Top 10 Weirdest Mascots

A school's mascot is a symbol of pride and unity that students can rally behind. When the mascot takes field at halftime to do his or her dance, students and alumni feel a sense of kinship as they root for their team to trump the opposition in the name of their college. While it is understandable that students feel empowered by a Bulldog, or a Brown Bear, there are some mascots that have no place on any university field of athletics. These mascots are created in the image of giant vegetables, clams and genitalia, yet have somehow become a part of their university's culture. Today we explore the top 10 weirdest mascots in America.

1. Rhode Island School Of Design: Scrotie The Nads

Rhode Island School Of Design: Scrotie The Nads Mascot Rhode Island School Of Design: Scrotie The Nads Mascot Rhode Island School Of Design: Scrotie The Nads Mascot

Scrotie is perhaps the most ridiculous mascot ever embraced by a student body. The giant walking penis is awaited by spectators at every university sporting event, and the costume makes sense considering that the teams at the school are also crudely named after male genitalia. The basketball team is known as "The Balls" and the hockey team goes by the name "The Nads." How these names passed through university administration is beyond us, but they have become a part of school tradition. The basketball cheerleaders even go by the name "The Jockstraps," since they support The Balls. (Photo Source 1 & 2, Photo Source 3)

2. Grays Harbor College: Charlie Choker

Grays Harbor College: Charlie Choker Mascot Grays Harbor College: Charlie Choker Mascot

The Gray Harbor Chokers may have the most misinterpreted college mascot in America. Anyone from outside of northern Washington would take one look at the 8-foot wood carving of the brawny man tightly stretching a thick rope between giant hands and fear for their necks. But apparently the Grays Harbor administration doesn't see what the big fuss is about. Good ol' Charlie Choker has been the school's mascot since 1960, and that rope he is holding is actually a choker bell used to wrap around logs to make their transportation easier. Though not as threatening as one might originally think, it still makes for some intimidating headlines, like "Chokers Eliminate Opponent" or "Chokers Show Opponent No Mercy". (Photo Source 1, Photo Source 2)

3. Evergreen State College: Speedy the Geoduck

Evergreen State College: Speedy the Geoduck Mascot Evergreen State College: Speedy the Geoduck Mascot

For those who have never encountered a Geoduck, this creature is a large mollusk that is famous for its long, suggestive body that protrudes from its shell. Geoducks are the largest burrowing clams in the world, and harvesting them is such a chore that it was recently featured as one of Mike Rowe's "Dirty Jobs." The giant dancing clam is often seen shoeless and air boxing on the court, though we're not sure the display is striking fear into the hearts of opponents. We've heard that the mascot even has a theme song to go with its phallic shaped mascot, and it goes something like "Siphon high, squirt it out, swivel all about, let it all hang out." (Photo Source 1, Photo Source 2)

4. University of California - Santa Cruz: Sammy The Banana Slug

University of California - Santa Cruz: Sammy The Banana Slug Mascot University of California - Santa Cruz: Sammy The Banana Slug Mascot University of California - Santa Cruz: Sammy The Banana Slug Mascot

It seems somehow appropriate that a college well-known for its pot smoking would select a yellow banana slug for a mascot. Known for his laid back personality and chilled-out dance moves, the banana slug is a mascot that should never have caught on, yet has somehow managed to make quite a name for himself. In 1992, Sports Illustrated magazine named Sammy the Slug the top college mascot, and in 2004 Readers Digest did the same. (Photo Source 1 & 2, Photo Source 3)

5. Scottsdale Community College: Artie the Fighting Artichoke

Scottsdale Community College: Artie the Fighting Artichoke Mascot Scottsdale Community College: Artie the Fighting Artichoke Mascot

Unlike so many college mascots, Artie the Fighting Artichoke is one with some real history behind him. During the 1970s, the students of Scottsdale Community College were infuriated to learn of the administration's shady practice of using scholarship money intended for Native American students to bribe athletes into the school. In a school-wide protest, the students voted to change the mascot to something utterly ridiculous that would stay with the school as a badge of shame for years to come. The Fighting Artichoke was the result, and although the administration tried to prevent the decision from going through, here we are in 2010 and the vegetable still makes an appearance at Scottsdale games. (Photo Source 1, Photo Source 2)

6. North Carolina School of the Arts: The Fighting Pickle

North Carolina School of the Arts: The Fighting Pickle Mascot North Carolina School of the Arts: The Fighting Pickle Mascot

Nothing could appear less intimidating than a giant pickle, yet as the result of a costume contest, North Carolina School of Arts has selected a "fighting pickle" as their team mascot. It is said that the pickle was first suggested as a joke, and it isn't hard to see why. Prancing around in his big green costume and sporting a gap-toothed grin, the fighting pickle can be seen greeting fans and dancing with cheerleaders at the schools many athletic events. Sadly, the pickle seems to represent very little to the school, as the university is not known for producing, nor consuming, especially good pickles. (Photo Source 1, Photo Source 2)

7. University of Arkansas at Monticello: The Boll Weevil

University of Arkansas at Monticello: The Boll Weevil Mascot University of Arkansas at Monticello: The Boll Weevil Mascot

Some schools choose a fierce animal for their mascot in the hopes of frighting other teams. Others choose a mighty knight or a king as a symbol of power and status. The University of Arkansas on the other hand chose a Boll Weevil, a pesky little insect known for damaging crops. It doesn't say much about your team when the mascot is an insect that is probably being crushed by the players on field during the actual game. (Photo Source 1, Photo Source 2)

8. Dartmouth: Keggy The Keg

Dartmouth: Keggy The Keg Mascot

Keggy The Keg is the unofficial mascot of Dartmouth. We say unofficial because the administration refuses to accept that a giant dancing keg of beer represents their athletic department, but the students have all but shunned the official mascot of the team and await the arrival of the giant keg each time around. It's the job of any mascot to tap into the spirit of the school, and what better way to do so than by getting at everyone's true reason for being at school: excessive drinking. (Photo Source)

9. California State University - Long Beach: The Dirtbags

California State University - Long Beach: The Dirtbags Mascot

The Long Beach State baseball team has been unofficially sporting the name Dirtbags since the late 1980's. Apparently the students find "dirtbag" a more accurate term than the team's official name, the 49ers. The name comes from the team's off-campus practice field that leaves them caked in, you guessed it, dirt. What we want to know is how does any fan keep a straight face while rooting "Go Dirtbags!" from the bleachers? (Photo Source)

10. Stanford University: The Stanford Tree

Stanford University: The Stanford Tree Mascot Stanford University: The Stanford Tree Mascot

The name may not sound that strange, but take one look at the photo and you will see this is no ordinary tree. With a history of taunting rivals and binge drinking, the Stanford Tree is not unlike that annoying, drunk frat brother who can't help but draw attention to himself. Each year competition for the college mascot is fierce as students try to out-stage one another with outrageous stunts. The winner gets to strut around the fields for the rest of the year donned in their homemade tree outfit. Jealous? Neither are we. (Photo Source 1, Photo Source 2)