May 312013

When you look at the worst team(s) from every major college football season there are a few surprises. Alabama, Florida, Florida St., Michigan, and Texas, have all at one point posted major college football’s worst record in a season.

Major College Football’s Worst Team Season by Season

Note: Click here for a list/explanation on major college football programs.

The worst team(s) was determined by winning percentage. Ties were counted as half a win.

Columns can be sorted by clicking on the titles in the header. You can search for a specific team or season using the search box to the right.

SeasonTeamW-L-TW PctWins
1869Princeton (NJ) ¹1-10.500Rutgers (NJ) (1-1) - Major
1869Rutgers (NJ) ¹1-10.500Princeton (NJ) (1-1) - Major
1870Columbia (NY)0-10.000
1872Stevens Tech (NJ)0-10.000
1873Rutgers (NJ)1-20.333Columbia (NY) (2-1) - Major
1874Columbia (NY)1-50.167Rutgers (NJ) (2-2) - Major
1875Rutgers (NJ)1-1-10.500Stevens Tech (NJ) (4-3) - Major
1875Yale (CT)2-20.500Win #1: Rutgers (NJ) (1-1-1) - Major
1875Yale (CT) (cont.)cont.0.500Win #2: Wesleyan (CT) (0-1) - Non-Major
1876Pennsylvania1-20.333Philadelphia All-Stars (PA) (?) - Non-Major
1877Rutgers (NJ)0-30.000
1878Brown (RI)0-10.000
1879Columbia (NY)0-3-20.200
1880Brown (RI)0-10.000
1882Lafayette (PA)0-20.000
1882MIT (MA)0-30.000
1884Lehigh (PA)0-40.000
1885Lehigh (PA)1-5-10.214Rutgers (NJ) (0-1) - Non-Major
1886Tufts (MA)0-100.000
1887Stevens Tech (NJ)1-6-10.188Tufts (MA) (3-7) - Major
1888Swarthmore (PA)0-50.000
1889Stevens Tech (NJ)1-100.091Trinity (CT) (5-3-1) - Major
1890Columbia (NY)1-5-10.214Fordham (NY) (1-3-1) - Non-Major
1891Columbia (NY)1-50.167Berkeley AC (NY) (1-2) - Non-Major
1892Wesleyan (CT)2-7-10.250Win #1: Springfield (MA) (4-3) - Major
1892Wesleyan (CT) (cont.)cont.0.250Win #2: Stevens Tech (NJ) (5-3-1) - Non-Major
1893Trinity (CT)0-9-20.091
1894Wesleyan (CT)0-6-10.071
1895Massachusetts1-50.167Pittsfield AC (MA) (0-1) - Non-Major
1896Tufts (MA)2-6-10.278Win #1: Boston College (MA) (5-3) - Non-Major
1896Tufts (MA) (cont.)cont.0.278Win #2: Phillips Exeter (NH) (?) - Non-Major
1897Williams (MA)1-7-10.167Laureate Boat Club (NY) (6-3) - Non-Major
1898Tufts (MA)1-90.100Boston College (MA) (2-5-1) - Non-Major
1899MIT (MA)1-60.143New Hampshire (4-2) - Non-Major
1900Iowa St.2-5-10.313Win #1: Cornell College (IA) (4-3-2) - Non-Major
1900Iowa St. (cont.)cont.0.313Win #2: William Penn (IA) (2-5-2) - Non-Major
1901Lehigh (PA)1-110.083Haverford (PA) (1-10-1) - Non-Major
1902Boston College (MA)0-80.000
1902Union (NY)0-90.000
1903Texas Christian0-70.000
1904Franklin & Marshall (PA)0-100.000
1905Baylor (TX)1-60.143Texas Christian (4-4) - Major
1906Haskell Institute (KS)0-50.000
1906Purdue (IN)0-50.000
1907Purdue (IN)0-50.000
1908Clemson (SC)1-60.143Gordon (GA) (1-3) - Non-Major
1909Tennessee1-6-20.222Transylvania (KY) (0-5-3) - Non-Major
1910Colorado St.0-50.000
1910Haskell Institute (KS)0-70.000
1910Tulane (LA)0-70.000
1911Villanova (PA)0-5-10.083
1912Samford (AL)1-70.125Jacksonville St. (AL) (1-4) - Non-Major
1913Wake Forest (NC)0-80.000
1914Northwestern (IL)1-60.143Lake Forest (IL) (3-5) - Non-Major
1915Colorado1-60.143Wyoming (2-6) - Major
1917Newberry (SC)0-60.000
1918Baylor (TX)0-60.000
1918Colorado St.0-20.000
1918Iowa St.0-30.000
1918Wofford (SC)0-30.000
1919Texas Christian1-70.125Trinity (TX) (2-6) - Non-Major
1920Colorado School of Mines0-60.000
1921Southwestern (TX)0-6-10.071
1922Erskine (SC)0-80.000
1924Erskine (SC)1-70.125Piedmont (GA) (0-5) - Non-Major
1925Clemson (SC)1-70.125Citadel (SC) (6-4) - Major
1926Western St. (CO)1-80.111Montezuma College (NM) (1-4) - Non-Major
1927Grinnell (IA)0-7-10.063
1928Western St. (CO)0-70.000
1929North Carolina St.1-80.111Wake Forest (NC) (6-5-1) - Major
1930Iowa St.0-90.000
1930Western St. (CO)0-60.000
1931Princeton (NJ)1-70.125Amherst (MA) (2-5) - Non-Major
1932Washington & Lee (VA)1-90.100Virginia (5-4) - Major
1933Western St. (CO)0-50.000
1935Cornell (NY)0-6-10.071
1936Sewanee (TN)0-6-10.071
1937Washburn (KS)0-100.000
1938Sewanee (TN)1-80.111Hiwassee College (TN) (2-5) - Non-Major
1938Texas1-80.111Texas A&M (4-4-1) - Major
1940UCLA1-90.100Washington St. (4-4-2) - Major
1941Utah St.0-80.000
1943Columbia (NY)0-80.000
1944Virginia Military Institute1-80.111Richmond (VA) (2-6) - Major
1945Coast Guard (CT)0-7-10.063
1946Fordham (NY)0-70.000
1946Kansas St.0-90.000
1947Kansas St.0-100.000
1947Stanford (CA)0-90.000
1948Texas A&M0-9-10.050
1948Tulsa (OK)0-9-10.050
1949Brigham Young (UT)0-110.000
1950Auburn (AL)0-100.000
1950Virginia Tech0-100.000
1951New Mexico St.1-90.100Northern Arizona (1-7) - Major
1952Kansas St.1-90.100Bradley (IL) (4-5) - Non-Major
1952Richmond (VA)1-90.100Randolph-Macon (VA) (5-3-1) - Non-Major
1953Davidson (NC)0-90.000
1954New Mexico St.0-90.000
1954Tulsa (OK)0-110.000
1956Marquette (WI)0-90.000
1957Marquette (WI)0-100.000
1957Northwestern (IL)0-90.000
1957Wake Forest (NC)0-100.000
1960Hardin-Simmons (TX)0-100.000
1960Stanford (CA)0-100.000
1961Brown (RI)0-90.000
1961Colorado St.0-100.000
1961Hardin-Simmons (TX)0-100.000
1962Colorado St.0-100.000
1962Kansas St.0-100.000
1962Tulane (LA)0-100.000
1962Wake Forest (NC)0-100.000
1963Wake Forest (NC)1-90.100South Carolina (1-8-1) - Major
1964Louisville (KY)1-90.100Dayton (OH) (3-7) - Major
1964Pacific (CA)1-90.100Montana (3-6) - Non-Major
1964Southern Methodist (TX)1-90.100Texas-Arlington (4-6-1) - Non-Major
1964Texas A&M1-90.100Southern Methodist (TX) (1-9) - Major
1964Texas-El Paso0-8-20.100
1964Virginia Military Institute1-90.100Davidson (NC) (3-6) - Major
1965Kansas St.0-100.000
1965Richmond (VA)0-100.000
1966Kansas St.0-9-10.050
1967Marshall (WV)0-100.000
1968New Mexico0-100.000
1968Wichita St. (KS)0-100.000
1969Baylor (TX)0-100.000
1969Cal St.-Los Angeles0-90.000
1969Virginia Military Institute0-100.000
1970Wichita St. (KS)0-90.000
1971Brown (RI)0-90.000
1972Colorado St.1-100.091Texas-El Paso (2-8) - Major
1972North Texas1-100.091Cincinnati (OH) (2-9) - Major
1972Pittsburgh (PA)1-100.091Boston College (MA) (4-7) - Major
1973Army (NY)0-100.000
1973Florida St.0-110.000
1973Texas-El Paso0-110.000
1974Florida St.1-100.091Miami (FL) (6-5) - Major
1974Indiana1-100.091Minnesota (4-7) - Major
1974Marshall (WV)1-100.091Akron (OH) (5-5) - Non-Major
1974Texas Christian1-100.091Texas-Arlington (1-10) - Major
1974Texas-Arlington1-100.091Louisiana-Lafayette (2-9) - Major
1974Utah1-100.091New Mexico (4-6-1) - Major
1974Wake Forest (NC)1-100.091Furman (SC) (5-6) - Major
1975Holy Cross (MA)1-100.091Brown (RI) (6-2-1) - Major
1975Lamar (TX)1-100.091Southern Illinois (1-9-1) - Major
1975Louisville (KY)1-100.091Tennessee-Chattanooga (5-5-1) - Major
1975Oregon St.1-100.091Washington St. (3-8) - Major
1975Texas Christian1-100.091Rice (TX) (2-9) - Major
1975Texas-El Paso1-100.091East Tennessee St. (2-8-1) - Non-Major
1975Utah1-100.091Wyoming (2-9) - Major
1975Virginia1-100.091Virginia Military Institute (3-8) - Major
1975Western Michigan1-100.091Eastern Michigan (4-6) - Major
1976Texas Christian0-110.000
1977Kansas St.1-100.091Wichita St. (KS) (5-6) - Major
1977Northwestern (IL)1-100.091Illinois (3-8) - Major
1977Ohio1-100.091Marshall (WV) (2-9) - Major
1977Rice (TX)1-100.091Idaho (3-8) - Major
1977Texas-El Paso1-100.091New Mexico St. (4-7) - Major
1977Wake Forest (NC)1-100.091Furman (SC) (4-5-2) - Major
1978Boston College (MA)0-110.000
1979Richmond (VA)0-110.000
1980Northwestern (IL)0-110.000
1980Oregon St.0-110.000
1981Colorado St.0-120.000
1981Eastern Michigan0-110.000
1981Northwestern (IL)0-110.000
1982Rice (TX)0-110.000
1983Eastern Michigan1-100.091Marshall (WV) (4-7) - Non-Major
1983Kent St. (OH)1-100.091Eastern Michigan (1-10) - Major
1983Minnesota1-100.091Rice (TX) (1-10) - Major
1983Rice (TX)1-100.091Louisiana-Lafayette (4-6) - Major
1983Stanford (CA)1-100.091Arizona (7-3-1) - Major
1985Kansas St.1-100.091Missouri (1-10) - Major
1985Missouri1-100.091Iowa St. (5-6) - Major
1985New Mexico St.1-100.091Texas-El Paso (1-11) - Major
1985Texas-El Paso1-100.091Brigham Young (UT) (11-3) - Major
1985Tulane (LA)1-100.091Louisiana-Lafayette (4-7) - Major
1986Houston (TX)1-100.091Oklahoma St. (6-5) - Major
1986Memphis (TN)1-100.091Vanderbilt (TN) (1-10) - Major
1986New Mexico St.1-100.091Cal St.-Fullerton (3-9) - Major
1986Ohio1-100.091Northern Illinois (2-9) - Major
1986Vanderbilt (TN)1-100.091Duke (NC) (4-7) - Major
1987New Mexico0-110.000
1988Kansas St.0-110.000
1988Rice (TX)0-110.000
1989Kent St. (OH)0-110.000
1989New Mexico St.0-110.000
1989Northwestern (IL)0-110.000
1990Cal St.-Fullerton1-110.083Sonoma St. (CA) (7-3) - Non-Major
1991Oklahoma St.0-10-10.045
1992Eastern Michigan1-100.091Ohio (1-10) - Major
1992Navy (MD)1-100.091Tulane (LA) (2-9) - Major
1992Ohio1-100.091Kent St. (OH) (2-9) - Major
1992Temple (PA)1-100.091Boston (MA) (3-8) - Non-Major
1992Texas-El Paso1-100.091Utah (6-6) - Major
1993Kent St. (OH)0-110.000
1995Oregon St.1-100.091Idaho (6-5) - Non-Major
1995Southern Methodist (TX)1-100.091Arkansas (8-5) - Major
1995Temple (PA)1-100.091Pittsburgh (PA) (2-9) - Major
1995Wake Forest (NC)1-100.091Navy (MD) (5-6) - Major
1996Duke (NC)0-110.000
1997Northern Illinois0-110.000
1997Rutgers (NJ)0-110.000
1998Kent St. (OH)0-110.000
1998Nevada-Las Vegas0-110.000
1999Ball St. (IN)0-110.000
1999Buffalo (NY)0-110.000
1999South Carolina0-110.000
2000Duke (NC)0-110.000
2001Duke (NC)0-110.000
2001Houston (TX)0-110.000
2001Navy (MD)0-100.000
2002Army (NY)1-110.083Tulane (LA) (9-5) - Major
2002Buffalo (NY)1-110.083Rutgers (NJ) (1-11) - Major
2002Rutgers (NJ)1-110.083Army (NY) (1-11) - Major
2002Tulsa (OK)1-110.083Texas-El Paso (2-10) - Major
2003Army (NY)0-130.000
2003Southern Methodist (TX)0-120.000
2004Central Florida0-110.000
2005New Mexico St.0-120.000
2005Temple (PA)0-110.000
2006Duke (NC)0-120.000
2006Florida International0-120.000
2007Duke (NC)1-110.083Northwestern (IL) (6-6) - Major
2007Florida International1-110.083North Texas (2-10) - Major
2007Idaho1-110.083Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo (7-4) - Non-Major
2007Minnesota1-110.083Miami (OH) (6-7) - Major
2007Southern Methodist (TX)1-110.083North Texas (2-10) - Major
2009Eastern Michigan0-120.000
2009Western Kentucky0-120.000
2010San Jose St. (CA)1-120.077Southern Utah (6-5) - Non-Major
2011Akron (OH)1-110.083Virginia Military Institute (2-9) - Non-Major
2011Florida Atlantic1-110.083Alabama-Birmingham (3-9) - Major
2011Indiana1-110.083South Carolina St. (7-4) - Non-Major
2011New Mexico1-110.083Nevada-Las Vegas (2-10) - Major
2012Southern Mississippi0-120.000

¹ In 1869, Princeton and Rutgers were the only teams to play intercollegiate football.


Kansas St. has been major college football’s worst team nine times; more than any other program.

Most Seasons as Major College Football’s Worst Team

TeamCurrent Level# of Times as the Worst TeamLast Time the Worst Team
Kansas St.FBS91988
Wake Forest (NC)FBS71995
Colorado St.FBS61981
Columbia (NY)Non-FBS61943
New Mexico St.FBS62005
Northwestern (IL)FBS61989
Rutgers (NJ)FBS62002
Texas-El PasoFBS61992
Duke (NC)FBS52007
Texas ChristianFBS51976
Brown (RI)Non-FBS41971
Eastern MichiganFBS42009
Kent St. (OH)FBS41998
Rice (TX)FBS41988
Southern Methodist (TX)FBS42007
Western St. (CO)Non-FBS41933
Army (NY)FBS32003
Baylor (TX)FBS31969
Iowa St.FBS31930
Lehigh (PA)Non-FBS31901
New MexicoFBS32011
Oregon St.FBS31995
Richmond (VA)Non-FBS31979
Stanford (CA)FBS31983
Stevens Tech (NJ)Non-FBS31889
Temple (PA)FBS32005
Tufts (MA)Non-FBS31898
Tulane (LA)FBS31985
Tulsa (OK)FBS32002
Virginia Military InstituteNon-FBS31969
Boston College (MA)FBS21978
Buffalo (NY)FBS22002
Clemson (SC)FBS21925
Erskine (SC)Non-FBS21924
Florida InternationalFBS22007
Florida St.FBS21974
Hardin-Simmons (TX)Non-FBS21961
Haskell Institute (KS)Non-FBS21910
Houston (TX)FBS22001
Louisville (KY)FBS21975
Marquette (WI)Non-FBS21957
Marshall (WV)FBS21974
MIT (MA)Non-FBS21899
Navy (MD)FBS22001
Princeton (NJ)Non-FBS21931
Purdue (IN)FBS21907
Sewanee (TN)Non-FBS21938
Texas A&MFBS21964
Wesleyan (CT)Non-FBS21894
Wichita St. (KS)Non-FBS21970
Akron (OH)FBS12011
Auburn (AL)FBS11950
Ball St. (IN)FBS11999
Brigham Young (UT)FBS11949
Cal St.-FullertonNon-FBS11990
Cal St.-Los AngelesNon-FBS11969
Central FloridaFBS12004
Coast Guard (CT)Non-FBS11945
Colorado School of MinesNon-FBS11920
Cornell (NY)Non-FBS11935
Davidson (NC)Non-FBS11953
Florida AtlanticFBS12011
Fordham (NY)Non-FBS11946
Franklin & Marshall (PA)Non-FBS11904
Grinnell (IA)Non-FBS11927
Holy Cross (MA)Non-FBS11975
Lafayette (PA)Non-FBS11882
Lamar (TX)Non-FBS11975
Memphis (TN)FBS11986
Nevada-Las VegasFBS11998
Newberry (SC)Non-FBS11917
North Carolina St.FBS11929
North TexasFBS11972
Northern IllinoisFBS11997
Oklahoma St.FBS11991
Pacific (CA)Non-FBS11964
Pittsburgh (PA)FBS11972
Samford (AL)Non-FBS11912
San Jose St. (CA)FBS12010
South CarolinaFBS11999
Southern MississippiFBS12012
Southwestern (TX)Non-FBS11921
Swarthmore (PA)Non-FBS11888
Trinity (CT)Non-FBS11893
Union (NY)Non-FBS11902
Utah St.FBS11941
Vanderbilt (TN)FBS11986
Villanova (PA)Non-FBS11911
Virginia TechFBS11950
Washburn (KS)Non-FBS11937
Washington & Lee (VA)Non-FBS11932
Western KentuckyFBS12009
Western MichiganFBS11975
Williams (MA)Non-FBS11897
Wofford (SC)Non-FBS11918
Yale (CT)Non-FBS11875


Additional Info

  • Most Consecutive Seasons as the Worst Team: Three seasons. Texas Christian was major college football’s worst team from 1974 to 1976.
  • Worst to First (Poll Era): In 1972, Pittsburgh finished the season with major college football’s worst winning percentage. Only four seasons after being the worst team, Pittsburgh won the national championship In 1976. In the poll era, it’s the shortest amount of time a team went from worst to first.
  • Least Worst Seasons: These current FBS programs have never been major college football’s worst team.
Air Force (CO) Georgia Tech Oregon
Alabama-Birmingham Kentucky Penn St.
Arizona Louisiana St. San Diego St. (CA)
Arizona St. Louisiana Tech South Alabama
Arkansas Louisiana-Monroe South Florida
Arkansas St. Miami (FL) Southern California
Boise St. (ID) Miami (OH) Syracuse (NY)
Bowling Green (OH) Michigan St. Texas St.
California Middle Tennessee Texas Tech
Central Michigan Mississippi St. Texas-San Antonio
Cincinnati (OH) Nebraska Toledo (OH)
Connecticut Nevada Troy (AL)
East Carolina (NC) North Carolina Washington St.
Fresno St. (CA) Notre Dame (IN) West Virginia
Georgia Ohio St.  
Georgia St. Oklahoma  


  • Once the Worst, and at Least Once the Best: The following teams have been major college football’s worst team at least once, and its national champion at least once.
Alabama Illinois Southern Methodist (TX)
Army (NY) Iowa Stanford (CA)
Auburn (AL) Lafayette (PA) Tennessee
Boston College (MA) Maryland Texas
Brigham Young (UT) Michigan Texas A&M
Clemson (SC) Minnesota Texas Christian
Colorado Mississippi UCLA
Cornell (NY) Pennsylvania Washington
Florida Pittsburgh (PA) Yale (CT)
Florida St. Princeton (NJ)  


  • Worst Defeating AP Ranked Teams: There have been only two games where the season’s worst major college team has beaten an AP ranked team.
Season Worst Team   Rk Final Rk Ranked Team Score
1983 Stanford (CA) vs. 19 UR Arizona 31-22
1985 Texas-El Paso vs. 7 16 Brigham Young (UT) 23-16


Geographic Facts About Worst Seasons

  • Teams from the state of Texas have posted major college football’s worst winning percentage 33 times; more than any other state followed by Pennsylvania (16 times) and Kansas (15 times).
  • In every season from 1972 to 1977, at least one team from the state of Texas posted major college football’s worst winning percentage.
  • In 1975, three teams from the state of Texas (Lamar, TCU, UTEP) posted major college football’s worst winning percentage (0.091).
  • Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, and Nebraska, are the only states – currently a part of the FBS – to have never had a team post major college football’s worst winning percentage in a season.


Sources: College Football Data WarehouseCollege Football at


  2 Responses to “College Football: Worst Team(s) Season by Season”

  1. Great research Andrew! As we have come to expect from your findings–detail, facts and highly informative.

    I always learn something by reading your post, keep-up the outstanding work!

    How about one list of the most successful teams next time?

  2. Thanks Tex!

    I might put together something like that. It would be the team(s) with the best winning percentage. Almost always the national champion, and all the undefeated teams which are already printed in the record books and well known.

    I believe there have been a few seasons without any undefeated teams, so there could be a handful of “best” teams that are unknown about.

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