History of the Falcons
The Bowling Green Falcons are the intercollegiate athletic teams representing Bowling Green State University (BGSU) in Bowling Green, Ohio, United States. The Falcons compete in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) at the Division I level as a Mid-American Conference (MAC) East Division member. The men's ice hockey team competes in the Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA); men's soccer will move to the Missouri Valley Conference (MVC) in 2023, following the MAC shutting down its men's soccer league at the end of the 2022 season. Bowling Green sponsors teams in seven men's and 11 women's NCAA-sanctioned sports, and the football team competes in the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS), the highest level for college football. BGSU is one of only 15 universities in the United States that plays Division I FBS football and Division I men's ice hockey.
The Falcons' main rivals are the Toledo Rockets from the University of Toledo, separated by 20 miles (32 km) of Interstate 75 in northwestern Ohio, a rivalry contested in several sports. The best-known of these games is the annual football game known as the Battle of I-75. Initially, the winner of the game was awarded the Peace Pipe, a Native American peace pipe placed upon a wood tablet. Since 2011, the winner has been awarded a bronzed I-75 road sign.
College Sports Established
Bowling Green, Ohio
Bowling Green State University
1973 - Present / NCAA Division I
1921 - 1973 / University Division of the NCAA
1952 - Present / MAC Conference
1942 - 1952 / Independent
1933 - 1942 / Ohio Athletic Conference
1931 - 1933 / Independent
1921 - 1931 / Northwest Ohio League
1919 - 1921 / Independent
Falcons - Until 1927, Bowling Green State University was referred to as Bowling Green Normal University, for its teaching training curriculum. The school’s nickname was “The Normals”. That year a man named Ivan “Doc” Lake, who was a distinguished 1923 graduate of the University, and active athletics booster, suggested that the University needed new nickname. Doc Lake, then a sports reporter for the local Sentinel Tribune newspaper, had just finished reading an article about falconry. He suggested the University rename its nickname and mascot, “The Falcons.” He felt the bird was a fierce fighter with speed and courage. Doc Lake's suggestion of “The Falcons” met with instant general approval by members of the University.
Men's Basketball 0
Women's Basketball 0
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