Alabama A&M Football


Alabama A&M Football

The Alabama A&M Bulldogs are the college football team representing the Alabama Agricultural and Mechanical University. The Bulldogs play in NCAA Division I Football Championship as a member of the Southwestern Athletic Conference.

The Alabama State Hornets are A&M’s arch-rival as the teams play annually in the Magic City Classic on the last Saturday in October at Historic Legion Field. A&M and State first played each other in 1924, though the annual classic series began in 1941 in Birmingham, which is roughly halfway between the two campuses. The two competed from 1947–1975 in Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. The rivalry has intensified since A&M joined State in the Southwestern Athletic Conference in 1999, with the two teams regularly in contention for the Eastern Division Crown. Alabama A&M leads the overall series 40-39-3.

The Bulldogs other in-state rivalry is with Tuskegee Golden Tigers. The Bulldogs and Tigers began their series with in 1932 and would not meet on the girdiron for another 20 years. They played annually from 1963–1999 including 35 years as conference rivals in the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. The series was discontinued when A&M moved up to Division I (FCS) and joined the SWAC. A&M and Tuskegee resumed a two game set from 2008–2009, the latter as an installation of the Circle City Classic in Indianapolis. The two teams played in 2014, with A&M leading the series 27-20-3.

A&M and the Tennessee State Tigers have a rivalry dating back to the 1930s. After a 30 year hiatus, the two teams resumed play in the 1970s. TSU dominated the series well into the 1980s, winning the first 15 contests. A&M scored its first win, a 7–6 victory in 1986, followed by another 24–6 win in 1987. A&M and TSU met annually for a decade beginning in 2001, usually on Labor Day Weekend in the John Merritt Classic at Nashville’s LP Field. Since their last contest in 2010, TSU holds a 23–8 series lead, with A&M winning 6 of the last 9 meetings.

The Bulldogs has developed new rivals since entering the SWAC in 1999. A&M has a budding rivalry with the Jackson State Tigers, the second closet SWAC member institution after Alabama State. Although JSU leads the all-time series 16–11, the teams have split the last dozen contests with A&M winning the last 3 in a row. A&M’s interdivisional nemesis is the Grambling State Tigers. Grambling (9) and A&M (6) lead the league in title game appearances, squaring off against each other a record 4 times. A&M won the first meeting in 1941 against the legendary Eddie Robinson, who was in his first season, but Grambling has gone on to win 10 of the next 11. Grambling holds a decisive 20–7 series edge and is 4-0 against A&M in SWAC Championship Game matchups.


Conference championships

A&M has won or shared a total of 13 league titles in football with their most recent title coming in a win over Arkansas-Pine Bluff in the 2006 SWAC Championship Game. The Bulldogs other 12 conference crowns came as a member of the Division II Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC) from 1947–1997.

Season Conference Coach Overall Record Conference Record
1962 SIAC Louis Crews 8–2 6–0
1963 SIAC Louis Crews 8–0 7–0
1966 SIAC Louis Crews 8–1 6–0
1971 SIAC Louis Crews 5–6 4–3
1972 SIAC Louis Crews 7–1–1 6–0–1
1979 SIAC Ray Greene 8–3 4–0
1981 SIAC Ray Greene 8–2 4–1
1987 SIAC Ray Greene 7–4 6–1
1988 SIAC Ray Greene 7–3 6–1
1989 SIAC George Pugh 8–4 6–0
1990 SIAC George Pugh 6–5 6–1
1991 SIAC George Pugh/Ray Bonner 5–6 5–2
2006 SWAC Anthony Jones 9–3 6–3

Division championships

The Bulldogs have a total of 6 SWAC Eastern Division Championships, each time earning a berth to the SWAC Championship Game.

Season Division Coach Overall Record Conference Record Result Attendance
2000 SWAC East Ron Cooper 7–5 5–2 L 14–6 Grambling State 34,687
2002 SWAC East Anthony Jones 8–4 6–1 L 31–19 Grambling State 23,727
2005 SWAC East Anthony Jones 9–3 7–2 L 45–6 Grambling State 20,612
2006 SWAC East Anthony Jones 9–3 6–3 W 22–13 Arkansas-Pine-Bluff 30,213
2009 SWAC East Anthony Jones 7–5 4–3 L 30–24 Prairie View A&M 20,218
2011 SWAC East Anthony Jones 8–4 7–2 L 16–15 Grambling State 23,476

Bowl games

A&M has participated in two College Division Bowl Games.

Season Bowl Game Opponent Result Location
1966 Orange Blossom Classic Florida A&M L 26–43 Miami, FL
1971 Azalea Bowl Classic Jackson State L 21–40 Mobile, AL

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