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Why are So Many High School Sports Teams Bulldogs?

Have you ever noticed that “bulldogs” seems to be an extremely popular name for college and high school sports teams?  I grew up near a town who had their own bulldogs, but I see mention of bulldogs in the news quite frequently.  In fact, when I research for this blog, most of the stories that come up are about bulldogs sports teams.  I wonder why that is.

In news stories for just the past 24 hours, there is mention of the Georgia Bulldogs, Gonzaga Bulldogs, Hampton Bulldogs, Boston Bulldogs, Fresno State Bulldogs, and a few others.  I don’t know how many other teams there are, but I know it’s quite a lot.  What is it about bulldogs that sports teams try to emulate?

I mean, bulldogs are fantastic animals, but they’re not exactly what I would call athletic.  Nor are they particularly focused.  Bulldogs just love to have a good time, relaxing with their families and enjoying the finer things in life.  When it comes to running, swimming or playing hard, bulldogs are not anywhere near the top of the list.

So why is it that all of these teams choose to be bulldogs?  My best guess is the bulldog looks ferocious, like he might be a tough competitor.  Have any of the people responsible for naming teams actually met a bulldog?  I bet the answer is no.   When you look up personality traits for bulldogs, one of the most common things mentioned is how un-athletic they are.

What do you think?  What’s in a bulldog that makes it such a great team name?