|By: Tyler Scheuerman|
Every college has its traditions and we all know that tradition runs deep at Delgado. One of our traditions is also one of our most frequently asked questions…why the dolphin?
For several decades, the turtle was the school’s unofficial mascot, used by clubs and other departments. The annual yearbook was even known as The Turtle.
In 1972, Delgado announced plans to begin fielding a college athletic program. When the time came to choose a mascot for the school’s athletic teams, Athletic Director “Rags” Scheuermann decided that the turtle was not exactly the ideal athletic image the school should look for in a mascot.
The Student Government Association agreed and sponsored a contest to help choose the new Delgado moniker. Suggestions up for consideration included ducks, dogs, and an obvious front-runner, the dolphins. At the time, the Miami Dolphins were at the top of the National Football League standings as an undefeated powerhouse who would go on to win Super Bowl VII at the end of the season.
When the results of a special student election were tabulated, the Delgado Dolphin was born. The mascot transition took place during the 1972-1973 academic year. The turtle was retired and buried in an official jazz funeral near the pond and the dolphin took its place as the college mascot.
The baseball team adopted the nickname (and the green and gold color scheme) and athletic teams have borne the moniker ever since, representing Delgado at a local and national level.
In addition to sports, the dolphin is also used in various ways throughout the college community. The student newspaper, The Dolphin, covers campus news and voices student opinion. The Dolphin card serves as the official college ID. Most recently, the launch of Dolphin Radio offers the campus and surrounding area a blend of all types of music, news updates, special programming and more.
Forty years later, the "Dolphins" are still representing Delgado both on and off of the playing field, in and out of the classroom.