The 2020 season marks the 28th year for the Pioneer Football League – the nation’s only non-scholarship, football-only NCAA Football Championship Subdivision conference.

The PFL is one of only two conferences that sponsor football as its only sport (the Missouri Valley Football Conference being the other). However, the PFL is a truly national conference with members on each coast and throughout the nation’s heartland. The league still retains four of its charter members – Butler University, the University of Dayton, Drake University, and Valparaiso University, as well as the University of San Diego which joined before the league's first season.

The league has expanded in all directions since its founding. The league added Davidson College and Morehead State University in 2001 from the FCS' independent ranks. Marist College, which joined for the 2009 season, further extended the league’s footprint into the northeast. Stetson University revived its long-dormant football program and selected the PFL as its conference home in 2013. Presbyterian College and the University of St. Thomas will join the league in 2021, adding to the league's membership in both the southeast and midwest. 

In January 1991 the NCAA passed legislation to require Division I institutions to sponsor all intercollegiate sports at the Division I level. The five charter members (Evansville was a founding member before dropping football in 1997), each dedicated to the enhancement and sound management of intercollegiate football as an integral part of the student-athletes’ collegiate experience, joined together to form the Pioneer Football League. From the league’s inception, it was a proponent of the creation of a non-scholarship football classification within Division I and adopted the moniker of Pioneer based on the intent to become the first league in that new division. The PFL’s original membership was comprised of NCAA Division I universities that previously sponsored intercollegiate football at other levels.

The PFL began play in 1993 with Dayton winning the league’s first crown. The league spent its first season in 1993 under the administrative guidance of the Midwestern Collegiate Conference and the office moved to St. Louis in 1994 when current commissioner Patty Viverito was named the PFL commissioner, a leadership position she continues to fill.

 Name Position E-Mail Phone
 Patty Viverito Commissioner [E-Mail] 314-444-4313
 Greg Walter Associate Commissioner [E-Mail] 314-444-4318
 Kathryn Delaney Executive Assistant [E-Mail] 314-444-4322
 Cody Bush Media Relations Director [E-Mail] 931-980-4940

 2020 PFL Membership