Bizarre High School Nicknames and Mascots
The Awesome Blossoms don't strike fear in the hearts of their opponents by their name, but at least they are not offensive.
At one time, Faribault High School used the nickname Ferries. Of course a ferry is a boat that is used to transport people across a body of water, usually for a short distance.
Believe it or not, there was a ferry across the Straight River in Faribault. The Second Street Ferry landing was located about where the pedestrian bridge currently is, according to the Faribault Heritage Preservation Commission. This was before 1900. I assume that's why they used the name Ferries.
I'm so appreciative former Faribault High School teacher Ted Estabrook helped get the name changed to Falcons. During an interview on KDHL's AM Minnesota program, I believe he said it changed in the late 1920s. Estabrook was my guest a number of times in his elderly years, and I would pick him up at his home near Bethlehem Academy and then return him there after we concluded the program. He was a delightful gentleman indeed.
While posting a recent scoreboard for the Section finals, I checked out the nicknames of many of the teams. I thought I would check some names in other states and got so engrossed in my research I ended up checking every state. You won't believe many of these.
In Alaska they have the Aniak Halfbreeds. I don't particularly like this one but the residents of Aniak claim they embrace it because it reveals their history as a community of Eskimo Indians and white settlers. According to a 2005 Associated Press story, students chose the name in the 1970s.
How about the Yuma Criminals in Arizona? Explanation for that one is a fire destroyed the school in 1910 and they had to use a converted prison for a few years. A rival school called them the Criminals and the rest, as they say, is history.
Rocky Ford, Colorado, has the Meloneers, and their mascot is a menacing watermelon wearing bib overalls.
Rocky Ford is 50 miles east of Pueblo and is in the heart of the Arkansas valley where melons and onions are top crops.
I'm sure there are scores others from every state, but here are a few that caught my eye while looking through state high school athletic association nickname listings and just doing general google searches in the states.
My personal favorite is the Poca Dots of Poca, West Virginia.
How about the Sturgis, S.D. (famous for the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally), Brown High School Scoopers? That's right, the Sturgis Brown Scoopers. Can't make it up.
Freeburg, Illinois, has the Midgets for it's nickname.
Columbus, Nebraska, is named after Christopher Columbus and so the high school nickname is Discoverers.
Here is one a Minnesota school should adopt. In Mesquite, Texas, they are the Skeeters. Their mascot is a mosquito.
Calhoun, Texas, adopted the nickname Sand Crabs.
Webb, Tennessee, couldn't resist and so they are the Feet.
Laurel Hill, Florida, is the Hoboes.
Apparently in the early 1900s Kewpie dolls were very popular, so Hickman, MIssouri, chose Kewpies as their nickname. I assume Kewpie is a variation of cutie pie. How would you like to announce those games? And now entering the field the Hickman Kewpies.
In Idaho I found the Orofino Maniacs.
Sheldon, Iowa chose Orabs. It's supposed to be a combination of their school colors of orange and black, and Punahou, Hawaii, also went the color route with the Punahoa Buff and Blue. Buff is a combination of gold and brown and Buff and Blue are the official colors of Galludet University also.
The Salesianum High Sallies are in Wilmont, Delaware.
The Richland, Washington, Bombers have a nuclear mushroom cloud on their football helmets.