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Photos: WKU Memorabilia

This helmet was signed by Joe Bugel, who played for WKU from 1960-1963 before joining the Hilltoppers coaching staff as a graduate assistant. Bugel went on to coach in the NFL and helped lead the Washington Redskins to three Super Bowl wins. He also coached for the Detroit Lions, the Houston Oilers, and the San Diego Chargers. He aalso served as a head of the Phoenix Cardinals and Oakland Raiders. This helmet was made for a team in the mid 1990’s that Bugel signed. Bugel died in 2020. (Sue Strader)

Since 1906, Western Kentucky University has built decades of traditions, university spirit, a beloved mascot and vibrant alumni support–which, when combined, has produced hundreds of one-of-a-kind memorabilia items, ranging from vintage football helmets to stuffed Big Reds. The Herald asked our readers for submissions of their most unique WKU memorabilia and the stories behind them. This is what we found.