Texans learn marketing rather early. It usually starts in Texas schools, like other places, with their mascot. The mascot creates the corporate identity, colors and logos which inspire, or burden, these kids. The mascot, and the identity it creates becomes entwined and interdependent with the student’s identity, usually for life.
This is because a mascot, which most school boards don’t understand, is a powerful marketing force. The mascot is a symbol in the students’ minds, both of the home school and opposing school. Note the effectiveness of J.K. Rowlings’ Hogwarts four houses with mascots (snake, raven, lion, badger).
Most Texas schools have the usual run-of-the-mill or variations of cougars, tigers, braves, cowboys, pirates, cadets, farmers, harvesters and bulldogs. These mascots are effective, but do not have as much power because of their common usage.
Some students, however, are faced with the unusual challenge of an odd mascot. Odd, unusual mascots can have powerful marketing force either for good or bad. It creates a unique set of mental pathways of dealing, and sometimes learning to cope with, the image and implications of the school mascot. Here, then, is the most unusual mascots that Texas high school students are blessed with (or cursed with) as the standard bearers of their particular school’s cause.
Itasca Wampus Cats. Yes. There’s many definitions of what a Wampus Cat is, ranging from the spirit of death to a black cat with a red behind to a Cougar. Nobody really knows. So the Wampus Cats are whatever the Itasca kids believe it is.
Groesbeck Goats. Nothing like a mascot considered the scape of the blame to humble and strengthen Groesbeck students in a counterculture, anti-mascot pride. It’s a harder name than even the Fredericksburg Billies to sell.
Killeen Kangaroos. Gee. I often wonder what the Killeen kids of the soldiers of the free world’s largest military base think when their folks ship in and they become a Texas marsupial that’s known for leaping Down Under. Still, Killeen Kangaroos has a beat and rhythm to it.
Cuero Gobblers. Cuero is the turkey capital of the world and stuck that mascot with an image of its wattle shaking as it makes its turkey sound. I’m sure every kid by junior high in that district has wrestled with the ignomy of having the mascot of what is considered an extremely stupid bird. However, we've noticed one thing. The school excels some years in academics and sports. Cuero Gobblers can be tough as leather.
Little River Bumbebees. Little River Academy students are locked into an onomatopoeia and a aerodynamically awkard mascot.
Hamlin Pied Pipers. A man (or woman sometimes) piping a pipe is the mighty mascot of Hamlin. Coach Art Briles of Baylor University football fame coached the Pied Pipers a time long, long ago.
Big Spring Steers. The Big Spring students that endure this mascot from long ago are to be congratulated for understanding what a moral victory is, and striving for real victory. One doesn’t have to spell out what their opponents pep rally skit possibilities entail.
Hutto Hippos. Why Hutto? Why? Your kids are going to be really special with this image. Who sold this idea to the school board in yesteryear?
Lanier Voks. Short for a vocational student. Actually, not bad if you consider what some above must use.
Somerville Yeguas. Spanish name for mare, but it also has less salutary meanings. One must suspect a high probability that 99 percent of Somerville students know the alternative meanings.
Trent Gorillas. Somebody finally had to acknowledge the gorilla as a mascot. Ok. Most kids will think this mascot is cool.