Field of Science

New Rules for College Mascots

Recently a high school was accused of infringing upon a university's trade-marked mascot and with so many possibilities out there, why would you copy someone else's mascot? Other mascots are subject to complaints about insensitivity and political incorrectness, but the solution these problems is quite simple, a new rule is needed; college mascots can only be named after plants and invertebrates. Some institutions are ahead of the curve on this idea demonstrating that mascots don't have to be some snarling anthropomorphic vertebrate, and with so many more plants and invertebrates to choose from there will be no need to copy. Does THE Ohio State University suffer for having Buckeyes as their mascot? No, but we do point out that this is the foetid buckeye. Does having a plant mascot take anything away from the Buckeye's annual rivalry with the University of Michigan Pansies? Clearly not. You have to admire the University of California Santa Cruz for being the Banana Slugs; they're so cute and slimy, and it fits their sports slogan so well, "We're soft, yellow, and slow". A few institutions would only have to make some minor adjustments, e.g., Nebraska Cornhusks and Illinois State Redbuds (and the former Redbirds could keep the same colored uniforms!). The Penn State Petunias has a nice alliteration. There are still scorpions, spiders, and the mighty ants (let's save this one for Division III). Commentaries will still be colorful, "Boy, the Wyoming Weeds have really gone to seed this year". "Yes, the Texas Thistles are certainly having a good season, if only they hadn't lost to the Kentucky Bluegrass." The Phactor is confident that readers can supply more mascot suggestions for their favorite institutions.


Anonymous said...

An hooray for the Fightin’ Artichokes of the Scottsdale Community College in Arizona!!!

My all-time favourite is the nickname chosen by the rugby team of Namibia: Welwitschias, in honour of the endemic plantWelwitschia mirabilis.

The Phytophactor said...

The Fightin' Artichokes! How did the Phactor miss that one? And the Namibia Welwitschias! Gneto! Those are great!

CelticRose said...

meristemi beat me to it! Here's some history on the SCC Artichoke: