Lamar Cardinals football
First season 1923
Athletic director Larry Tidwell
Head coach Ray Woodard
Home stadium Provost Umphrey Stadium
Stadium capacity 16,000
Stadium surface AstroPlay artificial turf
Location Beaumont, Texas
Conference Southland
All-time record
Postseason bowl record 1–1
Current uniform
Colors Red and White            
Fight song Cardinals Fight!
Mascot Cardinal
Marching band “The Showcase of Southeast Texas”
Rivals McNeese State
Website Lamar Cardinals

The Lamar Cardinals football program represents Lamar University in college football at the NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision (formerly Division I-AA) level. The Cardinals are members of the Southland Conference, although they will not play a full conference schedule until 2011. The Cardinals play their homes games in the 16,000 seat Provost Umphrey Stadium.[1] The team's head coach is Ray Woodard.


From its inception as South Park Junior College in 1923, football was a part of Lamar's history. It was discontinued in 1928 because of a lack of common opponents but was revived again in 1932 by the renamed Lamar College. Coach John Gray led his charges to records of 8-1 that season and 8-1-1 in 1934 before the program was discontinued again in 1942 and did not resume again until the end of World War II. Football was restored in 1946 and the first football scholarships were offered. In the 1946 season Lamar posted an 8-2 ledger. The 1948 club (8-4-0) won two bowl games, and the 1949 outfit won an all time school record 10 games and another bowl trophy as the school bade farewell to the junior college era.

After the school moved up to the NAIA level in the Lone Star Conference, the Cardinals didn’t have a winning season until a superb 8-0-2 season in 1957 ignited a string of 11 consecutive winning campaigns. The 1961 team advanced to the Tangerine Bowl (now the Capital One Bowl) against Middle Tennessee State on December 29, 1961, and won 21-14.

Just as the Cardinals were becoming a perennial contender in the Lone Star loop, school officials moved the athletic program forward into the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) college division ranks in 1963 via the Southland Conference. The football team enjoyed immediate success with three straight SLC grid titles (1964–66). In 1964 the Cardinals were invited to the Pecan Bowl after a 6-3-1 campaign. The Cardinals lost 19-17 to Northern Iowa. The Cardinals had a second-place finish in 1967. A year later, the school’s athletic program embarked on another challenge by upgrading to the NCAA Division I level.[2]

Lamar averaged 12,000 patrons through 1974, drawing a then record 16,226 against arch-rival McNeese State to Cardinal Stadium in 1972. The transition to Division I proved to be a spark for many LU sports but football experienced a downturn after 1974. Fans responded when new coach Larry Kennan delivered a 6-3-2 club in 1979; Games against Louisiana Tech (17,600) and West Texas State (17,250) rank second and third, respectively, behind the standing-room-only 18,500 Baylor drew for the 1980 opener. Lamar set an all-time attendance record by averaging 16,380 that season. The Cardinals’ signature win came on September 5, 1981, in an 18-17 win over the UPI #20 ranked Baylor Bears under Head Coach Larry Kennan.

Football went independent when Lamar left the SLC in 1987 to join the basketball-flavored American South Conference.

Disbandment and reintroductionEdit

Dismal support finally led to larger-than-expected deficits and provided the bottom line fodder for five new appointees to the then-Lamar University System board of regents to pull the plug on football at their first official session in 1989 (5 to 4 vote). Now a member of the Texas State University System, the university is in the process of bringing the football team back, fielding a club in 2010. In preparation for the return of play the University has done extensive work on the facilities including, Provost Umphrey Stadium, a new Athletic complex, and high class suites built into the existing Montagne Center. The university hired former NFL player Ray Woodard as the head coach to lead the charge in bringing the Cardinals back to the gridiron. Former Basketball Coach Billy Tubbs was hired as the Athletic Director in 2006 and has had a significant role in bringing back the Cardinals football team.


Inactive rivalryEdit

Louisiana–Lafayette Ragin' CajunsEdit

The first Sabine Shoe trophy was first awarded in 1937 to the winner of the SLI–Lamar football game.[3] The name of the bronze rivalry trophy was derived from the Sabine River that forms the Texas-Louisiana border. USL defeated Lamar in the 1978 edition of the rivalry game, but the Ragin' Cajuns were not awarded the trophy as it had vanished.[4] The Sabine Shoe trophy now sits in at trophy case in the Ragin' Cajun Athletic Complex.

UL Lafayette–Lamar: All-Time Record
Games played First meeting Last meeting Lamar wins Lamar losses Ties Win %
34 October 27, 1923 (lost 16–19) September 1, 2012 (lost 0–40) 11 23 0 32.4%



The 2010 season was the Lamar Cardinals's first since 1989 and the first for head coach Ray Woodard and his staff. The Cardinals opened up the season on September 4 against arch-rival, #11 McNeese State in Lake Charles. The crowd of 19,235 that filled Cowboy Stadium marked the highest attendance since 2002 for the Cowboys.[5] Lamar quarterback Andre Bevil set a school record for passing yards with 427 yards through the air.[6] The game featured a late fourth quarter surge by the Cardinals with two touch down passes thrown in the final quarter of the game. McNeese clinched the 30-27 victory when they converted on third and 10 with less than a minute left.

Date Time Opponent# Rank# Site TV Result Attendance
September 4, 2010* 7:00 PM at #11 McNeese State Cowboy StadiumLake Charles, LA   L 30–27   19,235
September 11, 2010* 6:00 PM Webber International Provost Umphrey StadiumBeaumont, TX   W 21–14   16,600[7]
September 18, 2010* 6:00 PM at Southeastern Louisiana Strawberry StadiumHammond, LA   W 29–28   4,217
September 25, 2010* 6:00 PM at #7 Stephen F. Austin Homer Bryce StadiumNacogdoches, TX KBTV L 71–3   13,281
October 2, 2010* 6:00 PM Sam Houston State Provost Umphrey Stadium • Beaumont, TX   L 38–10   17,187
October 9, 2010*† 6:00 PM Langston Provost Umphrey Stadium • Beaumont, TX   W 14–0   17,306
October 16, 2010* 6:00 PM South Alabama Provost Umphrey Stadium • Beaumont, TX   L 26–0   16,150
October 30, 2010* 12:00 PM at North Dakota Alerus CenterGrand Forks, ND   L 31–6   6,238
November 6, 2010* 1:00 PM at Georgia State Georgia DomeAtlanta, GA   L 17–23   14,689
November 13, 2010* 6:00 PM South Dakota Provost Umphrey Stadium • Beaumont, TX   W 24–20   15,103
November 20, 2010* 6:00 PM [[{{{school}}}|Oklahoma Panhandle State]] Provost Umphrey Stadium • Beaumont, TX   W 44–6   14,125
*Non-Conference Game. Homecoming. #Rankings from AP Poll. All times are in Central Time.


2011 was Lamar's first season as a full member of the Southland Conference since 1986.

Date Time Opponent Site TV Result Attendance
September 3* 7:00 PM Texas College Provost Umphrey StadiumBeaumont, TX W 58–0   15,367
September 10* 4:00 PM at South Alabama Ladd Peebles StadiumMobile, AL KBTV L 8–30   18,136
September 17* 7:00 PM Incarnate Word Provost Umphrey Stadium • Beaumont, TX KBTV/ESPN3 W 45–35   15,367
October 1 3:00 PM at Southeastern Louisiana Strawberry StadiumHammond, LA SLC TV/ESPN3 W 48–38   5,104
October 8 7:00 PM Northwestern State Provost Umphrey Stadium • Beaumont, TX L 17–37   15,367
October 15* 6:00 PM at Texas State Bobcat StadiumSan Marcos, TX L 21–46   15,028
October 22† 3:00 PM Central Arkansas Provost Umphrey Stadium • Beaumont, TX SLC TV L 24–38   15,367
October 29 2:00 PM at #6 Sam Houston State Bowers StadiumHuntsville, TX KBTV L 0–66   6,575
November 5 6:00 PM Stephen F. Austin State Provost Umphrey Stadium • Beaumont, TX L 10–69   11,286
November 12 5:30 PM at Nicholls State John L. Guidry StadiumThibodaux, LA KBTV/WHNO/ESPN3 W 34–26   5,466
November 19 6:00 PM McNeese State Provost Umphrey Stadium • Beaumont, TX L 17–45   13,901
*Non-Conference Game. Homecoming. #Rankings from The Sports Network FCS Poll released prior to game. All times are in Central Time.


External linksEdit

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