The 50 most popular high school team nicknames ever, ranked
Years after high school graduation, you may forget what happened at prom or the details you learned in math class, but one thing you'll never forget is your high school mascot. But where does your school's mascot rank among the most popular in history? MascotDB pulled the numbers and published a comprehensive ranking of the most popular high school mascots of all time.
Spoiler that's not actually a spoiler: There are a lot of big cats. A lot. Roar.
Spoiler: The top spot belongs to a species with fewer legs.
Another spoiler: This list is really fun, so check out the 50 most popular mascots of all time.
With 153 schools calling themselves the Bearcats, this nickname kicks off our list at No. 50.
In this photo from 2010, the Forest Bearcats of Forest, Mississippi celebrate during a game against the Aberdeen Bulldogs.
Photo by: Chris Evans/MaxPreps
Through the years, 155 high schools have called themselves the Rangers.
The Lewis-Palmer Rangers of Monument, Colorado made a valiant second-half comeback in the 2018 4A state basketball championship, but fell just short, losing to the Longmont Trojans 62-59.
A total of 157 schools have used the Lancers nickname.
Here, the Malden Catholic Lancers of Malden, Massachusetts celebrate during a 2017 hockey game.
No small feat: 162 high schools have gone by "the Giants."
One of those teams: the Highland Park Giants of Highland Park, Illinois.
Photo by: Patrick Gorski/MaxPreps
MascotDB says 165 schools have used the Royals moniker.
Payton Lawton of Fullerton, California's Rosary Academy Royals warms up for an at-bat during a 2014 matchup against Orange Lutheran.
44 (TIE). Senators
A total of 167 high schools have called themselves the Senators.
In this 2012 photo, the McMahon Senators of Norwalk, Connecticut face off against the Trumbull Golden Eagles.
44 (TIE). Colts
There have been 167 schools that have worn Colts jerseys.
In January 2021, the Casteel Colts of Queen Creek, Arizona played a game against the Higley Knights.
Photo by: Jack Beasley/MaxPreps
A total of 173 high school teams have chosen "the Thunder" as their nickname.
Trinity International of Las Vegas wears Thunder jerseys during games.
Photo by: Greg Jungferman/MaxPreps
Over the years, 186 squads have been called the Comets.
Photo by: Alik McIntosh/MaxPreps
Bakersfield, California's North High School — and 186 other teams — have been known as the Stars.
A North Stars kicker lets it fly in a 2021 game against the Highland Scots.
Photo by: Joe Bergman/MaxPreps
MascotDB says 190 high schools have chosen "the Chiefs" as their team nickname.
Springfield, Missouri's Kickapoo High School Chiefs take on Greensboro Day School in a 2020 game.
Photo by: Randy Kemp/MaxPreps
39. Red Devils
Through the years, 193 high schools — including West Lafayette High School in West Lafayette, Indiana — have called themselves the Red Devils.
Here, a cheerleader looks on during a 2020 game against Lafayette Jefferson Broncos.
Fierce and loyal, 197 teams have gone by "the Huskies."
The Centennial Huskies take the field during a 2015 football game against Notre Dame High School in Sherman Oaks, CA.
A total of 225 high schools have been called the Pioneers.
One of those teams is the Poughkeepsie High School Pioneers of Poughkeepsie, New York.
Photo by: Lonnie Webb/MaxPreps
There have been 229 high schools known as the Chargers.
Here, the Charger cheer squad from Littleton, Colorado's Chatfield High School celebrates a touchdown during a 2011 football game.
If your high school has a jaguar mascot, you're far from alone. In fact, 234 teams go by the big-cat nickname.
Here's a little throwback. This photo from 2000 shows Minnesota's Bloomington Jefferson High School cheerleading squad with a speckled Jaguar mascot.
Mascot DB says 235 high schools have been known as "the Dragons," including DeRidder High School of DeRidder, Louisiana.
A DeRidder player signals a touchdown during a 2019 game against the Leesville Wampus Cats.
Photo by: Roddy Johnson/MaxPreps
32 (TIE). Wolverines
Overton High School in Memphis — and 238 other teams — have gone by "the Wolverines."
Here, an Overton player takes in the action during a 2014 game against the Memphis East Mustangs.
Photo by: Chris Evans/MaxPreps
32 (TIE). Rockets
Like the Houston NBA franchise, 239 high schools have chosen to go by "the Rockets."
One of those teams is the Richard Montgomery High School Rockets from Rockville, Maryland.
31. Blue Devils
There have been 256 high schools that have gone by "the Blue Devils."
Here, Maryland's Springbrook Blue Devils announce their starting lineup before a 2018 game against the Paint Branch Panthers.
A total of 272 high schools have donned Wolves jerseys.
Garrett Giles of Nevada's Basic Academy Wolves high-fives teammates after scoring a run during the 2017 NIAA 4A state championship game.
Mascot DB counts 276 schools with "the Braves" as their nickname.
St. John Bosco Braves' quarterback DJ Uiagalelei plays in a 2019 game against the Mater Dei Monarchs in Bellflower, California.
Remember the Titans? How could anyone forget? There have been 279 teams with the nickname.
The sports teams at Legend High School in Parker, Colorado are known as the Titans.
There have been 285 high schools known as the Saints.
California's Crean Lutheran Saints' mascot poses with the schools's cheer squad in 2013.
Charlotte's NBA team was known as the Bobcats from 2004 to 2014. Likewise, there have been 298 high schools with this feline moniker.
Here, the Bobcat mascot from Battlefield High School of Haymarket, VA watches a 2013 game against the W.T. Woodson Cavaliers.
We've made it to the top 25! Have you spotted your team's mascot yet?
Through the years, 339 teams have been known as the Rebels.
Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado uses "the Rebels" nickname. Here, shortstop Tommy Gillman gets pumped up with teammates before a 2016 game against Brighton.
There have been 345 teams — including New York's Archbishop Stepinac High School — that have gone by the Crusaders.
Stepinac guard R.J. Davis squares up to shoot a free throw during a 2020 game against the East Catholic Eagles.
Like the New England NFL squad, 388 high schools have chosen "the Patriots" as their nickname.
Denver's George Washington High School Patriots bring the ball up the floor in a 2016 game against the FNE Warriors.
Through the years, 417 high schools have gone by "the Hawks."
Michael Koster, of Minnesota's Chaska High School Hawks, celebrates after scoring the game's winning goal against the Edina Hornets in 2018.
Bears are a symbol of strength and ferocity, and 418 high schools have chosen the furry beast as their mascot.
Southern California's Riverside Poly Bears warm up before a 2020 game against Capital Christian.
Photo by: Darren Yamashita/MaxPreps
There have been 422 high schools with "the Hornets" as their nickname.
Damascus High School Hornets fans celebrate during a 2016 game between the Damascus Hornets and the Quince Orchard Cougars.
A total of 446 high schools have gone by "the Rams."
Akron High School in Akron, Colorado brings this smiling Rams mascot to their games.
In ancient Greece, Spartans were tough as nails. And, to reflect their own toughness, 447 high schools have chosen "the Spartans" as their nickname.
Pennsylvania's Wyomissing Area Spartans were all masked up in a 2021 game against the Schuylkill Valley Panthers.
MascotDB counts 490 high schools with the Raiders moniker.
Here, members of Colorado's Rangeview High School Raiders basketball team finish up practice in 2016.
Through the years, 505 schools have gone by "the Vikings."
One of those schools is Archbishop Wood High School of Warminster, Pennsylvania.
A total of 515 schools have chosen the Pirate's life.
Here, the Englewood Pirates' football coach chats with the team's quarterbacks at practice in Englewood, Colorado.
Birds of prey are a favorite source of mascot inspiration, and 551 schools chose the falcon as the symbol for their athletic programs.
Football players from Maryland's Good Counsel High School watch a fireworks display after a 2016 game against the Spalding Cavaliers.
A total of 577 neighborhoods have been the "Home of the Trojans."
This water tower is in Osawatomie, Kansas, home of the Osawatomie Trojans.
According to MascotDB, 586 teams have chosen "the Mustangs" as their nickname.
Here, the Ponderosa High School Mustang mascot stands at attention during the national anthem.
There have been 611 high-school teams that have gone by "the Cardinals."
Elizabeth High School in Elizabeth, Colorado brings this big, red bird mascot to their sports games.
Students at 668 schools have cheered on the Knights.
Reading High School's Knight mascot attends a 2020 graduation ceremony in Reading, Pennsylvania.
A total of 682 high schools have chosen the cougar as their mascot.
This particular cougar is the mascot for Niwot High School in Niwot, Colorado.
He's no coward: The lion has been the mascot at 786 high schools.
One of those schools is Wellsville Senior High School in Wellsville, New York.
A total of 857 high schools have used "the Indians" as their nickname.
Here, the 2019 Palm Springs Indians basketball team poses with a 2nd-place plaque.
Photo by: Heston Quan/MaxPreps
Students at 1,012 high schools have cheered on the Warriors.
Cheerleaders for the Wells High School Warriors of Wells, Maine perform at a 2017 football game.
MascotDB counts 1,085 programs that have chosen the Wildcats moniker.
This wildcat statue at Arvada West High School in Arvada, Colorado wore a mask in January 2021, when students returned for in-person learning after the COVID-19 shutdown.
There have been 1,193 high-school programs that have gone by "the Panthers."
Sports teams from Western High School in Russiaville, Indiana are known as the Panthers. Here, the Panthers' football team celebrates after a 2020 victory over the Kokomo Wildkats.
With 1,237 teams using this canine nickname, the bulldog is the top dog in our countdown, but it's not No. 1...
Here, Aberdeen High School's bulldog mascot carries pom poms during a 2010 game against the Forest Bearcats.
Photo by: Chris Evans/MaxPreps
Weighing in with 1,440 schools, the tiger is the most popular big-cat mascot ever.
It's a rough life being a high school mascot. Here, the Olive Ames Tiger grapples with a wrestler from a nearby school.
With 1,756 programs (and, ya know, the United States) having used the bird, the majestic eagle is the all-time No. 1 symbol for high school athletic programs.
Hope High School in Joplin, Missouri was badly damaged by a tornado in 2011, but these eagle statues weathered the storm.