In 1936 The Brown Bears football team wins the first-ever Sugar Bowl, defeating the University of Tennessee 7-0.
In 1946 The Brown Bears men’s soccer team wins the first-ever NCAA Division I Men’s Soccer Championship.
In 2004 Joe Paterno is inducted into the Brown University Athletic Hall of Fame. Paterno was a quarterback for the Brown Bears football team from 1946-1949 and later became the head coach of the Penn State Nittany Lions, where he became one of the most successful and iconic coaches in college football history.
History of the Bears
The Brown Bears are one of college sports history's most storied and successful athletic programs. With a long tradition of excellence, the Brown Bears have competed at the NCAA Division I level since 1936. From their first season in 1936 to today, they have earned impressive championships and accolades for their teams and individual athletes.
The football team has won three Ivy League Championships (1958-59-60) and four undefeated seasons (1960, 1963–64–65). The men’s basketball team has also had its share of success with two Ivy League titles (1969 & 1990), while women’s basketball earned its first NCAA Tournament appearance in 2011. Other notable achievements include multiple conference titles by both baseball and softball teams; numerous individual national champions from track & field; eight All-Americans from rowing; five consecutive ECAC Hockey tournament appearances for men's hockey between 2004-2008; plus many more accomplishments throughout all sports offered by Brown University Athletics!
To this day, no other school can match what the Brown Bears have accomplished over nearly 80 years—a testament to the hard work and dedication to excellence that each student-athlete brings when they don their brown jerseys, proudly representing “the best little university there is." Whether you are a fan or alumnus yourself or appreciate significant collegiate athletics, you should recognize how special it is to be part of such a rich legacy that belongs exclusively to those who call themselves “Brown Bear."
College Sports Established
Providence, Rhode Island
1973 - Present / NCAA Division I
1921 - 1973 / University Division of the NCAA
1954 - Present / Ivy League
Bears - The Brown Bears are one of the most iconic teams in college sports. For decades, they have been a staple of NCAA competition, and their loyal fan base is known for their passionate support. But what many fans may not know is that the team's nickname has an exciting history behind it.
The origin of the name "Brown Bears" dates back to 1895 when a group of students from Brown University decided to form their football club and needed a mascot or symbol to represent them on game days. After some deliberation, they settled on using bears as their mascot because it was symbolic both for its strength and ferocity and its connection with nature - which reflected Brown University's commitment to environmental conservation at that period.
The choice also fit perfectly with Rhode Island’s state animal – the black bear – which further strengthened ties between school spirit and local pride amongst students attending Providence during this era.
From then onwards, any sporting event involving athletes representing Brown would feature players wearing brown uniforms adorned with either images or logos depicting bears, thus constantly solidifying “Brown Bears” into college sports folklore! Over 120 years later, the same logo remains proudly displayed across all athletic equipment used by current generations of student-athletes competing under the banner ‘Brown Bear Football.’
Men's Basketball 0
Women's Basketball 0
To qualify as the greatest player for this team, the player must have played one season for this team. If not, we will remove the player.
* verifies that player has played for this team as an added player by a fan.