Hey, we almost played, "Who's got the cutest point guard?" But it's hot in those costumes, so let's show the fuzzy guys some love! Read on for fun facts on five mascots (it makes for great water-cooler conversation), then tell us which is most deserving of a hug.
Testudo the Diamondback Turtle
Where:College Park, MD
Mascot: Maryland Terrapins (Terps for short.) Theories abound as to how Testudo got his name. Perhaps from the scientific classification for turtles. Maybe adapted from Latin. Maybe they're one and the same. But he officially became the school’s symbol in 1932, when the then university president, who, legend has it, did battle with snapping turtles in his youth, offered the species up in response to a mascot search by the school paper.
Pro: Cute story.
Con: Fuzzy-shelled turtle? Testudo is clearly not a metrosexual reptile.
Buzz, theYellow Jacket
Where: Atlanta, GA
Mascot: Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets. The Jackets actually have more than one mascot. In addition to Buzz, the Jackets are also known as the Ramblin’ Wreck, and represented by a 1930 Ford Model A. The first two students to don the Yellow Jacket costume were just enthusiastic fans; then, in 1980, Buzz became the Jackets' official mascot.
Pro: Will flip for you. Literally. (He's renowned for his forward somersaults performed in mid-air.)
Con: Buzz the toxic bachelor!? Watch out you don't get stung.
Brutus the Buckeye Where:Columbus, OH
Mascot:Ohio Buckeyes. Brutus Buckeye. Ohio is the Buckeye State, so it follows that the school’s mascot would be the Buckeye. In fact, he's a human-size anthropomorphic buckeye. Brutus became the team’s mascot in 1965 when a buck deer was rejected as impractical and potentially dangerous to keep on the sidelines.
Pro: Buckeyes are good luck. And just look at that face.
Con: The name Brutus doesn't exactly inspire loyalty.
Hokie Bird Where: Blacksburg, VA
Mascot: Virginia Tech Hokies. What’s a Hokie? A Hokie is a made-up word used to refer to a student or fan of Virginia Tech. The bird became the team’s mascot in 1896 when the school changed names from Virginia A&M to Virginia Tech. They were once called the Fighting Gobblers, so the Hokie worked with the tough turkey motif.
Pro: You will always have a partner for the Hokey Pokey, that’s what it’s all about.
Con: Hokie as an adjective doesn't inspire much confidence. As in, Sure, ya’ll won the game, but it was
a hokie victory.
Puddle the Duck
Mascot: Oregon Ducks. Oregon’s mascot is based on the famed Disney character Donald Duck. Some claim he's called Puddle; others plain ole "Oregon Duck." Walt Disney himself gave the school free reign to use the waddly fellow as their symbol, well, provided royalties were paid. Then, in 2002, the school tried to phase out Donald’s doppelganger in favor of a new, futuristic mascot called Roboduck, but the idea didn’t swim.
Pro: Cute nephews
Con: Mug with Puddle, and you’re an unwitting victim of product placement.