By: Egi Canie & Kyle Boone (Loyola Juniors)
Whether or not you are a current student of Loyola, former alumni, Rogers Park resident or just a fan of Loyola, at one point we have all had that one thought in our head, “What is a Rambler?”
Luckily for you, we have the answer.
Loyola University Chicago has quite the history with mascots. When the school was first coming about, the sports teams used to just be called by their colors, “Maroon and Gold”. The school finally settled on the “Grandess” tying in the Spanish origins of St. Ignatius of Loyola.
However, that didn’t stick.
It was not until 1926 they got their infamous nickname, the “Ramblers.” This name was acquired because of the extensive traveling that the Loyola football team did across the country. The school did not associate nicknames with a mascot until 1982 when they inherited “Bo Rambler ” which is shortened from “hobo”. After realizing this mascot was not so fitting, Loyola introduced the new and current mascot that we know as “Lu Wolf” in 1990. Lu was inspired by St. Ignatius as well, whose family was known to feed family, friends, neighbors, and soldiers. Their generosity was so abundant they even would feed the wild animals such as wolves.
Being current students, we have noticed that not many students know exactly why we are called the “Ramblers” and why our mascot is a wolf. We were curious to see what our fellow peers thought was a better mascot than Lu Wolf.
We asked our burning question, “If you could change Loyola’s mascot, to any animal or being, what would it be and what would be its name.” Right away, we got some rather creative answers.
Current Loyola Senior, and Film and Digital Media major, Aaron Sommerness, had a completely different species in mind. He said, “I think it has to be lake themed. I would have to go with the Loyola Lakers. We don’t have octopuses in Lake Michigan but I’m going to have to say the mascot would be an octopus.”
Solid choice Aaron. Though not everyone focused on the lakefront, many found alliterative names to be appealing.
Staying with the film majors, Junior JJ Rodriguez, took a different approach to the question. JJ said, “I would make the mascot a furry, because the mascot is already furryish, so why not make it a furry? We are the ‘Fuming Furries’. Just imagine the wolf we have, but if it took steroids. Really buff and really tall with a mullet.”
Thanks for the vivid description of our new furry friend JJ. To our surprise some students appreciated the wolf but had some slight tweaks to it.
Current Loyola Senior Andrew Schmitt said, “I feel like it should just be a wolf. Actually make it a husky… Hue the Husky.”
Close enough to a wolf right?
However, our students were not the only ones who had an opinion on the matter. We ran into a couple of fellow fans who do not attend Loyola who also liked the idea of the wolf but had some minor modifications.
20-year-old Illinois native and Rambler fan Riley Cronin said, “It should stay a wolf but it should be a real wolf and not a mascot. Kind of like the Georgia Bulldogs have a real bulldog at games or the LSU Tigers bring a tiger to a game. I think that is really cool.”
While 21-year-old Bryon Mane not only liked the wolf but also liked the use of alliteration and said “It should be the ‘Wolf of West Sheridan’ because Loyola is west off of Sheridan and the alliteration sounds good.”
Some people thought the recent NCAA March Madness success of our Ramblers should be linked to a possible new mascot and name.
21-year-old Jake Kaczmarek, a resident of Lockport, Illinois and avid Rambler fan said, “A koala bear because they are a slept-on animal, just like Loyola is a slept-on university.”
However, have no fear, Lu Wolf is here to stay and Loyola students will most likely forever be known as the Ramblers.
Nonetheless, if Loyola ever does choose to change our mascot, at least we can all agree, anything but a hobo.