|Air Force Falcons football|
|Athletic director||Nathan Pine|
|Head coach||Troy Calhoun |
16th season, 120–78 (.606)
|Location||Colorado Springs, Colorado|
|Conference||Mountain West (1999–present)|
|Division||Mountain (2013–2019 and 2021–present)|
|Past conferences||Independent (1955)|
University Division Independent (1956–1972)
Division I/I-A Independent (1973–1979)
|All-time record||427–342–13 (.554)|
|Bowl record||15–13–1 (.534)|
Colorado State (rivalry)
|Colors||Blue and silver|
|Fight song||"Falcon Fight Song"|
(unofficial: "The U.S. Air Force")
|Marching band||United States Air Force Academy Drum & Bugle Corp "The Flight of Sound"|
The Air Force Falcons football program represents the United States Air Force Academy in college football at the NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (formerly Division I-A) level. Air Force has been a member of the Mountain West Conference since its founding in 1999. The Falcons play their home games at Falcon Stadium in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Troy Calhoun has been the team's head coach since 2007.
The three major service academies—Air Force, Army and Navy—compete for the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy which is awarded to the academy that defeats the others in football that year (or retained by the previous year's winner in the event of a three–way tie).
The Falcons are not only recognized by the lightning bolt on the side of their helmets, but their traditional option attack. Air Force is one of the premier rushing teams in the nation. Since Fisher DeBerry took over as Falcons head coach in 1984, they have ranked among the nation's top 10 in rushing 19 times in 21 years. The Air Force football team has enjoyed success not only on the field but also in the classroom. In 49 years of Air Force football, there have been 39 Academic All-Americans.
See also: 1985 Air Force Falcons football team
1985 was the most successful season in Air Force football history. Under 5th-year coach Fisher DeBerry, the Falcons came within one win of playing for the national championship. They recorded 10 straight wins to start the season, climbed the polls to No. 2 in the nation, but lost to BYU 28–21 in the penultimate game of the regular season. Air Force rebounded with a bowl game win over Texas in the Bluebonnet Bowl and finished with a 12–1 record as the No. 5 ranked team in the nation.
Air Force has been affiliated with the following conferences.
|Year||Conference||Coach||Overall Record||Conference Record|
|1985†||Western Athletic Conference||Fisher DeBerry||12–1||7–1|
|1998||WAC - Mountain||Fisher DeBerry||BYU||W 20–13|
|2015||MW - Mountain||Troy Calhoun||San Diego State||L 24–27|
|2021||MW - Mountain||N/A lost tie-breaker to Utah State|
Air Force has appeared in 2 conference championship games in their history, winning 1 of them.
|Year||Conference||Coach||CG Opponent||CG Result||Game MVP|
|1998||WAC||Fisher DeBerry||BYU||W 20–13||N/A|
|2015||Mountain West||Troy Calhoun||San Diego State||L 24–27||Christian Chapman (QB, San Diego State)|
Na'im McGee (S, San Diego State)
Note: Includes appearances where the conference did not use divisions to determine championship game participants.
Air Force has played in 29 bowl games in their history, with a 15–13–1 (.534) record. Their highest finish in the polls was fifth (UPI coaches) in 1985.
|1958||Cotton||TCU||T 0–0||Ben Martin||9–0–2|
|1963||Gator||North Carolina||L 0–35||Ben Martin||7–4|
|1970||Sugar||Tennessee||L 13–34||Ben Martin||9–3|
|1982||Hall of Fame||Vanderbilt||W 36–28||Ken Hatfield||8–5|
|1983||Independence||Ole Miss||W 9–3||Ken Hatfield||10–2|
|1984||Independence||Virginia Tech||W 23–7||Fisher DeBerry||8–4|
|1985||Bluebonnet||Texas||W 24–16||Fisher DeBerry||12–1|
|1987||Freedom||Arizona State||L 28–33||Fisher DeBerry||9–4|
|1989||Liberty||Ole Miss||L 29–42||Fisher DeBerry||8–4–1|
|1990||Liberty||Ohio State||W 23–11||Fisher DeBerry||7–5|
|1991||Liberty||Mississippi State||W 31–15||Fisher DeBerry||10–3|
|1992||Liberty||Ole Miss||L 0–13||Fisher DeBerry||7–5|
|1995||Copper||Texas Tech||L 41–55||Fisher DeBerry||8–5|
|1997||Las Vegas||Oregon||L 13–41||Fisher DeBerry||10–3|
|1998||Oahu||Washington||W 43–25||Fisher DeBerry||12–1|
|2000||Silicon Valley||Fresno State||W 37–34||Fisher DeBerry||9–3|
|2002||San Francisco||Virginia Tech||L 13–20||Fisher DeBerry||8–5|
|2007||Armed Forces||California||L 36–42||Troy Calhoun||9–4|
|2008||Armed Forces||Houston||L 28–34||Troy Calhoun||8–5|
|2009||Armed Forces||Houston||W 47–20||Troy Calhoun||8–5|
|2010||Independence||Georgia Tech||W 14–7||Troy Calhoun||9–4|
|2011||Military||Toledo||L 41–42||Troy Calhoun||7–6|
|2012||Armed Forces||Rice||L 14–33||Troy Calhoun||6–7|
|2014||Idaho Potato||Western Michigan||W 38–24||Troy Calhoun||10–3|
|2015||Armed Forces||California||L 36–55||Troy Calhoun||8–6|
|2016||Arizona||South Alabama||W 45–21||Troy Calhoun||10–3|
|2019||Cheez-It||Washington State||W 31–21||Troy Calhoun||11–2|
|2021||First Responder||Louisville||W 31–28||Troy Calhoun||10–3|
|2022||Armed Forces||Baylor||W 30–15||Troy Calhoun||10–3|
Main article: List of Air Force Falcons head football coaches
In over 60 years of play in college football, the Falcons have had seven head coaches.
|1955||Robert V. Whitlow||4–4||.500|
The Air Force Falcons have finished in the AP Poll and/or the Coaches Poll 8 times in the program's history, with the highest-ranked finishes being No. 6 in 1958 and No. 8 in 1985. Note: The AP Poll began in 1936, and the Coaches' Poll began in 1950. Before 1990, only the top 20 teams were ranked in the AP Poll before it was expanded to 25.
In addition to the major polls, the BCS produced rankings from 1998 to 2013 which helped select teams for the BCS Bowls. Then, starting in 2014, the CFP committee began issuing rankings to determine which teams were selected for the playoffs.
|Season||Overall Record||Major Polls||Others|
|AP Poll||Coaches Poll||BCS Standings
Home games are played in Falcon Stadium, which sits below the main campus at an elevation of 6,621 feet (2,018 m) above sea level. Pre-game activities include flyovers by USAF aircraft, including the F-15 and B-2. Opened in 1962, its highest attendance was 56,409 in 2002, when the Falcons hosted Notre Dame.
|1956||Larry Thomson||FB||Little America (3rd)|
|1966||Neal Starkey||DB||Playboy Magazine All-American|
|1967||Neal Starkey||DB||Associated Press (3rd)|
|1969||Ernie Jennings||WR||Central Press (2nd)|
|1971||Orderia Mitchell||C||Black Sports|
|Gene Ogilvie||DE||UPI (3rd)|
|1972||Orderia Mitchell||C||Associated Press (2nd), Gridiron (2nd)|
|Gene Ogilvie||DE||UPI (2nd)|
|1973||Steve Heil||ROV||Associated Press (3rd)|
|1974||Dave Lawson||LB/K||Football Writers|
|1975||Dave Lawson||LB/K||UPI (2nd), Football News (2nd)|
|1981||Johnny Jackson||DB||Associated Press (2nd)|
|1982||Dave Schreck||OG||Associated Press (2nd)|
|1983||John Kershner||FB||Football News (2nd)|
|Mike Kirby||WR||Sporting News (2nd)|
|1985||Mark Simon||P||Scripps Howard, Associated Press (2nd)|
|Scott Thomas||DB||Walter Camp, Kodak, Football Writes, Associated Press (2nd)|
|1986||Terry Maki||LB||Kodak, Football News (2nd), Associated Press (3rd)|
|Tom Rotello||DB||Football News (2nd)|
|1987||Chad Hennings||DT||Consensus, Walter Camp, Kodak, Football Writers, Associated Press, UPI, Scripps Howard, Sporting News, Football News, Outland Trophy winner|
|1989||Dee Dowis||QB||Heisman Trophy finalist|
|Ron Gray||KR||Associated Press (3rd)|
|1991||Jason Christ||P||Associated Press (2nd), Football News (3rd)|
|1992||Carlton McDonald||DB||Consensus, Walter Camp, Kodak, Football Writers, Associated Press, UPI, Scripps Howard, Sporting News|
|1993||Chris MacInnis||P/K||UPI, Associated Press (2nd)|
|1996||Beau Morgan||QB||Associated Press (3rd)|
|1998||Chris Gizzi||LB||Associated Press (3rd), Football Writers (2nd)|
|1998||Tim Curry||DB||Sporting News (3rd)|
|Frank Mindrup||OL||American Football Foundation (3rd)|
|2001||Anthony Schlegel||ILB||Sporting News (Freshmen 3rd team)|
|2002||Brett Huyser||OL||Sporting News (4th)|
|2007||Chad Hall||WR||Rivals (3rd), Sports Illustrated|
|Carson Bird||CB||Sports Illustrated|
|2008||Ryan Harrison||K||College Football News|
|2010||Reggie Rembert||DB||AFCA (1st), Associated Press (3rd)|
Academic All–Americans at Air Force.
Announced schedules as of January 9, 2022.
|Robert Morris||at Baylor||Bucknell||Duquesne||Baylor||at UTSA||at Arizona||Navy||Arizona||UTSA||Army||Navy||Army||Navy||Army|
|vs Sam Houston (in Houston, TX)||Navy||Sam Houston||Navy||at Navy||Navy||Army||at Army||Army||Navy||at Navy||at Army||at Navy||at Army||at Navy|
|at Navy||at Army||at Navy||at Army||Army||at Army||at Navy||at Navy||at Army|
|vs Army (in Denver, CO)||Army|
Air Force has a traditional rivalry against the other two FBS service academies, Army and Navy; the three play for the right to hold the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy. Air Force has won the trophy 20 times, more than either Army or Navy.
Air Force has played more games against Colorado State and Wyoming than any other school, having played each school 59 times since 1957, the Falcons' first season.
Since 1980, the Falcons and Colorado State Rams have competed for the Ram–Falcon Trophy. Air Force holds a 26–15 advantage over Colorado State in games that the trophy has been contested in.
In 2019 Air Force renewed a rivalry with Colorado, winning at Folsom Field on Sept. 14 by a score of 30–23. The teams had not played since Oct. 5, 1974, a game that Colorado won by a score of 28–27. Air Force won the first meeting between the teams in 1958. The 1963 game between the two college football teams was postponed due to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. The 1973 game, the last one played in Boulder before the 2019 clash, was marred by a riot. Fans threw eggs and beer at Air Force personnel and cadets.
Below are Air Force's records against its top ten most-played opponents since 1957.
|Colorado State||59||37||21||1||.636||Nov 13, 2021 (W 35–21)|
|Wyoming||59||30||26||3||.534||Oct 9, 2021 (W 24–14)|
|Army||56||37||18||1||.670||Nov 6, 2021 (L 14–21 OT)|
|Navy||54||32||22||0||.593||Sep 11, 2021 (W 23–3)|
|New Mexico||39||25||14||0||.641||Oct 2, 2021 (W 38–10)|
|San Diego State||37||19||18||0||.514||Oct 23, 2021 (L 14–20)|
|BYU||31||7||24||0||.226||Sep 11, 2010 (W 35–14)|
|Notre Dame||30||6||24||0||.200||Oct 26, 2013 (L 10–45)|
|Utah||27||14||13||0||.519||Oct 30, 2010 (L 23–28)|
|UNLV||23||17||6||0||.739||Nov 26, 2021 (W 48–14)|