A banana slug is a slimy yellow mollusk that slides across the ground, leaving an oily residue wherever it goes. It is also the name of UC Santa Cruz’s athletic team. When Santa Cruz joined NCAA’s Division III in 1981, athletic officials presented the school with its first official mascot: the sea lion. But the students were having none of it; they wanted to be called the banana slugs. After five years of slug vs. sea lion rivalry, the slug won out and it has been the official mascot ever since.
See pictures of eighth-graders being recruited for college basketball.