Conference USA


East Division

CHARLOTTE FLORIDA ATLANTIC FLORIDA INTERNATIONAL
"49ers" "Owls" "Panthers"
Charlotte, NC Boca Raton, FL Miami, FL
MARSHALL MIDDLE TENNESSEE
STATE
OLD DOMINION
"Thundering Herd" "Blue Raiders" "Monarchs"
Huntington, WV Murfreesboro, TN Norfolk, VA
WESTERN KENTUCKY
"Hilltoppers"
Bowling Green, KY

West Division

LOUISIANA TECH NORTH TEXAS RICE
"Bulldogs" "Mean Green" "Owls"
Ruston, LA Denton, TX Houston, TX
SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI UTEP UTSA
"Golden Eagles" "Miners" "Roadrunners"
Hattiesburg, MS El Paso, TX San Antonio, TX

Comments

Old Dominion and Western Kentucky were new members of Conference USA in 2014. Charlotte will be a new member of both NCAA Division I - Football Bowl Subdivision and Conference USA in 2015.


Historical Helmets

CHARLOTTE

2013 -

2013 was the first season of football for Charlotte.


FLORIDA ATLANTIC

2001 - 2004 2005 - 2011 2012
2013 -
*see note 1 below

2001 was the first football season for FAU.

*1 Numerals are worn on the left side of this design, with an "owl" logo on the right side (as shown below).


FLORIDA INTERNATIONAL

2002 - 2007 2008 -

2002 was the first football season for FIU.


LOUISIANA TECH

? - 1967 1969 1968 - c.early 1980s; c.1989
*see note 1 below
c.mid 1980s - 1988 c.early 1990s - 2006 2007
*see note 2 below
2008 - 2012 2013 -
*see note 3 below

Louisiana Tech's traditional state outline/"T" logo has apparently been used since 1968, making it one of the longest-used logos among the Division I-FBS teams. There have been some minor adjustments to the shape of the state outline and perhaps to the "T" also during this period, but the basic design has not changed. The blue color forming the state outline was apparently changed from a somewhat lighter color to a darker one sometime around 1990.

*1 The "100" logo was worn only on the left sides of the Louisiana Tech helmets in 1969, with the state outline logo worn on the right sides.

*2 The earliest and latest seasons from which I have seen photographs showing stripes on the red helmet are 1985 and 1988, respectively.

*3 It was reported to me prior to the beginning of the 2012 season that Louisiana Tech would wear the numerals "22" on the right sides of each helmet in 2012 in honor of team member Tyrone Duplessis, who died on February 2, 2012; however, photographs from the team's first three games indicate that no such change has been made. The team did, however, wear small decals at the rear of the helmet incorporating the number "22" into the traditional state outline logo.


MARSHALL

1959 - 1961 1963 - 1964 1965
1965 1965 1966 - 1967
1968 1969 1970
*see note 1 below
1971 1972 - 1975? 1975
1976 1977 - 1982? c.1983
1984 - 1985 1986 - 1988 1989
1990 - 1992 1993 - 2008 October 28, 2008;
November 29, 2008;
2009
*see note 2 below
2010 -

Marshall's helmet history is one of the largest and most complicated among the current Division I-A teams, and there have been at least a few other designs in addition to those shown here. The sequence of designs is particularly complicated during two periods: the mid-1960s, and the early 1980s.

In 1965, it appears that at least three different designs were used. At the beginning of the season and possibly again at the end, the team apparently used plain green helmets with a single white stripe and no decals or numerals on the sides. Two different logos were used during the middle of the football season; below are photographs of these two designs:

The first picture shows a decal that I could not identify, but a couple of people have written to say that the logo is a "bison head" whose overall appearance is similar to that of the "Elmer's glue cow". I would appreciate a clearer photograph than this one, which is probably the best I have yet received showing this logo. It was used for at least three or four games in 1965.

Apparently later in the year, Marshall switched to the "buffalo" decal shown in the second photograph. It appears that there was a yellow "shadow" on the underparts of the buffalo, but I am not certain about this. Clearer photographs of this one would also be appreciated.

In 1969, Marshall used white helmets with a version of the "100" decal that many teams used that year to recognize the centennial of college football's first game. Marshall's version featured a football shape of some unknown dark color (I actually think blue is more likely than green) with white numerals.

Here is a link to a set of drawings of historical Marshall helmets, along with comments, put together by the Herald-Dispatch newspaper.

*1 A taller "M" logo is visible on some helmets in photographs from some games during the 1968 season; I do not yet have enough different pictures to say whether these two "M"s were used simultaneously, or if a switch from one to the other was made at some point in 1968.

*2 This design was first worn during home games against Houston and Tulsa in 2008.


MIDDLE TENNESSEE STATE

1960 - 1963 1964 1965 - 1966
1967 - 1968 1969 1970
1972 1971 - 1973 1974
*see note 1 below
1975 1976 1977
1978 1979 - 1981 1982 - 1998
1999 2000 -

These are all of the known helmet designs used by MTSU during the period covered by this site (1960 to present).

*1 MTSU used plain white helmets during at least games #3 and #7 of the 1972 season, but the design labelled "1971 - 1973" above was used during game #10.


NORTH TEXAS

? - c.1963 1964 - 1966
1967 c.1968 - 1971 1972
1973 - 1978 1979 - 1982 1983 - 1993
1994 1996 - 1997 1995; 1998 - 2000
*see note 1 below
2001 - 2003 2003 - 2004 2005 - 2006
*see note 2 below *see note 2 below
2007 - 2010 August 31, 2013 2011 -
*see note 4 below

I do not yet have any information for North Texas for the years 1960 and 1961. In 1962, the team used white helmets with uniform numerals of some unknown color (probably green) on the sides; no stripes are visible in the photographs that I have from 1962. The team used plain white helmets during at least one game in 1963 (vs Cincinnati).

*1 During part of the period when this logo was in use, a completely white version of it, without the yellow parts, may have been used; this has been reported to me but not confirmed with photographic evidence.

*2 The difference between these two helmets is probably not readily apparent: the 1996 - 1997 helmet included two navy blue stripes flanking the central white stripe.

*3 The black facemasks were first used during the October 30 game against Troy State.

*4 This was apparently a single-use design for the first game of the 2013 season (home vs Idaho), as the helmets are being auctioned off.


OLD DOMINION

2009 - September 3, 2011 September 1, 2012 September 10, 2011 -
2012
*see note 1 below *see note 2 below
2013 - 2013 -

2009 was the first year for this team.

*1 Worn during the first game of the 2012 season (vs Duquesne).

*2 Stripes were added to ODU's helmets for the team's second game of the 2011 season (at Georgia State); the stripes were not present during the team's previous game a week earlier (vs Campbell).


RICE

c.mid 1950s - 1964 1965 - 1966 1967 - 1970
1971 - 1975 1976 1977
1978 1979 - 1981 1982
1983 1984 1984
*see note 1 below
1985 1986 - 1989 1990 - 1993
1994 - 1996 1997 - 2005 2006
    'B'
October 16, 2010;
October 23, 2010;
October 22, 2011
September 10, 2011 2012 -
*see note 2 below *see note 3 below *see note 4 below
'C' 'D' 'A'
2012 - 2012 - 2007 -
*see note 5 below *see note 6 below

During the 2012 season Rice used four different helmet designs in the following sequence (through the first ten games): A-A-A; A-A-A; B-B-C; D.

To the best of my knowledge, the above are all of the different helmet designs used by Rice during the period covered by this site (1960 to present).

*1 The decal on this helmet was used for only the first two games of the 1984 season (vs Minnesota and Lamar); the logo was modified for the third game, and that version was used for the remainder of the 1984 season.

*2 A pink "R" logo was worn on Rice's helmets during the 2010 games vs Houston and at Central Florida "in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month". This design was again used during the 2011 home game against Tulsa.

*3 Worn during the 2011 home game against Purdue.

*4 First worn October 13, 2012 (vs UTSA); subsequently worn October 20, 2012 (at Tulsa).

*5 Worn during the 2012 home game vs Southern Mississippi.

*6 Worn during the 2012 game at Tulane.


SOUTHERN MISSISSIPPI

c.1960s c.1969 - 1971 c.1973 - 1974
1975 - ? 1977? - 1981? 1986
*see note 1 below *see note 2 below
1982 - 1987 1988 - 1989 1990 - 2002
2003 - 2010;
2011 (games 1 - 3)
2011 (games 4 - 6) 2011 (games 7 - 9)
*see note 3 below
2011 (games 10 - 12) December 3, 2011 December 24, 2011

During the 2011 season Southern Mississippi used six different helmet designs, each of them with uniform numerals on the right sides, and with (except for games 7 through 9) a logo on the left sides. Of these six, the two "missing" helmets which I have not been able to add to the site yet are those used during games 4 through 6, and during games 10 through 12; below are photographs of these two designs. For both of these I need a copy of the helmet logo in order to add the helmets to this web site.

I have received very little information for Southern Mississippi for the years prior to about 1980, and there are several other known helmet designs which I have been unable to add to the site due to insufficient information.

I have no information whatsoever for 1960 and 1961 (also 1963, 1964, 1965, 1968, 1972, and 1976), but by at least 1962 the team wore dark-colored numerals (almost certainly black) on helmet shells that I think were almost certainly gold in color (assuming the school colors have not changed since then). Having no color photographs from these years, I cannot rule out the possibility that the helmets might have been yellow or silver, particularly since the team did use yellow helmets a few years later.

The 1975 helmet featured a "USM" logo similar or identical to the one shown on the "c.1969 - c.1971" helmet above, but I am unsure about the helmet shell color, which may have been gold rather than yellow. Below is a photo from 1975:

There certainly may have been some other designs used by the team through the years; any additional information would be appreciated.

*1 Possibly several designs were used during the period 1977 through 1981 - the facemask color may have been gray initially, the logo may have changed slightly in 1980 or 1981, and the color white may have appeared in the logo during some years.

*2 The numerals "25" were added to each player's helmet for the 1986 season as a tribute to Eric Sorey, a member of the team who died during a preseason practice; 25 was Sorey's uniform number. To be precise, the numerals were worn only on one side of the helmet, the right side rather than the left as shown here.

*3 During the first three games of the 2011 season the "SOUTHERN MISS" logo was replaced on the right side of the helmets with numerals (see below).


UTEP

1964 - 1967 c.early 1960s;
c.1967 - 1970
1971
1972 1973 1974 - 1976
1977 - 1979? 1980 - 1981 1982? - 1986?
1987 - ? ? - 1990 1991
1992 - 1998 1999 2000 -

UTEP has several other interesting historical helmet designs for which I have only partial information at the present time; a few of these are shown in the photographs below.

A shows a helmet design used during the mid 1960s. The logo is bizarre: a bearded prospector holding a pickaxe sitting astride a large football which has a pair of wings extending out from either side. I do have a copy of this logo and could add this helmet to the web site if I could get a photograph clear enough to show the colors within the logo, as used on the football helmets. This design was apparently last used in 1967.

B and C are from 1971 and 1972, respectively. The colors of the letters "TEP" on the 1971 helmet are unknown, but they were dark orange on the 1972 helmet. Whether any stripes were present on the 1972 helmet remains unknown; the 1971 helmet apparently did not have any. UTEP was apparently using white helmets in 1970, also, though I do not have any photos showing what logo (if any) was worn on the sides of the helmets. I do not have any photos from the 1973 season, but it has been reported to me that the helmets were white that year, with no decals on the sides, but with an orange-white-orange stripe sequence.

D is from the 1976 season; the 1974 and 1975 helmets were apparently very similar to this design but probably with some slight differences. I do not have any color photographs from these years. The helmets appear to be white, but the colors within the logo are unclear. The letters "UT" on the earlier 1974 helmet appear to be larger, narrower, and lighter in color than those on the 1976 helmet.

E shows the 1979 UTEP helmet. The shell is probably orange. The logo is the team name "MINERS" on a white oval shape, behind which are a pickaxe and a shovel in an "X" shape. Again I do not have any color photographs to reveal the colors within the logo, the facemask color, etc.; nor do I yet have a copy of the helmet logo itself. The facemask appears to be dark in the 1979 photo, but some lighter color (probably gray or orange) in photos from the 1977 season, which show otherwise basically the same helmet design as the 1979 one.

Two later designs are shown below:

F is a photograph from the 1985 season; the helmets used from 1982 through 1985 appear to have been basically the same each year. During the earlier years the white letters spelling "UTEP" appear to be outlined in light blue, but it is unclear whether this was still the case in 1985. The facemasks were white and the stripe sequence was light blue/white/light blue.

G shows the 1991 - 1992 helmet. I could add this one to the web site easily if I could get a copy of the helmet logo.


UTSA

2011 - 2012 November 24 2012;
2013 -
*see note 1 below

2011 was the first football season for UTSA.

*1 First worn during the 2012 home game vs Texas State.


WESTERN KENTUCKY

c.1970s c.1980s c.1997
? - 2002 September 10, 2005 2003 - 2006
*see note 1 below
2007 - 2010 September 10, 2011 2011 - 2012
*see note 2 below
2013 -

I have received little information other than some descriptions for WKU helmet designs used during the years prior to 1980. An early 1960s design has been described as featuring a red shell with a white "W" at the front of the helmet, more or less like the one used by Wisconsin at about the same time. The 1966 WKU helmet has been described as having a red shell with one white stripe and with a white "W" logo similar to the one used on the historical helmets shown at this web site for Winona State (see the NCAA Division II Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference). A late-1960s helmet featured a red shell, one white stripe, and a white "W" on the sides. A design used during the early 1980s used white uniform numerals on the sides with the letters "WKU" in an arch above the numerals; again this was worn on red helmet shells. Photographs of any of these designs would be appreciated.

*1 This design was used during the 2005 home game against Eastern Kentucky and reportedly several other games that year (which ones?).

*2 Worn during WKU's 2011 home game against Navy.