Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders football
|Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders|
|Athletic director||Chris Massaro|
11th year, 72–65 (.526)
|Stadium||Johnny "Red" Floyd Stadium|
|Field surface||Sportexe PowerBlade turf|
|NCAA division||Division I FBS|
|All-time record||551–410–28 (.571)|
|Bowl record||2–5 (.286)|
Royal Blue and White|
|Fight song||MTSU Fight Song|
|Marching band||Band of Blue|
Western Kentucky Hilltoppers|
North Texas Mean Green
The Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders football team represents Middle Tennessee State University in NCAA Division I FBS football competition. The Blue Raiders are members of Conference USA and play their home games at Johnny "Red" Floyd Stadium in Murfreesboro, Tennessee.
Rick Stockstill is the head coach of the team.
Early History (1911-1925)
Middle Tennessee State University first fielded a football team in 1911 under the direction of head coach L. T. "Mutt" Weber. From 1913-1923, Alfred B. Miles lead the Blue Raiders football program. The 1914 football season led by Miles was its first undefeated season, with five straight victories after a tie with Cumberland.
The First Fifty Years: A History of Middle Tennessee State College recalls this story of Jess Neely's days playing for Middle Tennessee State Normal and coach Miles: "Jess Neely, a brilliant half-back and a handsome man on the campus, is remembered for his popularity among members of the opposite sex and for an incident that occurred just prior to a football game with Southern Presbyterian in Clarksville. Miles had done an exceptionally good job in mentally preparing his team for the game. He climaxed the pre-game, locker-room exhortation with a soaring call for courage and deathless allegiance to "dear Ol' Normal." Neely was greatly affected by the words of his coach for he leaped to his feet and, roaring like an angry bull, led the team in a rush to the doorway opening to the field. He misjudged the extremely low entrance, and his head received the full impact of the strip of wall above the doorway. He was revived shortly before the kickoff, but he never quite knew where he was, frequently huddling and aligning himself with the enemy." This was said to occur at a point near the 1917 season.
Frank Faulkinberry era (1926-1932)
Frank Faulkinberry was hired as MTSU's head coach after Miles' departure. During his tenure, the Blue Raiders compiled a record of 33–26–4. Faulkinberry was found shot to death in his garage on May 13, 1933, a suspected suicide being the cause.
E. M. Waller era (1933-1934)
E. M. Waller led the Blue Raiders for two seasons and compiled a 3–14–1 record. Waller resigned due to the team's struggles after two seasons.
Johnny Floyd era (1935-1938)
Johnny Floyd returned to MTSU in 1935 and led the Blue Raiders for four seasons. Under his tutelage, the Blue Raiders compiled a record of 30–8–1. Floyd's 1935 team went a perfect 8–0. However, a 2–6 campaign in 1938 ended his time in Murfreesboro.
Ernest Alley era (1939)
Ernest Alley was named the next head coach of MTSU football, and in his one season, the Blue Raiders compiled a 1–6–1 record.
E. W. Midgett era (1940-1946)
E. W. Midgett led the Blue Raiders for four seasons (MTSU did not field a football team from 1943-1945 because of World War II. In 1940, Midgett led the Blue Raiders to a 4–4 mark. In 1941, the Blue Raiders posted a 4–3–1 campaign, followed by 4–2–1 in 1942, and 6–2–1 in 1946.
Charles Murphy era (1947-1968)
Charles Murphy is the longest-tenured and winningest head coach in MTSU, football history, with a 155–63–8 record in 22 seasons as MTSU's head coach. Under Murphy's tutelage, the Blue Raiders posted four undefeated seasons (1949, 1957, 1959 and 1965) along with 17 winning seasons and three bowl appearances. Murphy was asked to resign at MTSU after a 2–8 campaign in 1968.
Donald Fuoss era (1969)
Bill Peck era (1970-1974)
Coach Bill Peck took over in 1970 and instantly brought improvement to Murfreesboro. In his first season, the Blue Raiders posted a 6–3–1 record. In 1971, MTSU posted a record of 7–4. That was followed by a 7–3–1 mark in 1972, a 4–7 mark in 1973 and a 3–8 campaign in 1974. Peck was asked to resign after back to back losing seasons to end his tenure.
Ben Hurt era (1975-1978)
Ben Hurt took over the Blue Raiders in 1975. Under his tutelage, in 1975, MTSU posted a 4–7 mark. That was followed by another 4–7 campaign in 1976. In 1977, Hurt's Blue Raiders posted a 3–8 record that was followed by a 1–9–1 1978 season, after which Hurt was fired.
James Donnelly era (1979-1998)
Austin Peay head coach James Donnelly was hired as MTSU's head coach in 1979. Under his leadership, the MTSU football program compiled a record of 133–80–1. Donnelly is the second winningest football coach in MTSU history. Of his 20 seasons at the helm, 15 of them were winning seasons (including 12 in a row) and four of them were seasons of at least 10 wins. Donnelly resigned after a 5–5 season in 1998.
Andy McCollum era (1999-2005)
Andy McCollum took over for Donnelly in 1999. McCollum led the Blue Raiders to a 6–5 record in 2000, their first as an FBS program. In 2001, MTSU finished 8–3, won the Sun Belt Conference championship and oversaw an offense that ranked fifth nationally. In 2005, MTSU's defense ranked ninth nationally. McCollum was fired after the 2005 season.
Rick Stockstill era (2006-present)
In 2006, South Carolina tight ends coach and recruiting coordinator Rick Stockstill got the head coaching job at Middle Tennessee State. In his first season, Stockstill led the Blue Raiders to the program's second bowl game as well as a share of the Sun Belt Conference title. He was later that year named the conference coach of the year. The 2007 and 2008 seasons saw the Blue Raiders take a small step back with back-to-back 5–7 seasons. However, in 2009, Stockstill and the Blue Raiders went 10–3 and won the New Orleans Bowl, which was the second bowl victory in school history. Again, Stockstill was named conference coach of the year for the 2009 season. The Blue Raiders went to another bowl in 2010, and they finished the season 6–7 after losing the GoDaddy.com Bowl.
After the successful 2009 season, he turned down several offers from other schools, including Conference USA's East Carolina and Memphis, citing that it was not the right time to leave the Blue Raiders. Stockstill has led MTSU to five bowl games in 11 years.
The nickname of the Middle Tennessee athletic teams is the Blue Raiders. Female teams were long known as the Lady Raiders, but adopted the Blue Raiders name in 2007. The nickname's origin goes back to a 1934 newspaper contest. An MT football player, Charles Sarver, won $5 from Murfreesboro's The Daily News Journal with his winning entry "Blue Raiders", which he later admitted borrowing from Colgate University, whose teams were known as "Raiders" at the time. No official nickname existed prior to 1934, when teams were called "Normalites", "Teachers", and "Pedagogues".
Colors and mascot
MT appeared twice in the Tangerine Bowl (now the Capital One Bowl). The first game, played January 1, 1960, against Presbyterian College, resulted in a 21-12 win. The second game, against Lamar University on December 29, 1961, was a 21-14 loss.
The Blue Raiders were invited to the Motor City Bowl in 2006 after a shared conference title with Troy University. Troy had won the conference with a tie-breaker, but MT was invited due to the Big Ten having two teams in the Bowl Championship Series (BCS) and thus being unable to fulfill their bowl contract for the Motor City Bowl. MT played Central Michigan University in the game and were defeated 31-14.
MT finished the 2009 regular season with a 9-3 record and was invited to play in the R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl on December 20, 2009. The team played against the University of Southern Mississippi, defeating them 42-32. This was MT's second bowl game since joining the FBS. Quarterback Dwight Dasher was named as the game's MVP after rushing and passing for two touchdowns each.
|1959||January 1, 1960||Tangerine Bowl||W||Presbyterian||21||12||Charles M. Murphy||notes|
|1961||December 29, 1961||Tangerine Bowl||L||Lamar||14||21||Charles M. Murphy||notes|
|2006||December 26, 2006||Motor City Bowl||L||Central Michigan||14||31||Rick Stockstill||notes|
|2009||December 20, 2009||New Orleans Bowl||W||Southern Miss||42||32||Rick Stockstill||notes|
|2010||January 6, 2011||GoDaddy.com Bowl||L||Miami (OH)||21||35||Rick Stockstill||notes|
|2013||December 30, 2013||Armed Forces Bowl||L||Navy||6||24||Rick Stockstill||notes|
|2015||December 24, 2015||Bahamas Bowl||L||Western Michigan||31||45||Rick Stockstill||notes|
|2016||December 24, 2016||Hawaii Bowl||Hawaii||Rick Stockstill||notes|
|Total||8 bowl games||2–5||149||200|
Division I-AA Playoffs results
The Blue Raiders have appeared in the I-AA playoffs seven times with a record of 6–7.
|1984|| First Round|
| Eastern Kentucky|
| W 27–10|
W 42–41 3OT
|1985||Quarterfinals||Georgia Southern||L 21–28|
|1989|| First Round|
| Appalachian State|
| W 24–21|
|1990|| First Round|
| W 24–21|
|1991|| First Round|
| Sam Houston State|
| W 20–19OT|
|1992|| First Round|
| Appalachian State|
| W 35–10|
|1994||First Round||Marshall||L 14–49|
All-time record vs. CUSA teams
Official record (including any NCAA imposed vacates and forfeits) against all current CUSA opponents:
|Florida Atlantic||11||3||0||.786||Won 9||2003||2016|
|Louisiana Tech||2||4||0||.333||Won 1||1984||2016|
|North Texas||7||8||0||.467||Won 2||2001||2016|
|Old Dominion||1||0||0||1.000||Won 1||2014||2014|
|Southern Miss||3||0||0||1.000||Won 3||2009||2014|
|Western Kentucky||33||31||1||.515||Lost 2||1914||2016|
Future non-conference opponents
Announced schedules as of August 26, 2015
|at Missouri||vs Vanderbilt||at Vanderbilt||vs Duke||at Duke||vs Missouri||at Missouri|
|at Vanderbilt||at Minnesota||at Bowling Green|
|at Bowling Green||vs Bowling Green|
|vs Alabama A&M|
- MTSU Visual Style Guide and Branding Policy Manual (PDF). 2015-05-01. Retrieved 2016-03-25.
- "100 Years of MTSU Football".
- Stone, India (June 20, 2003). "The Heritage of Champions". GoBlueRaiders.com. Retrieved September 4, 2014.
- Pittard, Homer (1961). The First Fifty Years: A History of Middle Tennessee State College. Middle Tennessee State College. p. 73. OCLC 7580185.
- Cattell, James McKeen, ed. (1933). "School & Society". Society for the Advancement of Education. The University of California. 37 (960): 652.
- Forsythe, Regina (July 3, 1995). "Oral History Interview With Isa Lee Freeman" (PDF). MTSU.edu. Albert Gore Research Center.
- Sparks, Adam (October 1, 2015). "Johnny "Red" Floyd: MTSU legend, Vandy lost treasure". The Tennessean.
- DeLassus, David. "Middle Tennessee State Yearly Results: 1935-1939". College Football Data Warehouse.
- DeLassus, David. "Middle Tennessee State Yearly Results: 1940-1944". College Football Data Warehouse.
- DeLassus, David. "Middle Tennessee State Yearly Results: 1945-1949". College Football Data Warehouse.
- Organ, Mike (May 11, 2014). "Former MTSU coach nominated for College Football Hall". The Tennessean.
- Bullen, Bob (1984). "Recollections: The Middle Tennessee Voices of Their Times Series, Television Program with Charles "Bubba" Murphy" (PDF). MTSU.edu. Albert Gore Research Center.
- DeLassus, David. "Middle Tennessee State Yearly Results: 1965-1969". College Football Data Warehouse.
- DeLassus, David. "Middle Tennessee State Yearly Results: 1970-1974". College Football Data Warehouse.
- Schmadtke, Alan (October 16, 1988). "Peck's Kids: He Loves Them For Just Trying". Orlando Sentinel.
- DeLassus, David. "Middle Tennessee State Yearly Results: 1975-1979". College Football Data Warehouse.
- "Donnelly, James "Boots"". Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame.
- "Andy McCollum". RamblinWreck.com.
- "Middle Tennessee fires coach Andy McCollum". USA Today. November 21, 2005.
- Dooley, Pat (December 13, 2005). "Stockstill tapped as MTSU coach". The Gainesville Sun.
- Anderson, Reggie (January 20, 2010). "Former Clemson and USC Assistant Stockstill Staying At Middle Tennessee". WLTX. Archived from the original on February 9, 2013.
- Stukenborg, Phil (November 17, 2009). "Tigers to talk to MTSU's Rick Stockstill about vacancy". The Commercial Appeal. Archived from the original on December 25, 2013.
- "Stockstill stays at MTSU, won't pursue East Carolina opening". Nashville City Paper. January 19, 2010. Archived from the original on July 12, 2012.
- Stone, India (June 20, 2003). "The Heritage of Champions". GoBlueRaiders.com. Retrieved January 8, 2010.
- Staff (August 1, 2008). "Blue Raider Logos". GoBlueRaiders.com. Retrieved January 8, 2010.
- Staff (December 20, 2009). "Blue Raiders power past Southern Miss to win New Orleans Bowl Championship, 42-32". GoBlueRaiders.com. Retrieved January 8, 2010.
- "Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders Football Schedules and Future Schedules". fbschedules.com. Retrieved 2012-02-20.