Eastern Kentucky Colonels football
2022 Eastern Kentucky Colonels football team
Eastern Kentucky Colonels logo.svg
First season1891
Athletic directorMatt Roan
Head coachWalt Wells
3rd season, 10–10 (.500)
StadiumRoy Kidd Stadium
(capacity: 20,000)
FieldHanger Field
Year built1969
Field surfaceSF II Synthetic Turf
LocationRichmond, Kentucky
NCAA divisionDivision I FCS
ConferenceASUN
All-time record602–386–38 (.605)
Bowl record4–3 (.571)
Playoff appearances21
Claimed national titles2
Conference titles21
RivalriesWestern Kentucky (rivalry)
Morehead State (rivalry)
Consensus All-Americans46
ColorsMaroon and white[1]
   
Fight songHail, Hail and Yea, Eastern
MascotThe Colonel
Marching bandEastern Kentucky University Marching Colonels
OutfitterAdidas
WebsiteEKUSports

The Eastern Kentucky Colonels football program represents Eastern Kentucky University (EKU) in college football, through the 2020-21 season as a member of the Ohio Valley Conference (OVC), and competes at the NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) level. The school has traditionally had much success on the football field, having won 21 OVC conference titles and two Division I FCS National Championships (then called Division I-AA) in 1979 and 1982, and reaching the finals in 1980 and 1981. Much of the success came during the long tenure of head coach Roy Kidd from 1964 to 2002. In 1990, Eastern honored Kidd by naming the school's football stadium Roy Kidd Stadium. Eastern Kentucky's football team was able to secure 31 consecutive winning seasons before finally posting a losing season record in 2009.

In September 2013, the Lexington Herald-Leader, the daily newspaper of nearby Lexington, reported that EKU was considering moving its program to the top-level Football Bowl Subdivision. However, under NCAA rules, such a move would require that EKU receive an invitation from an existing FBS conference.[2] In the end, no such move was made.

EKU left the OVC for the ASUN Conference in July 2021. While the ASUN does not currently sponsor football, it has committed to launching an FCS football league in the near future.[3] Until ASUN football is established, EKU will become a de facto associate member of the Western Athletic Conference (WAC), competing in a football partnership between the two leagues officially branded as the "ASUN–WAC Challenge".[4]

Conference affiliation

Championships

National championships

Eastern Kentucky went to four consecutive national championship games, winning twice in 1979 and 1982 while finishing as runner-up in 1980 and 1981 to Boise State and Idaho State, respectively.

Season Coach Selector Record Opponent Result
1979 Roy Kidd NCAA I-AA Playoff 11–2 Lehigh W 30–7
1982 Roy Kidd NCAA I-AA Playoff 13–0 Delaware W 17–14

Conference championships

Eastern Kentucky has won 21 conference championships, 16 outright and 5 shared.[5]

Year Conference Head Coach Overall Record Conference Record
1954 Ohio Valley Conference Glenn Presnell 8–1–1 5–0
1962 Glenn Presnell 6–3 4–2
1967 Roy Kidd 8–1–2 5–0–2
1968 Roy Kidd 8–2 7–0
1974 Roy Kidd 8-2 6–1
1976 Roy Kidd 8–3 6–1
1981 Roy Kidd 12–2 8–0
1982 Roy Kidd 13–0 7–0
1983 Roy Kidd 7–3-1 6–1
1984 Roy Kidd 8–4 6–1
1986† Roy Kidd 10–3–1 6–1
1987† Roy Kidd 9–3 5–1
1988 Roy Kidd 11–3 6–0
1990† Roy Kidd 10–2 5–1
1991 Roy Kidd 12–2 7–0
1993 Roy Kidd 8–4 8–0
1994 Roy Kidd 10–3 8–0
1997 Roy Kidd 8–4 7–0
2007 Danny Hope 9–3 8–0
2008 Dean Hood 8–4 7–1
2011 Dean Hood 7–5 6–2

† Co-champion

Bowl games

Eastern Kentucky has participated in six bowl games. Four of these bowl games served as a sort of championship game, whether as a regional championship game or as the NCAA Division I Football Championship. The EKU Colonels played in the inaugural Opportunity Bowl presented by Raising Cane's, and in memory of Dr. Sheila Pressley, on Nov. 21, 2020. Eastern Kentucky University hosted the second annual Opportunity Bowl presented by Dinsmore & Shohl on Nov. 20, 2021. The game was matchup EKU and Jacksonville State University.

Season Coach Bowl Opponent Result
1954 Glenn Presnell Tangerine Bowl Omaha L 7–6
1967 Roy Kidd Grantland Rice Bowl Ball State W 27–13
1980 Roy Kidd Camellia Bowl Boise State L 29–31
1981 Roy Kidd Pioneer Bowl Idaho State L 23–34
1982 Roy Kidd Pioneer Bowl Delaware W 17–14
2020 Walt Wells Opportunity Bowl Western Carolina W 49-17
2021 Walt Wells Opportunity Bowl Jacksonville State W 39-31

Playoff appearances

NCAA Division I-AA/FCS

Eastern Kentucky University football is considered the first dynasty in FCS football. Including a four year run to the championship game from 1979 to 1982. During this time period they went 46-7 under legendary coach Roy Kidd. Eastern Kentucky is third all time in the FCS for playoff appearances with 21 total appearances (Montana 26/UNI 22). Below is a list of all playoff appearances.

Season Round Opponent Result
1979 Semifinals
Championship
Nevada
Lehigh
W 33–302OT
W 30–7
1980 Semifinals
Championship
Lehigh
Boise State
W 23–20
L 29–31
1981 Quarterfinals
Semifinals
Championship
Delaware
Boise State
Idaho State
W 35–28
W 23–17
L 23–34
1982 Quarterfinals
Semifinals
Championship
Idaho
Tennessee State
Delaware
W 38–30
W 13–7
W 17–14
1983 First Round Boston University L 20–24
1984 First Round Middle Tennessee L 10–27
1986 First Round
Quarterfinals
Semifinals
Furman
Eastern Illinois
Arkansas State
W 23–10
W 24–22
L 10–24
1987 First Round
Quarterfinals
Western Kentucky
Northeast Louisiana
W 40–17
L 32–33
1988 First Round
Quarterfinals
Semifinals
UMass
Western Kentucky
Georgia Southern
W 28–17
W 41–24
L 17–21
1989 First Round Youngstown State L 24–28
1990 First Round Furman L 17–45
1991 First Round
Quarterfinals
Semifinals
Appalachian State
Middle Tennessee
Marshall
W 14–3
W 23–13
L 7–14
1992 First Round Marshall L 0–44
1993 First Round Georgia Southern L 12–14
1994 First Round
Quarterfinals
Boston University
Youngstown State
W 30–23
L 15–18
1995 First Round Montana L 0–48
1997 First Round Western Kentucky L 14–42
2007 First Round Richmond L 14–31
2008 First Round Richmond L 10–38
2011 First Round James Madison L 17–20
2014 First Round Indiana State L 16–36

NCAA Division II

The Colonels made one appearance in the Division II playoffs, with a combined record of 5-1.

Year Round Opponent Result
1976 Quarterfinals North Dakota State L, 7–10

Head coaches

Years Coach Record Conference championships
1909 Jim Park 0–0–4 0
1910–1911 Clyde H. Wilson 2–7–1 0
1912 Charles A. Keith 3–4–1 0
1913–1916 Ben Barnard 8–13–2 0
1919–1921 Clyde McCoy 3–6–1 0
1922–1928 George Hembree 21–29–4 0
1929–1934 Turkey Hughes 8–29–6 0
1935–1946 Rome Rankin 56–24–6 0
1947–1953 Tom Samuels 41–24–2 0
1954–1963 Glenn Presnell 42–49–3 2
1964–2002 Roy Kidd 315–123–8 16
2003–2007 Danny Hope 35–22 1
2008–2015 Dean Hood 55–38 2
2016-2019 Mark Elder 21–24 0
2020-current Walt Wells 0-0 0

Rivalries

This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (November 2018)

Western Kentucky

Main article: Battle of the Bluegrass

Morehead State

Main article: Old Hawg Rifle

Program records

This section does not cite any sources. Please help improve this section by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (November 2018) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)

Team records

Individual records

References

  1. ^ Eastern Kentucky University Visual Identity Guide. March 20, 2017. Retrieved April 24, 2017.
  2. ^ Story, Mark (September 14, 2013). "Mark Story: EKU is 'discussing' moving its football program up to the FBS". Lexington Herald-Leader. Retrieved September 18, 2013.
  3. ^ "ASUN Conference Announces Three New Institutions; Adds Football as 20th Sport" (Press release). ASUN Conference. January 29, 2021. Retrieved January 29, 2021.
  4. ^ a b "ASUN, WAC Conferences Announce Football Partnership for 2021" (Press release). ASUN Conference. February 23, 2021. Retrieved February 23, 2021.
  5. ^ "Ohio Valley Conference" (PDF). ovcsports.com.