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“Go Mounties?: The History of the North Greenville Mascot"

by Rachel Ham

You have probably seen the North Greenville mascot, the Crusader, running around at football games pumping up the crowd.

But what you may not know is that North Greenville’s mascot has not always been a crusader. In fact, our mascot has changed several times since the school came into existence in 1892.
In 1915 the first Athletic Association was organized. During that same year the first baseball and men’s basketball teams were formed. The first organized teams were nicknamed the Black Widow Spiders.
Just when the athletics at North Greenville were starting to take off, the mascot was changed from the Black Widow Spiders to the Moonshiners. Later the mascot was changed again, this time to the Mountaineers, which was then shortened to the Mounties.
It is probable that the faculty and administration wanted a mascot more suited to North Greenville’s ideals.
Also, it is thought that the name Mountaineers was chosen because the school itself sits in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
The Mounties mascot was modeled after the typical mountain man of the day, who would have worn heavy work boots, overalls, and a straw hat.
Women’s sports were also becoming quite popular. But throughout the first several years, the women’s teams were called Lassies instead of Mounties like the men.
Mrs. Inez Roddy, college bookstore supervisor, was a Lassie herself as a part of the women’s basketball team from 1965-1967.
As the college continued to expand and grow, so did the athletic department. The sports teams started to receive more recognition, especially in the local newspapers.
The college mascot was then changed once again to the one we are now familiar with, the Crusader.
It was students who originally proposed to change the mascot. Several students voiced their opinions in the Skyliner that the mascot’s image should be changed. Shortly after, a committee was formed to choose North Greenville’s new mascot.
After many suggestions from students and the committee, the idea of a crusader was given to the Executive Council for its consideration. After reviewing the sketch and making a few changes, the Executive Council sent it back to the Mascot Committee for further review.
The Mascot Committee then sent the sketches back through the Executive Council who then sent the idea on the Administrative Council for approval. The next step was to present the final recommendation to the Executive Board of Trustees. The Executive Board then met with the Board of Trustees for final approval and planning.
“The committees and councils were made up of faculty, staff, students, administration, the Board of Trustees and alumni,” an Alumni Newsletter from March 2001 said.
So after two years of planning and considering ideas, North Greenville’s mascot was officially changed from the Mounties (and Lassies) to the Crusaders in August of 2001.
“’We wanted the mascot to better represent the college’s goals and purpose, something that would identify the college better,’” Dr. Epting, President of North Greenville, said in the Alumni Newsletter.
It was quite a long process to alter North Greenville’s mascot, but students and faculty were dedicated to changing and improving their school’s overall image.
Change can be difficult for an institution. But in many cases it is very beneficial in the end. In North Greenville’s case, the new mascot brought about much-needed growth and development for the school’s athletic program.
 

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