Football Players to Eat Corn, Not Bugs

Bugeaters and Cornhuskers:

Years ago University of Nebraska football players were called the Bugeaters, after the state-wide nickname which came from Nebraska’s numerous bull bats (Chordeiles minor), called bugeaters because they fed on bugs. The name was also apt because of the “poverty-stricken appearance of many parts of the state.”

In 1900 a sports correspondent began calling the team “the Cornhuskers,” and by 1907 the name was accepted. Charles S. ‘Cy’ Sherman, Lincoln sports editor, was credited with having conceived the name, and in 1933 the University Athletic Board presented him with a gold football, properly inscribed.

Nebraska State Historical Society General Collection, 7294-7017 p. 91

History Nebraska General Collection, (NSHS Object ID: 7294-7017)

Become a Member!

Our members make history happen.

Join Now

You May Also Enjoy

Recent Archeological Work at Ft. Atkinson

Recent Archeological Work at Ft. Atkinson

Willie Nelson FarmAid Concert

Willie Nelson FarmAid Concert

Marker Monday: Nehawka Flint Quarries

Marker Monday: Nehawka Flint Quarries

About History Nebraska
History Nebraska was founded in 1878 as the Nebraska State Historical Society by citizens who recognized Nebraska was going through great changes and they sought to record the stories of both indigenous and immigrant peoples. It was designated a state institution and began receiving funds from the legislature in 1883. Legislation in 1994 changed History Nebraska from a state institution to a state agency. The division is headed by Interim Director and CEO Jill Dolberg. They are assisted by an administrative staff responsible for financial and personnel functions, museum store services, security, and facilities maintenance for History Nebraska.
Explore Nebraska
Discover the real places and people of our past at these History Nebraska sites.

Upcoming Events

View our new and upcoming events to see how you can get involved.

Become a Member

The work we do to discover, preserve, and share Nebraska's history wouldn't be possible without the support of History Nebraska members.

Latest Hall of Fame Inductee

The Nebraska Hall of Fame was established in 1961 to officially recognize prominent Nebraskans.

Become a Member

The work we do to discover, preserve, and share Nebraska's history wouldn't be possible without the support of History Nebraska members.
Nebraska Collections

History Nebraska's mission is to collect, preserve, and open our shared history to all Nebraskans.

Our YouTube Video Collection

Get a closer look at Nebraska's history through your own eyes, with our extensive video collections.

Additional Research Resources

History Nebraska Research and Reference Services help connect you to the material we collect and preserve.

Support History Nebraska
Make a cash donation to help us acquire, preserve, and interpret Nebraska’s history. Gifts to History Nebraska help leave a legacy and may help your taxes, too! Support the work of History Nebraska by donating to the History Nebraska Foundation today.

Volunteers are the heroes of History Nebraska. So much history, so little time! Your work helps us share access to Nebraska’s stories at our museums and sites, the reference room, and online.