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Central Michigan Chippewas football

The Central Michigan Chippewas are a college football program in Division I FBS, representing Central Michigan University (CMU). CMU currently[when?] has the 30th highest overall winning percentage of programs currently playing in NCAA Division I.[2]

Central Michigan Chippewas
2019 Central Michigan Chippewas football team
Central Michigan Chippewas logo.svg
First season1896
Athletic directorMichael Alford
Head coachJim McElwain
1st season, 3–3 (.500)
StadiumKelly/Shorts Stadium
(Capacity: 30,255)
Field surfaceFieldTurf
LocationMount Pleasant, Michigan
NCAA divisionDivision I FBS
ConferenceMid-American Conference
All-time record612–407–36 (.597)
Bowl record3–8 (.273)
Claimed nat'l titles1 (1974) (Division II)
Conference titles16
Division titles3
RivalriesWestern Michigan (rivalry)
Eastern Michigan (rivalry)
Current uniform
ColorsMaroon and Gold[1]
Fight songThe Fighting Chippewa
Marching bandThe Marching Chippewas

The Chippewas have played in five bowl games in the last seven years, drawing 60,624 fans in the 2007 Motor City Bowl. CMU has played a total of eight post-season games (conference championships and bowl games), winning six. All have occurred in the past seven years.


Conference affiliationsEdit

Central Michigan has been a member of the following conferences.[3]:109–117


National championshipsEdit

The Chippewas won the 1974 NCAA Division II National Championship.

Year League Coach Record CG Opponent Result
1974 NCAA Division II Roy Kramer 12–1 Delaware W 54–14

Conference championshipsEdit

Central Michigan has won 16 conference championships including seven Mid-American Conference Championships.[3]:109–117

Year Conference Coach Record Conference Record
1952 Interstate Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Bill Kelly 7–2 6–0
1953 Interstate Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Bill Kelly 7–1–1 5–0–1
1954 Interstate Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Bill Kelly 8–2 5–1
1955 Interstate Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Bill Kelly 8–1 5–1
1956 Interstate Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Bill Kelly 9–0 6–0
1962 Interstate Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Bill Kelly 6–4 4–0
1966 Interstate Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Bill Kelly 5–5 3–0
1967 Interstate Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Roy Kramer 8–2 2–1
1968 Interstate Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Roy Kramer 7–2 2–1
1979 Mid-American Conference Herb Deromedi 10–0–1 8–0–1
1980 Mid-American Conference Herb Deromedi 9–2 7–2
1990 Mid-American Conference Herb Deromedi 8–3–1 7–1
1994 Mid-American Conference Dick Flynn 9–3 8–1
2006 Mid-American Conference Brian Kelly 10–4 7–1
2007 Mid-American Conference Butch Jones 8–6 6–1
2009 Mid-American Conference Butch Jones‡ 12–2 8–0

† Co-champions

Division championshipsEdit

Central Michigan has won 3 division championships.

Year Division Coach Opponent CG result
2006 MAC West Brian Kelly Ohio W 31–10
2007 MAC West Butch Jones Miami W 35–10
2009 MAC West Butch Jones Ohio W 20–10

† Co-champions

Head coachesEdit

Many notable coaches have contributed to CMU's culture. Some include legendary "Wild" Bill Kelly who won seven conference championships in sixteen years and whom Kelly/Shorts Stadium is named after; national championship winning coach Roy Kramer who had a 72% winning percentage and never had a losing season in more than a decade; College Football Hall of Fame coach Herb Deromedi who is the winningest coach in MAC history[citation needed] and Brian Kelly and Butch Jones who combined for three MAC Championships in four years, four consecutive bowl appearance and top 25 finish in the nation.

CMU head coaches through the 2018 season.[3]

Coach Seasons Years Record
Pete McCormick 1896 1 3–1
Carl Pray 1897–1899 3 6–5
Unknown 1900 1 1–0
No team 1901
Charles Tambling 1902–1905, 1918 5 18–2
No team 1906
Ralph Thacker 1907 1 2–4
Hugh Sutherland 1908 1 4–3
Harry Helmer 1909–1912 4 14–7–2
No team 1913–1915
Blake Miller 1916 1 1–5
Fred Johnson 1917 1 1–2
Garland Nevitt 1919 1 2–2–3
Joe Simmons 1920 1 4–3–1
Wallace Parker 1921–1923, 1926–1928 6 34–11–6
Lester Barnard 1924–1925 2 11–2–3
Butch Nowack 1929–1930 2 7–6–2
George Van Bibber 1931–1933 3 12–9–2
Alex Yunevich 1934–1936 3 9–13–1
Ron Finch 1937–1946 10 53–18–1
Lyle Bennett 1947–1949 3 8–15–1
Warren Schmakel 1950 1 6–4
Kenneth Kelly 1951–1966 16 91–58–2
Roy Kramer 1967–1977 11 83–32–2
Herb Deromedi 1978–1993 16 110–55–10
Dick Flynn 1994–1999 6 30–37
Mike DeBord 2000–2003 4 12–34
Brian Kelly 2004–2006 3 19–16
Jeff Quinn 2006 1–0
Butch Jones 2007–2009 3 27–13
Steve Stripling 2009 1–0
Dan Enos 2010–2014 5 26–36
John Bonamego 2015–2018 4 22–29
Jim McElwain 2019–Present

† Interim

Bowl gamesEdit

Central Michigan holds a 3–8 record in bowl games.[3]:124–136

Year Bowl Opponent Result
1990 California Bowl San Jose State L 24–48
1994 Las Vegas Bowl UNLV L 24–52
2006 Motor City Bowl Middle Tennessee State W 31–14
2007 Motor City Bowl Purdue L 48–51
2008 Motor City Bowl Florida Atlantic L 21–24
2009 GMAC Bowl Troy W 44–41
2012 Little Caesars Pizza Bowl Western Kentucky W 24–21
2014 Bahamas Bowl WKU L 48–49
2015 Quick Lane Bowl Minnesota L 14–21
2016 Miami Beach Bowl Tulsa L 10–55
2017 Famous Idaho Potato Bowl Wyoming L 14–37

Jeff Quinn coached in 2006 Motor City Bowl and Steve Stripling coached in 2010 GMAC Bowl


Western MichiganEdit

These archrivals first met in 1907 and have faced one another annually since 1943. Since the two schools are separated by a two-hour drive, the visiting team typically has a strong fan and student presence at the game. The winner of the game receives the Cannon Trophy.[4] The outcome also helps determine the winner of the Michigan MAC Trophy, a trophy fought over between Michigan's three MAC football teams: the Chippewas, the Broncos, and the Eastern Michigan Eagles.[5] WMU leads the series overall 49–39–2.[citation needed][when?]

Eastern MichiganEdit

The Chippewas and Eagles maintain a less prominent, but steady rivalry. CMU holds the series lead over EMU, leading 56–28–6.[6][when?]


Kelly/Shorts game day experienceEdit

Central Michigan has the largest on-campus stadium in the Mid-American Conference,[7] seating 32,885 fans and has been playing home football games dating back to 1896. The Sporting News has named Kelly/Shorts Stadium "the finest football facility in the Mid-American Conference" and "the best game day atmosphere in the MAC".[8]

The East End of the stadium (as of 2014) once again hosts the CMU Student section backing the football team.[citation needed] The Chippewa Marching Band, cheerleaders, and dance team add to the game day experience[citation needed] and has helped CMU become one of the nation's winningest schools at home with a .714 winning percentage all-time at Kelly/Shorts Stadium.[citation needed]

CMU drew a capacity crowd of 35,127 fans for the Central Michigan–Michigan State game televised on ESPNU[9] and has hosted schools from the ACC, Big Ten, and Big 12 conferences. Future opponents at home include schools from the Big Ten, ACC, Big 12, Pac-12 and Mountain West conferences.[10]

In 2010, the CMU Board of Trustees designed and set course to construct a state of the art stadium expansion to integrate a hotel, restaurant, and conference center connected by a glass atrium to new stadium suites on the east side. This addition will be custom-built into Kelly/Shorts Stadium.[11]

Newer upgrades include a video scoreboard standing six stories and featuring two video replay boards—one facing into the stadium and a second board facing outside the stadium by tailgating areas. NFL-quality permanent lighting has been installed for television and future ESPN night games.[12]

"Fire Up Chips!", "OO-Wah... Chip-OO-Wah" & "The Fighting Chippewa"Edit

The traditional greeting of "FIRE UP CHIPS!" heard amongst Chippewa fans, students and alumni around the nation can also be heard on game day and throughout the stadium.[citation needed] The Chippewa nickname is used with the consent and support of the nearby Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe, who have a positive relationship with the university.[13]

The CMU football helmet logo has evolved from a "Chippewa Indian spear and feather" to a "Flying C" representing the CMU Chippewas.

The CMU pre-game entrance signals the beginning of another great Chippewa football contest by filling the stadium with the name itself, loud and clear: "OO-WAH . . . CHIP-OO-WAH!"[citation needed]

The Fight Song, "The Fighting Chippewa" (Words and Music by Howard Loomis, Class of 1935), can be heard after a Chippewa score: " FIGHT, Central down the field, FIGHT for victory, FIGHT, fellows never yield; We're with you, oh varsity. Onward with banners bold, to our colors we'll be true, FIGHT for Maroon and Gold, Down the field for C. M. U."

College Football Hall of FameEdit

One former Central Michigan coach has been inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame.[14][15]

Name Position Career Induction
Herb Deromedi Head coach 1978–1993 2007

Notable playersEdit



The CMU Sports Network broadcasts all games live throughout Michigan and online for free.

CMU Sports Network Affiliates:


The ESPN family of channels and Fox Sports affiliates have provided national and local television coverage.

CMU Sports Zone provides live and archive Internet video-feed of games, gameday coverage, and coaches shows.[21]

Future non-conference opponentsEdit

Announced schedules as of September 18, 2019.[22]

No games currently scheduled for the 2028-2029 seasons.
2020 2021 2022 2023 2024 2025 2026 2027 2030
San Jose State (9/5) at Missouri (9/4) at Oklahoma State (9/3) at Alabama (9/2) at Florida International (9/7) at San Jose State (8/30) at New Mexico State (9/5) at Wyoming (9/4) at San Diego State (9/21)
at Nebraska (9/12) Robert Morris (9/11) South Alabama (9/10) at South Alabama (9/9) at Illinois (9/14) Wyoming (9/19)
at Northwestern (9/19) at LSU (9/18) at Penn State (9/24) San Diego State (9/28)
Bryant (9/26) Florida International (9/25)


  1. ^ Graphic Identity Guidelines (PDF). Central Michigan University Brand Identity Standards. Archived from the original (PDF) on January 4, 2017. Retrieved August 3, 2019.
  2. ^ "Division I-A All-Time Winning Percentage". Retrieved August 13, 2012.
  3. ^ a b c d "2017 CMU Media Guide" (PDF). CMU Athletics. p. 106. Retrieved January 29, 2018.
  4. ^[permanent dead link]
  5. ^[permanent dead link]
  6. ^ " : NCAAF Football : Series records : Central Michigan vs. Eastern Michigan".
  7. ^ "CMUCHIPPEWAS.COM - Official Athletic Site".
  8. ^ "Kelly/Shorts Stadium -—Official Web Site of Central Michigan University Athletics". October 23, 2012. Archived from the original on November 5, 2013. Retrieved September 30, 2013.
  9. ^ "Michigan State Spartans vs. Central Michigan Chippewas - Box Score - September 08, 2012 - ESPN". September 8, 2012. Retrieved September 30, 2013.
  10. ^ "2014 Central Michigan Chippewas Football Schedule - CMU".
  11. ^ "Central Michigan Life – Proposal for on-campus hotel to go before board Thursday". Retrieved September 30, 2013.
  12. ^ "Kelly/Shorts Stadium -—Official Web Site of Central Michigan University Athletics". August 31, 2010. Archived from the original on November 1, 2013. Retrieved September 30, 2013.
  13. ^ "Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe - Central Michigan University".
  14. ^ "CMU legend Herb Deromedi named to Football Playoff Selection Committee".
  15. ^ "Inductees - Football Players & Coaches - College Football Hall of Fame".
  16. ^ "Brett Hartmann Stats - ESPN". Retrieved September 30, 2013.
  17. ^ "Gary Hogeboom NFL Football Statistics". August 21, 1958. Retrieved September 30, 2013.
  18. ^ "Gary Hogeboom - Survivor: Guatemala". August 21, 1958. Retrieved September 30, 2013.
  19. ^ "Robert Jackson Past Stats, Statistics, History, and Awards". Archived from the original on October 3, 2013. Retrieved September 30, 2013.
  20. ^ "Listen to Chippewa Football Across the Entire State -—Official Web Site of Central Michigan University Athletics". August 14, 2010. Archived from the original on November 5, 2013. Retrieved September 30, 2013.
  21. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on July 20, 2011. Retrieved 2010-07-07.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  22. ^ "Central Michigan Chippewas Football Future Schedules". Retrieved September 18, 2019.

External linksEdit