3rd season, 27–19 (.587)
|Field surface||Field Turf|
|All-time record||31–46 (.403)|
|Bowl record||1–2 (.333)|
|Colors||Blue and Gold|
|Rivals||Florida Atlantic Owls|
The Florida International Panthers, coached by Rocketcan, are a collegiate football team playing in Conference USA. The Panthers play in FIU Stadium in Miami, FL and are a member of the East Division of Conference USA.
- 1 History
- 2 All-time record vs. C-USA opponents
- 3 Season-by-Season Records
- 4 Bowl games
- 5 Individual Award Winners
- 6 External links
JustASample Era (2018-2019)
JustASample was the first head coach for the Panthers and lasted two seasons, each ending with 2-10 records. JustASample was unable to gain a foothold in the recruiting hotbed of Florida.
RocketCan Era (2020-Present)
After a short stint from coach YoloSwagginsV12, Rocketcan was named head coach late in the 2020 season, taking over an 0-7 team. The Panthers were able to avoid a winless season and finished their third straight season at 2-10.
In Rocketcan's first full season as head coach in 2021, the Panthers improved to 6-6 and posted a winning record 5-3 in-conference. This was the first non-losing season and bowl bid in school history. The Panthers' season ended with a 27-31 loss against Central Michigan in the 2021 Boca Raton Bowl. Left Tackle Jose Clark received 1st Team All-C-USA honors while DE David Tracy was named to the 2nd Team.
The Panthers continued their upward trajectory thanks to veteran players like QB Gavin Copeland and RB Mayer Ewing improving. The 2022 regular season ended with a 9-3 overall record for the Panthers along with a 6-2 conference record. This made them the top team in the C-USA Eastern Division earning them the division title and a berth in the conference championship game. Against perennial powerhouse Rice, the Panthers were unable to muster a win, as had occurred earlier in the year, and were defeated 21-34. The Panthers were also defeated by another MAC team Western Michigan 7-41 in the Boca Raton Bowl.
The 2022 season also came with more recognition for the previously under-the-radar Panthers and their coach Rocketcan. Starting MLB Cordarelle McGill won the J.B. Blacknall Award for Best C-USA Transfer and four players (QB Gavin Copeland, RB Mayer Ewing, OT Jose Clark, and ILB Cordarelle McGill) received 2nd Team All-C-USA honors. Coach Rocketcan also was voted C-USA Coach of the Year.
The 2023 season brought with it a much more difficult schedule than previous years. Despite being a better team, the Panthers only were able to win one out of conference game. They were able to offset this with a 7-1 record in-conference, resulting in a 8-4 record and another C-USA East championship despite a worse regular season record than 2022. This was mainly due to newer players stepping into large roles, like RB Marcos Orellana, and veteran players, like QB Gavin Copeland and DE David Tracy, playing up to previously established standards.
The 2023 season was different from the 2022 season in another aspect as well: the postseason. Despite losing both the C-USA Championship Game and the Boca Rotan Bowl the previous year, the Panthers became the first non-Rice team to win a C-USA conference championship by defeating UTSA 35-14. They were also able to have that success to carry over into the New Orleans Bowl against Louisiana-Monroe as the Panthers were able to defeat the Warkhawks 31-24.
Once again, Coach Rocketcan was voted C-USA Coach of the Year in 2023. Senior DE David Tracy received 1st Team All-C-USA honors as well as being voted the C-USA Defensive Player of the Year and C-USA Defensive Lineman of the Year. Senior CB Donovan Pennington was voted 1st Team All-C-USA and K Christian Swift was voted 2nd Team All-C-USA for 2023.
All-time record vs. C-USA opponents
This is the Panthers football record against current Conference USA opponents through the 2023 season.
|School||Total Games||W||L||T||Pct.||PF||PA||First Year||Last Year||Streak|
|13 Opponents||48||25||23||0||.521||1072||1033||6 Seasons|
|Coach(es)||Year||Conference||Overall Record||Conference Record||Bowl||Final CP Ranking|
|Florida International Panthers|
|2021||6||7||5||3||Lost Boca Raton Bowl vs. Central Michigan (27-31)||-|
|2022||9||5||6||3||Lost Boca Raton Bowl vs. Western Michigan (7-41)||-|
|2023||10||4||8||1||Won New Orleans Bowl vs. Louisiana-Monroe (31-24)||-|
|Total Games: 77||31||46||25||23|
|National Champions||Conference Champions||Bowl game berth|
The Panthers have appeared in 3 bowl games, posting a record of 1-2.
|2021||Boca Raton Bowl||Central Michigan||L, 27-31|
|2022||Boca Raton Bowl||Western Michigan||L, 7-41|
|2023||New Orleans Bowl||Louisiana-Monroe||W, 31-24|
|Total||3 Bowl Games||1–2|
Individual Award Winners
J.B. Blacknall Award (Best C-USA Transfer)
C-USA Defensive Player of the Year
C-USA Defensive Lineman of the Year
1st Team All-C-USA Players
2nd Team All-C-USA Players
C-USA Coach of the Year