The legend behind the mascot of the University of Michigan: In 1803 Michigan and Ohio entered into a border dispute referred to as the “Toledo War.” As the two states argued over the state line, Michiganders came to be called ‘wolverines.’ It is unclear whether Michigan natives pinned this name on themselves to show their tenacity and strength, or whether Ohioans chose the name in reference to the gluttonous, aggressive habits of the wolverine. But from then on, Michigan was labeled the “Wolverine State.” When the University of Michigan was founded, it adopted the nickname of the state it represented. In 1923, UofM football coach Fielding Yost set out to find a wolverine as a mascot and in 1927, ten wolverines were obtained from Alaska and placed in the Detroit Zoo. For football games, two of these wolverines were brought into Michigan Stadium and carried around in cages. The legacy was born.
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