Nov 29, 2005
I consider myself a sports fan. I have ESPN as my homepage, watch Sports Center at least once a day and I must say now is a very exciting time for sports. The NFL is in full swing, the World Series is upon us, and college football has never been better.
There is a bit of a cloud over college football that has been unjust. I’m talking about people making a stink over some college mascots being deemed inappropriate and offensive to certain cultures, namely Native American tribes. So much has been made about changing college mascots that are insensitive to Native American tribes that another group of inappropriate college mascots are being overlooked even though they represent a larger margin.
I’m talking about pansy mascots. You heard me, college mascots that wouldn’t intimidate even the most intimidatable. I went to Ithaca College and their mascot was the Bombers, not a bad name, not a particularly good name especially during 9/11. I didn’t know what a “bomber”, assuming it wasn’t simply one who bombs things, but I knew I wouldn’t want to cross one. And that’s what mascots are suppose be, intimidating. This problem of pansy mascots far overshadows that of Native American mascots. After the Florida State Seminoles, name another Native American mascot in college sports.
I’ll give you some more time.
Ok, you see my point.
Now name some pansy mascots in college sports.
Just off the top of my head there’s the Maryland Terrapins, Oregon Duck, and the Tennessee Volunteers and that’s just Division I.
The Maryland Terrapins. My favorite college team, but come on, a terrapin. For those of you not in touch with your reptiles, a terrapin is a turtle. That’s how you want your school to be represented? Its defense system is going into it’s shell. Careful, don’t piss that turtle off or it’ll hide from you. Maryland says “Fear the Turtle”, but why, what are you gonna do? Granted it’s a snapping turtle, but that doesn’t change the fact that it’s still a fucking turtle. Furthermore, if you get bit by a turtle, I’m gonna go out on a limb and say you were asking for it.
The Oregon Ducks. How intimidating can a mascot be even he doesn’t even have teeth! Moving on.
The Tennessee Volunteers. I don’t care if Peyton Manning went there, a volunteer is the least intimidating mascot ever. If Peyton Manning came up to you and said “Watch out man, I’m a Volunteer.” Would you be intimidated? Shit, I’d have him come over to clean out my gutters. Plus, there is no chance of anything violent happening because they’re there to help you. If you piss a turtle or duck off at least they’ll attack you, a volunteer will use his words and calmly ask you to stop, is there anything more pansy than that? And you know what else? Most volunteers are hippies. It’s true. So now you gotta ask yourself, do you want your school represented by a god damn hacky sack playing, hemp wearing, weed smoking, Phish loving, man damning hippy? I would rather root for Duke than be associated with someone who thinks the world’s problems can be fixed if we all just “chill out, man”.
In my research I found the epitome of pansy mascots. Ladies and Gentlemen, I present to you the University of California-Santa Cruz Banana Slugs.
I don’t even know where to begin.
How about the fact that up until now, I didn’t even know there was such a thing as a banana slug. If someone came up to me and told me that the banana slug recently became extinct, I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised. What’s more is that they decided to name their school mascot after something that can be killed by a seasoning. They didn’t stop there. They went one step further and specified what kind of slug and they didn’t even try to spruce it up by adding a cool prefix like “Golden” or “Fighting”, no, they went with “Banana” instead, a food people aren’t even sure is a fruit. The right prefix can change a pansy name into a semi-respectable name. Would you be intimidated of a team called the “Notre Dame Irish”? Not unless your Scottish, but put a “Fighting” before that and you got yourself a semi-respectable name, albeit an overrated name that hasn’t won a national championship in over 15 years, but a semi-respectable name nonetheless.
Furthermore, what does it say about the University of California-Santa Cruz when choosing what would represent their school, not only did someone have the shear audacity to even suggest the banana slug, but no one thought it was the worst suggestion for a mascot ever. In fact that suggest beat out all of the other mascot ideas, I guess the three toe sloth and the titmouse didn’t have as much pizzazz. If your child told you they wanted to be a UCSC Banana Slug, it’s not a question of if you would beat them, but how long and with what instruments.
Or you could use race to your advantage. Take the Haverford College Squirrels, or should I say theHaverford College Black Squirrels. That’s right, you’ve heard of the black knights, well they are the black squirrels and those niggas are the craziest motherfuckers on earf (It’s ok, Marcus, our token black writer, is a good friend, he said I can use that word if it’s for comedy purposes, so put down your GAT).
See how the right prefix turned Haverford College’s mascot from pansy to slightly intimidating? Because you think of a squirrel and you think of cute woodland creature jumping from tree to tree storing nuts for the winter. You think of a black squirrel you think of squirrel rap music, illegitimate squirrel children, and drive by nut chucking (Alright, I’ve hit my black joke quota, for more racists jokes check out my review of the movie “Red Eye”)
The point is, intimidation is a big part of the game. As the great Yankee catcher Yogi Berra once said “90% of this game is half mental”, now granted he was talking about baseball and was borderline retarded, but that’s beside the point. There are two battles to be won in a sporting event, the physical and the mental, and you can get a leg up on the mental game by instilling fear in your opponent before they’re even on the field by having an intimidating mascot. If my parents and physicans allowed me to play sports when I was in college and I was facing the Newport University Rapists, I’d be scared shitless, but tell me I’m squaring off against Banana Slugs, fuck that, lemme at ‘em.
I’m all for changing mascot names if they are offensive, but I’m also a proponent of the handling the bigger matter. So the next time someone complains about the Florida State Seminoles, just mention there is a bigger problem and mention the Rhode Island College Anchormen, Millikin University Big Blue, Dartmouth Big Greens, Cornell Big Red, Purdue Boilermakers, Columbia College Claim Jumpers, Concordia College Cobbers, University of Nebraska Cornhuskers, University of Arkansas-Monticello Cotton Blossoms, Harvard University Crimson, Southern Nazarene University Crimson Storm, University of Alabama Crimson Tide, Calumet College of St. Joseph Crimson Wave, Franklin & Marshall College Diplomats, Central College Dutch, Huntington College Foresters, Lake Forest College Forresters, Hampshire College Frogs, Centenary College of Louisiana Gentlemen, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University Gobblers, Xavier University of Louisiana Gold Rush, Austin Peay State University Governors, Tulane Green Wave,
Houghton College Highlanders (there can be only one and yet there are four other colleges with this name), Western Kentucky University Hilltoppers, Virginia Tech Hokies, California Tech Pokies (ok, I made that one up), Oregon Institute of Technology Hustlin’ Owls, Earlham College Hustlin’ Quakers, Washburn University Ichabods, Manhattan College Jasper (the only mascot named after a Simpsons character), Central Missouri State University Jennies, Jamestown College Jimmies, St. John’s University Johnnies, Brandeis University Judges, Tufts University Jumbos, Columbia College Koalas, Lasell College Lasers, Pennsylvania State University-Abington Little Johns (insert hacky Lil’ John joke here), Lemoyne-Owen College Magicians (wait, I’m sorry, that’s faggy, not pansy), University of Chicago Maroons, Thomas Jefferson University Medics, Florida Southern College Moccasins, Southwestern College Moundbuilders, Montana State University Northern Lights, Syracuse University Orange, Upper Iowa University Peacocks, Clark College Penguins, New England College Pilgrims, Whittier College Poets, University of Wisconsin Pointers, Centre College Praying Colonels, Rowan College Professors, University of Evansville Purple Aces, University of Hawaii Rainbows, Palm Beach Atlantic University Sailfish, Heidelberg College Student Princes, Trinity Christian College Trolls, New York University Violets, Emory and Henry College Wasps, Western Illinois University Westernwinds, Colby College White Mules, and the University of Akron Zips and that’ll sure put Chief Bitches A Lot in his place.