Where the Wildcats Are!

mascot costumes 1974 to present

The first official Wildcat costume made its debut at a Dartmouth football game in the fall of 1968. The idea had been conjured up by the Alpha Phi Omega fraternity during a discussion of service projects for the University. Review the history of the Wildcat mascot.

Vote for Gnarlz to win the America East Chance 2 Dance competition on or before Friday, March 1.

  • 1974 mascot

    “Mascots keep up the spirit of the teams, cheerleaders, and fans,” said Bob St. Cyr ’69, a zoology major from Manchester who wore the Wildcat costume for all football games during his senior year.

  • 1983 costume

    The first ’Cat costume was the handy work of a “Pep Cat”—as the cheerleaders were called. Lynda Brearey '66 created the costume to boost morale during a losing season. Many costumes followed; this one is from 1983.

  • 1991 costume

    1991 saw the appearance of a ferocious blue Wildcat with a frightening set of incisors...

  • 1995 costume

    ...while 1995 brought in a casual, jauntier style.

  • 2000 Wild E. Cat

    In 2000, Wild E. Cat came on the scene, the same year that UNH Athletics introduced a new logo (on the jersey shoulder).

  • Wild E. Cat playing hockey

    “What most people do not know? I was the one who stopped Darren Haydar’s slapper during the warm-up skate in 2001,” pronounced Wild E. Cat, who practices with both the women's and men's hockey teams.

  • Gnarlz

    When Wild E.'s schedule became overbooked, another costumed cat was deemed necessary. This time a fiercer, more athletic and muscular-looking costume was created. Athletics called the new character “Gnarlz,” the name chosen by popular vote in a poll of fans and students.

  • Wild E. Cat makeover

    Wild E. Cat himself underwent a makeover in the summer of 2010, with the explicit goal of losing a little “fluff ”and gaining a lot more “buff.”

  • Wild E. Cat clapping

    After three months of intensive physical training, a more athletic, but still adorable, Wild E. Cat emerged.

  • Wild E. Cat hugging student

    One of Wild E.'s favorite duties is to greet students and their families. Taking advantage of every opportunity, the affable ’Cat finds Move-In Day to be the perfect time for making friends.

  • Gnarlz and President Huddleston leading parade

    Wild E. may be a hugging fool, but Gnarlz loves a parade. Even President Huddleston has to stay on his toes around Gnarlz, who tends to dash out ahead of other natural leaders, trying to assume the "alpha" role.

  • Wild E. Cat, Gnarlz and the wildcat statue

    The Wildcat trio proudly watches over campus athletics and community events, an unbeatable team, and a fine example of UNH sportsmanship, ability and savior faire.

Photography by UNH Photo Services. Slideshow by Marjorie Foote, Editorial and Creative Services. Special thanks to Mylinda Woodward, UNH Archives, and Bridget Finnegan, New and Emerging Media.