Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns football

The Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns football program is a college football team that represents the University of Louisiana at Lafayette in the Sun Belt Conference. Between 2011 and 2014, the Cajuns won four consecutive New Orleans Bowls, representing the most successful stretch in the program's history, but later had to vacate two of the victories due to NCAA violations.[2]

Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns football
2020 Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns football team
Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns wordmark.svg
First season1901 (1901)
Athletic directorBryan Maggard
Head coachBilly Napier
2nd season, 18–10 (.643)
StadiumCajun Field
(Capacity: 41,426)
Year built1971
Field surfaceTurf (ProGrass)
LocationLafayette, Louisiana
NCAA divisionDivision I FBS
ConferenceSun Belt Conference
All-time record544–563–33 (.492)
Bowl record6–3 (.667)
Conference titles7
Division titles2
RivalriesULM (Battle on the Bayou)
Arkansas State
Consensus All-Americans4
ColorsVermilion and White[1]
Fight songRagin' Cajuns Fight Song
Marching bandPride of Acadiana

The university has had several notable players to go to the NFL, including Jake Delhomme, Elijah McGuire, Brian Mitchell, Charles Tillman, and Orlando Thomas.

The team plays in Cajun Field, and Billy Napier is currently the head coach.


Before 1974, the team's official nickname was the Bulldogs, although the current nickname was in common use with the football team for approximately the decade prior.

Division historyEdit

Years Division
1937–1962 National Junior College Athletic Association
1963–1972 NCAA College Division (Small College)
1973 NCAA Division II
1974–1977 NCAA Division I
1978–present NCAA Division I-A (FBS)

Conference affiliationsEdit

Louisiana has been both independent and a member of four different conferences.[3]:89


Conference championshipsEdit

Louisiana has won 8 conference championships, with the 2013 championship later vacated.[3]:84–89

Year Conference Coach Overall record Conference record
1952† Gulf States Conference Raymond Didier 5–2–2 3–0–2
1965† Russ Faulkinberry 7–3 4–1
1968 Russ Faulkinberry 8–2 5–1
1970 Russ Faulkinberry 9–3 5–0
1993† Big West Conference Nelson Stokley 8–3 5–1
1994† Nelson Stokley 6–5 5–1
2005 Sun Belt Conference Rickey Bustle 6–5 5–2
2013†,‡ Mark Hudspeth 9–4 5–2

† Co-champions

‡ Louisiana vacated the 2013 Sun Belt Conference co-championship due to major NCAA violations.[4]

Divisional championshipsEdit

Season Division Coach Conf. record Overall record Opponent CG result
2018 Sun Belt West Billy Napier 5–3 7–7 Appalachian State L 19–30
2019 Sun Belt West Billy Napier 7–1 11–3 Appalachian State L 38-45

Postseason historyEdit

National Junior College Athletic AssociationEdit

Date Coach Bowl Opponent Result
January 1, 1944 Louis Whitman Oil Bowl Arkansas–Monticello W 24–7

NCAA Small College DivisionEdit

Date Coach Bowl Opponent Result
December 12, 1970 Russ Faulkinberry Grantland Rice Bowl Tennessee State L 25–26

NCAA Division I FBSEdit

Since joining the NCAA Division I-A (FBS) in 1978, the Ragin' Cajuns have played in six bowl games, although two of those games (which were victories) were vacated due to sanctions. Officially, they have a record of 3–2 in bowl games.

Date Coach Bowl Opponent Result
December 17, 2011 Mark Hudspeth New Orleans Bowl San Diego State Vacated W 32–30
December 22, 2012 New Orleans Bowl East Carolina W 43–34
December 21, 2013 New Orleans Bowl Tulane Vacated W 24–21
December 20, 2014 New Orleans Bowl Nevada W 16–3
December 17, 2016 New Orleans Bowl Southern Miss L 21–28
December 15, 2018 Billy Napier Cure Bowl Tulane L 24–41
January 6, 2020 LendingTree Bowl Miami (OH) W 27–17

Home stadiumsEdit

McNaspy StadiumEdit

In 1940 McNaspy Stadium was built on the campus of Southwestern Louisiana Institute (now University of Louisiana at Lafayette). It served as the Cajuns home field through the 1970 season and was demolished in 2000. McNaspy Stadium was located at the site where the current computer science building Oliver Hall now stands.

Cajun FieldEdit

Cajun Field on gameday.

Cajun Field is a football stadium located in the city of Lafayette, Louisiana, and has served as the home field of the Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns football team since 1970. Cajun Field has an official capacity of 41,426 with 2,577 chairback seats, and its nickname is "The Swamp."

Head coachesEdit

Years coached Name Record
1901–1902 Ashby Woodson 3–2
1903 J. Ovey Herpin 1–1
1904 Edwin F. Gayle 2–0–1
1906 Herbert McNaspy 1–0–1
1907 Jefferson Caffrey 3–0
1908–1911; 1913; 1917–1918 Clement J. "C. J." McNaspy 34–15–4
1912 H. Lee Prather 3–4
1914–1915 R. B. Dunbar 10–5–1
1916; 1919; 1921–1930 T. R. Mobley 57–48–7
1920 Herbert O. Tudor 2–8
1931–1936 T. F. Wilbanks 19–32–2
1937–1941; 1946 Johnny Cain 33–19–5
1942–1945 Louis Whittman 14–14–2
1947–1949 George "Gee" Mitchell 18–8–1
1950 A. L. "Red" Swanson 5–4
1951–1956 Raymond Didier 29–23–2
1957 John Robert Bell 4–5–1
1958–1960 Jim "Red" Hoggatt 11–17
1961–1973 Russ Faulkinberry 66–63–2
1974–1979 Augie Tammariello 30–35–2
1980–1985 Sam Robertson 29–34–2
1986–1998 Nelson Stokley 62–80–1
1999–2001 Jerry Baldwin 6–27
2002–2010 Rickey Bustle 41–65
2011–2017 Mark Hudspeth 29–38†
2018–present Billy Napier 18-10

† Hudspeth's record of 51–38 was reduced to 29–38 due to alleged NCAA violations.[citation needed]



The Battle on the Bayou is the annual rivalry game between Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns and ULM. The wooden boot-shaped rivalry trophy was created in 2002 to be awarded to the victors.[5]

Louisiana–ULM: All-time record
Games played First meeting Last meeting LA wins LA losses Ties Win %
54 September 15, 1951 (lost 7–13) November 30, 2019 (won 31–30) 29 25 0 53.7%


Although no longer a rivalry, the first Sabine Shoe trophy was first awarded in 1937 to the winner of the SLI–Lamar football game.[6] The name of the bronze rivalry trophy was derived from the Sabine River that forms the Texas-Louisiana border. USL defeated Lamar in the 1978 edition of the rivalry game, but the Ragin' Cajuns were not awarded the trophy as it had vanished.[7] The Sabine Shoe trophy now sits in at trophy case in the Ragin' Cajun Athletic Complex.

Louisiana–Lamar: All-time record
Games played First meeting Last meeting LA wins LA losses Ties Win %
34 October 27, 1923 (won 19–16) September 1, 2012 (won 40–0) 23 11 0 67.6%

McNeese StateEdit

Another former rivalry. When active the Cajun Crown was the name of the trophy between Louisiana and McNeese State.[8]

Louisiana–McNeese State: All-Time Record
Games played First meeting Last meeting LA wins LA losses Ties Win %
38 September 22, 1951 (won 35–14) September 10, 2016 (won 30–22) 16 20 2 47.1%

Southeastern LouisianaEdit

This is another former rivalry. The Cypress Mug was the turned, polished mahogany mug awarded to the winner of the Southwestern–Southeastern football game.[9]

Louisiana–Southeastern Louisiana: All-time record
Games played First meeting Last meeting LA wins LA losses Ties Win %
40 November 11, 1930 (won 13–0) September 2, 2017 (won 51–48) 20 17 3 58.8%

Arkansas StateEdit

Primarily only in football, this rivalry has been predominant due to the conference alignments of the Cajuns and Red Wolves. This rivalry also dates back to 1953, but became heated in 1971 when they both became Southland Conference members and met every year from 1971–1981 (the years they were in the conference together). Then, in 1993, both teams played again in the Big West Conference as football-only members from 1993–1995 and played all years. In 2001, when the Sun Belt Conference added football to the conference, Louisiana-Lafayette (now Louisiana) and Arkansas State both joined the same conference for the third time and have played every year since. It was known for a short time that when Louisiana and Arkansas State met in Sun Belt play, which ever team had homefield advantage would most likely win and have a good chance at winning the conference. (This was before the advent of the Conference Football Championship). Louisiana leads the series at 24–20–1 through the 2018 season.[10]

Louisiana–Arkansas State: All-time record
Games played First meeting Last meeting LA wins LA losses Ties Win %
41 October 17, 1953 (loss 12–13) October 17, 2019 (won 37–20) 23 18 0 56.1%

Notable playersEdit

Future non-conference opponentsEdit

Announced schedules as of February 7, 2020.[11]

2020 2021 2022 2023 2024 2025 2026 2027 2028
McNeese at Texas Eastern Michigan at UAB Tulane Rice UAB at Tulane Tulsa
Wyoming Nicholls at Rice at Minnesota at New Mexico State at Eastern Michigan at Wyoming
at New Mexico State Ohio at Florida State New Mexico State
at Missouri at Liberty

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "ULL Brand Guide and Graphic Standards Manual" (PDF). Retrieved March 27, 2016.
  2. ^ "Exam fraud, recruit payments among NCAA accusations against UL-Lafayette, ex-assistant coach David Saunders". The Baton Rouge Advocate. October 11, 2015. Retrieved October 20, 2015.
  3. ^ a b "2018 Media Guide" (PDF). ragincajuns.com. Louisiana Athletics.
  4. ^ "Big NCAA penalties for UL-Lafayette: Cajuns vacate 20-plus wins, two bowls, 2013 Sun Belt title". The Advocate. March 6, 2016.
  5. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-12-09. Retrieved 2013-12-08.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  6. ^ "Tribal lore". The Sporting News. 1997.
  7. ^ "The Week". CNN. October 9, 1978.
  8. ^ "College Football Rivalries". www.1122productions.com.
  9. ^ http://www.athleticnetwork.net/picpopup.php?piclibID=7334
  10. ^ http://www.winsipedia.com/louisiana-lafayette/vs/arkansas-state
  11. ^ "Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns Football Future Schedules". FBSchedules.com. Retrieved February 7, 2020.

External linksEdit