Howard Bison

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Howard Bison
UniversityHoward University
ASUN (women's lacrosse)
Sun Belt (men's soccer)
SWAC (women's soccer)
CCSA (m and w swimming)
NCAADivision I FCS
Athletic directorKerry Davis
LocationWashington, D.C.
Varsity teams19 (21 in 2020)
Football stadiumWilliam H. Greene Stadium
Basketball arenaBurr Gymnasium
Softball stadiumWashington Nationals Youth Academy
Other arenasWTEF-East Capitol Campus
ColorsNavy Blue and White[1]

Howard Bison wordmark.svg

The Howard Bison are the intercollegiate athletic teams representing Howard University in Washington, D.C. The Bison compete in the NCAA's Division I Football Championship Subdivision (FCS)[2] and are members of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference for most sports. On July 16, 2015, the Athletics Department unveiled new logos.[3]

Varsity teams[edit]

A member of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC), Howard University currently sponsors teams in eight men's and eleven women's NCAA sanctioned sports. Men's and women's golf will be added in the 2020–21 school year, with six years of program funding guaranteed by NBA superstar Stephen Curry.[4]

Men's Intercollegiate Sports Team Article Head Coach Women's Intercollegiate Sports Team Article Head Coach
Basketball Bison basketball Kevin Nickelberry Basketball Bison basketball Tiesha "Ty" Grace
Cross country David Oliver Bowling Ron Davis
Football Bison football Ron Prince Cross country David Oliver
Soccer [v 1] Bison soccer Phillip Gyau Lacrosse [v 2] Karli Brentlinger
Swimming & Diving [v 3][v 4] Nicholas Askew Soccer [v 5] Brent Leiba
Tennis Larry Strickland Softball Victoria Tyson
Track & Field (Indoor) & (Outdoor) [v 6] David Oliver Swimming & Diving[v 4] Nicholas Askew
Tennis Larry Strickland
Track & Field (Indoor) & (Outdoor) [v 6] David Oliver
Volleyball Shaun Kupferberg
  1. ^ The men's soccer team competes as an Associate member of the Sun Belt Conference.
  2. ^ The lacrosse team competes as an Associate member of the Atlantic Sun Conference (ASUN). Howard is the first and only HBCU with a Division I women's lacrosse team.
  3. ^ The men's and women's swimming teams compete as members of the Coastal Collegiate Sports Association (CCSA). Howard is the only HBCU with competitive swim and dive teams.
  4. ^ a b The NCAA considers swimming & diving to be a single sport.
  5. ^ The women's soccer team competes as an Associate member of the Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC).
  6. ^ a b The NCAA considers indoor and outdoor track & field to be two separate sports.


The Howard Bison have won 4 regular season conference championships, 3 conference tournament championships, and have appeared in 2 NCAA tournaments (1981 & 1992).


As the only team in the MEAC playing men's soccer, the Bison's men's soccer team competed as an independent for many years, but the Bison became an affiliate member of the Sun Belt Conference when the conference resumed men's soccer after a 20-year absence in 2014. Over the years, Howard has had an up and down history, with NCAA championship seasons and other years seeing little success; the 2013 team had only one win in eighteen games.[5]

Bison teams qualified for the NCAA tournament in 1962, 1963, 1970†, 1971†, 1972, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1980, 1988, 1989, and 1997. In six College Cup appearances, they were NCAA Champions in 1974, runners-up in 1988, third in 1972, and fourth in 1975; additional first (1971) and third (1971) place finishes were vacated by the NCAA.[6]

The women's soccer team joined the Southwestern Athletic Conference in 2014 and won the regular season & tournament titles in its first year. As a first-year member of the conference, Howard was not allowed to accept the SWAC's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament (runner up Prairie View A&M went instead).

Athletic facilities[edit]

William H. Greene Stadium is a 7,086-seat multi-purpose stadium in Washington, D.C., in the United States, which opened in 1926. It is home to the Howard University Bison football, soccer, track & field, and Women's lacrosse teams. Originally called Howard Stadium, it was renamed William H. Greene Stadium in 1986 in honor of William H. Greene, M.D., a Washington, D.C., physician.[7]

Marching band[edit]

Howard's marching band is known as the "Showtime" Marching Band and it also features auxiliary, the "Ooh La La!" dance team and The Most Beautiful Ladies of the Flag Squad. The band has performed at several NFL games, the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, the Honda Battle of the Bands, and the 56th Inaugural Parade for former U.S. President Barack Obama. The marching band's mission is to serve as a university ambassador and Bison athletics supporter.[8]


Division I National Championships[edit]

Men's Soccer – 1971 (Vacated) See Note

Men's Soccer – 1974[9]

  • Note: Howard initially won the 1971 NCAA Men's Soccer Championship. The Championship was later vacated by the NCAA[10] on the grounds that two Howard players had played amateur soccer in Trinidad, exhausting their eligibility, and that two others had not taken entrance exams, required by the NCAA, to predict a grade point average of at least 1.6. Howard University argued that the eligibility rules were vague and discriminated against foreigners, and that the players had all maintained grade-point averages of 3.0 or higher in college, but the NCAA did not reverse the ruling.[11] Although the NCAA stripped Howard of their first title, the University still respects and honors the accomplishments of their 1971 National Championship title team.


Howard's top rival is Hampton University. The two schools call their intense rivalry Battle of "The Real HU".[12] [13] [14] [15] [16]

Howard also has a strong rivalry with Morgan State University.[17][18] [19]

Another of Howard's historic rivals is Morehouse College, more popularly known as the Howard/ "Spel-House" rivalry due to Morehouse's close association with the all-women's HBCU Spelman College. This rivalry is not often played because Morehouse is an NCAA Division II athletic program, while Howard is NCAA Division I.[20][21][22]


  1. ^ Howard Bison New Visual Identity Guide (PDF). July 16, 2015. Retrieved July 22, 2016.
  2. ^ "The Official Website of NCAA Championships". Retrieved July 10, 2015.
  3. ^ "Howard University Bison - Howard Unveils New Athletics Logo". July 16, 2015. Retrieved October 4, 2015.
  4. ^ "Stephen Curry Partners With Howard University to Launch First Division I Golf Program" (Press release). Howard Bison. August 19, 2019. Retrieved August 20, 2019.
  5. ^ "Howard University Bison". Retrieved July 10, 2015.
  6. ^ "2012 Men's Soccer Championship Records" (PDF). Retrieved October 4, 2015.
  7. ^ "William H. Greene Memorial Stadium". Footsteps of Achievement: Historic Kappa Heritage Trail (PDF) (Report). Washington, D.C.: Humanities Council of Washington, D.C. 2010. pp. 12–13. Retrieved October 15, 2012.
  8. ^ "Howard University Bands - Pep - Marching - Concert". Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  9. ^ "DI Men's Soccer".
  10. ^ "Division I Men's Soccer Championship History". February 25, 2011. Retrieved May 28, 2013.
  11. ^ Wahl, Grant (February 24, 1997). "Men on a mission: The 1974 Howard University soccer team wanted to win more than an NCAA title". Retrieved April 26, 2016.
  12. ^ "Column: Historically, Who's the Real HU?". Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  13. ^ "Howard and Hampton reprise the battle for the 'real HU'". Washington Post. Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  14. ^ "Howard-Hampton: the real 'HU' rivalry continues – News4usonline". Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  15. ^ "HU VS HU: Nation's Classic To Highlight The Greatest HBCU Rivalry". Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  16. ^ "Who is the real HU? 100 year old football rivalry kicks off". Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  17. ^ Wilbon, Michael (November 21, 1980). "Howard-Morgan State: The Game". Retrieved August 3, 2018 – via
  18. ^ "Rivalry And Revelry". Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  19. ^ "Howard & Morgan Take Rivalry North to a Big Stage in the Big Apple - Afro". Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  20. ^ "With rivalry renewed, Morehouse and Howard wrap up four-year series at RFK Stadium". Washington Post. Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  21. ^ Crockett Jr., Stephen A. "Howard vs. Morehouse: A Rivalry for the Ages". Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  22. ^ Seymour Jr., Add. "Morehouse and Howard Renew Rivalry in the 2011 Nation's Football Classic in Washington, D.C." (Press release). Retrieved August 2, 2018.

External links[edit]