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Does this make me a sportswriter?

ver since the Big Ten basketball championship was clinched by the Wisconsin Badgers, I’ve had sports on the brain. Now, two of my favorite parts of sports are the mascots and the spirit of competition. In that spirit, I’ve decided to compile a ranked list of the absolute worst Big Ten mascots for our mutual enjoyment. Obviously, the Badgers will not be included in this list, not only because I am biased, but also because our mascot doesn’t suck. So, if yours does, fair warning that you may see it if you continue reading.

Sidenote: I am listing the worst mascots in ascending order, with the very worst at the very end.

5. Testudo Terrapin

U of Maryland takes the number five spot not necessarily because it has the worst looking mascot, but more because it’s just so weird. For those of you who don’t know, a terrapin is essentially a massive turtle.  A turtle is not typically what you think of when coming up with menacing mascot animals, so I would be curious as to what the selection process was here. Still though, a turtle is not especially threatening, and doesn’t have a reputation for being fast or strong. Testudo the turtle is almost asking to be called slow, despite his cool name.

4. Herbie the Husker (University of Nebraska- Lincoln)

I’m sure many of you saw this one coming. The good ole Nebraska Corn-Huskers, known far and wide for being the lamest mascot in the Midwest area. Now, even though the Corn Huskers do not strike fear into the hearts of anyone, I’m only putting them at the number four worst. Their saving grace? The fact that Herbie himself is kind of suave. He’s got a nice cowboy hat, a solid head of hair and even though he’s a cornhusker, I don’t think it’s that terrible.

3. Lil ‘Red (University of Nebraska-Lincoln)

Now, this is where it starts getting good. I have no idea what Lil Red is actually supposed to be, but he looks like a giant baby in a baseball hat. I honestly think that he’s just supposed to be a guy (or maybe a child) dressed in red. Nebraska, who did you put in charge of your mascot department? Fire them immediately. At least if their mascot was going to be an average Joe, they could’ve given him a sword or something. Nevertheless, it’s not scary, and it’s too creepy to be cute, but it’s still not the absolute worst.

2. Purdue Pete (Purdue University)

Purdue Pete comes sliding into  the number two spot, and if you look him up, you’ll find out why. Although I like the ring of the name Purdue Pete, his physical appearance will certainly be turning up in my nightmares tonight. He looks like a doll that is possessed by a demon, and I wouldn’t be surprised if his eyes moved all on their own. The reason that Purdue Pete is not the winner of the worst mascot competition is because in his ugliness, he is actually quite scary, which can be considered a good thing.

1. Brutus Buckeye (Ohio State University)

I think this one goes without saying. Brutus Buckeye cannot be described, simply because I don’t think anyone knows what he is. He just looks like a giant turd with eyes, to be quite frank. However, because I pride myself in my work, I did a little research. A buckeye is a nut that comes from the state tree. The Ohio State University’s team mascot is a nut. I say again, a nut. So, with that being said, I feel like I don’t even need to explain why this mascot takes the cake as the worst.

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Frankie Tarlizzo

Wisconsin '25

hello:) my name is Frankie Tarlizzo, and I’m from Scandia, Minnesota. I go to the university of Wisconsin Madison as a freshman this year, planning to major in psychology. I love to write, and I have a lot of useless opinions, so I’m very excited to have somewhere to put them now! Hope you enjoy!
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