Southern Oregon Raiders football

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Southern Oregon Raiders football
First season 1927
Head coach Craig Howard
4th year, 34–14 (.708)
Stadium Raider Stadium
Seating capacity 5,000
Field surface Turf
Location Ashland, Oregon
NCAA division NAIA
Conference Frontier Conference
All-time record 349–351–15 (.499)
Claimed nat'l titles 1 (2014)
Conference titles 13
Consensus All-Americans 23 (NAIA)
Colors Red and Black           
Mascot Red-Tailed Hawk
Rivals Montana Tech, Carroll College, Western Oregon
Website SOURaiders.com

The Southern Oregon Raiders football team represents Southern Oregon University in the sport of American football. The Raiders team competes in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) as an associate member of the Frontier Conference. Southern Oregon University has fielded an official football team since 1927 and has an all-time record of 349–351–15 (a .499 winning percentage).[Note 1] The Raiders play in Raider Stadium in Ashland, Oregon, which has a capacity of 5,000. Southern Oregon has played in two NAIA national championship games and won thirteen conference championships in multiple conferences.

While not historically a relevant program, the Raiders have been successful in the twenty-first century, participating in the NAIA championship tournament four times. Twenty-three Raiders players have been named first-team NAIA All-Americans and two were named to Academic All-America teams. There have been two Southern Oregon players selected in the NFL Draft, one of which, Jeff Beathard, was the 1988 draft's Mr. Irrelevant. Thirty-eight Raiders players have been inducted into the university's athletic hall of fame, as have three individual football teams. The primary colors for the program are black and red. The school's mascot is a red-tailed hawk. Southern Oregon has long-standing rivalries with three of their current conference opponents: Montana Tech, Carroll College, and Western Oregon.

History

The first iteration of football at Southern Oregon University came in 1896, when the school was a small teachers' college known as Southern Oregon State Normal School (SONS). A student at the school, John Berry, set up a game between a group of people from the school and the Ashland Athletic Club, a team he set up for the match. In front of a large crowd, the SONS team won 18–0. The sport developed at the school over the next few years. Games were played against nearby high schools, primarily Ashland High School. In 1899 and 1900, contests were set up with the University of Oregon Webfoots, a major regional team; SONS was shutout in both contests.[1][2] In 1900, a school professor organized the program and led it to relative success. However, funding for the school was stopped and it closed in 1909.[1]

The school reopened in 1926 on a new campus with only one building. Roy McNeal, a coach who had been moderately successful at the University of Puget Sound was hired as football coach and athletic director for the college in 1927. The school had no athletic facilities and very few male students at the time; the university president had pushed for a football program as a way to bring in more students. A playing field was leveled by a highway crew working nearby and uniforms were purchased for the players. Three games against local colleges were scheduled, the last of which marked the beginning of a rivalry with the Oregon Normal School, which was later renamed Western Oregon University.[1] SONS shutout their first two opponents and defeated the Oregon Normal School 19-12,[3] giving them an undefeated season and the unofficial title of Oregon teachers' colleges champion.[1][4]

The college struggled in its second season, winning only one match in a five-game schedule.[5] However, more significant than that was the death of star freshman Max Newsom. He died shortly after a game against Oregon State JV from cerebral hemorrhaging after collapsing on the field from injuries sustained making a tackle.[6][7]

The Raiders first tasted sustained success under head coach Al Akins. During Akins' 15 years as the Raiders' head coach, Southern Oregon was conference champions seven times (either outright or co-champions).[8] 18 years after Akins' last season, the Raiders experienced their first postseason, defeating Central Washington in the first round of the NAIA playoffs and losing to Mesa State in the quarterfinals.[9] The Raiders found even greater success during the 2001 and 2002 seasons, reaching the quarterfinals of the NAIA playoffs each year. Although, in both years, Southern Oregon lost to Carroll College, neither game was decided by more than four points.[10]

Southern Oregon was seeking to move up to NCAA Division II as the Great Northwest Athletic Conference had only nine teams after Seattle University moved up to Division I. The University is currently a member of the NAIA and an affiliate member of the Frontier Conference for football while being a member of the Cascade Collegiate Conference for all other sports. It had been reported that the move to NCAA may take years to complete.[11] However, the move never happened. In November 2010, Steve Helminiak was fired as head coach at Southern Oregon. He was replaced by Craig Howard, a high school football coach from Florida. Howard is best known for being the head coach of Tim Tebow at Nease High School in St Augustine, Florida.[12]

In December 2014, the Raiders won the NAIA National Championship in Daytona, Florida.[13] The day before, Austin Dodge was named the 2014 NAIA Player of the Year.[14]

Head coaching history

Notable players

Player Years at SOU Current team (if any)
Andy Katoa 1989–1991 San Diego Chargers
Mark Helfrich 1992–1995 Oregon Ducks (head coach)
Griff Yates 1996–1999
Dusty McGrorty 2000–2003 St. Louis Rams
Andrae Thurman 2003 Las Vegas Locomotives
Kellan Quick 2002–2006 Toronto Argonauts
Bryan Lee-Lauduski 2006–2008
Austin Dodge 2011–2014 2014 NAIA Player of the Year
Ryan Retzlaff 2011–2014 Munich Cowboys

Rivalry with Western Oregon

Beginning in 1927, the Western Oregon Wolves and the Southern Oregon Raiders have played 71 games against each other, more than any other opponent either school has faced. Due to the number of times the teams have met some have chosen to refer to the game as the "little civil war".[15] This is in reference to the civil war game played between the state's two NCAA FBS schools, the University of Oregon and Oregon State University. However, the competition between the two squads is not nearly as heated as their division one counterparts, as Southern Oregon has not won since 1998 and holds a 26–44–1 all-time record against the Wolves. SOU has not defeated Western Oregon since WOU made the jump to NCAA Division II.[16]

Year Visitor Home Year Visitor Home Year Visitor Home
1927 Western Oregon 12 Southern Oregon 19 1928 Western Oregon 12 Southern Oregon 0 1929 Southern Oregon 0 Western Oregon 0
1930 Did Not Play 1931 Did Not Play 1932 Western Oregon 20 Southern Oregon 6
1933 Southern Oregon 12 Western Oregon 7 1934 Southern Oregon 6 Western Oregon 7 1935 Southern Oregon 6 Western Oregon 12
1936 Western Oregon 7 Southern Oregon 0 1937 Southern Oregon 0 Western Oregon 6 1938 Southern Oregon 6 Western Oregon 19
1938 Western Oregon 6 Southern Oregon 0 1939 No Team 1940 No Team
1941 No Team 1942 No Team 1943 No Team
1944 No Team 1945 No Team 1946 Southern Oregon 51 Western Oregon 0
1947 Southern Oregon 20 Western Oregon 0 1948 Southern Oregon 6 Western Oregon 13 1949 Western Oregon 30 Southern Oregon 7
1950 Southern Oregon 0 Western Oregon 40 1951 Western Oregon 48 Southern Oregon 6 1952 Western Oregon 13 Southern Oregon 26
1953 Southern Oregon 14 Western Oregon 40 1954 Southern Oregon 13 Western Oregon 34 1955 Western Oregon 6 Southern Oregon 13
1956 Southern Oregon 12 Western Oregon 6 1957 Western Oregon 19 Southern Oregon 21 1958 Southern Oregon 0 Western Oregon 21
1959 Western Oregon 7 Southern Oregon 20 1960 Southern Oregon 32 Western Oregon 12 1961 Western Oregon 7 Southern Oregon 26
1962 Southern Oregon 12 Western Oregon 6 1963 Western Oregon 0 Southern Oregon 33 1964 Southern Oregon 32 Western Oregon 19
1965 Western Oregon 21 Southern Oregon 27 1966 Southern Oregon 20 Western Oregon 32 1967 Western Oregon 20 Southern Oregon 7
1968 Southern Oregon 7 Western Oregon 17 1969 Western Oregon 33 Southern Oregon 12 1970 Southern Oregon 13 Western Oregon 24
1971 Western Oregon 17 Southern Oregon 6 1972 Western Oregon 30 Southern Oregon 28 1973 Southern Oregon 7 Western Oregon 24
1974 Western Oregon 29 Southern Oregon 34 1975 Southern Oregon 0 Western Oregon 12 1976 Western Oregon 28 Southern Oregon 20
1977 Southern Oregon 0 Western Oregon 40 1978 Southern Oregon 21 Western Oregon 51 1979 Western Oregon 10 Southern Oregon 6
1980 Southern Oregon 7 Western Oregon 21 1981 Western Oregon 42 Southern Oregon 13 1982 Southern Oregon 23 Western Oregon 13
1983 Western Oregon 22 Southern Oregon 45 1984 Southern Oregon 17 Western Oregon 24 1985 Western Oregon 32 Southern Oregon 14
1986 Southern Oregon 0 Western Oregon 36 1987 Western Oregon 17 Southern Oregon 38 1988 Southern Oregon 3 Western Oregon 22
1989 Western Oregon 21 Southern Oregon 42 1990 Southern Oregon 57 Western Oregon 20 1991 Southern Oregon 54 Western Oregon 13
1992 Western Oregon 31 Southern Oregon 46 1993 Southern Oregon 40 Western Oregon 45 1994 Western Oregon 33 Southern Oregon 28
1995 Western Oregon 14 Southern Oregon 32 1996 Southern Oregon 14 Western Oregon 21 1997 Western Oregon 14 Southern Oregon 22
1998 Southern Oregon 56 Western Oregon 35 1999 Southern Oregon 17 Western Oregon 52 2000 Western Oregon 21 Southern Oregon 13
2001 Did Not Play 2002 Western Oregon 34 Southern Oregon 20 2003 Did Not Play
2004 Did Not Play 2005 Western Oregon 24 Southern Oregon 10 2006 Western Oregon 38 Southern Oregon 0
2006 Southern Oregon 7 Western Oregon 53 2007 Southern Oregon 13 Western Oregon 37 2008 Western Oregon 35 Southern Oregon 3

Championships

Conference championships

Southern Oregon has won a combined 13 conference championships. The Raiders won the Far West Conference three times, the Oregon Collegiate Conference six times, NAIA District II once, the Columbia Football Association Mount Hood League once, and NAIA Independents once and the Frontier Conference once.

Year Conference Overall record
1946 Far West Conference 8–0
1947 Far West Conference 7–2
1948 Far West Conference 5–5
1955† Oregon Collegiate Conference 4–5
1957 Oregon Collegiate Conference 6–2–1
1961 Oregon Collegiate Conference 5–4
1962 Oregon Collegiate Conference 8–1
1964† Oregon Collegiate Conference 6–2–1
1965 Oregon Collegiate Conference 5–3–1
1983 NAIA District II 9–2
1990 Columbia Football Association Mount Hood League 6–3
2001 NAIA independents 9–2
2012 Frontier Conference 9–3
† Denotes co-champions

Conference affiliations

  • 1927–1938: Independent
  • 1939–1945: No team
  • 1946–1952: Far West Conference
  • 1953–1954: Independent
  • 1955–1965: Oregon Collegiate Conference
  • 1966–1970: Independent
  • 1971–1985: Evergreen Conference
  • 1985–1986: Columbia Football League
  • 1987–1994: Columbia Football Association Mount Hood League
  • 1995–1998: Columbia Football Association
  • 1999–2011: NAIA independent
  • 2012–present: Frontier Conference

Notes

  1. The Southern Oregon Raiders' official record is taken from the university's official statistics, which may not align with those from other sources.

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Bennett, Steve (September 1, 2002). "Rising SONS". Mail Tribune. Medford, OR. OCLC 232119333. Archived from the original on December 16, 2015. Retrieved December 15, 2015. Unknown parameter |deadurl= ignored (help)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. L. L. Goodrich (November 19, 1900). "Eugene Bests Ashland: U O Defeats Southern Oregon Normal School in Football". Daily Eugene Guard. Eugene, OR. p. 1. OCLC 37529729.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. "Normal Defeats Arcata Team". Morning Register. Eugene, OR. Associated Press. November 13, 1927. p. 8. OCLC 37529798.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. Staff writer (November 16, 1927). "Monmouth Normal Tackles Ashland". The Capital Journal. Salem, OR. p. 6. OCLC 21019600.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. Raider Football Season Results 1927-2014, pg. 1
  6. Staff writer (October 13, 1928). "Max Newsom Dies After Fainting In Football Game". The Klamath News. Klamath Falls, OR. p. 1. OCLC 41173134.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. Staff writer (September 1, 2002). "SOU Football Timeline". Mail Tribune. Medford, OR. OCLC 232119333. Archived from the original on December 17, 2015. Retrieved December 15, 2015. Unknown parameter |deadurl= ignored (help)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  8. "Southern Oregon Composite Championship Listing". College Football Data Warehouse. July 17, 2008.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  9. "Southern Oregon Yearly Results 1985–1989". College Football Data Warehouse. July 17, 2008.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  10. "Southern Oregon Yearly Results 2000–2004". College Football Data Warehouse. July 17, 2008.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  11. "SOU considers move from NAIA to NCAA". Ashland Daily Tidings.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  12. http://jacksonville.com/sports/football/2011-02-10/story/ex-nease-football-coach-craig-howard-takes-southern-oregon-job
  13. http://traveljapanblog.com/ashland/2014/12/10-photos-of-the-champions/
  14. http://traveljapanblog.com/wordpress/2014/12/2014-naia-football-player-of-the-year/
  15. "Little Civil War Football Game on Tap Saturday". SOU Sports. October 15, 2007.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  16. "Southern Oregon vs Western Oregon". College Football Data Warehouse. July 17, 2008.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links