The 1936 SMU Mustangs football team represented Southern Methodist University during the 1936 college football season. The Mustangs were led by second-year head coach Matty Bell and played their home games at Ownby Stadium in Dallas, Texas. The team competed as a member of the Southwest Conference. Entering the season as defending co-national champions, SMU had high expectations once again. They lost their first regular season game in two years when they lost to Fordham at the Polo Grounds. Regardless, SMU was featured in the first ever AP Poll, released two weeks later on October 19, being ranked 19th in that poll. The Mustangs failed to defend their SWC crown, finishing in fifth in the conference with a record of 5–4–1 (2–3–1 SWC).