a game-high 159 yards on 28 carries and completed 16-of-25 passes for 159 yards while accounting for three scores in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) triumph. 

The Bulldogs opened the scoring on the first possession of the game as they drove 75 yards in 10 plays to grab the early lead. Vander Laan found junior receiver Shakur Sanders on an 18-yard scoring strike with 10:45 to go in the first period as FSU took an early 7-0 advantage.

However, ODU marched back and moved 67 yards in five plays with Casey Williams recovering a Panther fumble in the endzone to make it 7-7 midway thru the first quarter.

The score stood up until 13:47 remained in the first half when Vander Laan made history by bouncing off right tackle on a sprint to the endzone, giving FSU a 14-7 lead they would not relinquish.

The Bulldogs added a pair of first-half scores as junior kicker Nate Iveson connected on a 25-yard field with 8:12 to play in the half after Ferris State had drove 56 yards before the drive stalled. Then, late in the half, FSU covered 41 yards in 10 plays with senior wideout Jake Lampman finding the endzone on a three-yard TD run with only 20 seconds left in the period as FSU grabbed a 24-7 lead at the break.

In the third quarter, FSU scored the lone points when Vander Laan scored his second rushing touchdown of the afternoon on a three-yard plunge. It capped a 13-play, 68-yard Bulldog drive as FSU pushed its lead to 31-7 at the end of three periods.

Ohio Dominican finally found the scoreboard again with 12:56 to go when Brent Wahle connected on a 31-yard field goal to finish an 11-play, 47-yard jaunt. The Panthers later moved 51 yards in seven plays with quarterback Grant Russell finding JT McFarland on a 17-yard TD toss to cut the margin to 31-17 with 5:20 to go.

The Bulldogs, though, closed the scoring as slot Jamel Lockett set FSU up for a final score by racing 59 yards to the redzone. From there, redshirt freshman back Robert Thomas found paydirt on a nine-yard run to account for the final margin with 3:33 left in the contest.

Ferris State rolled up 442 yards of total offense, including 283 on the ground. Vander Laan ran for 161 yards and two scores while completing 16-of-25 passes for 159 yards and a score. Tailback Jahaan Brown caught three passes for 45 yards and Antonio Agurs had five grabs for 41 yards in leading the receiving game. Brown also ran for 47 yards on 12 carries.

Defensively, FSU limited ODU to 240 yards of total offense and only 45 yards rushing on 27 attempts. Panther QB Grant Russell was 19-of-38 in the air for 195 yards and two scores with Darryl Johnson leading the ground game with 12 carries for 49 yards. Standout receiver Dez Stewart caught six passes for 73 yards.

Junior linebacker Nick Huckabay and senior defensive lineman Justin Zimmer paced the FSU defense with seven tackles each in the victory. Both also had a sack and a tackle for loss.
Ferris State improved to 6-0 overall and in the GLIAC with the victory while ODU fell to 4-3 overall and in conference play.

The Bulldogs conclude a two-game homestand by hosting Michigan Tech in a potential battle of top 10 ranked teams next Saturday (Oct. 24) at Top Taggart Field. The Huskies are unbeaten heading into an evening road tilt at Grand Valley State. Kickoff next Saturday is set for 12 p.m. (ET) and tickets are on sale now. Visit or call 231-591-2888.