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Sam Houston State Bearkats football

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Title: Sam Houston State Bearkats football  
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Subject: Puny Wilson, Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks football, 2001 NCAA Division I-AA football season, Sam Houston State Bearkats football, Woodland (Huntsville, Texas)
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Sam Houston State Bearkats football

For information on all Sam Houston State University sports, see Sam Houston State Bearkats
Sam Houston State Bearkats
2014 Sam Houston State Bearkats football team
First season 1912
Athletic director Bobby Williams
Head coach K. C. Keeler
1st year, 9–4 (.692)
Home stadium Bowers Stadium
Stadium capacity 14,000
Stadium surface Real Grass Pro Artificial Surface
Location Huntsville, TX
League NCAA Division I (FCS)
Conference Southland Conference
All-time record 469–448–34 (.511)
Postseason bowl record 3–1–1 (.700)
Claimed national titles 1
Conference titles 5
Division titles 0
Consensus All-Americans 41
Current uniform

Orange and White

Fight song Bearkat Fight Song
Mascot Sammy Bearkat
Marching band Bearkat Marching Band
Outfitter Nike
Rivals Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks
Texas State Bobcats (inactive)

The Sam Houston State Bearkats football program is the intercollegiate American football team for Sam Houston State University located in the U.S. state of Texas. The team competes in the NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) and are members of the Southland Conference. Sam Houston's first football team was fielded in 1912. The team plays its home games at the 14,000 seat Bowers Stadium in Huntsville, Texas. On January 23, 2014, K. C. Keeler was named the 15th head coach in Sam Houston State program history.[1]


Sam Houston has fielded a football team since 1912 and have played continuously since 1946 following World War II. The only times the Bearkats did not field a football team were in 1918 for World War I and from 1943-1945 for WWII. The Bearkats competed independently from 1912 through 1923, in the Texas Intercollegiate Athletic Association (TIAA) from 1924-1931, in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) from 1932-1981, in NCAA Division II from 1982-1985 and in NCAA Division I-AA (now FCS) since the 1986 season.

The Bearkats have 11 conference championships, and have seen post-season NCAA playoff action in 6 seasons, with back-to-back NCAA Division I Championship game appearances in 2011-2012.[2] Sam Houston State also has 3 bowl victories in four games, and one claimed National Championship from NAIA in the 1964 season.[3]

Since starting the football program, the Bearkats are 469-448-34 overall through the 2012 season.[4]

Head coaches

Ron Randleman is Sam Houston's and the Southland Conference's all-time winningest coach with 132 wins over a span of 23 years. Randleman also won conference Coach of the Year honors on four different occasions, in the Gulf Star Conference in 1985 and 1986, and in the Southland Conference in 1991, and 2001.[5]

Paul Pierce coached the Bearkats to its only National Championship, and also won the 1965 Knute Rockne Little All-American Coach of the Year award.[6]

Willie Fritz coached Sam Houston to back-to-back conference championships and back-to-back national title game appearances in only three years, while being awarded the 2011 AFCA National Coach of the Year award and the 2012 Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year award. He was also named the 2012 AFCA Regional Coach of the Year.[7][8][9][10]

On January 23, 2014, former Delaware head coach K. C. Keeler was named the 15th head coach in Sam Houston State program history.[1]

Name From To Record Postseason
S.R. Warner 1912 1913 5 4 2
Gene Barry 1914 1919 14 15 1
James Gee 1920 1922 7 8 4
J.W. Jones 1923 1935 53 55 9 1930 Texas Intercollegiate Athletic Association Champions
H.O. Crawford 1936 1937 7 12 0
Puny Wilson 1937 1951 50 49 6
Paul E. Pierce 1952 1967 94 52 7 1955 Lone Star Conference Co-Champions, 1956 LSC Champions, 1964 LSC, NAIA National Co-Champions, 3 Bowl Wins in 4 appearances
Tom Page 1968 1971 20 19 3
Allen Boren 1972 1973 7 14 0
Billy Tidwell 1974 1977 11 30 1
Melvin Brown 1978 1981 13 28 0
Ron Randleman 1982 2004 132 124 3 1985 Gulf Star Conference Co-Champions, 1986 GSC Champions, 2001 Southland Conference Co-Champions, 2004 SLC Co-Champions
Todd Whitten 2005 2009 25 28 0
Willie Fritz 2010 2013 31 10 0 2011 SLC Champions, 2011 NCAA Division I Finalist, 2012 SLC Co-Champions 2012 NCAA Division I Finalist
K. C. Keeler 2014 Present 6 4 0
Composite Record 1912 Present 475 451 34


National Championships

In 1964, Sam Houston tied Concordia College (Moorhead, MN) 7-7 in the NAIA National Championship.[11] They are Co-champions with Moorhead.[12]

Conference championships

Year Conference Overall Record Conference Record
1930 Texas Intercollegiate Athletic Association 9–1–0 5-0-0
1955† Lone Star Conference (NAIA) 6–1–2 5-1-1
1956 Lone Star Conference (NAIA) 10–0-0 7-0-0
1961 Lone Star Conference (NAIA) 8–1–0 7-0-0
1964†* Lone Star Conference (NAIA) 9–1–1 5-1-0
1985† Gulf Star Conference (Division I FCS) 8–3–0 4-1-0
1986 Gulf Star Conference (Division I FCS) 9–3–0 4-1-0
2001† Southland Conference (Division I FCS) 10–3-0 5-1-0
2004† Southland Conference (Division I FCS) 8–3–0 4-1-0
2011 Southland Conference (Division I FCS) 14–1–0 7-0-0
2012† Southland Conference (Division I FCS) 11–4–0 6-1-0
*Denotes national champion. † Denotes shared title.[13]

Conference Affiliations

Bowl Game Appearances

Year Bowl Game Bowl Game Result Opponent PF PA
1952 Shrimp Bowl W Northeastern State (OK) 41 20
1953 Refrigerator Bowl W College of Idaho 14 12
1956 Refrigerator Bowl W Middle Tennessee State 27 13
1958 Christmas Festival Bowl L Northwestern State 11 18
1964* Championship Bowl T Concordia College 7 7
*Denotes National Title game[14]

Home Stadium

Pritchett Field (1912-1985)

The Bearkats' home for football was on Pritchett Field for 73 (1912-1985) years beginning with their first football game against Rice University in 1912. The field was named after Joseph Pritchett, brother of the university's fourth president Henry Carr Pritchett, and former owner of the land the field rests on.

The final football game played on Pritchett Field was a victory for the Bearkats with a score of 51-7, defeating Washburn University. Sam Houston State Football began playing games at Bowers Stadium following the 1985 season. The complex is currently home to Sam Houston Women's Soccer and Club Lacrosse.[15]

On April 18, 2013,[16] football was played on Pritchett Field for the first time since 1985 for the annual Orange-White spring game. The event also included the presentation of the Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year Award to head coach Willie Fritz.[9]

Bowers Stadium (1986-Present)

Bowers Stadium in Huntsville, Texas. Home of the Sam Houston State Bearkats football team.
Bowers Stadium, formerly Bearkat Stadium (1986-1989), is currently home to both Sam Houston State Football and the Track and Field programs beginning with the 1986 season. Bowers Stadium has a capacity of 14,000. However, 16,148 fans packed Bowers Stadium in 1994 to watch Alcorn State led by NFL bound quarterback Steve McNair in a 48-23 victory on regional ABC-TV.[17][18]


Active rivalry

Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks

The Sam Houston State/Stephen F. Austin rivalry game, also known as the Battle of the Piney Woods, is a yearly rivalry held in Reliant Stadium in Houston, TX. The two teams have met 87 times with Sam Houston leading the series 50-35-2. The Battle of the Piney Woods is Texas' second longest FCS rivalry. The most recent meeting was a 56-49 thriller in favor of the Bearkats in front of 26,213 fans.[19]

Inactive Rivalry

Texas State Bobcats

The rivalry between the Sam Houston State Bearkats and Texas State Bobcats is no longer active due to Texas State's moving to the FBS and former Western Athletic Conference. Texas State moved to the Sunbelt after the WAC fell apart. The Bearkats and Bobcats have played each other 89 times, and is the most played FCS rivalry game in Texas as of 2011. Texas State currently leads the series 48-36-4. The most recent battle between the two squads was in 2011 and resulted in a 36-14 score in favor of Sam Houston at Bobcat Stadium.[20]

Notable former players

Bearkats in the National Football League

Sam Houston has had 35 alumni play in the National Football League, with 18 players selected in the Draft.[21][22]

Individual Awards

National Awards

Sam Houston State University has had a total of 73 players selected into the College Football All-America Team, including 43 NCAA All-Americans and 30 NAIA All-Americans. A number of these players have also been considered for major national awards.[23]

Major honors

Conference Awards

Sam Houston State has had 407 All-Conference selections and honorable mentions, including 202 in the Southland Conference, 25 in the Gulf Star Conference, 173 in the Lone Star Conference, and 7 in the Texas Intercollegiate Athletic Association.[24]

Individual Program Records

Rushing Records

  • Most Rushing Attempts, career: 758, Timothy Flanders (2010-2012)
  • Most Rushing Attempts, season: 298, Timothy Flanders (2011)
  • Most Rushing Attempts, game: 39, Charles Harris vs North Texas (1993)
  • Most Rushing Yards, career: 4,234, Timothy Flanders (2010-2012)
  • Most Rushing Yards, season: 1,644, Timothy Flanders (2011)
  • Most Rushing Yards, game: 287, Timothy Flanders vs Montana (2011)
  • Most Rushing Touchdowns, career: 52, Timothy Flanders (2010-2012)
  • Most Rushing Touchdowns, season: 22, Timothy Flanders (2011)
  • Most Rushing Touchdowns, game: 5, Timothy Flanders (September 20, 2011 vs. New Mexico)
  • Longest Rush from Scrimmage: 90 yards, Charles Harris vs Rice (1993), Arthur Louis vs SFA (1978), Dennis Gann vs Texas A&I (1966)
  • Most games with at least 100 rushing yards, career: 25, Timothy Flanders (2010-2012)
  • Most games with at least 100 rushing yards, season: 10, Timothy Flanders (2012)
  • Most games with at least 200 rushing yards, career: 2, Charles Harris (1993), D.D. Terry (2006), Timothy Flanders (2011-2012)
  • Most games with at least 200 rushing yards, season: 2, Charles Harris (1993, D.D. Terry (2006)[25]

Passing Records

  • Most passing attempts, career: 770, Brian Bell (2010-2012)
  • Most passing attempts, season: 531, Dustin Long (2004)
  • Most passing attempts, game: 69, Rhett Bomar vs Southeastern Louisiana (2008)
  • Most passing completions, career: 450, Brian Bell (2010–2012)
  • Most passing completions, season: 333, Dustin Long (2004)
  • Most passing completions, game: 38, Dustin Long vs Eastern Washington at FCS Quarterfinals (2004)
  • Most passing yards, career: 6,165, Brian Bell (2010-2012)
  • Most passing yards, season: 4,588, Dustin Long (2004)
  • Most passing yards, game: 577, Dustin Long McNeese State (2004)
  • Most passing touchdowns, career: 52, Brian Bell (2010-2012)
  • Most passing touchdowns, season: 39, Dustin Long (2004)
  • Most passing touchdowns, game: 5, 9 times by Dustin Long (4 times), Chris Chaloupka (3 times), Josh McCown (1 time), Rhett Bomar (1 time)
  • Longest pass completion: 99 yards, Binky Ford to Frankie Reescano vs Howard Payne University (1980)
  • Most games with at least 300 passing yards, career: 8, Dustin Long (2004)
  • Most games with at least 300 passing yards, season: 8, Dustin Long (2004)[26]

Receiving Records

  • Most receptions, career: 211, Matt Dominguez (1997-2000)
  • Most receptions, season: 99, Jarrod Fuller (2004)
  • Most receptions, game: 13, Jason Mathenia vs Eastern Washington (2004)
  • Most receiving yards, career: 3,273, Matt Dominguez (1997–2000)
  • Most receiving yards, season: 1,477, Jonathon Cooper (2001)
  • Most receiving yards, game: 242, Jonathon Cooper vs Western Illinois (2001)
  • Most touchdown receptions, career: 27, Matt Dominguez (1997-2000)
  • Most touchdown receptions, season: 18, Jonathon Cooper (2001)
  • Most touchdown receptions, game: 4, Matt Dominguez vs Nicholls State(1999)
  • Longest pass reception: 97 yards, Frankie Reescano from Blinky Ford vs Howard Payne (1980)
  • Most games with at least 100 receiving yards, career: 10, Matt Dominguez (1997–2000)[27]

Defensive Records

  • Most Tackles, career: 538, Stan Blinka (1975-1978)
  • Most Tackles, season: 211, Stan Blinka (1978)
  • Most Tackles, game: 24, Stan Blinka (1978 vs Stephen F. Austin)
  • Most Sacks, career: 36, Andre Finley (1986-1989)
  • Most Sacks, season: 15, Andre Finley (1988)
  • Most Sacks, game: 4, Michael Bankston (1991 vs Angelo State), Will Henry (2010 vs Nicholls State)
  • Most Interceptions, career: 14, Daxton Swanson (2009-2012)
  • Most Interceptions, season: 8, Daxton Swanson (2011)
  • Most Interceptions, game: 3, Charles Stanley vs. Howard Payne (1977), Mark Hughes vs. McNeese State (2004)[28]

Future non-conference opponents

2013 2014 2015
vs Houston Baptist at Eastern Washington at UTSA
at Texas A&M at LSU
vs Texas Southern
vs Incarnate Word
vs Eastern Washington


  1. ^ a b Roepken, Corey (2014-01-23). "Sam Houston State hires K.C. Keeler as head football coach". Houston Chronicle. 
  2. ^ "Sam Houston Football Record Book". Sam Houston State Athletics. 2013. Retrieved 2013-05-04. 
  3. ^ "1964 National Co-Champion team holds reunion". Sam Houston State Athletics. 2009-10-24. Retrieved 2013-05-04. 
  4. ^ "Sam Houston State Yearly Totals". College Football Data Warehouse. Retrieved 2013-05-04. 
  5. ^ "SHSU's Ron Randleman to Retire". Southland Conference. 2004-12-12. Retrieved 2013-05-04. 
  6. ^ "Sam Houston State Coaching Records". College Football Data Warehouse. Retrieved 2013-05-04. 
  7. ^ "Sam Houston State gets second chance in FCS title game". Houston Chronicle. 2013-01-04. Retrieved 2013-05-04. 
  8. ^ "SHSU's Willie Fritz Named AFCA Coach of the Year". Retrieved 2013-04-12. 
  9. ^ a b "Football Back At Pritchett Thursday Night". Retrieved 2013-04-19. 
  10. ^ "Willie Fritz earns AFCA Regional Coach of the Year". Retrieved 2013-04-12. 
  11. ^
  12. ^ "Sam Houston State Bearkat History". Retrieved 2009-08-07. 
  13. ^ "Sam Houston State Conference Championships". Retrieved 2013-04-09. 
  14. ^ "Sam Houston State Football History". Retrieved 2013-04-09. 
  15. ^ "Joseph Pritchett Field". Retrieved April 9, 2013. 
  16. ^ "Orange-White Spring Scrimmage". Retrieved 2013-04-19. 
  17. ^ "Sam Houston State Bearkat Athletic History". Retrieved July 17, 2014. 
  18. ^ McNair Hurt As Alcorn St. Loses, 48-23. Washington Post (September 25, 1994). Retrieved 2014-7-17.  – via HighBeam Research (subscription required)
  19. ^ "SHSU outlasts SFA 51-43 in Battle of the Piney Woods". KBTX. 2012-10-02. Retrieved 2013-05-04. 
  20. ^ Associated Press (2011-11-19). "Sam Houston St. 36, Texas St. 14". ESPN. Retrieved 2013-04-27. 
  21. ^ "NFL Players who attended Sam Houston State University". Retrieved 2013-04-19. 
  22. ^ "Sam Houston State Football Record Book". Sam Houston State Athletic Department. Retrieved 2013-04-23. 
  23. ^ Sam Houston State Football Records - National Awards. Sam Houston State Athletics. p. 38. 
  24. ^ Sam Houston State Football Records - All Conference Players. Sam Houston State Athletics. pp. 39–40. 
  25. ^ Sam Houston State Football Records - Rushing. Sam Houston State Athletics. pp. 8–11. 
  26. ^ Sam Houston State Football Records - Passing. Sam Houston State Athletics. pp. 12–14. 
  27. ^ Sam Houston State Football Records - Receiving. Sam Houston State Athletics. pp. 16–18. 
  28. ^ Sam Houston State Football Records - Defensive. Sam Houston State Athletics. pp. 21–22. 

External links

  • Official website
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