|Eastern Illinois Panthers football|
|Athletic director||Tom Michael|
|Head coach||Adam Cushing |
1st season, 1–11 (.083)
|Field surface||Artificial Turf|
|NCAA division||Division I FCS|
|Conference||Ohio Valley Conference|
|Past conferences||IIAC (1912–1969)|
|All-time record||558–546–42 (.505)|
|Bowl record||0–1 (.000)|
|Playoff appearances||2 (Div. II)|
16 (Div. I FCS)
1982, 1983, 1986, 1989, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012, 2013, 2015
|Playoff record||5–1 (Div. II)|
4–16 (Div. I FCS)
|Claimed national titles||1 – (Div. II): 1978|
1912, 1913, 1914, 1928, 1948, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1986, 1995, 2001, 2002, 2005, 2006, 2009, 2012, 2013
|Rivalries||Illinois State (rivalry)|
|Colors||Blue and gray|
|Fight song||Eastern State March|
|Mascot||Billy the Panther|
|Marching band||Panther Marching Band|
The Eastern Illinois Panthers football program is the intercollegiate American football team for Eastern Illinois University located in the U.S. state of Illinois. The team competes in the NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) and are members of the Ohio Valley Conference. The school's first football team was fielded in 1899. The team plays its home games at the 10,000 seat O'Brien Field, which is named after head coach Maynard O'Brien.
This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (November 2018)
- 1960–1972: NCAA College Division (Small College)
- 1973–1980: NCAA Division II
- 1981–present: NCAA Division I FCS (Formerly Division I-AA)
- 1899–1911: Independent
- 1912–1949: Illinois Intercollegiate Athletic Conference
- 1950–1969: Interstate Intercollegiate Athletic Conference
- 1970–1972: NCAA College Division Independent
- 1973–1977: NCAA Division II Independent
- 1978–1984: Association of Mid-Continent Universities
- 1985–1995: Gateway Collegiate Athletic Conference/ Gateway Football Conference
- 1996–present: Ohio Valley Conference
|1978||Division II||Darrell Mudra||12–2||Delaware||10–9|
|Season||Conference||Coach||Overall Record||Conference Record|
|1912||Illinois Intercollegiate Athletic Conference||Charles Lantz||6–1||4–0|
|1980||Association of Mid-Continent Universities||Darrell Mudra||11–3||4–0|
|1986||Gateway Collegiate Athletic Conference||Al Molde||11–2||5–1|
|1995†||Gateway Football Conference||Bob Spoo||10–2||5–1|
|2001||Ohio Valley Conference||Bob Spoo||9–2||6–0|
Playoffs and Bowls
- NCAA Division I Football Championship playoff appearances: 1982, 1983, 1986, 1989, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012, 2013, 2015
- All time playoff results 
|Year||First Round Home Team||First Round Away Team||Quarterfinal Home||Quarterfinal Away|
|1982 OT||Eastern Illinois||16||Jackson Tigers||13||Tennessee State||20||Eastern Illinois||19|
|1983 2OT||Indiana State||16||Eastern Illinois||13|
|1986||Eastern Illinois||28||Murray State||21||Eastern Illinois||22||Eastern Kentucky||24|
|1989||Idaho||21||Eastern Illinois||38||Montana||25||Eastern Illinois||19|
|1995||Stephen F. Austin||34||Eastern Illinois||29|
|1996||Northern Iowa||21||Eastern Illinois||14|
|2001||Eastern Illinois||43||Northern Iowa||49|
|2002||Western Illinois||48||Eastern Illinois||9|
|2005||Eastern Illinois||6||Southern Illinois||21|
|2006||Eastern Illinois||13||Illinois State||24|
|2007||Southern Illinois||30||Eastern Illinois||11|
|2009||Southern Illinois||48||Eastern Illinois||7|
|2012||South Dakota State||58||Eastern Illinois||10|
|2013||Eastern Illinois||51||Tennessee State||10||Eastern Illinois||39||Towson||49|
|2015||Northern Iowa||53||Eastern Illinois||17|
Eastern Illinois has participated in one bowl game, going 0–1.
|1948||Maynard O'Brien||Corn Bowl||Illinois Wesleyan||L 0–6|
All-time record vs. current OVC teams
|Southeast Missouri State||18||8||.692||1956|
The Mid-America Classic is the rivalry game between Illinois State and Eastern Illinois. The rivalry began in 1901 and is the oldest in the state of Illinois. With the 100th game in the series, representatives from both schools met and developed the Mid-America Classic renaming for the rivalry. The two schools also collaborated on a traveling trophy, which holds plaques with the results of the previous 100 games in the series and has room for results of future games in the series. The two teams have played 108 times in total, with Illinois State holding a 57–42–9 advantage in the all-time series as of the end of the 2019 season.
1st Team All Americans
|James Warring||1978||AP, AFCA|
|Pete Catan||1979, 1980||AP, AFCA|
|Poke Cobb||1979||AP, AFCA|
|Robert Williams||1982, 1983||AP, AFCA|
|Roy Banks||1986||AP, AFCA|
|John Jurkovic||1988, 1989||AP, AFCA, SN|
|Tim Lance||1990||AP, SN, WC|
|Dan Dee||1992||WC, SN|
|J.R. Taylor||2002||AP, FBG, SN, WC|
|Nick Ricks||2002||AP, FBG, SN|
|Kevin Hill||2002||FBG, SN, WC|
|Tony Romo||2002||AP, AFCA, SN, WC|
|Clint Sellers||2005||AFCA, FBG|
|Erik Lora||2012, 2013||AP, AFCA, SN, WC|
|Jimmy Garoppolo||2013||AP, AFCA, SN, WC|
|Collin Seibert||2013, 2014||AP, AFCA, SN, WC|
College Football Hall of Fame members
Eastern Illinois has two inductees in the College Football Hall of Fame as of 2021.
|No.||Player||Position||Career||Date of Retirement||Ref.|
|17||Tony Romo||QB||1999–2002||October 17, 2009|||
|18||Sean Payton||QB||1983–1986||September 11, 2010|||
Future non-conference opponents
Announced schedules as of January 11, 2021.
|vs Illinois State||at Northern Illinois||at Indiana State||vs Indiana State||at Indiana State||vs Indiana State|
|at South Carolina||at Chattanooga||at Illinois State||at Illinois|
|at Bowling Green|
Notable former players
Notable alumni include the following.
- "Eastern Illinois University Panthers - Media Relations". October 15, 2015. Retrieved October 6, 2016.
- "2017 NCAA FCS Records" (PDF).
- "2019 EIU Football Media Guide page 62" (PDF).
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-10-13. Retrieved 2012-09-10.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
- "Division I EIU All Anericans" (PDF).
- "Eastern Illinois University". eiu.touchpros.com.
- "Five OVC Players Named to College Sporting News FCS Fabulous Fifty All-American Team". ovcsports.com.
- "Seibert, Drake named AP All-Americans | Eastern | jg-tc.com". jg-tc.com.
- "JSU's Dunn, EIU's Fanti Named to AFCA FCS All-American Team". ovcsports.com.
- "Darrell Mudra (2000) - Hall of Fame". National Football Foundation.
- "EIU Retired Numbers - Eastern Illinois University Athletics".
- Kilhoffer, Kevin. "Sean Payton Jersey Retirement". JG-TC.com.
- "Eastern Illinois Panthers Football Schedules and Future Schedules". Retrieved March 16, 2020.