Offbeat College Sports Team Nicknames for Those Wanting More Than Bulldogs and Tigers

If you want to root for a football team from the SEC and you are a big fan of tigers or bulldogs, you will find yourself in team nickname heaven. If you prefer something a little more imaginative, nickname tedium is just another reason to view the SEC as college football hell. (Then there’s the Univ. of Alabama and the Univ. of Auburn, which both seem to have a bit of an identity crisis when it comes to nicknames and mascots. I mean, seriously, an elephant is the mascot of a team called the Crimson Wave? And what’s the deal with Auburn’s live eagle when they are one of those SEC tigers I was discussing?) Looking for a college team (football or otherwise) to wrap your love around with an appropriately offbeat nickname that suits your sensibilities? Here you go.

Presbyterian College Blue Hose

You can definitely consider yourself a college sports fan who bops to the beat of a different drummer if you can work up the same kind of enthusiasm when you shout out “Go Blue Hose!” that those less imaginative athletic supporters express when shouting out for their bulldogs or tigers to go. The story of hose the smallest school in Division I football got its nickname goes back to a long tradition that it shares with baseball teams in Cincinnati and Boston. The Blue Hose were originally known as the Blue Stockings. And, yes, it was because they wore blue stockings. As stockings went out of favor as a term to describe the particular attire worn by athletes, the team adopted Blue Hose rather Blue Sox or even just the Blues. You may find some who attribute the name to the blue hose worn by Scottish warriors, but that coincidence came with a late awareness.

University of California-Irvine Anteaters

The nickname for the University of California-Irvine sports teams has got to be one of the only in the country inspired by a comic strip. If you are familiar with the comic strip “B.C.” then you may recall the anteater character who occasionally shows. Apparently, two members of the college’s water polo team were quite taken with the comic strip and its anteater character and the rest is history. Rooting for a team called the Anteaters will definitely provide you with a sense of satisfaction at your own iconoclasm.

Amherst College Lord Jeffs

Perhaps no college sports teams are stuck with a more difficult nickname to transform into a call to action on the field than those who play for Amherst College. And the really weird thing is that Amherst College may lay claim to having the oldest athletics programs in America. Why Lord Jeffs? Because his last name was Amherst. Who is Lord Jeffs? An officer who commanded the British in America. So, you know, you not only have a problem working up passion when yelling out “Go Lord Jeffs” but you may also feel a bit queasy when the team is going up against a team with a nickname like Patriots.

Trinity Christian College Trolls

Rather than go into detail about how Trinity Christian College came up with their very unique nickname, I will just give this link to an official page giving you the whole skinny. I personally find it the ultimate in offbeat that a Christian college would adopt a name associated with pagan superstition. That disconnect is addressed to a point in that explanation page. One thing is most definitely for sure. If you do choose to adopt the Trinity Christian College Trolls as your college sports team of choice, you will get the added bonus of enjoying one of the most idiosyncratic team mascots in American college history.

LeMoyne-Owen College Magicians

I was not able to track down exactly why the teams that play for LeMoyne-Owen College are known as the Magicians. But you have to admit that it is a terrific nickname for a sports team. Especially if you write about the team; you’ve got a built-in shorthand such as the Magicians performing a disappearing act against so-and-so last night.


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