The Louisiana–Lafayette Ragin' Cajuns football program is a college football team that represents the University of Louisiana at Lafayette in the Sun Belt Conference. On Saturday, December 17, 2011, the Ragin' Cajuns won their first Division I FBS bowl game at the New Orleans Bowl in a 32-30 point game with a 50-yard field goal as time expired.
In 1940 McNaspy Stadium was built on the campus of Southwestern Louisiana Institute (now UL Lafayette). It served as the Cajuns home field through the 1970 season and was demolished in 2000. McNaspy Stadium was located at the site where the current computer science building Oliver Hall now stands.
The first Sabine Shoe trophy was first awarded in 1937 to the winner of the SLI–Lamar football game. 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. The Sabine Shoe trophy now sits in at trophy case in the Ragin' Cajun Athletic Complex.
Starting 2012, South Alabama will join the Sun Belt Conference as a playing member. Representatives of Sun Belt Conference member institutions have approved an eight game conference football schedule that will be effective for the 2012 season. Each of the 10 teams will play four home and four away games each season and will never miss a game against its natural rival. League representatives approved a nine game conference schedule beginning in the 2015 season with each team playing each other.