Analysis. History. Perspective.

Sports Then and Now



SMU Football: Back From The Dead 17

Posted on December 20, 2009 by Dean Hybl
SMU vs. East Carolina

More than 20 years after being given the "death penalty" by the NCAA, SMU football is heading back to a bowl game.

Illustrating that in college football even death isn’t permanent, the Southern Methodist University (SMU) Mustangs will take the field for the Sheraton Hawaii Bowl this week, 25 years after playing in their last bowl game and 23 years after their program was left for dead by the NCAA.

For an entire generation of fans, SMU is best known for having the only football program ever given the “death penalty” by the NCAA for repeated rules violations. However, to define the football history of the school only by the last 25 years is to neglect a rich and historic tradition that is an important part of college football history.

Though the football programs at Texas, Texas A&M and Texas Christian (TCU) are all older, it didn’t take long after starting football in 1915 for SMU to join them to form a dominant football juggernaut within the state of Texas. Between 1927 and 1941, each school claimed a share of at least one national championship.

In 1915, Texas and Texas A&M were among the founding members of the Southwest Conference. SMU joined the league in 1918 and soon was contending for league titles.

The first great football team at SMU was under the guidance of coach Ray Morrison in 1923. The Mustangs registered shutouts in seven of their nine games and outscored their opponents 207-9 while claiming their first SWC title with a perfect 9-0 record.

Read the rest of this entry →

  • Follow Us Online

  • Vintage Athlete of the Month

    • Tony Oliva: Hall of Fame Worthy
      April 21, 2019 | 5:18 pm
      Tony Oliva

      Cuba is known for producing great baseball talent and there has arguably been no one from the island better than the Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month.

      Before injuries cut short his Hall of Fame worthy career, Tony Oliva was one of the best hitters in baseball and combined with Hall of Famers Rod Carew and Harmen Killebrew to make the Minnesota Twins a perennial American League contender during the late 1960s.

      Read more »

    • RSSArchive for Vintage Athlete of the Month »
  • Sign up for Email Updates

    Sign-up to get daily updates of all the great articles and information on Sports Then and Now.

    Enter your email address:

    Delivered by FeedBurner

  • Check out the best free bets at freebets4all. Learn how to convert online bookmakers free bets into guaranteed cash using the matched betting technique.

  • Affordable Satellite TV Great prices on Dish network packages.

  • Gear up for your next trip with new North Face Backpacks from SportsUnlimited.com. Shop great Field Hockey Sticks from Grays & Gryphon.

    Football Jerseys

    8mm film to digital
  • Current Poll

    Does it bother you that baseballs in MLB appear to be "juiced"?

    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...
  • Post Categories



↑ Top