Northwestern University

1980 Wildcats
(Authentic Reproduction)




If Venturi wasn't winning, he certainly was setting a record for helmet designs as he introduced his third distinctive change in as many years. Perhaps he was just "trying anything and everything" to win but the white helmet with purple one-inch center stripe and purple mask now had a purple "Cats" on each side, in script, instead of the script "N" that was used in '79. The new helmet design didn't help. The arguments about Northwestern football heated up in the shadow of another horrid season. Points of discussion for this private school included its high admissions standards, stringent academic demands, expensive tuition which limited scholarship assistance, and an inability to recruit top talent. While discussion was widespread and concern was expressed, there was no change and for the football program, no resolution. Ohio State was ahead 42-0 at the half in a 63-0 blowout. Black Athletes United for the Light or BAUL protested against Venturi and his coaching methods which caused a rift with white teammates, some of whom disagreed with the charges and others who agreed but felt that their Black teammates should have requested their involvement or support. The 0-11 record brought the three-year total of Venturi's tenure to 1-31-1.     
Pont was fired as Athletic Director and Venturi as Head Coach three days after the close of the season. A new AD, Doug Single hired Dennis Green on December 23, 1980, to direct the fortunes of Northwestern football. Venturi went on to a professional coaching career that is still current, beginning in the CFL and then serving as the defensive coordinator and interim head coach of the Colts and the head coach of the Saints.

If interested in any of these NWU helmets please click on the photos below.