Dear 100 Hour Board,
If all players on college football teams were suddenly transformed into the animal or human represented by their team mascots (though they all retain their same human intelligence) what would the championship game look like? How would the BYU cougars do? How about the Tulane green wave (whatever that is)? Let's say that killing/maiming the other team isn't a legal option.
- Rating Pending (who is guessing a lot of team's throwing games are going to suffer)
Dear Rating Pending,
Did you know that there are 114 teams in the NCAA Division I, Football Bowl Subdivision Conferences for the 2013 season? I do now!
I found all the teams here and I retrieved information for each school team from their respective Wikipedia pages (I would cite them, but I think I would break the Board!) All teams were magically turned into their schools' official mascot and remained the same size as their species normally would, meaning that larger animals didn't shrink and smaller animals didn't grow.
American Athletic Conference:
Temple University Owls vs. University of Connecticut Huskies
Just by looks, it's easy to see who the winner of this match will be. While the Owls are cute, their tiny beak and feet make it impossible for them to move the ball down the field and their lack of arms means that there is no way for them to throw the ball down the field. The Huskies are able to pick up the ball with their teeth and run down the field, easily avoiding their opponents.
Winner: University of Connecticut Huskies
University of Memphis Tigers vs. University of Central Florida Knights
Not only do the Tigers look intimidating, but their large mouths and agility allow them to quickly maneuver the ball to the end zone. The Knights are one of the few teams with hands but their bulky armor limits their range of motion and makes it incredibly difficult to run.
Winner: University of Memphis Tigers
University of South Florida Bulls vs. University of Houston Cougars
While the Bulls may be bigger, they're not as nimble as the Cougars. Additionally, the Cougars' front paws can act somewhat like an arm, manipulating the ball into an easier position to grab.
Winner: University of Houston Cougars
University of Louisville Cardinals vs. University of Cincinnati Bearcats
Both of these teams won't last long in the tournament. The Cardinals are tiny birds who share the same problem as the Owls (tiny beaks and feet, no arms) while the Bearcats are slow moving. The Bearcats win this round just because they're actually able to move the ball down the field.
Winner: University of Cincinnati Bearcats
Rutgers University Scarlet Knights vs. Southern Methodist University Mustangs
While they may be known as the Mustangs, Southern Methodist University's official mascot is a shetland pony. That's right, their mascot is the short, baby-sized horse. While they are still a breed of horse, they're no where near as quick as a mustang. However, the Knights would have trouble running in their armor and probably wouldn't be able to throw or catch a ball. Because they're able to actually move around, the Ponies live to see another round.
Winner: Southern Methodist University Mustangs
Kansas State University Wildcats vs. Texas Christian University Horned Frogs
Note to self: Don't pick a horned frog as a mascot. Somebody on the Internet may judge you for it one day.
Winner: no contest, Kansas State Wildcats
West Virginia University Mountaineers vs. Baylor University Bears
Ah, the first game that I actually have to think about. The Mountaineers have a few things going for them. Since they're people, they have arms and can throw. The Bears wouldn't be able to throw like the Mountaineers can, but they can definitely scoop toss the ball to each other. They would be faster in running, but slower at the start since they would be bigger and heavier. While the Bears may seem more intimidating, the fact that the Mountaineers can throw the ball down the field gives them a huge advantage.
Winner: West Virginia Mountaineers
University of Oklahoma Sooners vs. University of Kansas Jayhawks
They may call themselves Sooners but Oklahoma's official mascot is actually a pair of horses. Their ability to gallop around and pick up the ball overcomes their lack of being able to throw the ball. The Jayhawks, which is a bluejay and sparrow hybrid, may be able to outfly them but have no true advantage in a game of football.
Winner: University of Oklahoma Sooners
Iowa State University Cylones vs. Texas Tech University Red Raiders
I think we can all agree by now that birds do not make good football players. Since the Cyclones' mascot is actually a cardinal, the Raiders' would easily overcome them.
Winner: Texas Tech Raiders
Oklahoma State University Cowboys vs. University of Texas at Austin Longhorns
I had to poll the family for this match up. Cowboy supporters argued that their ability to throw the ball and that they could probably lasso the Longhorns (since it wouldn't be hurting them) would give them a winning advantage. Longhorn supporters countered with the fact that their giant horns could be used to block their opponents and that being lassoed would be some type of technicality. After both cases were presented, the Cowboys won the vote, 3-2.
Winner: Oklahoma State Cowboys
Troy University Trojans vs. University of Louisiana at Lafayette Ragin' Cajuns
The line above should read 'Trained Warriors vs. Cayenne Peppers'.
Winner: Troy University Trojans for obvious reasons
Arkansas State University Red Wolves vs. University of South Alabama Jaguars
These teams have similar qualities, including in their speed. The Jaguars would be stronger and bigger, but the Wolves, being pack animals, would work together better. Since teamwork is important in team sports (and having nothing to do with the fact that dogs are better than cats), Wolves win!
Winner: Arkansas State Red Wolves
Georgia State University Panthers vs. University of Texas at Arlington Mavericks
Seeing as how the Mavericks' mascot is a horse, I'm thinking they would win this one. They would be faster and have a longer stride. They could also just jump over their opponents or, in my mind, continue running if they were tackled by a Panther.
Winner: University of Texas at Arlington Mavericks
University of Louisiana at Monroe Warhawks vs. Texas State University Bobcats
Okay so a Warhawk is totally different than a cardinal or other weakling bird. They actually have talons that they could use to lift things up. I'm torn on this one because I feel like the NCAA Animal Division would implement some type of stipulation for flying because birds of prey would totally wipe out just about any team. But, for now, no such rules exist.
Winner: University of Louisiana at Monroe Warhawks
University of Arkansas at Little Rock Trojans vs. Western Kentucky University Hilltoppers
Western Kentucky's mascot is a red...thing. It's just a red blob. Unless it has a superpower I'm not aware of, I'm feeling the Trojans on this one.
Winner: University of Arkansas at Little Rock Trojans
University of Minnesota Golden Gophers vs. Purdue University Boilermakers
Purdue's mascot is a train. Minnesota's is a gopher. It's a round of 'Which one would lose better?' and the answer to that would be the Gophers, because they would actually be able to control the ball.
Winner: University of Minnesota Golden Gophers
Indiana University Hoosiers vs. University of Nebraska Cornhuskers
Apparently Indiana University doesn't have a mascot so the Cornhuskers win by default.
Winner: University of Nebraska Cornhuskers
Pennsylvania State University Nittany Lions vs. University of Michigan Wolverines
Another default win since the University of Michigan doesn't have a mascot either!
Winner: Penn State Nittany Lions
Ohio State University Buckeyes vs. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Fighting Illini
Okay, what is with the Big 10 teams and not having mascots?! Another default win in favor of the Buckeyes. For those at home wondering what a buckeye is, it's a NUT. That's right, a nut just won a fake football game.
Winner: Ohio State Buckeyes
University of Iowa Hawkeyes vs. University of Wisconsin Badgers
Another bird of prey wiping the field with their opponent. It's too bad since I was rooting for the Hufflepuff Wisconsin Badgers.
Winner: University of Iowa Hawkeyes
Michigan State University Spartans vs. Northwestern University Wildcats
If a team has a throwing ability, they essentially win the round. The Spartans wouldn't be as fast, but they still have a good shot at winning.
Winner: Michigan State Spartans
Atlantic Coast Conference:
University of Maryland, College Park Terrapins vs. North Carolina State University Wolfpack
Since Maryland's mascot is a turtle, it's pretty obvious who would win a game.
Winner: North Carolina State Wolfpack
University of Virginia Cavaliers vs. Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University Hokies
Cavaliers remind me of a less equipped version of a musketeer. A Hokie is a bird that, in my opinion, looks similar to a chicken. We all know how birds do in this game.
Winner: University of Virginia Cavaliers
Georgia Institute of Technology Yellow Jackets vs. Duke University Blue Devils
On the up side, the Yellow Jackets can fly, which is typically a great sign. On the down side, there is no way for them to carry the ball down the field. The Blue Devils would be able to pass it around. They could possibly also have another evil scheme up their sleeve, but I don't think it would be necessary while battling insects.
Winner: Duke Blue Devils
University of Pittsburgh Panthers vs. University of Miami Hurricanes
So the Panthers have the same abilities as all the other big cats. The University of Miami's mascot is an ibis. I was having trouble deciding if the Ibises would be able to outfly the Panthers since they're so tiny. I think the Panthers would take this one due to the small size of the Ibises. I also imagine it would be somewhat painful for the Ibises to fly with a football in their beak.
Winner: University of Pittsburgh Panthers
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Tar Heels vs. Syracuse University Orange
UNC's mascot is a ram while Syracuse's is a fruit. Of all the possible mascots for a team, I wonder why an orange was picked.
Winner: UNC Tar Heels
Clemson University Tigers vs. Wake Forest University Demon Deacons
This is another one I'm torn between. Yes, the Deacons would be able to throw but the Tigers can jump and they can run pretty fast. I'm thinking that those abilities in addition to it being difficult to effectively tackle a Tiger would lead them to victory.
Winner: Clemson Tigers
Boston College Eagles vs.Florida State University Seminoles
The NCAA doesn't like having college mascots that are Native Americans for a variety of reasons but Florida State is one of the exceptions (more about that can be found here). However, FSU tries to be respectful so they don't call their Seminole and his horse companion mascots, but rather 'symbols'. Since they're technically not mascots (and it makes my life a little easier), Boston wins by default.
Winner: Boston College Eagles
Middle Tennessee State University Blue Raiders vs. East Carolina University Pirates
In one corner we have the Blue Raider Horses, which are built like...horses. Strong, fast, and how they will be able to avoid being tackled by jumping will propel them past the Pirates, who probably have bad hand-eye coordination from all those eye patches anyway.
Winner: Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders
Marshall University Thundering Herd vs. University of Alabama at Birmingham Blazers
Bison vs. DRAGONS. A REAL, FIRE-BREATHING DRAGONS. They win due to their sheer awesomeness.
Winner: University of Alabama at Birmingham Blazers
University of Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles vs. Rice University Owls
As previously stated, the Owls would struggle due to their small feet while the Eagles would fly in circles around them.
Winner: University of Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles
Tulane University Green Wave vs. Florida Atlantic University Burrowing Owl
Like other universities that go by weird nicknames, Tulane's mascot is actually a pelican. Owls and other birds with tiny feet/claws don't do well in this game. While the Pelican's feet are webbed, they could hold the ball in their giant beak.
Winner: Tulane Green Wave
University of Texas at El Paso Miners vs. University of Tulsa Golden Hurricanes
I didn't think anything could have gotten better than a fire-breathing dragon, but a superhero comes pretty close! Conference USA definitely wins the award for the greatest mascots. The Superheroes would dominate a game against the Miners.
Winner: University of Tulsa Golden Hurricanes
Louisiana Tech University Bulldogs vs. University of North Texas Mean Green
The Mean Green Eagles would win this game. The Bulldogs essentially do themselves in since they can't run very fast and easily tire. Also, flying typically means domination.
Winner: University of North Texas Mean Green
Florida International University Panthers vs. University of Texas at San Antonio Roadrunners
While they would be super speedy, the Roadrunners would be creamed by the Tigers since I think they would have a difficult time picking up the ball.
Winner: Florida International University Panthers
Texas A&M University Aggies vs. Vanderbilt University Commodores
The Aggies will be represented by the Border Collies. While they're cute and adorable, they don't stand a chance against the Commodores since they can throw the ball down the field.
Winner: Vanderbilt Commodores
Auburn University Tigers vs. University of Florida Gators
Two, strong teams battling for victory. Both are equally ferocious but the Tigers are quicker and can make their way down the field easier than their reptile opponents.
Winner: Auburn Tigers
University of Tennessee Volunteers vs. Mississippi State University Bulldogs
I've never realized that the Vols mascot is actually a coonhound. Interesting. Anyway, the Bulldogs would have trouble running due to their short, stubby legs so the Coonhounds take this one!
Winner: University of Tennessee Volunteers
University of South Carolina Gamecocks vs. University of Mississippi Rebels
Almost due to the sheer height difference, the Mississippi Rebel Black Bears would easily win in a game against a brood of roosters. The Gamecocks, being birds, would suffer the same fate as their other chicken-y friends.
Winner: University of Mississippi Rebels
University of Missouri Tigers vs. University of Alabama Crimson Tide
At first, I decided that the Crimson Tide Elephants would lose against the Tigers. But I started thinking about it and I realized that they might actually have a chance. They could pick the ball up with their trunks and hold it up high and they could throw it to each other. I'm giving it to Alabama.
Winner: University of Alabama Crimson Tide
Louisiana State University Fighting Tigers vs. University of Arkansas Razorbacks
Okay, so Arkansas is represented by russian boars. In addition to looking absolutely terrifying, these things are as big as a house and are pretty fast. While they can't jump as high as the Tigers, the pure ferociousness of them puts them ahead of the Tigers.
Winner: University of Arkansas Razorbacks
University of Georgia Bulldogs vs. University of Kentucky Wildcats
Seeing the track record of teams consisting of bulldogs and winning streak of big cats, Wildcats take the lead.
Winner: University of Kentucky Wildcats
Western Michigan University Broncos vs. Eastern Michigan University Eagles
East vs. West. Only one shall survive. The Eagles will easily take this one since they can soar up above the Broncos, keeping the ball away.
Winner: Eastern Michigan University Eagles
Ohio University Bobcats vs. University of Toledo Rockets
I was expecting Toledo to replace the Rockets with some type of animal like the other schools did, but alas, no. Since the Rockets won't be able to control the ball, the Bobcats win.
Winner: Ohio University Bobcats
Northern Illinois University Huskies vs. Central Michigan University Chippewas
No official mascot for Central Michigan means that the Huskies win.
Winner: Northern Illinois University Huskies
Ball State University Cardinals vs. Miami University RedHawks
Another team of cardinals? No need to explain this one!
Winner: Miami University RedHawks
University at Buffalo Bulls vs. Kent State University Golden Flashes
The Golden Eagles would take football to a new height. While the Bulls would put up a good fight, there is no way they can compete against the flying Golden Eagles.
Winner: Kent State Golden Flashes
Bowling Green State University Falcons vs. University of Akron Zips
Akron gets points for having a mascot we haven't encountered yet: a kangaroo! The Kangaroos would bounce all around the field, easily swatting away at the Falcons that may fly overhead. They could also store the ball in their pouches, making it an easy and safe way to score touchdowns.
Winner: University of Akron Zips
University of California Berkeley Golden Bears vs. Stanford University Cardinal
Seeing as how Stanford Tree is both a plant and an unofficial mascot, Bears win!
Winner: UC Berkeley Golden Bears
University of Arizona Wildcats vs. University of Southern California Trojans
Wildcats need to get their heads in the game if they want to have a shot at winning. While they may be called the Trojans, their true mascot is a horse. Similar to the throw down between Georgia State and University of Texas at Arlington, the Horses will overpower the Wildcats and take the lead.
Winner: University of SoCal Trojans
Arizona State University Sun Devils vs. University of California, Los Angeles Bruins
Using the precedent set from West Virginia vs. Baylor, the Sun Devils win.
Winner: Arizona State University Sun Devils
University of Oregon Ducks vs. Washington State University Cougars
This one is self-explanatory, but I think a team of ducks in football uniforms would be one of the cutest things ever.
Winner: Washington State Cougars
University of Utah Utes vs. University of Colorado Buffalo
Wow, half of the games from this conference are repeated match ups! The Utes mascot is a red tailed hawk, so just like the University of Buffalo vs. Kent State, Utah wins.
Winner: University of Utah Utes
Oregon State University Beavers vs. University of Washington Huskies
I'm not sure what the Beavers would do on a football field. Their tails can be used to smack the balls around but they're definitely in the Top 5 Worst Football Teams.
Winner: University of Washington Huskies
Army Black Knights vs. Brigham Young University Cougars
Throwback to one of the first games- Memphis Tigers vs. Florida Knights! As stated before, the Knights will be slow moving and their armor will limit their range of motion. The Cougars will have no problem with this game.
Winner: BYU Cougars
Navy Midshipmen vs. University of Idaho Vandals
I was really hoping that Idaho's mascot would be a potato, but it's actually a Viking. So we have a team of Navy officers against a team of Vikings. Both have similar qualities and close to equal strengths. The Midshipmen have better training and would probably be faster but the Vikings would be stronger. I'm thinking the Midshipmen have this one.
Winner: Navy Midshipmen
Notre Dame Fighting Irish vs. New Mexico State University Aggies
This would be an interesting match to see! Seeing as how the football would be bigger than the Leprechauns, they would have a lot of trouble doing anything. On the other hand, the Cowboys would be able to play an actual game of football.
Winner: New Mexico State University Aggies
I was going to randomly pair teams up again, but there are quite a few animal repeats and most Conferences had a clear winner.
American Athletic Conference:
Teams: U of Connecticut Huskies, U of Memphis Tigers, U of Houston Cougars, U of Cincinnati Bearcats, Southern Methodist University Mustangs/ Shetland Ponies
It really comes down to the Tigers or the Cougars. Seeing as how the Tigers would be bigger and stronger, they would pull out ahead of the Cougars.
Champion: U of Memphis Tigers
Teams: Kansas State Wildcats, West Virginia Mountaineers, U of Oklahoma Sooners/Horses, Texas Tech Raiders, Oklahoma State Cowboys
All of the teams are wiped out by the Oklahoma Sooners. The Wildcats may be able to get close to their speed, the Sooners will be stronger and would have an easier time keeping the ball away from other teams.
Champion: U of Oklahoma Sooners/Horses
Teams: Troy University Trojans, Arkansas State Red Wolves, U of Texas at Arlington Mavericks/Horses, U of Louisiana at Monroe Warhawks, U of Arkansas at Little Rock Trojans
Again it comes down to two teams: Arlington Mavericks/Horses and the Monroe Warhawks. Both have their own strengths that would wipe out just about any other team, but the Warhawks would easily take the game since they can fly.
Champion: U of Louisiana at Monroe Warhawks
Teams: U of Minnesota Golden Gophers, U of Nebraska Cornhuskers, Penn State Lions, Ohio State Buckeyes, U of Iowa Hawkeyes, Michigan State Spartans
This was probably the worst Conference mascot-wise since half of the matches were default wins. I think the Hawkeyes would win for the same reason posted above for the Warhawks.
Champion: U of Iowa Hawkeyes
Atlantic Coast Conference:
Teams: North Carolina State Wolfpack, U of Virginia Cavaliers, Duke Blue Devils, U of Pittsburgh Panthers, UNC Tar Heels/Rams, Clemson Tigers, Boston College Eagles
This one would be quite an intense showdown! Panthers, Wolfpack, and Tigers...oh my! While they each would put up a good fight, the Eagles would easily win.
Champion: Boston College Eagles
Teams: Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders/Horses, U of Alabama at Birmingham Blazers/Dragons, U of Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles, Tulane Green Wave/Pelicans, U of Tulsa Golden Hurricanes/Superheroes, U of North Texas Mean Green/Eagles, Florida International University Panthers
This would be one of the most epic showdowns of all time. Just picture all seven teams in this giant dome, duking it out for victory. It would be complete madness! This one comes down to the Dragons or the Superheroes. While the Dragons may be amazing, the Superheroes would probably win.
Champion: U of Tulsa Golden Hurricanes/Superheroes
Teams: Vanderbilt Commodores, Auburn Tigers, U of Tennessee Vols/Coondogs, U of Mississippi Rebels/Black Bears, U of Missouri Tigers, University of Alabama Crimson Tide/Elephants, U of Arkansas Razorbacks, U of Kentucky Wildcats
Another tough Conference! I think I would actually watch a football game if they were played by mascots. So much more entertaining. For the champion here, I'm thinking the Elephants would rock it out. They're the biggest competitors and they could plow through anyone in their way.
Champion: Alabama Crimson Tide/Elephants
Teams: Eastern Michigan University Eagles, Ohio University Bobcats, Northern Illinois University Huskies, Miami University RedHawks, Kent State Golden Flashes/Eagles, U of Akron Zips/Kangaroos
This was an interesting group since there were three birds of prey. I consulted the Great Wikipedia and discovered that the Eagles would be significantly bigger than the RedHawks so that narrows it down to Eastern Michigan and Kent State. Since they're the same animal, we go to the coin flip. And the win goes to...Eastern Michigan!
Champion: Eastern Michigan Eagles
Teams: UC Berkeley Golden Bears, University of SoCal Trojans/Horses, Arizona State University Sun Devils, Washington State Cougars, U of U Utes/Red Tail Hawks, University of Washington Huskies
Until there are rules against flying while playing, Red Tail Hawks dominate the field.
Champion: U of U Utes/Red Tail Hawks
Teams: BYU Cougars, Navy Midshipmen, New Mexico State University Aggies/Cowboys
Both the Midshipmen and the Cowboys would have the upper hand in passing the ball but their speed and agility can't beat that of the Cougs.
Champion: BYU Cougars
I was going to do a Round Three for the Champion of Champions, but it would be quite dull seeing as how the teams that can fly just wipe out any competitor they encounter. It would be a more interesting match if the rules of the game were changed a little to make it a little more fair, like stipulations on a length of flight or more team members for smaller animal teams. Or a game of Ultimate Frisbee...that would be a sight to see.