Air Force Falcons football

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Air Force Falcons football
2014 Air Force Falcons football team
Air Force Falcons.svg
First season 1955
Athletic director Dr. Hans J. Mueh
Head coach Troy Calhoun
5th year, 49–22  (.690)
Home stadium Falcon Stadium
Stadium capacity 52,480
Stadium surface Turf
Location Colorado Springs, CO
Conference Mountain West
Division Mountain
All-time record 337–278–13 (.547)
Postseason bowl record 10–11–1 (.477)
Conference titles 3
Consensus All-Americans 5
Current uniform
MWC-Uniform-Air Force.png
Colors

Blue and Silver

          
Fight song "Falcon Fight Song"
(unofficial: "The U.S. Air Force")
Mascot The Bird
Marching band United States Air Force Academy Drum & Bugle Corp "The Flight of Sound"
Rivals Army Black Knights
Navy Midshipmen
Colorado State Rams
Website GoAirForceFalcons.com

The Air Force Falcons are a college football team from the United States Air Force Academy, located just outside of Colorado Springs, Colorado. The team competes in the Football Bowl Subdivision of the NCAA Division I and the Mountain West Conference.

Style[edit]

Given the physical restrictions that military service puts on cadets, Air Force football has traditionally been based more on speed, willpower and technical execution than on pure size and strength. The Falcons have traditionally run a triple option offense, and have routinely competed favorably against bigger and stronger national opponents. While the wishbone is almost always assumed synonymous with the triple option, Air Force only deployed the formation occasionally under Coaches Fisher DeBerry and Ken Hatfield. One mainstay from both of these coaches is the option, and the consistent repetition to near perfection, as witnessed by the wins and the rushing statistics in the past 25 years, regularly placing Air Force in the top ten rushing teams in the nation.[citation needed]

Falcon Stadium[edit]

Falcon home games are played in Falcon Stadium, which sits below the main campus at an elevation of 6621 feet (2018 m) above sea level. Pre-game activities include flyovers by USAF aircraft, including the F-15 and B-2. The highest attendance at a home game was 56,409 spectators in 2002, when the Falcons battled the Notre Dame Fighting Irish.[1]

History[edit]

Running back Asher Clark and the Falcons take on the Houston Cougars during the 2009 Armed Forces Bowl

The Falcons are not only recognized by the lightning bolt on the side of their helmets, but their traditional option attack. Air Force is one of the premier rushing teams in the nation. Since Fisher DeBerry took over as Falcons head coach in 1984, they have ranked among the nation’s top 10 in rushing 19 times in 21 years. The Air Force football team has enjoyed success not only on the field but also in the classroom. In 49 years of Air Force football, there have been 39 Academic All-Americans.[2]

The 1985 Season[edit]

1985 was the most successful season in Air Force football history. Under 2nd year coach Fisher DeBerry, the Fightin’ Falcons came within one win of playing for the national championship. They recorded 10 straight wins, climbed the polls to #2 in the nation, but lost to BYU by 7 points in the penultimate game of the season. Air Force rebounded with a bowl game win over Texas in the Bluebonnet Bowl and finished with a 12-1 record as the #5 ranked team in the nation.

Past results[edit]

Year Coach Overall Conference Standing Bowl/playoffs Coaches# AP°
1956 Buck Shaw 6–2–1
1957 Buck Shaw 3–6–1
1958 Ben Martin 9–0–2 T Cotton 8 6
1959 Ben Martin 5–4–1
1960 Ben Martin 4–6
1961 Ben Martin 3–7
1962 Ben Martin 5–5
1963 Ben Martin 7–4 L Gator
1964 Ben Martin 4–5–1
1965 Ben Martin 3–6–1
1966 Ben Martin 4–6
1967 Ben Martin 2–6–2
1968 Ben Martin 7–3
1969 Ben Martin 6–4
1970 Ben Martin 9–3 L Sugar 11 11
1971 Ben Martin 6–4
1972 Ben Martin 6–4
1973 Ben Martin 6–4
1974 Ben Martin 2–9
1975 Ben Martin 2–8–1
1976 Ben Martin 4–7
1977 Ben Martin 2–8–1
1978 Bill Parcells 3–8
1979 Ken Hatfield 2–9
1980 Ken Hatfield 2–9–1 1–3
1981 Ken Hatfield 4–7 2–3
1982 Ken Hatfield 8–5 4–3 W Hall of Fame
1983 Ken Hatfield 10–2 5–2 W Independence 16 16
1984 Fisher DeBerry 8–4 4–3 W Independence
1985 Fisher DeBerry 12–1 7–1 W Bluebonnet 7 10
1986 Fisher DeBerry 6–5 5–2
1987 Fisher DeBerry 9–4 6–2 L Freedom
1988 Fisher DeBerry 5–7 3–5
1989 Fisher DeBerry 8–4–1 5–1–1 L Liberty
1990 Fisher DeBerry 7–5 3–4 W Liberty
1991 Fisher DeBerry 10–3 6–2 W Liberty
1992 Fisher DeBerry 7–5 4–4 L Liberty
1993 Fisher DeBerry 4–8 1–7
1994 Fisher DeBerry 8–4 6–2
1995 Fisher DeBerry 8–5 6–2 L Copper
1996 Fisher DeBerry 6–5 5–3
1997 Fisher DeBerry 10–3 6–2 L Las Vegas 21 23
1998 Fisher DeBerry 12–1 7–1 W Oahu 13 16
1999 Fisher DeBerry 6–5 2–5
2000 Fisher DeBerry 9–3 5–2 W Silicon Valley
2001 Fisher DeBerry 6–6 3–4
2002 Fisher DeBerry 8–5 4–3 L San Francisco
2003 Fisher DeBerry 7–5 3–4
2004 Fisher DeBerry 5–6 3–4
2005 Fisher DeBerry 4–7 3–5
2006 Fisher DeBerry 4–8 3–4
Troy Calhoun (Mountain West) (2007–present)
2007 Calhoun 9–4 6–2 L Armed Forces
2008 Calhoun 8–5 5–3 L Armed Forces
2009 Calhoun 8–5 5–3 W Armed Forces
2010 Calhoun 9–4 5–3 W Independence
2011 Calhoun 7–6 3–4 L Military
2012 Calhoun 6–7 5–3 L Armed Forces
2013 Calhoun 2-10 0-8
Total: 356–305–13
      National championship         Conference title         Conference division title
Indicates BCS bowl, Bowl Alliance or Bowl Coalition game. #Rankings from final Coaches' Poll.

[2]

Championships[edit]

  • WAC Champions: 1985 (tie), 1995 (tie), 1998
  • WAC Mountain Division Champions: 1998
  • Commander in Chief's Trophy Winners (AF-Army-Navy): 1982, 1983, 1985, 1987, 1989-1992, 1994, 1995, 1997-2002, 2010, 2011.

Since 1980, the Falcons and the Colorado State Rams have competed for the Ram-Falcon Trophy. Air Force currently holds a 16-13 advantage over Colorado State in games that the trophy has been contested in.

All-time record vs. Mountain West teams[edit]

Opponent Won Lost Tied Percentage Streak First Last
Boise State 0 2 0 .000 Lost 2 2011 2013
Colorado State 31 20 1 .606 Lost 1 1957 2013
Fresno State 4 3 0 .571 Lost 1 1993 2012
Hawaii 12 6 1 .658 Won 1 1966 2012
Nevada 1 1 0 .500 Lost 1 2012 2013
New Mexico 20 11 0 .645 Lost 1 1957 2013
San Diego State 19 13 0 .594 Lost 4 1980 2013
San Jose State 1 1 0 .500 Lost 1 1996 1997
UNLV 13 6 0 .684 Lost 2 1981 2013
Utah State 1 1 0 .500 Lost 1 1969 2013
Wyoming 27 22 3 .548 Lost 1 1957 2013
Totals 129 86 5 .598

Head coaches[edit]

Season(s) Head Coach Record (W-L-T)
1955 Colonel Robert V. Whitlow 4–4–0
1956–1957 L.T. “Buck” Shaw 9–8–2
1958–1977 Ben Martin 96–103–9
1978 Bill Parcells 3–8–0
1979–1983 Ken Hatfield 26–32–1
1984–2006 Fisher DeBerry 169–107–1
2007–present Troy Calhoun 49–41–0

Players[edit]

Individual accomplishments[edit]

Notable individual records[edit]

  • Chance Harridge: In 2002, Harridge set the NCAA Division I record for most single-season rushing touchdowns by a quarterback, with 23. Tied by the University of Florida's Tim Tebow in 2007. Broken by Navy's Ricky Dobbs in 2009 with 27.
  • Beau Morgan: He became the first player in NCAA history to rush and pass for over 1,000 yards in a season twice. He broke the NCAA single season rushing record for a quarterback, along with being only the second player in NCAA history to run and pass for 3,000 yards in a career.

Falcons in the NFL[edit]

The Bullard Award: Falcon Football’s Highest Honor[edit]

The Bullard Award is voted on by the team based on the criteria that typifies Brian Bullard – unselfishness, 110 percent effort, total team commitment and pride in his role on the team whether he’s a starter or not.[4]

Winners:

  • 1984 – Steve Kelly
  • 1985 – Pat Malackowski
  • 1986 – Pat Evans & Jason Webster
  • 1987 – Rip Burgwald
  • 1988 – Anthony Roberson
  • 1989 – Lance McDowell
  • 1990 – Bill Price
  • 1991 – Kette Dornbush
  • 1992 – Grant Johnson
  • 1993 – Will McCombs
  • 1994 – Steve Russ
  • 1995 – Brandon Wilkerson
  • 1996 – Lee Guthrie
  • 1997 – Chris Gizzi
  • 1998 – Mike Tyler
  • 1999 – Charlie Jackson
  • 2000 – Mike Gallagher, Matt Dayoc, Nate Beard
  • 2001 – Zach Johnson
  • 2002 – Tom Heir
  • 2003 – Joe Schieffer, Monty Coleman
  • 2004 – John Rudzinski
  • 2005 – Denny Poland
  • 2006 - Gilberto Perez
  • 2007 - Drew Fowler, Garrett Rybak
  • 2008 - Shea Smith
  • 2009 - Ben Garland
  • 2010 - Nate Walker

All-Americans[edit]

Year Player Position Award(s)
1956 Larry Thomson FB Little America (3rd)
1958 Brock Strom OL Consensus
Robert Brickey HB Helms
1963 Terry Isaacson QB Helms
Joe Rodwell C Helms
1966 Neal Starkey DB Playboy Magazine All-American
1967 Neal Starkey DB Associated Press (3rd)
1969 Ernie Jennings WR Central Press (2nd)
1970 Ernie Jennings WR Consensus
1971 Orderia Mitchell C Black Sports
Gene Ogilvie DE UPI (3rd)
1972 Orderia Mitchell C Associated Press (2nd), Gridiron (2nd)
Gene Ogilvie DE UPI (2nd)
1973 Steve Heil ROV Associated Press (3rd)
1974 Dave Lawson LB/K Football Writers
1975 Dave Lawson LB/K UPI (2nd), Football News (2nd)
1981 Johnny Jackson DB Associated Press (2nd)
1982 Dave Schreck OG Associated Press (2nd)
1983 John Kershner FB Football News (2nd)
Mike Kirby WR Sporting News (2nd)
1985 Mark Simon P Scripps Howard, Associated Press (2nd)
Scott Thomas DB Walter Camp, Kodak, Football Writes, Associated Press (2nd)
1986 Terry Maki LB Kodak, Football News (2nd), Associated Press (3rd)
Tom Rotello DB Football News (2nd)
1987 Chad Hennings DT Consensus, Walter Camp, Kodak, Football Writers, Associated Press, UPI, Scripps Howard, Sporting News, Football News, Outland Trophy winner
1989 Dee Dowis QB Heisman Trophy finalist
Ron Gray KR Associated Press (3rd)
1991 Jason Christ P Associated Press (2nd), Football News (3rd)
1992 Carlton McDonald DB Consensus, Walter Camp, Kodak, Football Writers, Associated Press, UPI, Scripps Howard, Sporting News
1993 Chris MacInnis P/K UPI, Associated Press (2nd)
1996 Beau Morgan QB Associated Press (3rd)
1997 Chris Gizzi LB Associated Press (3rd), Football Writers (2nd)
1998 Tim Curry DB Sporting News (3rd)
Frank Mindrup OL American Football Foundation (3rd)
2001 Anthony Schlegel ILB Sporting News (Freshmen 3rd team)
2002 Brett Huyser OL Sporting News (4th)
2007 Chad Hall WR Rivals (3rd), Sports Illustrated
Carson Bird CB Sports Illustrated
2008 Ryan Harrison K College Football News
2010 Reggie Rembert DB AFCA (1st),[3] Associated Press (3rd)

Academic All-Americans[edit]

Year Player Position
1958 Brock Strom OT
1959 Rich Mayo QB
1960 Rich Mayo QB
Don Baucom HB
1967 Ken Zagzebski MG
Carl Janssen OE
1969 Ernie Jennings WR
1970 Ernie Jennings WR
Bob Parker QB
Phil Bauman LB
1971 Darryl Haas LB/P
Bob Homburg DE
John Griffith DT
1972 Gene Ogilvie DE
Bob Homburg DE
Mark Prill MG
1973 Joe Debes OT
1976 Steve Hoog WR
1977 Mack McCollum ROV
1978 Steve Hoog WR
Tom Foertsch LB
Tim Fyda DE
1981 Mike France LB
Kevin Ewing ROV
1982 Jeff Kubiak P
1983 Jeff Kubiak P
1987 Chad Hennings DT
Scott Salmon DB
James Hecker DB
1988 Scott Salmon DB
David Hlatky OL
James Hecker DB
1989 Chris Howard HB
1990 Chris Howard HB
J.T. Tokish LB
1992 Grant Johnson LB
1996 Dustin Tyner WR
2003 Ryan Carter DE
2004 Ryan Carter DE

[5]

Air Force Academy Falcons free safety Bobby Giannini (#11) prepares to finish off Tennessee tailback Montario Hardesty, while Falcons defensive end Josh Clayton (#97) loosens Hardesty's grip on the football. The Falcons lost 31-30 in 2006.

Current coaching staff[edit]

  • Troy Calhoun - Head Coach
  • Ron Burton - NFL Liaison/Defensive Line
  • Clay Hendrix - Assoc. Head Coach/Off. Coordinator/Off. Line
  • Matt McGettigan - Strength/Conditioning
  • Blane Morgan - Offensive Coordinator/QBs
  • Steve Russ - Assist. Head Coach/Co-Defensive Coord./Secondary
  • Mike Thiessen - Asst.Head Coach/Offensive Coordinator/Wide Receivers
  • Matt Weikert - Inside Linebackers
  • Jake Campbell - Offensive Assistant/JV Offensive Coordinator
  • Ben Miller - Running Backs/Special Teams Coordinator
  • Jake Moreland - Tight Ends
  • Lt. Col. Bill Price - Varsity/JV Assistant
  • Capt. John Rudzinski - Outside Linebackers/Recruiting Coordinator
  • Steve Senn - Executive Asst./Quality Control
  • Lt. Col. Darryl Sumrall - JV Head Coach

[4]

Future non-conference opponents[edit]

2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 TBA
vs Nicholls State at Michigan State vs Abilene Christian at Michigan at Army vs Army at Army vs Army at Army vs Notre Dame
at Georgia State at Navy vs Georgia State at Navy vs Navy at Navy vs Navy at Navy vs Navy
vs Navy vs Army vs Navy vs Army
at Army at Army

[5]

Rivals[edit]

Air Force has a traditional rivalry against the other two FBS service academies, Army and Navy; the three play for the right to hold the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy. Air Force has held the trophy 18 times, more than either Army or Navy. Among other schools, Air Force has played more games against Colorado State and Wyoming, having played each school 52 times since 1957, the Falcon's first season.

Top 10 rivals[edit]

Below are Air Force's record against its top ten most-played opponents.[6]

Opponents Games Wins Losses Ties Last meeting
Colorado State 52 31 20 1 Nov. 30, 2013 (L 13-58)
Wyoming 52 27 22 3 Sep. 21, 2013 (L 23-56)
Army 48 33 14 1 Nov. 2, 2013 (W 42-28)
Navy 46 27 19 0 Oct. 5, 2013 (L 10-28)
San Diego State 32 19 13 0 Oct. 10, 2013 (L 20-27)
New Mexico 31 20 11 0 Nov. 8, 2013 (L 37-45)
BYU 30 7 23 0 Sep. 11, 2010 (W 35-14)
Notre Dame 30 6 24 0 Oct 26., 2013 (L 10-45)
Utah 27 14 13 0 Oct 30, 2010 (L 23-28)
UNLV 19 13 6 0 Nov 21, 2013 (L 21-41)

References[edit]

External links[edit]