1981 Football Team
During the 25th Reunion of the Red Raider Championship Football team, coaches and players reminisced about their legendary season. Reflecting on the incredible circumstances of the Fall of 1981, the players and coaches decided to jointly establish a football scholarship in honor of the championship team. It was their hope that by creating such a scholarship, the members of that winning team could help to shape the future of Red Raider football.
The 1981 Red Raider team was unlike any other team in Shippensburg football history. The team finished the regular season with a perfect record of 11-0. Shippensburg won the PSAC championship game with a victory over Millersville 34-17. Shippensburg went on to play Virginia Union in the first round of the Division II Football Championships. Virginia Union, ranked number one in Division II, were soundly beaten by Shippensburg 40-27. Shippensburg's season ended soon after with a loss of 18-6 to North Dakota State in the semi-finals.
The 1981 Red Raider team still holds many records with most wins (12), most victories on the road (8), most rushes (611), most touchdown passes in a game (6), and fewest turnovers in a season (16). The team maintained a 12-1 record, making history for Shippensburg University. The team was named the Eastern College Athletic Conference Team of the Year and won the Lambert Cup.
Coach Vito Ragazzo, who led the Red Raider team throughout their unprecedented season, received post-season awards including: PSAC Coach of the Year, NCAA Division II Coach of the Year; and the Kodak Coach of the Year. Many players also received awards, and numerous individual records were set. Four members of the team are in the Shippensburg University Athletic Hall of Fame: Ed Brown, Dave Calvario, Tim Ebersole, and Ed Noon.
Scholarships associated with 1981 Football Team