Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Survey Says . . .

The best high school nicknames in the Greater Cincinnati area.

Top 6 answers on the board . . .

1. Campbell County Camels
I’m a sucker for alliteration and ‘Camels’ are just different and fun. Grant it, Camels are not really native to Northern Kentucky and you don’t think of them as very threatening but I’m willing to over look that. Honorable Mention along the same lines would be the Mount Healthy Fighting Owls.

2. Batavia Bulldogs
I just like ‘Bulldogs’ for a nickname. Add the alliteration and you have yourself a winner. Honorable Mention would be the Woodward Bulldogs but it just doesn't sound as cool.

3. Newport Central Catholic Thoroughbreds
While there are a few horse-related nicknames including Stallions and Mustangs, I like Newport Catholic's because of its link to Kentucky as a horse breading and racing state and it is a little more unique. Simon Kenton Pioneers, Seton Saints, and the Taft Senators get Honorable Mentions for the same reason with a nice tie between the name and the history. The Thoroughbreds get the overall nod because I think the horse is a little more intimidating.

4. Moeller Crusaders
Here again is a nice connection between the school name and the nickname but more alluded to than real. I mean, Archbishop Moeller was never a Crusader but there is a tie to the Catholic faith. Honorable Mention in this category would be the Wyoming Cowboys. Been a while since the suburb of Wyoming has seen cowboys . . . if ever. But as a wide open, western state, ‘Cowboys’ make sense.

5. Lloyd High School Juggernauts
Here the ranking is based primarily on its uniqueness. By definition, a Juggernaut is "a massive inexorable force, campaign, movement, or object that crushes whatever is in its path". While the sentiment is cool, it would be higher on the list if there was a physical mascot that could match the idea.

6. Monroe Hornets
I kind of like ‘bees’ as a mascot. So here the Hornets nickname gets the nod over Honorable Mentions the Seven Hills Stingers and the Taylor High School Yellow Jackets out in North Bend.

Additional Honorable Mentions for me also include the Ryle High School Raiders and the Oak Hills Highlanders.

A little bit of fun with the football playoffs about to start and basketball season on the horizon. This list could generate a little heated debate with some fierce local loyalties.

Some personal guidelines in developing the list . . .

I pretty much ruled out all the standard nicknames that get replicated over and over including the many cats (Tigers, Lions, Wildcats, Cougars, Panthers) and birds (Eagles, Falcons, Cardinals, Thunderhawks?) unless a very compelling reason. That includes all the variations of Indians, including Braves & Mohawks. And while not PC, I personally don’t mind them especially for schools with Native American derived names like Talawanda and Lakota. I tended to shy away from nicknames that while unique, the link to an identifiable mascot was difficult. Schools like Hughes Big Red, Hamilton Big Blue or the Middletown Middies where you are like, "What is a Big Blue exactly?" Doesn’t really strike fear in the opponent. But I can see them possibly being favorites for their uniqueness.

So, any favorites I am not thinking about? What about Southeast Indiana schools? They were kind of off my radar. I did also short-list the LaSalle Lancers, the Maderia and Western Hills Mustangs, the Winton Hills Warriors, the Reading Blue Devils and the Conner Cougars.

Sadly, there are no schools quite as weird and yet as cool as the Poca Dots of Poca, West Virginia. We need some fun name changes like the Roger Bacon Boars or the Roger Bacon Lettuce & Tomatoes. Kidding on that last one.


Julie said...

Seton Saints! My alma mater, most of us weren't saints, and the Saint Bernard (the mascot) is about the silliest I've seen.

Randy Simes said...

The Oak Hills Highlanders are clearly #1.

dave said...

No mention of the Bombers?

QITC said...

Once upon a time I lived in South Carolina and the mascot for the local college were the Christian Knights. As disturbing as that is, the university was Furman.

It was completely appropriate for both sides of the game to scream out F-U-C-K.

I think it's since been changed.

valereee said...

No way! The best hs sports nickname in Cincinnati is the Sycamore Aviators, or Aves. There's real history behind this one: Sycamore High School used to offer flying lessons as part of the curriculum, with classes conducted through the Blue Ash airport. Liability and expense issues ended that years ago, but the name stuck. Or that's the story, anyway.