Prairie View A&M Panthers football

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Prairie View A&M Panthers football
2016 Prairie View A&M Panthers football team
Prairie View A&M University logo.png
First season 1907
Head coach Willie Simmons
2nd year, 8–2 (.800)
Stadium Panther Stadium (Under Construction)
Seating capacity 15,000
Field surface Natural grass
Location Prairie View, Texas
Conference SWAC
Division West
All-time record 401–459–34 (.468)
Bowl record 24–25–1 (.490)
Claimed nat'l titles 5 Black college football national championships
Conference titles 11
Colors Purple and Gold[1]
         
Mascot Panthers
Marching band "Marching Storm"
Website pvpanthers.com

The Prairie View A&M Panthers football team is the college football team representing the Prairie View A&M University. The Panthers play in NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) as a member of the Southwestern Athletic Conference. From 1989-1998, Prairie View A&M lost 80 straight games, the longest losing streak in NCAA history.[2]

History[edit]

The first football coach at Prairie View was H.B. Hucles, who began in 1924. Before Hucles's arrival at Prairie View, the school played two games without a coach on record: a 1907 7–0 win against a team from Wylie, Texas[3] and a 1920 7–6 loss to Tuskegee University.[4]

Prairie View's most recognized and celebrated coach was William "Billy" Nicks. Nicks was head coach in 1945–47, assistant coach in 1948–51, and head coach again in 1952–65. His record for 17 years was 127-39-8. He led the Panthers to 8 Southwestern Athletic Conference championships and 5 black college national championships. Nicks was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1999. Coach Nicks was named the American Football Coaches Association’s recipient of the Trailblazer Award. The award was presented posthumously at the AFCA Kickoff Luncheon on Monday, January 7 at the 2008 AFCA Convention in Anaheim, California.

Prairie View is recognized as the first historically Black university to create and play in a post-season bowl game. The Prairie View Bowl was played in Texas between 1928 and 1962.

The Prairie View A&M Football team won Black college football national championship titles in 1953, 1954, 1958, 1963, and 1964 and Southwestern Athletic Conference Championships SWAC in 1933, 1951, 1952, 1953, 1954, 1958, 1960, 1963, 1964. and recently in 2009. Notable football players that have achieved success in the National Football League (NFL) are National Football Hall of Fame Inductee Kenny Houston, who played for the Houston Oilers and Washington Redskins and Otis Taylor, who won a World Championship with the Kansas City Chiefs in 1969. On a small note of significance, Charlie "Choo Choo" Brackins, who played from 1952–1955, was the first HBCU alumnus to play quarterback in the NFL.

The team lost 80 consecutive games in 1989–98, almost doubling Columbia University's 44 straight losses between 1983–1988.[5]

On November 10, 2007, it clinched its first winning season since 1976 with a 30–27 victory over traditional power Jackson State University under then head coach Henry Frazier, III.

In 1999 the SWAC moved to a new divisional format with Western Division and Eastern Division champions to play for the SWAC Championship. On November 14, 2009, it clinched its first SWAC Western Division Championship by defeating Alcorn State. The next weekend would see the Panthers go undefeated in the SWAC by defeating Arkansas Pine Bluff and securing an 8–1 record, their only loss during the season to New Mexico State. They finished the season by winning the SWAC Championship on December 12, defeating Eastern Division Champion Alabama A&M 30-24 in the SWAC Championship Game. They exited the 2009 SWAC football campaign with an unblemished 9-0 SWAC conference record. They were led by their quarterback 6'4' 225 pound, swift-footed KJ Black who led all quarterbacks in the SWAC with an outstanding passer effiency rating of 168.1 their SWAC second leading rusher in Donald Babers that averaged 5.2 yards per carry.

In November 2014, Prairie View A&M broke ground on a $60 million football stadium and athletic field house. The facility will be 55,000 square feet and hold up to 15,000 people. The first phase of the project is scheduled to be completed before the 2016 football season.[6]

Annual Classics[edit]

History[edit]

Classifications[edit]

  • 1951–1972: NCAA College Division
  • 1952–1969: NAIA
  • 1970–1986: NAIA Division I
  • 1973–1979: NCAA Division II
  • 1980–present: NCAA Division I–AA

Conference memberships[edit]

Championships[edit]

Black college football national championships
SWAC Championships

College Football Hall of Fame members[edit]

Alumni in the NFL[edit]

Over 30 Prairie View alumni have played in the NFL,[7] including:

References[edit]

External links[edit]