7 Most Popular Types of High School Mascots

Mascots are the widely loved, oversized members of every high school community. They are there to represent the secondary institution, show school pride, and build fan spirit. As well as serving as an honorary member of many high school football, hockey, baseball, basketball, and swimming teams, they can also add a fun flare to academic events.

Like professional mascots at high-level sporting events, such as Major League Baseball or the National Basketball Association, many high school mascots have built an incredible reputation. Many of them are even going above and beyond the call of duty. Sometimes, the mascot might be even more entertaining than the game itself (particularly if it is a major blowout!). 

But have you noticed that most high schools use the same type of mascots? Certain animals or characters tend to represent valued sports traits such as fierce athleticism, speed, or grace, so it’s not surprising that these creatures are chosen time and time again as the representative mascot. We have compiled a breakdown of the seven most common types of high school mascots, and why these characters tend to be popular choices for sports teams. 

1. Bulldogs 

Bulldogs are tough and surly. You’d be unwise to pick a fight with a bulldog bulldog, no matter how cute they may look. It’s no wonder the bulldog stands as of the most common high school mascots around today. And why not? Even the name is pretty effective, certainly more intimidating than a Pekingese or Chihuahua!

2. Eagles 

Eagles are impressive and intelligent creatures that soar high above their competition. These impressive birds can stalk their prey from a distance, and strike when the timing is right. No wonder why sports teams use the eagle as both a team name and a mascot! 

3. Tigers 

If you were to come face to face with tiger, what would you do? Chances are, you would flee in the opposite direction, screaming at the top of your lungs. Unless of course that particular tiger had the charm of Tony the Tiger, in which case you might ask for a bowl of cereal. Jokes aside, high school teams often pick the tiger because it is fierce, fast, cunning, and strong. 

4. Lions 

Much like the tiger, the lion is another furry feline with a deadly bite. Strong, regal, and fast, these powerful creatures are the king of the jungle; a great mascot concept if you really want your team to bring a ROAR to every game.

5. Spartans

High schools may sometimes ditch the animal altogether and embrace a historical reference: The Spartan! Disciplined, brave, and strong, these ancient Greek warriors were the ultimate athletes. The added benefit of adopting the Spartan as your high school mascot? The opportunity for your team to charge onto the field with a signature battle cry! In fact, take a line from King Leonidas, the king of Sparta in the blockbuster hit 300, as he rallies his troops – “This is where we fight! This is where they die!”.

6. Panther

With a hiss, a growl, and a scream, the panther will leap a great distance and rip its prey to shreds. They are as big as a human, but are far from friendly, and they cannot be tamed. A chance meeting with a panther in the jungle are what nightmares are made of, so it’s no wonder that a panther mascot can help high school sports teams get into the “crush the opponent” mindset.

7. Knights 

Once again, it is time to move away from the animal kingdom and embrace history with the knight. A lot of high schools use the knight for a team name and a mascot, and even some of the biggest sports franchises in the world have adopted the knight to represent their team (i.e.. The Las Vegas Golden Knights). With an impenetrable coat of armor, the knight represents bravery, strength and a relentless determination to win every battle!   

What’s so important about having a mascot for your high school team? There are generally four reasons why schools and professional sports leagues have mascots: 

  • They pump up the crowd, event when the team isn’t in play. 
  • Mascots provide the team with an identity. 
  • In creating this identity, a mascot can increase team pride and unity.
  • They help sell merchandise. 

A recent study was completed about the most common mascots and their success. In American college football, for example, teams with tigers as their mascots had won the most college football conference titles, but wildcats were the most winning mascots. There may not be a direct correlation between animals and a team’s performance, but it is still rather noteworthy. Should you adopt a wildcat, bulldog, or tiger as your next high school mascot ? Well, you certainly would not be the first, but you may give your high-school sports team that boost of confidence they need, on and off the field!