Brown Bears

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This article is about the athletics teams at Brown University. For the animal, see brown bear.
Brown Bears
University Brown University
Conference Ivy League
NCAA Division I
Athletic director Jack Hayes
Location Providence, RI
Varsity teams now 38[1]
Football stadium Brown Stadium
Basketball arena Pizzitola Sports Center
Baseball stadium Murray Stadium
Mascot Bruno
Nickname Bears
Fight song Ever True To Brown
     Seal brown       cardinal red       white

The Brown Bears is a name shared by all sports teams at Brown University, a university located in Providence, Rhode Island in the United States. The Bears are part of the Ivy League conference. Brown's mascot is Bruno. Both the men's and women's teams share the name, competing in 37 National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I sports. In football, the Bears, along with all other the Ivy League teams, compete in the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS).[1]


Brown's first mascot was a burro, first introduced in 1902 in a game against Harvard.[2] The burro mascot was not retained after it seemed frightened by the noise of the game, and due to the laughter it provoked.[3] The University originally settled on the Bruin, but later changed it to a bear after the head of bear was placed at an archway above the student union in 1904.[3] In 1905 The Bears introduced Helen, the university's first live bear mascot, at a game against Dartmouth.[2] Bruno, Brown's current mascot, was introduced in 1921, originally also as a live bear.[3] A number of bears represented Bruno over the years, later being represented by a person in costume by the late 60's.[3]

Varsity athletics[edit]

The Bears participate in 37 NCAA sports, ranking them third among all Division I institutions for number of sports offered.[1] The Bears first fielded a football team in 1878, playing Amherst College in their inaugural game.[4] In addition to football, the Bears participate in baseball, men's and women's basketball, men's and women's crew, men's and women's cross country, equestrian, fencing, field hockey, men's and women's golf, gymnastics, men's and women's ice hockey, men's and women's lacrosse, skiing, men's and women's soccer, softball, men's and women's squash, men's and women's swimming and diving, men's and women's tennis, men's and women's track and field, volleyball, men's and women's water polo, and wrestling.

Notable athletes[edit]

The Bears have produced many athletes. One of Brown's most famous athletes is John Heisman, namesake of the Heisman Trophy. Before finishing college at the University of Pennsylvania, Heisman played college football at Brown as a lineman.[5]

  • Porter Collins (Class of 1998) – American Rower, Brown Men's Crew Varsity Eight, 1996 and 2000 Olympian, 1999 World Champion in US Eight[6]
  • Xeno Müller – Swiss Rower, Brown Men's Crew, 1996 Gold Medalist and 2000 Silver Medalist in Single Scull at Olympic Games, 3x Silver Medalist in Single Scull at World Championships[6]


External links[edit]