Vic the Demon

On November 8, 1923, by proclamation of President V. L. Roy and Coach H. Lee Prather, all athletic teams became known as the Demons. The name was decided upon by a contest open to all students with a grand prize of $10.00. A committee was appointed by the President to narrow down the names submitted by the student body. The final selection was decided by a vote of the students. The two most popular choices were Braves and Demons. Among other names submitted by students were Sharks, Daredevils, Musketeers, Pelicans, Prather’s Ground Hogs, Bloodhounds, Cyclops and Serpents. The official winners were Aileen Ritter and Truett Scarborough.

On September 22, 1984, the Demon received his official name by means of another contest, sponsored by the Athletic Department, the contest was open to faculty, staff, and students. The objective…to find a name for the Demon. Over 300 entries were submitted to the committee. The grand prize was an all-expense paid weekend at the Louisiana State Fair Classic. Ray Carney, an alum of the University, was the official winner with “Vic” which is short for “Victory”.

Vic the Demon 1, Chief Brave Spirit 0

Few events in Southland Conference history attracted as much attention as the October 24, 1992, spontaneous scrap between Northwestern’s mascot, Vic the Demon, and Northeast’s Chief Brave Spirit. “The Tussle in Turpin” happened midway through the second quarter of the 1992 NSU Homecoming game. KTBS-TV’s Sam Schaecter made it his “Play of the Day” and the footage was picked up by ESPN — who declared Vic the victor. Monroe’s News-Star newspaper and KNOE-TV conceded the decision to Vic, who rallied after the Chief knocked off his head. Scott Ostler of the San Francisco Chronicle called it “the fight of the year” and wrote, “Vic won a unanimous decision. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen a fight where someone’s head actually gets ripped off — and yet he rallies to win!” The footage made its way around the country, appearing on CNN Sports Tonight, ESPN College Gameday, NBC’s Today Show, KNBC in Los Angeles, WUSA in Washington, D.C., and many other TV outlets. USA TODAY featured a photo of the mascot melee in its October 28, 1992 issue. At year’s end, the fight was named — by viewer vote — fourth on CNN’s “Plays of the Year” show. The frisky mascots met again, with plenty of fanfare but no altercation, when NLU visited for a January 30, 1993 basketball game. Shane Clabaugh, the senior social work major who served as Vic, explained: “After he tore my head off, that was it. That goes against the code of ethics for mascots.” Clabaugh said he won: “I scored a takedown. I was mad because he knocked my head off. I wanted to take off his head — his real one.” The footage continues to pop up on ESPN and other networks when mascot escapades go awry.