Behind the Names: College (FBS) Edition

Random Sports or college Quiz

Can you name the college (FBS) school/nickname based off the nickname origin?

Quiz not verified by Sporcle

How to Play
Nickname OriginSchool/Nickname
Adopted in 1926 to replace 'Silver Foxes', this school is symbolized by a golden bird emerging from a lightning bolt
Derived from the name for a Union militia that fought a fierce border war with Missouri
Selected in 1934 after a contest by the school newspaper, Silver and Gold; the real mascot stampeded on the field in the same year
Nickname came from a football coach that had admired Princeton's mascot
Believed to be a result of the press who claimed the team showed the qualities of 'grit, determination, and tenacity', much like these Europeans
A commissioned officer of the lowest rank in this branch of the military
Chosen by a popular vote of this academy's first graduating class in 1959
Named after a reptile which a football coach had numerous encounters with in his childhood; also the official state reptile
Formerly the Sagebrushers, the school changed their mascot to the animals that were often seen in the nearby Sierra Nevada mountains
Formerly known as the Cardinals, a rout of rival Northwestern in 1895 was compared to the storms that had plagued the area
A patriotic band of New England fishermen led them to be known as the 'Webfooters' prior to their use of Donald Duck
Recently changed from the Indians in honor of the local Osage tribe, this name was chosen in 2008 by a selection committee to be more politically correct
Named after the Chausseurs Alpins, a group of French soldiers during WWI that were nicknamed 'Les Diables Bleus'
Derived from this Texas university's agricultural background
Chosen the best fight song from a contest, this song eventually led to their nickname; both the mascot and the horse were donated by the university Polo Club in 1963
This name stuck after fans cheered on the new addition to the football team: a player wearing a checkered shirt and western hat
Named after the state's nickname, not the movie with Gene Hackman
Taken from a LA Times newspaper description of the team after they defeated Occidental College
Changed from the Red Wave by student vote in the 1970s to this: a name for the men of this Greek city
Originally known as the Flood, this name was taken to reflect the school's southern heritage
The 1st president of this school was a graduate of Yale; newspapers suggested it had a certain dignity and ferocity
Taken from the state nickname; a testament to the state's willingness to enlist in previous wars
Believed to be chosen by players hoping they would sweep away opponents like a powerful storm
Changed from the Indians in 2006 due to the NCAA restrictions against American-Indian themed mascots, this nickname beat out Bayou Gators and Bayou Hawks
An homage to the early settlers of the state (and the local geography)
Named after the Algonquin tribe for which the state is named; the name means 'they are men'
Chosen in 1911 to represent the university due to the large number of this reptile in the area
According to legend, the nickname is due to a dog that was fed by students and later saved several lives in a fire; he was later found dead in the house ruins
Chosen by the student body to replace the Parsons, a nickname used due to the large number of theology students on campus
Unknown - although theories include the trading of these pelts, a take on the voracious appetites of the French settlers, or a name for this state's people in a border dispute with
Named after the local armed guard during the Civil War that were formed to hold off Union pillagers
Named for an animal commonly seen in the surrounding Rocky Mountains
Created after cheering on a fullback, 'Teddy' Baehr, as the team beat the Kentucky Wildcats
Formerly known as the Knights of Pegasus, it changed to this to increase merchandise sales
Taken from a song written by the newspaper editor of the Tulane Hullabaloo
Known as the Hurons until 1991 when pressure from Native American civil rights groups led them to select their new nickname
A name for residents of the state; also a small, brown nut
Historically used to reflect this New Mexico university's agricultural background
Chosen to replace Beauregard T Rooster because of his strong resemblance to San Diego Chicken; their new nickname appeared in 1996
Formerly the Daniels and the Pedagogues, this mascot was officially adopted in 1925, well before the movie 300
Nickname OriginSchool/Nickname
Named after a local Native American tribe that still supports the university's use to this day; Chief Osceola and Renegade came later in 1977
Chosen by campus-wide election, beating the Queensmen and the Flying Dutchmen; this school defeated Princeton in the first ever intercollegiate football game
Student leaders chose this nickname over others such as the Balboans since it better represented their southwest heritage
Name for North Carolinians during the Civil War
Known as the 'Cardinals' until 1909 when the coach declared his team played 'like a wild band of' these porcine beasts
Taken from the name of an old Zane Grey novel; officially symbolized as a buffalo
Named after prospectors in the early 1800s that had to live like these animals
Named after a cheer created in 1896; it has no official meaning but is represented by a turkey mascot
Named in honor of an early symbol of the school, a canvas portrayal of this bird
Nominated by the student body in 1914, narrowly beating out Buffaloes, Antelopes, and Ferrets, oh my
Spanish for 'Wolves'; that's about it
Presumably used due to the number of untamed horses in the area as well as its alliterative effect
The state bird as well as a school color of this Indiana school
In 1905, the Atlanta Constitution referred to fans by what they were known to wear to the games
Named after the group of sailors, such as Blackbeard, that harbored ships on the nearby coast
This nickname was selected in 1925 by the student body because it was a 'sly, wily, and scrappy animal'
After reading an article on hunting with birds, an alumnus and booster thought this fierce fighter with speed and courage would make a great mascot
Another name for the 'Cadets' of this academy
Named after a bird commonly seen on campus grounds, the National Audobon Society declared this campus an official sanctuary
Named after the symbol of the state in which they are located, where everything is golden
The team earned this name for their tough, tenacious play; their mascot has the name Bully
Evolution of a volunteer company organized in New Orleans during the Civil War
A PE instructor and former Washington State football coach was fond of this mascot
Originally known as the Matadors, this nickname was chosen after the football team wore their new red uniforms to beat their rival
A Chicago sportswriter compared the team to this beast
Formerly known as the Aggies and Farmers, this school's nickname stuck after the coach called the team this
After upsetting their in-state rival, students paraded through the streets carrying a sign that had a bird standing over a fallen tiger
Originally meant as a derision to this school's devotion to engineering and agriculture
Chosen because it was the most formidable creature indigenous to the area, the alliterative effect, and the fact that at the time no other college or university employed it
Chosen to increase pageantry and showmanship, this nickname persisted through a movement to change Native American nicknames
After defeating an in-state rival, this team's 'devilish' play and fighting spirit were complemented in local papers; formerly known as the 'Baptists'
Honors the noted shipping and railroad mogul for whom the school is named
Named after the state reptile, this mascot was originally associated with the college's former name, AddRan Christian University
This mascot was chosen due to the team's tenacity, however un-original it may be
Used to describe a substitute offensive guard who recovered a fumble for a touchdown in a game against rival Carnegie Inst. of Technology; no one on the field could catch him
This canine mascot was chosen to replace the Evansmen in 1940
Named in honor of the American Indian tribe for which the state is also named
This school was sending a message to their in-state rivals whose mascot resembled a 'northern looking wolf'
Named after their state's nickname which came from a hero in Last of the Mohicans
This nickname was selected after pressure from their namesake Native American tribe to change it from Redskins
Nickname OriginSchool/Nickname
An official school color, chosen due to the university's one-time affiliation with the Protestant church
Chosen as the mascot in 1934 to replace Aggies; all dogs are named Jonathan
Chosen to give the school statewide identification, since this mascot is the state bird of Kentucky
In the 1970s, sports information director Bob Henderson described the football team as this, since over 90% of the team was from Louisiana
Taken from their state nickname, a satirical take on legislators plans to provide railroad loans in 1858, and the color of their championship teams in the 1930s
Although the more appropriate 'Golden Tornado' was preferred, that name was used elsewhere and the name evolved to this
Changed from the Southerners in the 1970s to this majestic bird by a student/alumni vote
Originally known as the Owls and the Bulldogs, and then this climate appropriate mascot, drawn by an artist for Disney after being pushed by the school newspaper
Switched from a similar mascot, the Bisons, in 1931
Refers to the hill the school sits on which offers a great view of surrounding Bowling Green
Although officially known as the Eagles, this team is more commonly known by a name for the team's defense in 1966, which included NFL great Joe Greene
Formerly the Indians, this mascot was chosen to represent their beating of Cal in 1919
Named after the small white dog that would greet students outside the main student building
Short for a name that is a pair of rubber overshoes and a brand name of the local BF Goodrich Company
Adopted in 1922 when a disgruntled fan was describing the behavior of the student body at games
Used by Coach Eugene Roberts in 1923 to represent his athletes; live mascots have escaped and killed children and animals
A nearby hill and the valley in which the school is located + a ferocious beast
After a tie with their in-state rival in 1907, a sports editor spoke of them as a 'thin red line'
Taken from a line in a poem by Oliver Goldsmith, 'where crouching _____ wait their hapless prey'
Adopted after the AD printed balloons saying, 'Oklahoma Aggies - Ride 'Em ______'
Coined by a former player replacing Teachers and Pedagogues; symbolized by a horse and lightning bolt for the region's walking horse industry and the school's aerospace program
A byproduct of when this school was a southern branch of the state institution that would later become their rival, the Bears
Simplified from Golden Brahmans, which won the popular vote in 1962
Formerly known as the Staters, a sports editor liked this nickname more and started referring to the team as this
A reference to this Utah university's agricultural background
Commandant Carbusier of old State University in KY said the football team fought like this ferocious beast
Used by a sportswriter to replace the former name of 'Bugeaters'; aptly named for the state's agriculturally based economy
Formerly the Hilltoppers, this horse nickname was submitted by an alumnus who later became the football coach
Originally known as the Methodists and Wesleyans, this team took on a name more befitting of their fighting spirit
Named after members of the Germanic tribes who sacked Rome in 455 AD
Rev. Edward McLaughlin suggested this nickname as it was a symbol of 'majesty, power, and freedom'
Named after the early state settlers who snuck in early to claim land
Originally known as the Aggies, then the Orangemen, and then this state animal
Presumably named after a beast found in the nearby Everglades
Originated from the university's early days as a night school for young people of limited means
An official school color; has nothing to do with the tree mascot that is a symbol of the city in which it is located
The school was found as the 'State School of Mines and Metallurgy'
The football team shortened the original name, Rainbow ____, in 2000 although not all sports at this university did
A famed breed of cattle brought to the state in the 1800s
Selected as the official nickname in 1922 to replace the Sun Dodger, an abstract reference to local weather

You're not logged in!

Compare scores with friends on all Sporcle quizzes.
Sign Up with Email
Log In

You Might Also Like...

Show Comments