Sports Mascots can be an important part of any sports competition. Not only do they represent the school spirit but they also can be rather entertaining for members of the audience. These are some of the best and worst sports mascots in use today.
Wichita State University
How many universities can claim that their mascot is a type of grain? That’s right. The mascot for Wichita State is a personified bundle of wheat complete with a muscular physique. The wheat, of course, pays homage to Wichita State’s home state of Kansas which is one of the largest wheat-producing states. It also eluded to the early students who made money by harvesting or shocking wheat in the fields around the campus. However, it does make for a rather unique mascot and has been a popular one at the Final Four Tournaments where the college has done well in recent years.
One of the most well-known mascots in the Premier League, Gunnersaurus is also one of the most questionable. Since becoming Arsenal’s mascot in 1994, many have wondered what exactly a dinosaur has to do with the Gunners. The mascot was part of a competition amongst Junior Gunners to create a mascot for the football club. It seems like the name, Gunnersaurus Rex, appealed to the judges.
The University of California-Santa Cruz
While the first two mascots may seem rather peculiar, the banana slug representing the University of California at Santa Cruz is just simply creepy. This depiction of the bright yellow slimy mollusk is fortunately made of fabric avoiding the repulsive gelatinous texture of the actual slug. Chosen for its common appearance on the floor of the redwood forest, the mascot has been representing the university for over 30 years.
This baseball club has one of the most popular sports mascots. Eliciting the assistance of Muppets creator, Jim Henson, Phillie Phanatic was designed to represent the loyalty of the team’s fans. Officially debuted in 1978, Phanatic is one of three baseball mascots to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York.
With a nickname like the Fighting Irish, it only seemed appropriate to have a mascot that correlated to the Irish folklore surrounding the university. In 1965, the Leprechaun became the official mascot for Notre Dame. The mascot is well known for his boisterous cheers and humorous interactions with the crowd. While he can appear at any athletic event, his presence is more constant during the football season.
This particular mascot was created with the team’s history in mind. Staley Da Bear received his moniker from the first owner of the football franchise, A.E. Staley. The large brown bear with bright orange eyes dons a Bears jersey made his debut in 2003 as a way to entertain the fans at Soldier Field. Staley’s popularity was evident in his first five seasons when he was voted to be the mascot for the Pro Bowl.