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America's 14 strangest mascots in high school sports

YumaCriminalsHS

Yahoo! Sports

Earlier this week I posted a job for Cairo high school, located in Georgia. Everything seemed relatively normal until I read somewhere along the way that their mascot is the Syrupmakers.

For whatever reason, I couldn't shake the thought of just how strange of a nickname that was, and it got me thinking back to when I was a college coach recruiting the southern part of Illinois and came across two rather unusual mascots that schools were using; the Orphans of Centralia HS (IL) and the Midgets of Freeburg HS (IL). Coming across both of those have proven to be useful material at dinner parties and during other casual conversations.

That train of thought led me to wondering what the strangest high school mascots in the country might be. So I took on the project over the last few days, and while I found no shortage of funny, clever, weird, and downright offensive mascots, I found 14 that really stood out to me as strange. Included below initial list are a handful that couldn't be ignored, so I created an "Honorable Mention" category.

In order to make the cut of 14, the mascot had to have an actual depiction of some kind, and the mascot had to be unique to the particular school. Take a look, and enjoy.

Blooming Prairie HS (MN) Awesome Blossoms

awesomeblossoms

Thought: Really? Because Blossoms just wasn't enough? I'd like to know who came up with this one.

Mt. Clemens HS (MI)Battlin Bathers

battlinbathers

Thought: There's something about guys fighting and bathing that isn't all that intimidating (or befitting of a mascot) for me.

Boiling Springs HS (PA)Bubblers

bubblers

Thought: What the heck is a "Bubbler"?

Robstown HS (TX)Cotton Pickers 

cottonpickers

Thought: Nothing about this one feels right...

Yuma HS (AZ)Criminals

criminals

Thought: Signs to "Support the Criminal football program" can't be too successful.

Frankfort HS (IN)Hot Dogs

hotdogs

Thought: Seems like they could have had a little more fun with the mascot choice to me.

Webb HS (TN)Feet

Feet

Thought: Pretty clever. I think "The Webb Toes" would have been a better choice though.

Aniak HS (AK) Halfbreeds

halfbreeds

Thoughts: Wow. Just wow.

Cary HS (NC)Imps 

Imps

Thought: This one should be a big hit with Game of Thrones fans.

Watersmeet HS (MI)Nimrods 

Nimrods

Thought: You mean to tell me that everyone's favorite second grade pun is an actual mascot somewhere?

Centralia HS (IL)Orphans

CentraliaOrphans

Thought: I'm not sure how to feel about this one...

Cairo HS (GA) Syrupmakers

syrupmakers

Thought: This has to be paying homage to the local heritage, and for that reason, I really like it.

Grimsley HS (NC)Whirlies

Whirlies

Thoughts: So, not a tornado...a "Whirlie"?

Poca HS (WV)Dots

pocadots

Thoughts: Dots was really the only logical choice here (although "Dancers" could have played well too). Well played Poca HS. That actual mascot costume though could use a bit of work.

Next week I'll try to take a look at some of the more interesting mascots in college football (but the Upper Iowa Peacocks are going to be tough to top). So if you have suggestions on a mascot I overlooked at the high school level, or a suggestion for strange college football mascots, let me know @CoachSamz or at doug@footballscoop.com.

Honorable Mention: Mountain State Academy (WV) Birdcage Cuckoos, The Midgets (Butternut HS, WI; Dickinson HS, ND; Estherville-Lincoln Central HS, IA; Freeburg HS, IL; Hurley HS, WI, McLaughlin HS SD; Minnewaukan HS, ND; Putnam County, MO), The Pretzels (New Berlin HS, IL and Freeport HS, IL), Alabama School for the Deaf (AL) Silent Warriors, Northwest Yeshiva HS (WA) 613s, the Truckers (Churchland HS, VA; Clintonville HS, WI; Norwalk HS, OH), the Unicorns (Columbus School for Girls, oh; Keffe Technical HS, MA; Keio Academy of NY, NY; Los Angeles Center for Enriched Studies, CA; MLK Jr. HS, Cleveland, OH; New Braunfels HS, TX; North Carolina School of Science and Math, NC; Selwyn HS, TX)