Legend of the Bulldog
The story takes place in the autumn of 1899 when five Tech students were returning home from school. They came upon an old, hungry bulldog sitting under a tree. The boys fed the dog with what food they had and continued their journey.
When they finally reached their destination, however, they found that the dog had followed them. Being sensitive young men, they sought permission for the dog to stay the night, and the landlord agreed - if the animal remained in the kitchen.
That night the house caught fire.
Spirit of 88
At the south end of Joe Aillet Stadium stands a bronze Bulldog statue named the Spirit of '88. The statue commemorates the 1988 Bulldog football team which blazed the path into Division I-A football for Louisiana Tech.
That 1988 team had to endure one of the most difficult schedules in school history while playing with only 65 scholarships - the allotted amount for Division I-AA teams. In what was the nation's 11th toughest schedule that year, the Bulldogs faced five I-A bowl teams including Houston, Florida State and Texas A&M.
The results were as expected: losses like 60-0, 56-17 and 66-3 ... but as a team, the Bulldogs grew. Those experiences likely played a key role in Tech finishing 5-4-1 the following year, its first in Division I-A, and then 8-3-1 in 1990 and an Independence Bowl berth.
The statue, which every Bulldog player touches as he walks down the ramp before every home game, has also brought good fortune to the Bulldogs at Joe Aillet Stadium. On Oct. 14, 1989, when it was unveiled, Tech proceeded to pummel a highly respected Northern Illinois team by the score of 42-21. That was just the start of one of the best runs in Tech football history.