- 1788: American Revolutionary War veteran, Col. Ebenezer Sproat, headed to Ohio to lead the United States against the Western Confederacy in the Northwest Indian War. Local natives nicknamed the six-foot-six giant “Hetuck” , meaning Big Buckeye. It was a reference to his stature and manner: large like a buck and tough as a buckeye tree.
- 1840: The future ninth President of the United States, William Henry Harrison, gets more credit for tying the Buckeye nickname to Ohioans, because of how prominently he and his supporters used it as a symbol of his frontier spirit.
- 1878: The Ohio Mechanical and Agricultural College (1870) became OSU. The student body adopted the scarlet and gray colors after rejecting orange and black when they discovered Princeton had already taken them.
- 1950: The athletic department finally, officially adopted the Buckeye nickname, although it is presumed it had been in use much earlier.
- 1965: Students decided it was time for a real live Buckeye, who looks like the Kool-Aid Man and the Shea Stadium, Home Run Apple’s love child. They named him Brutus, the winning entry in a campus-wide contest. Sadly for hunters and viral video producers, the plan to stick a live buck on the sidelines was scrapped because it would be to difficult to control…(sigh).
- 1975: Let this be a lesson to you, kids: You wanna party like a rock star on the sidelines of a major college program for a decade? That’s what it’s gonna like like when it’s over. Ahhh, the glamour of showbiz…
- 1976: Clearly Brutus was strung out and in desperate need of a head transplant. Apparently this is the best OSU scientists could muster with 70’s technology. They slapped on a “Block O” hat to represent his biggest fans while protecting his nut from harmful UV rays.
- 1981: Brutus got animated off the field, but might have gotten a liiiiiiittle too experimental on. Are we sure the leaf on that turnip suit still represents a buckeye plant?
- 1982: This nut head finally grew up into a fully-functional, anthropomorphic fruit. (Yeah, nuts are fruit. Look it up).
- 1987: OSU trademarked the Brutus Buckeye logo, finally (reluctantly?) accepting his image as worthy to represent the school.
- 1998: The story from the school itself is, “Over the summer Brutus hit the gym and beefed up some in the upper body, and went tanning in Florida.” Oh, is that right? Looks like somebody at that gym slipped this Bucky some juice judging by his even larger head. Further evidence of steroid use is difficult to ascertain due to the loin towel covering up a key indicator…or lack thereof.
- 2007: Brutus was in inducted into former Philly Phanatic, Denis Lehman’s Mascot Hall of Fame. OSU might have thought this honor was a dream come true, but there hasn’t been another class inducted since 2008, or a press release since 2009…I’m thinking this HoF isn’t long for this world.
- Originality-(2) I’d be shocked if any other school at any level competition (all the way down to kindergarten) is represented by a nut.
- Presentation-(.5) Brutus’ metamorphosis in the 80’s was a major improvement, but he’s often seen with more sweat stains than Kevin James in a Golden Corral. The ball cap and rugby-style shirt are fairly unique, but not enough to push this number. Besides, that late 90’s makeover didn’t produce a newly ripped Buckeye like we were promised. The limbs in those sweats still look pretty rangy.
- Authenticity-(2) If you’re from Ohio, you’re a Buckeye. This might piss off all the Ohioans that didn’t attend OSU, but that’s not my problem, that’s your problem.
- Intimidation Factor-(0) This inedible chestnut is only intimidating to teeth and GI tracts. In historical and scientific descriptions it never even got honorable mention as a potential projectile. It does, however, make a nice necklace.
- Political Incorrectness-(0) Human Buckeyes have a formidable tradition as frontier tamers and willing fighters. Bucks sport huge racks and stroll the countryside with multiple does. Unfortunately OSU chose to roll with the nut, which wouldn’t even tickle the most exposed nerve on the faculty.
- TOTAL-(5) Don’t worry Brutus, it’s okay to be average.