Southern Methodist Mustangs

About Southern Methodist Mustangs

The SMU Mustangs football program represents Southern Methodist University and has been active since 1915. Their main rivalries include the Battle for the Iron Skillet, with the TCU Horned Frogs; the Battle for the Mayor's Cup, with the Rice University Owls; the Safeway Bowl, with the North Texas Mean Green and the Gansz Trophy, which is contested with the Navy Midshipmen.

In 1987, the NCAA issued a severe punishment for the program, after it had been found to have violated several NCAA regulations. The most serious breach of rules was the use of a 'slush fund' to issue illegal payments to players. The program had previously been put on probation for recruitment violations back in 1985. As a result, the NCAA issued the 'death penalty' and cancelled the program's entire schedule for the 1987 season. It remains the only time the NCAA had issued such a severe punishment. The punishment proved to be a significant setback for the Mustangs, who only recorded one winning season over the next twenty years.

Prior to the scandal, SMU had achieved significant success, claiming National Titles in 1935, 1981 and 1982. In addition, they had amassed eleven Southwest Conference Championships, with their last coming in 1984. In recent times, the program has returned to winning ways, with coach June Jones guiding the team to the Conference USA West Division Title in both 2009 and 2010. The team have appeared in 15 bowl games and hold a 7-7-1 record.

The program has produced one Heisman Trophy winner, Doak Walker in 1948. Walker has since been inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame, along with other SMU alumni, including Raymond Berry, Forrest Gregg and Eric Dickerson.

Gerald J...

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