HOME ~ College Football History
One of the most recognizable athletic logos in the nation is the K-State
Powercat. The logo was introduced by Bill Snyder shortly after his
arrival in Manhattan as the attitude of the entire athletics department
and University was changing.
Manhattan native Tom Bookwalter, in cooperation with head coach Bill
Snyder, created the powerful logo that is a prominent feature on
K-State football helmet, at Wagner Field, on the back of the Dev Nelson Pressbox, clothing, flags, bottled water, vanity plates for cars and
just about anywhere there can be one.
Previous logos used by the athletics department included a line drawing
of a wildcat head and the cartoonish "Willie the Wildcat" that is used
only by the Alumni Association.
Through its first 19 seasons of athletic competition, Kansas State had
used "Aggies" as its nickname. But prior to the 1915 season, new coach
John "Chief" Bender gave his squad the nickname "Wildcats." The moniker
lasted the one season Bender coached at K-State. Under Coach Z.G.
Clevenger in 1917, the school team became known as the "Farmers." In
1920 Coach Charles Bachman, took over the program, renaming the team
"Wildcats." This time, the nickname stuck.
Willie the Wildcat
Willie, a student bedecked in a oversized Wildcat head, is K-State’s No.
1 fan. Willie Wildcats are selected yearly by a panel appointed by the
cheerleader coach. The mascot is a central part of athletic contests and
attends functions around the state as an ambassador. Traditionally, the
identity of the student portraying Willie is kept secret.
Entertaining Wildcat fans of all ages, Willie the Wildcat has become a
well-recognized icon of Kansas State University both in the Manhattan
community and across the United States.
The Alma Mater was selected as a result of an 1888 campus contest. H.W.
Jones ('88) was responsible for K-State's prized result. Jones' original
work was four stanzas including the chorus. His version has been
slightly altered over the years to include just two stanzas and the
changing of the words from KSAC to KSU. The school's fight song is
entitled "Wildcat Victory."
"I know a spot that I love full well, 'Tis not in forest nor yet in
dell, ever it holds me with magic spell, I think of thee Alma Mater.
"KSU, we'll carry the banner high, KSU long, long may thy colors fly.
Loyal you to thee they children shall swell the cry.
"Hail, Hail, Hail Alma Mater."
"Fight you K-State Wildcats. For Alma Mater fight-fight-fight.
"Glory into combat for the purple and white. Faithful to our colors, we
shall ever be, fighting ever fighting for a Wildcat Victory!"