The Dumbest Mascots in College Sports

December 10, 2012

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With over 100 schools populating Division I in the NCAA, it's tough for every one of them to have a winning mascot. Sometimes the good mascots have already been taken. Sometimes the school has a strange history, resulting in a mascot that stopped being a good idea 40 years ago. Whatever the reason, there are a handful of college mascots that make you point, giggle and laugh like a schoolgirl. Here are the dumbest mascots in college sports.

The Stanford Tree

Stanford Tree

(Photo via RD Sports Connection)

The Tree is Stanford's "unofficial" mascot, but the school has never created an official "Cardinal" mascot, because the nickname refers to the color red and not the bird, and you can't have a red blob running around campus. The Tree appears at all of the school's major sporting events, with giant googly eyes dangling from its head like they were attached with a glue stick by a third grader. This would not fly on Project Runway! The whole outfit is so creepy, it would feel right at home grinning at you from the back of a cop car. Oh right. That's already happened.

Kansas Jayhawk

Kansas Jayhawk

(Photo via Sports-Logos-Screensavers)

First things first. The Kansas Jayhawk is a mythical bird. It does not exist in real life. According to the official University of Kansas website, it is a combination of a blue jay and a sparrow hawk, and it has a "fascinating history" (of course, because the history is made up). After going all mad scientist and splicing together two random winged creatures, the university came up with this awkward bird with a gigantic head and yellow shoes, thus giving birth to the Jayhawk. "A bird with shoes? How preposterous!" you might say, and we would agree. Of course, the Jayhawk isn't wearing shoes for just any old reason. According to KU, they're for "kicking the opponent." So what we have here is a non-existent blue, red and yellow bird that runs around kicking members of the opposing team before darting into the shadows. Got it.

Duquesne Dukes

Duquesne Dukes

(Photo via Sports Logos Screensavers)

"It's going to be a cold one out there, eh?!" That's probably all the Duke, the mascot for Duquesne University, can say. This well-dressed dude may have been cool back in 1911, when Duquesne U decided to honor a Canadian named Marquis Duquesne, who built a fort along the Allegheny River back in 1754. According to Duquesne's athletic website, a Duke and a Marquis dress alike, and because of this fact, the Duquesne Duke was born. That's all well and good, until you realize your mascot is a Canadian dressed in a top hat and carrying a cane, probably headed to some four-course dinner in a dimly lit ballroom.

Presbyterian Blue Hose

Presbyterian Blue Hose

(Photo via Mad Duck 2020)

Presbyterian College, a small school in Clinton, S.C., chose blue as its school color, so naturally its athletic participants geared up in blue socks. According to Presbyterian's athletic website, sports reporters began referring to the school's sports teams as the "Blue Stockings" because of said socks. The name stuck, and eventually "stockings" was changed to "hose," because—try not to laugh here—"it sounded somewhat fiercer." It isn't difficult to come up with something more aggressive than a "stocking," but "hose" failed the test. Not the best choice. Also, the school's alternate mascot appears to be a dude in a blue kilt. So there's that.

Connecticut College Camels

Connecticut College Camels

(Photo via Under Consideration)

Come on, Connecticut. You're not even trying any more. A camel? The animal that slowly meanders through the desert with a hump or two on its back? The thing with a tongue that stretches as long as a fruit roll-up? The best part about Connecticut College's mascot is its recent rebranding. It now looks like some strange mixture of a camel's head and the Lochness Monster's body. The Lochness Camel. It will lick you to death. Terrifying.

Any team with a tiger as a mascot (LSU, Auburn, Missouri, Memphis, Clemson, etc.)

LSU Tiger

(Photo via LSU Sports)

This has gotten out of control. The first tiger mascot was cool. People were probably like, "Oh my goodness, what a scary mascot!" But now there are 3 billion colleges with a tiger mascot, all with ridiculous names like Truman or Mike. LSU's mascot is literally named Mike the Tiger, as if the university couldn't brainstorm past the most generic name in the world. Plus, a real tiger has never set foot in any these places that claim it as their representative. The Cornfield Tiger is not a thing, guys. There are plenty of underused animals that these teams could have adopted as their mascot. The otter...the timid field mouse...the boa constrictor. Endless possibilities. The NCAA should call for a ban on the use of a tiger as a mascot, effective immediately.

Stetson Hatters

Stetson Hatters

(Photo via the Beacon Online News)

Stetson University unfortunately carries the same name as the world famous cowboy hat company. One would think they would seek to differentiate. But no. What other mascot could this small Florida school be expected to have? The students of Stetson have been saddled (pun intended!) with the least fearsome mascot of them all: a cowboy hat. The last time a cowboy landed in Florida, it was the 1500s. What can you do with a cowboy hat? Protect yourself from the sun? Sure. Look really cool wearing it while chewing a piece of straw? You bet. But using a cowboy hat as your school's official mascot? Not so much.

Wofford Terriers

Wofford Terriers

(Photo via Vet Street)

If modeling your school mascot after the type of dog actresses and models carry in their purses was Wofford's goal, they nailed it. You know who the most famous terrier was? Wishbone, the talking 10-pound Jack Russell Terrier that solved mysteries on a children's television show. Wofford attempted to toughen up its mascot by drawing a scowl across its face, but no dog this cute could ever be angry.

Topics: NEWS
Jordan Zirm
- Jordan Zirm is an Associate Content Director for STACK. After earning his BS in Journalism from the University of Missouri, he spent time writing for...
Jordan Zirm
- Jordan Zirm is an Associate Content Director for STACK. After earning his BS in Journalism from the University of Missouri, he spent time writing for...
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