|Cal State Fullerton Titans football|
|Head coach||Gene Murphy (final coach)|
|Conference||Big West Conference|
|Bowl record||0–1 (.000)|
|Colors||Navy Blue, White, and Orange|
The Cal State Fullerton Titans football program represented California State University, Fullerton from the 1970 through 1992 seasons. The Titans originally competed as a member of the California Collegiate Athletic Association from 1970 to 1973 before moving to the Pacific Coast Athletic Association (now the Big West) in 1974 where they remained through the 1991 season. The Titans would compete in their final year as an I-A Independent prior to the program being disbanded. Fullerton played its home games at multiple stadiums throughout their history with the most recent being Titan Stadium, in Fullerton, California.
The CSUF Titans football team traces its roots to 1969 when in May, former USC assistant coach Dick Coury was hired as the program's first head coach. The team would win their inaugural game against Cal Poly Pomona by a score of 31-0 on September 19, 1970, and play to a 0-0 tie in their inaugural home game against Cal Lutheran at Anaheim Stadium. Following moderate success in the inaugural 1970 season with a record of 6-4-1, the 1971 season opened with a home game at Santa Ana Stadium versus Southern Utah State with the rest of their home games played at Anaheim Stadium except for a matchup against the Grambling State University Tigers played before their largest ever home crowd of 60,415 at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Just two weeks prior to the Grambling game, tragedy struck the program when a plane crash on November 13, 1971, resulted in the deaths of three Titan assistant coaches: Joe O'Hara, Dallas Moon and Bill Hannah.
Entering the 1972 season, Pete Yoder started the season as the program's second all-time head coach and the team moved all home games from Anaheim Stadium to Santa Ana Stadium. After completing a pair of 7-4 seasons, the Titans would suffer their first losing season following a 4-7 campaign in the 1974 season. It was during this year that Fullerton would make the move from the California Collegiate Athletic Association into the Pacific Coast Athletic Association (now the Big West).
For the 1975 season, Fullerton would hire former Pacific assistant coach Jim Colletto, as the third head coach in program history and the following season in 1976, the team moved their home games to Falcon Stadium at Cerritos College. During the Colletto era, the Titans would not have a winning season, with the lone bright spot of his tenure coming in 1978 with Obie Graves rushing for 1,789 total yards including 291-yards in a 34-9 upset of Long Beach State. Colletto would resign from his position following the 1979 season with Gene Murphy being announced as the program's fourth all-time head coach on December 16, 1979.
Entering Murphy's first season in 1980, the Titans would move their home games to an on-campus stadium, Titan Field, and continue to not see success on the field with losing seasons from the 1980 through the 1982 seasons. For the 1983 season, Fullerton split their home games between Anaheim Stadium and Glover Stadium, while the team played in the 1983 California Bowl after winning their first conference championship. The Titans would build upon their successes in finishing the 1984 season again as conference champion with a record of 11-1, while moving home games back to Santa Ana Stadium. Following the season, Murphy was named UPI West Coast Coach of the Year and the Titans would finish in the final top 20 UPI poll.
The Titans would never again reach the highs of the 1984 season and would embark on a steady decline through the late 1980s and into the early 1990s.
By the late 1980s, the program was in financial trouble. The team played the 1992 season at on-campus Titan Stadium, but during that year, the Fullerton Academic Senate voted 24-7 to recommend disbanding the program. That decision was halted by then-university president Milton A. Gordon on December 7, 1992 and Fullerton announced that it would suspend the program effective immediately for one year, with the intention of returning to play at the Division I-AA level for the 1994 season. However, citing budget restraints, Cal State Fullerton decided in February 1994 against bringing back football.
By 1995, the notion of resurrecting the program began to take shape. In fall 1995, the Fullerton Students Athletic Advisory Committee asked the student body in an election if they supported Titan football. At that time, 89 percent of respondents voted favorably for the reinstatement of football.
Cal State Fullerton alumni established the organization Bring Back Titan Football in 2007 to advocate the return of the football program. In 2008, Cal State Fullerton established a task force exploring the feasibility of bringing back football.
Although the Titans have not played a game since 1992, Fullerton is still the NCAA record holder in several categories. These records include: both most fumbles and most fumbles lost for a single season with 73 and 41 respectively during the 1992 season; the most kickoff returns per game with an average of 7.3 per game for the 1990 season; the 10th highest number of rushing yards in a single game with 357 by Mike Pringle on November 4, 1989, against New Mexico State; and being part of the fourth highest combined score in a tied game with their 41-41 contest against San Diego State on September 23, 1989.
Cal State Fullerton won two conference championships during their tenure as a football program. Both of these seasons had their record amended due to violations from UNLV that resulted in Cal State Fullerton gaining a win for both the 1983 and 1984 seasons. Due to this, the team went undefeated in conference play for both seasons.
|Season||Conference||Coach||Overall Record||Conference Record|
|1983||Big West Conference||Gene Murphy||8-4||6-0|
|1984||Big West Conference||Gene Murphy||12-0||7-0|
Cal State Fullerton had four head coaches during their 23 seasons as a college football program.
|Conference Champions *||Bowl game berth ^|
|Season||Head coach||Conference||Season results||Bowl result|
|1970||Dick Coury||California Collegiate Athletic Association||--||6||4||1||--|
|1971||California Collegiate Athletic Association||--||7||4||0||Won 1971 Mercy Bowl against Fresno State Bulldogs, 17-14 ^|
|1972||Pete Yoder||California Collegiate Athletic Association||--||7||4||0||--|
|1973||California Collegiate Athletic Association||--||7||4||0||--|
|1974||Pacific Coast Athletic Association||--||4||7||0||--|
|1975||Jim Colletto||Pacific Coast Athletic Association||--||2||9||0||--|
|1976||Pacific Coast Athletic Association||--||3||7||1||--|
|1977||Pacific Coast Athletic Association||--||4||7||0||--|
|1978||Pacific Coast Athletic Association||--||5||7||0||--|
|1979||Pacific Coast Athletic Association||--||3||8||0||--|
|1980||Gene Murphy||Pacific Coast Athletic Association||--||4||7||0||--|
|1981||Pacific Coast Athletic Association||--||3||8||0||--|
|1982||Pacific Coast Athletic Association||--||3||9||0||--|
|1983 *||Pacific Coast Athletic Association||1st||7||5||0||Lost 1983 California Bowl to Northern Illinois Huskies, 13-20 ^|
|1984 *||Pacific Coast Athletic Association||T--1st||11||1||0||--|
|1985||Pacific Coast Athletic Association||--||6||5||0||--|
|1986||Pacific Coast Athletic Association||--||3||9||0||--|
|1987||Pacific Coast Athletic Association||--||6||6||0||--|
|1988||Big West Conference||--||5||6||0||--|
|1989||Big West Conference||--||6||4||1||--|
|1990||Big West Conference||--||1||11||0||--|
|1991||Big West Conference||--||2||9||0||--|
|Total||107||148||3||(only includes regular season games)|
|0||2||0||(only includes bowl games)|
Cal State Fullerton participated in two bowl games. They had a bowl record of 1-1, although only the first counted under NCAA standards.
|December 11, 1971||Mercy Bowl II||Fresno State Bulldogs||W 17-13|
|December 17, 1983||California Bowl||NIU Huskies||L 14-17|
|Mike Ernst||QB||1972||Free Agent||Denver Broncos|
|Johnnie Gray||S||1975||Free Agent||Green Bay Packers|
|M. L. Carter||CB||1979||Free Agent||Kansas City Chiefs|
|Grady Richardson||TE||1979||Free Agent||Washington Redskins|
|Lucious Smith||CB||1980||Free Agent||Los Angeles Rams|
|Bobby Kemp||DB||1981||202||Cincinnati Bengals|
|Daren Gilbert||OT||1985||38||New Orleans Saints|
|Mark Collins||DB||1986||44||New York Giants|
|Vince Gamache||P||1986||Free Agent||Seattle Seahawks|
|James Pruitt||WR||1986||107||Miami Dolphins|
|Vince Abbott||K||1987||Free Agent||San Diego Chargers|
|Alex Espinoza||QB||1981||Free Agent||Kansas City Chiefs|
|Rick Calhoun||RB||1987||Free Agent||Los Angeles Raiders|
|Hank Goebel||OT||1987||Free Agent||Los Angeles Rams|
|A.J. Jenkins||DE/LB||1987||228||Pittsburgh Steelers|
|Wade Lockett||WR||1987||Free Agent||Los Angeles Raiders|
|Ronald McLean||DE/NT||1987||Free Agent||Denver Broncos|
|Cornelius Redick||WR||1987||Free Agent||Green Bay Packers|
|Marvin Williams||TE||1987||Free Agent||Washington Redskins|
|Michael Rhyan||QB||1988||332||Denver Broncos|
|Mike Pringle||RB||1990||139||Atlanta Falcons|
|Reggie Redding||OG/T||1991||Free Agent||Atlanta Falcons|
|Mike Rogan||OG||1991||Free Agent||Chicago Bears|
|Kurt Bloedorn||P||1993,1994,1995||Free Agent||Buffalo Bills, New York Giants, Dallas Cowboys|
In addition to the players that competed in the NFL, there have been several former Titans that have had significant careers in the Canadian Football League. The three players of note include: Mike Pringle who is the league's all-time leading rusher,Damon Allen, the league's second all-time leading passer and former all-time pro football passing leader with 72,381 passing yards, and Allen Pitts, the league's all-time leading receiver until 2008 when he was surpassed by Milt Stegall.
Amazingly, during the period between 2006 and 2008, the CFL all-time leaders in passing, rushing and receiving yardage were simultaneously former Cal State Fullerton Titans.