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13 Best & Funniest College Mascots


Some of the most popular college mascots are the Tigers, the Bears and the Bulldogs – names that conjure up the image of a fierce and powerful force on the football field.

But some of the best mascots are less straightforward – and a lot more funny. Mascots can tell you about a lot more than just sports at college. It can also tell you about the background of the school and its student spirit.

College mascots range from unusual animals, to mascots with an interesting historical connection, to mascots named for funny objects, to mascots whose names I had never even heard of!

Check out the 13 colleges with the best – or at least the most unique – college mascots:

Uncommon Creature Mascots

1. Banana Slugs: University of California at Santa Cruz chose this funny mascot animal in 1981, after the school administration decided on the “Sea Lions.” The famously unconventional students of UCSC voted to change the college mascot to what they liked best – the Slugs.

2. Horned Frogs: Texas Christian University‘s college mascot is the funny-looking horned frog, also called the “pacman frog” because of its huge mouth that resembles the classic video game character.

3. Trolls: No one seems to know exactly how this mysterious mascot of Trinity Christian College (Illinois) got its funny name. Some say that it’s an acronym for TRinity COLLege, while others claim to have seen a troll lurking under a bridge near the university.

Funny Historical Mascots

4. Claim Jumpers: Set in the gold rush country of California, Columbia College got its funny mascot name from the gold-seekers that settled illegally on other miners’ land.

5. Jumbos: Legendary circus organizer P. T. Barnum was a benefactor of Tufts University (Massachusetts) and donated the remains of his star performing elephant, Jumbo, to the college. Tufts thought honoring the elephant’s name would be the best choice for its mascot.

6. Moundbuilders: The funny mascot nickname for Southwestern College (Kansas) comes from the hill that the college sits on. The students rejected the name “Cliff-dwellers” and chose “Moundbuilders” as the best mascot name because it sounded more active.

7. Student Princes: Heidelberg University (Ohio) reflects its Germanic history not just in its name, but also in its mascot. “The Student Prince” was a German operetta, whose name makes a funny college mascot that also reveals the school’s background with the German Reformed Church.

Unusual Object Mascots

8. Blue Hose: The beginnings of this funny mascot of Presbyterian College (South Carolina) are unclear. Rumor has it that the name refers to the blue stockings that the Presbyterian Scotch-Irish wore under their kilts, but the college says it was simply because the athletes started wearing blue socks and uniforms in 1915.

9. The Fighting Pickles: University of North Carolina School of the Arts has only unofficial intramural sports teams, and coined their college mascot’s funny name during a touch-football game. It later became the college’s official mascot after a lot of student support.

What Is That Mascot?

10. Cobbers: What is a Cobber? Short for “corncobbers,” the mascot of Concordia College (Minnesota) gets its name from the fields of corn that surrounded the college. The funny college mascot’s full name is Kernel the Cobber.

11. Salukis: Southern Illinois University‘s college mascot is a tribute to the oldest known breed of domesticated dogs, the Saluki, which were also the dogs of Egyptian royalty. They are known today for their stamina while running, making them one of the best college mascots.

12. Geoducks: Pronounced “gooey-duck,” the Evergreen State College (Washington) mascot is the world’s largest burrowing clam. Originating in the northwest, the geoduck is one of the best college mascots in terms of sheer longevity, living over 150 years!

13. Gorloks: The Gorlok, named for the intersection of Gore and Lockwood Avenues on the Webster University (Missouri) campus, is a mythical creature with the paws of a cheetah, the horns of a buffalo, and the face of a dog. If this college mascot sounds unfamiliar, it’s because it was made up by students at the college and chosen as the best mascot in a contest.



5 Responses to “13 Best & Funniest College Mascots”

  1. Steph Says:

    Great post! Love hearing about the best mascots. Some people hate them, but I always enjoy what they bring to the game. Pretty athletic what they do out there too! I found a fun ranking of all the mascots of the NBA and decided to search for more on them. That’s how I found yours.

    Thanks for the post! Loved it. Here’s the ranking I stumbled upon if you’re interested: http://www.tchuddle.com/2011/03/happy-birthday-crunch/

  2. Jacko Says:

    I go to a school in WA and our mascot is a paper-maker

  3. Yonaa Says:

    Nice post..

    I like mascot, specially if it’s an animals.. 8-)

  4. no need to know it Says:

    my mascots name is the twinkle toed dairy farmers

  5. Todeba Says:

    My son want to be an International student. I think the US system will get good education. I will find the best.

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