Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns football

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Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns football
AmericanFootball current event.svg 2022 Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns football team
Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns wordmark.svg
First season1901 (1901)
Athletic directorBryan Maggard
Head coach Michael Desormeaux
1st season, 4–3 (.571)
Stadium Cajun Field
(capacity: 41,426)
Year built1971
Field surfaceTurf (ProGrass)
Location Lafayette, Louisiana
NCAA division Division I FBS
Conference Sun Belt Conference
DivisionWest
All-time record57656334 (.506)
Bowl record83 (.727)
Conference titles10
Division titles4
Rivalries ULM (rivalry)
Lamar (rivalry)
McNeese State (rivalry)
Southeastern Louisiana (rivalry)
Consensus All-Americans4
ColorsVermilion and white [1]
   
Fight songRagin' Cajuns Fight Song
Marching band Pride of Acadiana
Outfitter Adidas
Website RaginCajuns.com

The Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns football program is a college football team that represents the University of Louisiana at Lafayette at the NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) level as a member of the Sun Belt Conference. Since 1971, the team has played its home games at Cajun Field in Lafayette, Louisiana. Michael Desormeaux has served as Louisiana's head coach since 2021.

Contents

The RCAF (Ragin Cajun Athletic Foundation) is the supporter association that assists with funding for all Ragin Cajun sports..

The program began play in 1901 when the school was known as Southwestern Louisiana Industrial Institute. The school's sports teams were known as the Southwestern Louisiana Bulldogs from 1921 until 1973. The school's fight name was formally changed to Ragin' Cajuns in 1974, which had been in use since the 1960s. In 1999, the university took on its current name, at which point its sports teams were referred to as Louisiana–Lafayette. A rebranding in 2017 dropped "Lafayette" from the Cajuns' name.

Between 2011 and 2014, the Cajuns won four consecutive New Orleans Bowls, representing the most successful stretch in the program's history to date, but later had to vacate two of the victories due to NCAA violations. [2]

The Cajuns have had several players go to play professionally in the National Football League (NFL), including Jake Delhomme, Charles Tillman, Brian Mitchell, Orlando Thomas, Brandon Stokely, Elijah McGuire, Elijah Mitchell, Kevin Dotson, and Levi Lewis.

History

Before 1974, the team's official nickname was the Bulldogs, although the current nickname was in common use with the football team for approximately the decade prior.[ citation needed ]

Division history

YearsDivision
1937–1962 National Junior College Athletic Association
1963–1972 NCAA College Division (Small College)
1973NCAA Division II
1974–1977 NCAA Division I
1978–present NCAA Division I-A (FBS)

Conference affiliations

Louisiana has been both independent and a member of four different conferences. [3] :89

Championships

Conference championships

Louisiana has won 10 conference championships, with the 2013 championship later vacated. [4] [3] :84–89

YearConferenceCoachConference recordOverall record
1952 Gulf States Conference Raymond Didier 3–0–25–2–2
1965 Russ Faulkinberry 4–17–3
1968 5–18–2
1970 5–09–3
1993 Big West Conference Nelson Stokley 5–18–3
19945–16–5
2005 Sun Belt Conference Rickey Bustle 5–26–5
2013†,‡ Mark Hudspeth 5–29–4
2020†,^ Billy Napier 7–110–1
2021 8–013–1

† Co-champions
‡ Louisiana vacated the 2013 Sun Belt Conference co-championship due to major NCAA violations [4]
^ The 2020 championship game was not played due to Coastal Carolina impacted by COVID-19 pandemic [5] For College Football Playoff purposes, Coastal Carolina was viewed as the 2020 Sun Belt Champions. [6] Recognizing that the College Football Playoff committee had no jurisdiction to that magnitude coupled with a desire to prevent the diminishment to the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns football team’s accomplishments in 2020, Lafayette Mayor-President Josh Guillory declared, by executive proclamation, the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns football team as the 2020 sole champions of the Sun Belt Conference in football. [7]

Division championships

Louisiana has won four division championships with the most recent in the 2021 season.

YearDivisionCoachConf. recordOverall recordOpponentCG result
2018 Sun Belt West Billy Napier 5–37–7 Appalachian State L 19–30
2019 7–111–3 Appalachian State L 38–45
2020 7–110–1 Coastal Carolina No Contest^
2021 8–013–1 Appalachian State W 24–16

^ The 2020 championship game was not played due to Coastal Carolina impacted by COVID-19 pandemic [5]

Postseason history

National Junior College Athletic Association

DateCoachBowlOpponentResult
January 1, 1944Louis Whitman Oil Bowl Arkansas–Monticello W 24–7

NCAA Small College Division

DateCoachBowlOpponentResult
December 12, 1970Russ Faulkinberry Grantland Rice Bowl Tennessee State L 25–26

NCAA Division I FBS

Since joining the NCAA Division I-A (FBS) in 1978, the Ragin' Cajuns have played in nine bowl games, although two of those games (which were victories) were vacated due to sanctions. Officially, they have a record of 5–2 in bowl games.

DateCoachBowlOpponentResult
December 17, 2011 Mark Hudspeth New Orleans Bowl San Diego State W 32–30
December 22, 2012 New Orleans Bowl East Carolina W 43–34
December 21, 2013 New Orleans Bowl Tulane W 24–21†
December 20, 2014 New Orleans Bowl Nevada W 16–3
December 17, 2016 New Orleans Bowl Southern Miss L 21–28
December 15, 2018 Billy Napier Cure Bowl Tulane L 24–41
January 6, 2020 LendingTree Bowl Miami (OH) W 27–17
December 26, 2020 First Responder Bowl UTSA W 31–24
December 18, 2021 Michael Desormeaux New Orleans Bowl Marshall W 36–21

† Vacated [8] [9]

Home stadiums

McNaspy Stadium

In 1940 McNaspy Stadium was built on the campus of Southwestern Louisiana Institute (now University of Louisiana at Lafayette). It served as the Cajuns home field through the 1970 season and was demolished in 2000. McNaspy Stadium was located at the site where the current computer science building Oliver Hall now stands.

Cajun Field

Cajun Field on gameday. Cajun field gameday.jpg
Cajun Field on gameday.

Cajun Field is a football stadium located in the city of Lafayette, Louisiana, and has served as the home field of the Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns football team since 1970. Cajun Field has an official capacity of 41,426 with 2,577 chairback seats, and its nickname is "The Swamp."

In June of 2021 it was announced that Cajun Field would be undergoing a $75 million renovation, with construction slated to begin summer of 2022. [10] The plans are to demolish the current West Tower, and replace it with a state of the art facility, including amenities such as premium suites, a club level and club seats, loge boxes, and press box. Because of a $15 million donation, the stadium will now be known as “Cajun Field at Our Lady of Lourdes Stadium.”

Head coaches

Years coachedNameRecord
1901–1902 Ashby Woodson 3–2
1903J. Ovey Herpin1–1
1904 Edwin F. Gayle 2–0–1
1906 Herbert McNaspy 1–0–1
1907 Jefferson Caffery 1–0
1908–1911; 1913; 1917–1918 Clement J. McNaspy 34–15–4
1912 H. Lee Prather 3–4
1914–1915R. B. Dunbar10–5–1
1916; 1919; 1921–1930 T. R. Mobley 57–48–7
1920 Herbert O. Tudor 2–8
1931–1936 Truman F. Wilbanks 19–32–2
1937–1941; 1946 Johnny Cain 33–19–5
1942–1945Louis Whittman14–14–2
1947–1949 Gee Mitchell 18–8–1
1950 A. L. Swanson 5–4
1951–1956 Raymond Didier 29–23–2
1957 John Robert Bell 4–5–1
1958–1960 Red Hoggatt 11–17
1961–1973 Russ Faulkinberry 66–63–2
1974–1979 Augie Tammariello 30–35–2
1980–1985 Sam Robertson 29–34–2
1986–1998 Nelson Stokley 62–80–1
1999–2001 Jerry Baldwin 6–27
2002–2010 Rickey Bustle 41–65
2011–2017 Mark Hudspeth 29–38†
2018–2021 Billy Napier 40–12
2021–present Michael Desormeaux 2–0

† Hudspeth's record of 51–38 was reduced to 29–38 due to alleged NCAA violations.[ citation needed ]

Rivalries

Lamar

Although no longer an active rivalry, the first Sabine Shoe trophy was first awarded in 1937 to the winner of the SLI–Lamar football game. [11] The name of the bronze rivalry trophy was derived from the Sabine River that forms the Texas-Louisiana border. USL defeated Lamar in the 1978 edition of the rivalry game, but the Ragin' Cajuns were not awarded the trophy as it had vanished. [12] The Sabine Shoe trophy now sits in at trophy case in the Ragin' Cajun Athletic Complex.

Louisiana–Lamar: All-time record
Games playedFirst meetingLast meetingLA winsLA lossesTiesWin %
34October 27, 1923 (won 19–16)September 1, 2012 (won 40–0)2311067.6%

McNeese State

Another former rivalry. When active the Cajun Crown was the name of the trophy between Louisiana and McNeese State. [13]

Louisiana–McNeese State: All-Time Record
Games playedFirst meetingLast meetingLA winsLA lossesTiesWin %
38September 22, 1951 (won 35–14)September 10, 2016 (won 30–22)1620247.1%

Southeastern Louisiana

This is another former rivalry. The Cypress Mug was the turned, polished mahogany mug awarded to the winner of the Southwestern–Southeastern football game. [14]

Louisiana–Southeastern Louisiana: All-time record
Games playedFirst meetingLast meetingLA winsLA lossesTiesWin %
40November 11, 1930 (won 13–0)September 2, 2017 (won 51–48)2017358.8%

Conference Rivalries

Louisiana–Monroe

The Battle on the Bayou is the annual rivalry game between Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns and Louisiana–Monroe. The wooden boot-shaped rivalry trophy was created in 2002 to be awarded to the victors. [15]

Louisiana–ULM: All-time record
Games playedFirst meetingLast meetingLA winsLA lossesTiesWin %
56September 15, 1951 (lost 7–13)November 27, 2021 (won 21–16)3125055.4%

Appalachian State

Louisiana–Appalachian State: All-time record
Games playedFirst meetingLast meetingLA winsLA lossesTiesWin %
11November 22, 2014 (lost 35–16)December 4, 2021 (won 24–16)38027.3%

Arkansas State

Louisiana–Arkansas State: All-time record
Games playedFirst meetingLast meetingLA winsLA lossesTiesWin %
50October 17, 1953 (lost 13–12)October 21, 2021 (won 28–27)2821156.3%

Notable players

Future non-conference opponents

Announced schedules as of August 9, 2022. [16]

2023202420252026202720282029
vs Northwestern State at Michigan State Rice UAB at Tulane Tulsa Louisiana Tech
at UAB Tulane at Eastern Michigan at Louisiana Tech
at Minnesota at New Mexico State at Missouri
vs New Mexico State

See also

Related Research Articles

<span class="mw-page-title-main">New Orleans Bowl</span>

The New Orleans Bowl is an NCAA-sanctioned post-season college football bowl game that has been played annually since 2001. It is normally held at Caesars Superdome in New Orleans; when the Superdome and the rest of the city suffered damage due to Hurricane Katrina in 2005, the game was temporarily moved to Cajun Field in Lafayette, Louisiana, and given the name New Orleans Bowl at Lafayette. Since 2006, the bowl has been sponsored by R+L Carriers and officially known as the R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl. The game was previously sponsored by Wyndham Hotels & Resorts from 2002 to 2004 and was officially called the Wyndham New Orleans Bowl.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Cajun Field</span>

Cajun Field is a football stadium located in the city of Lafayette, Louisiana. Nicknamed The Swamp, it is the home field of Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns athletics. Cajun Field is primarily used for its American football team. Cajun Field has an official capacity of 41,426 with 2,577 chairback seats.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns</span> University of Louisiana athletic teams

The Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns are the athletic teams of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. The college has been competing athletically since 1901. The Ragin' Cajuns compete in NCAA Division I, fielding 16 varsity teams.

The 2008 Louisiana–Lafayette Ragin' Cajuns football team represented the University of Louisiana at Lafayette in the 2008 NCAA Division I FBS football season. Louisiana–Lafayette competed as a member of the Sun Belt Conference, and played their home games at Cajun Field. The Ragin' Cajuns were led by seventh-year head coach Rickey Bustle. UL-Lafayette finished the season with a 6–6 record.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Coastal Carolina Chanticleers football</span>

The Coastal Carolina Chanticleers football team represents Coastal Carolina University in college football at the NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision level. The Chanticleers are members of the Sun Belt Conference, fielding its teams at the FBS level since 2017. The Chanticleers play their home games at James C. Benton Field at Brooks Stadium in Conway, South Carolina.

The 2011 Louisiana–Lafayette Ragin' Cajuns football program represented the University of Louisiana at Lafayette in the 2011 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The Ragin' Cajuns were led by first year head coach Mark Hudspeth and played their home games at Cajun Field. They are members of the Sun Belt Conference. They finished the season 9–4 overall and 6–2 in Sun Belt play to finish in third place. They were invited to the New Orleans Bowl, the program's first bowl game, where they defeated San Diego State. However, in 2015 Louisiana–Lafayette vacated eight wins including their New Orleans Bowl victory due to alleged major NCAA violations.

The 2011 R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl, part of the 2011–12 bowl game season, took place on December 17, 2011, at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana. The 11th edition of the game featured the Louisiana–Lafayette Ragin' Cajuns from the Sun Belt Conference, and the San Diego State Aztecs from the Mountain West Conference. The game was telecast at 8:00 p.m. CT on ESPN and ESPN 3D.

The 2012 R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl was a post-season American college football bowl game held on December 22, 2012, at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana. The 12th edition of the New Orleans Bowl began at 11:00 a.m. CST and aired on ESPN. It featured the East Carolina Pirates from Conference USA against the Louisiana–Lafayette Ragin' Cajuns from the Sun Belt Conference and was the final game of the 2012 NCAA Division I FBS football season for both teams. The Ragin' Cajuns accepted their invitation after earning an 8–4 record in the regular season, while the Pirates advanced to the game through the C-USA's contingency plan after earning an 8–4 record.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Sabine Shoe</span>

The Sabine Shoe is the name of the bronze shoe trophy that was awarded to the winner of the annual football game between the Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns and the Lamar Cardinals. The first Sabine Shoe trophy was awarded in 1937 to the winner of the SLI–Lamar football game. The name of the bronze rivalry trophy was derived from the Sabine River that forms part of the Texas–Louisiana border. USL defeated Lamar in the 1978 edition of the rivalry game, but the Ragin' Cajuns were not awarded the trophy as it had vanished. The Sabine Shoe trophy now sits in at trophy case in the Ragin' Cajun Athletic Complex in Lafayette, Louisiana. The two teams have met 34 times on the football field, with the Ragin' Cajuns currently holding a 22–11 edge in the all time series. The game has been infrequently played following the Ragin' Cajuns departure from the Southland Conference in football. Following the 1981 season, the conference was one of several forced to reclassify from NCAA's Division I-A to Division I-AA. The Ragin' Cajuns, a member of Division I-A since 1978, met the NCAA requirements to remain a Division I-A member and chose to continue participation in that sub-division. Later on, both Division I-A and I-AA were changed to the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) and the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS), respectively. Lamar still remains a member of the FCS, the division in which the teams play in a post-season tournament to find a champion while Louisiana plays in the FBS, the division in which teams compete in post-season bowl games.

The 2014 Louisiana–Lafayette Ragin' Cajuns football program represented the University of Louisiana at Lafayette in the 2014 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The team was led by fourth-year head coach Mark Hudspeth. The Ragin' Cajuns played their home games at Cajun Field and competed in the Sun Belt Conference. They finished the season 9–4 overall and 7–1 in Sun Belt play to finish in second place. They were invited to the New Orleans Bowl, for the fourth consecutive year, where they defeated Nevada. However, in 2015 Louisiana–Lafayette vacated two wins due to major NCAA violations.

The 2014 New Orleans Bowl was a college football bowl game played on December 20, 2014 at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana. The fourteenth annual New Orleans Bowl, it pitted the Nevada Wolf Pack of the Mountain West Conference against the Louisiana-Lafayette Ragin' Cajuns of the Sun Belt Conference. The game began at 10:00 a.m. CST and aired on ESPN. It was the first of the 2014–15 bowl games that concluded the 2014 FBS football season. Sponsored by freight shipping company R+L Carriers, the game was officially known as the R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl. Louisiana–Lafayette beat Nevada by a score of 16–3.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">2015 Louisiana–Lafayette Ragin' Cajuns football team</span> American college football season

The 2015 Louisiana–Lafayette Ragin' Cajuns football team represented the University of Louisiana at Lafayette in the 2015 NCAA Division I FBS football season. They were led by fifth-year head coach Mark Hudspeth and played their home games at Cajun Field in Lafayette, Louisiana. The Ragin' Cajuns were members of the Sun Belt Conference. They finished the season 4–8, 3–5 in Sun Belt play to finish in a five way tie for fifth place.

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The 2017 Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns football team represented the University of Louisiana at Lafayette in the 2017 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The Ragin' Cajuns played their home games at Cajun Field in Lafayette, Louisiana, and competed in the Sun Belt Conference. They were led by seventh-year head coach Mark Hudspeth. They finished the season 5–7, 4–4 in Sun Belt play to finish in a three-way tie for fifth place.

The 2018 Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns football team represented the University of Louisiana at Lafayette in the 2018 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The Ragin' Cajuns played their home games at Cajun Field in Lafayette, Louisiana and competed in the West Division of the Sun Belt Conference. They were led by first-year head coach Billy Napier. They finished the season 7–7, 5–3 in Sun Belt play to finish in a tie for the West Division championship with Arkansas State. Due to their head-to-head win over Arkansas State, they represented the West Division in the inaugural Sun Belt Championship Game where they lost to East Division champion Appalachian State. They were invited to the Cure Bowl where they lost to Tulane.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">2018 Sun Belt Conference Football Championship Game</span> Annual NCAA football game

The 2018 Sun Belt Conference Championship Game was played on December 1, 2018, between the Mountaineers of Appalachian State and the Ragin' Cajuns from Louisiana. The game was played at Kidd Brewer Stadium in Boone, North Carolina, due to Appalachian State's better conference record. This was the second time these teams played this year; the first meeting finished 27–17 in the Mountaineers' favor. The winner of the game would play in the R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl while the loser would play in the Cure Bowl.

The 2019 Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns football team represented the University of Louisiana at Lafayette in the 2019 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The Ragin' Cajuns played their home games at Cajun Field in Lafayette, Louisiana, and competed in the West Division of the Sun Belt Conference. They were led by second-year head coach Billy Napier. The Cajuns made it to the Sun Belt Conference Championship Game for the second consecutive year by winning the West Division, ultimately losing to Appalachian State by the score of 45–38. The Cajuns then defeated Miami (OH) in the LendingTree Bowl, to end the season with an overall record of 11–3. Following the season, head coach Billy Napier's contract was extended by two years, going into the 2025 season.

The 2020 LendingTree Bowl was a college football bowl game played on January 6, 2020, with kickoff at 7:30 p.m. EST on ESPN. It was the 21st edition of the LendingTree Bowl, and was the last of the 2019–20 bowl games concluding the 2019 FBS football season, with only the National Championship and all-star games to follow. The game's title sponsor was online lending marketplace LendingTree.

The 2020 Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns football team represented the University of Louisiana at Lafayette in the 2020 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The Ragin' Cajuns played their home games at Cajun Field in Lafayette, Louisiana, and competed in the West Division of the Sun Belt Conference. They were led by third-year head coach Billy Napier. The Cajuns began the season with an away matchup against a preseason top-25 Iowa State and concluded their regular season at conference and in-state rival Louisiana–Monroe.

The 2021 Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns football team represented the University of Louisiana at Lafayette in the 2021 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The Ragin' Cajuns played their home games at Cajun Field in Lafayette, Louisiana, and compete in the West Division of the Sun Belt Conference. They were led by fourth-year head coach Billy Napier. The Cajuns began the season with an away matchup against Big 12's Texas and concluded their regular season at conference and in-state rival Louisiana–Monroe.

References

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  2. "Exam fraud, recruit payments among NCAA accusations against UL-Lafayette, ex-assistant coach David Saunders". The Baton Rouge Advocate. October 11, 2015. Retrieved October 20, 2015.
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  4. 1 2 "Big NCAA penalties for UL-Lafayette: Cajuns vacate 20-plus wins, two bowls, 2013 Sun Belt title". The Advocate. March 6, 2016. The Cajuns will vacate 22 total wins, including New Orleans Bowl championships in 2011 and 2013, and a shared Sun Belt Conference championship in 2013.
  5. 1 2 "Coastal Carolina vs. Louisiana canceled: crowns co-champions, title game called off due to COVID-19". CBSSports.com. A highly anticipated rematch between No. 12 Coastal Carolina and No. 19 Louisiana in the Sun Belt Championship Game has been canceled due to a positive COVID-19 test in the Coastal Carolina program, the Sun Belt announced Thursday night. One of the Chanticleers' entire position groups would have been unavailable for the game "due to possible exposure," according to the league's announcement.
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  12. "The Week". CNN. October 9, 1978.
  13. "College Football Rivalries". www.1122productions.com.
  14. "Photo of the Cypress Mug".
  15. "Rivalry rekindled today at ULM | the Advertiser | theadvertiser.com". Archived from the original on 2014-12-09. Retrieved 2013-12-08.
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