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History Of The Wildcat

In 1926, a contest was conducted involving the entire university, to adopt a mascot for Villanova. Edward Hunsinger, a former All-American defensive end at Notre Dame, hit upon the nickname "Wildcats". Hunsinger was nicknamed the "Little General" of the legendary "Four Horsemen" and he had recently been added to Villanova's football staff as the assistant coach.

Mascot The name Wildcats refers to a wide variety of feral felines such as the bobcat, caracal, and lynx. Villanova's Wildcat most closely resembles the bobcat, which is found in the Southwest part of the United States. The term Wildcats is meant to convey the image of an animal that is successful in its quest to survive using its ferocious attitude, speed, agility, and alertness. The spirit of the Wildcat is embodied in all of our athletic teams.

Until the late 1970's the Villanova women's athletic teams were often referred to as the "Wildkittens". For a short period during the late 1970's and early 1980's the word "cat" was added to the name of the individual sports: "Trackcats", "Watercats", and "Polocats". Since then the nickname "Wildcat" has been universally used for all Villanova's athletic teams.

In 1930, 1945, 1947, and 1949 Villanova acquired a wildcat that was kept in a cage on campus at the Fieldhouse and appeared at both home and away Villanova football games. Each of the cats was named Count Villan. In 1945, Marine Private Bob Austin and Apprentice Seaman Clyde Cobb were in charge of the bobcat. Count Villan II, the cat of 1945, was feisty towards its caretaker. Behavior became a perennial problem with the cats; as they were caged in the Fieldhouse, paraded around in front of large crowds, and unaccustomed to the cold weather. The passing of Count Villan IV in 1950 drew the period of the live bobcat mascot to a close. Instead of a live animal, college officials then decided that a student would wear a costume of a wildcat and be the official mascot.

Will D. Cat is the mascot that attends all of our home games and entertains the fans while cheering on Villanova.

The Legend of the Wildcat by Joseph A Finisdore (1996)

I am a Wildcat-
A symbol of Villanova.
Cunning, perservance,
Strength, endurance-
I possess all of these.

I am a Wildcat-
Some call me a villain,
But, I am not-

I seek only to survive
Using my greatest weapon-
A fighting spirit
Given to me by the Creator.

I am a Wildcat-
I fear no one.
Though many have come to challenge me-
Few have defeated me-
None has ever conquered me.

I am a Wildcat-
Because of what I am,
You are!

And, you who would be Villanovans,
Before you do battle this day,
Look into yourselves and perhaps
You, too, will feel
The spirit that burns within me.

I am a Wildcat-