Independent football is any type of league that exists that is not part of the NFL, or in the case of colleges, not part of the NCAA. There are many independent football leagues. Probably the most common of the leagues are FBS independent school leagues and independent women’s football leagues.
American football as we know it dates back to the United Kingdom in the mid-19th century. Surely back then, all teams played independent football. All independent football leagues play in the same way that NCAA or NFL players play American football. There are three types of players, offense, defense, and special teams. A special teams player is what you would call a punter, or kicker. All American football is a collision sport.
As you see, Independent football leagues do not vary much from NCAA or NFL teams. Independent leagues will still, in fact, play against NCAA teams in college. This is required for TV time bowl games, and simply to make scheduling less confusing.
The four best known independent teams are Notre Dame, BYU, Army and Navy. Even these independent teams have their own football stadiums as well. Notre Dame’s stadium is self named. BYU’s stadium is named LaVell Edwards Stadium. The Army has Michie Stadium, and the navy plays their independent football games at home at Navy – Marine Corps Memorial Stadium.
Though these are the only four independent teams in the NCAA Division I FBS independent schools, many many other teams started as independent when the league began in 1978. Some other well known teams that were once independent are the Air Force, Fullerton, Rutgers, and even Virginia Tech. You are sure to find a team from your own home state that was once and independent football team.
Independent football does not earn as much money annually as the NCAA, but they hold their own by bringing in 141.6 million dollars annually.← Back