As I was watching the Syracuse Orange men's basketball team take on Georgia Tech at the Carrier Dome recently (Syracuse won 74 to 73 in overtime), my mind began to wander. Nothing unusual for me. I was looking at the players and wondering how Syracuse University came up with the colors orange and blue.

And so I went about searching for the answer, plus a few other Syracuse University tidbits that I, and maybe you, didn't know, but may find interesting. The Syracuse University website has a ton of interesting facts about the school.

As for the school colors, in 1890 the university became the only college in the nation with just one official color when it adopted the color orange. Before that, the university had two official colors, first light pink and pea green and then segued to light pink and blue. But, according to the Syracuse University website, the students wanted a bolder color after a sporting event with Hamilton College, noting how much their colors stood out. No other university had claimed orange, so it became the primary color for the college.

Some other interesting Syracuse University trivia from their website include Orange Central, which is a yearly celebration held in the fall for students, faculty, staff, and alumni, which they describe as an "...amped-up version of the traditional collegiate homecoming and reunion weekend", full of events and activities.

Also, there's the Legend of 44. Three of eleven Syracuse Orange football players who have worn the number 44 earned All-American honors including Elmira's own Ernie Davis, along with Floyd Little and Jim Brown. The Syracuse University website states that all university phone numbers begin with the number '44.'

And, did you know, the Syracuse University mascot wasn't always an orange (Otto)? In earlier years, the mascot was a warrior, gladiator, and even a dog wearing a helmet, among others. Check out this video of the history of the Syracuse Orange Mascot.

via Syracuse University


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