In case you didn’t realize it, it’s Shark Week.You should have realized it, of course, because it’s basically the third-best week of the year after the week between Christmas and New Years and spring break. But I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt. Maybe you’ve been really busy at work, or you belong to some weird religion that doesn’t believe in sharks.
But I digress. Like I said, it’s Shark Week. So today, we’re paying tribute to nature’s most fearsome dead-eyes predators with this list of sports teams named after sharks.
Now, right off the bat you probably assume, oh, there must be dozens of teams named after sharks. But sadly, that is not the case. Apparently people seem to be under the impression that you can only name a team after sharks if said team plays somewhere in the vicinity of an ocean. And this false believe severely limits the number of teams named after cartilaginous fish.
Someday, God-willing, this will change, and we’ll have tons of pro sports teams around the world named after all sorts of sharks. But for now, we’ll have to settle for the teams you see here.
Take a look, and may you and yours have a blessed and happy Shark Week.
The Wilmington Sharks are about as low down the sports pyramid as I was willing to go for this list. They're a baseball team in the Coastal Plain League, a wood-bat collegiate summer league, which would be on-par with short-season Single-A or extended spring training ball.
As you can see, they don't put much of their operating budget into uniforms, but they do have one of the greatest shark logos in in sports history. (Check it out here.) So that's pretty neat.
13. Wilmington Sharks
Nova Southeastern University is located in Davie, Florida, a town of 91,000 people that's part of the Miami metropolitan area. Their sports teams used to compete in the NAIA, but now they compete in the NCAA Division II. And obviously, they are the sharks.
As for the mascot, his name is Razor. I know he kinda looks like a buck-toothed dolphin, but I assure you he is a shark.
12. Nova Southeastern University Sharks
Miami Dade College is part of the Florida College System, and it lies somewhere between a community college and a regular, four-year university. They do confer bachelors degrees, but they also confer associates degrees and other technical certificates.
More importantly, yes, they have sports teams (such as women's softball). And yes, those teams are called the Sharks.
11. Miami Dade College Sharks
FYI, the Lingerie Football League—oh, I'm sorry, the Legends Football League—isn't the only professional women's football league in America. There is also the Women's Football Alliance, or WFA, and as you probably gathered from this clever promotional photo, they don't play in the underwear.
As for the New York Sharks, here, they are the longest-running and most successful WFA team in the history of the league...which only goes back to 2008.
10. New York Sharks
Meet the University of South Carolina Beaufort Sand Sharks. They may only compete in the NAIA, but they have shark uniforms.
And no, that's not the coach. That's the University Chancellor Jane T. Upshaw...rocking a sweet turtleneck.
9. University of South Carolina Beaufort Sand Sharks
The Shanghai Sharks of the Chinese Basketball Association have signed such former NBA stars as Ron Artest and Gilbert Arenas (pictured here). However, they're probably most famous for developing the former NBA player who now serves as the team's president.
I am talking, of course, about Yao Ming.
8. Shanghai Sharks
The Jupiter Hammerheads are the Class-A Advanced affiliates of the Florida Marlins. They share a stadium with the Palm Beach Cardinals, Class-A Advanced affiliates of the St. Louis Cardinals. (Not coincidentally, the Marlins and Cardinals share that same stadium during spring training every year.)
As for the Hammerheads' mascot, his name is Hamilton R. Head. And while he may be goofy-looking, this kid thinks he's hilarious.
7. Jupiter Hammerheads
The Clearwater Threshers, affiliates of the Philadelphia Phillies, play in the Single-A Florida State League along with the Jupiter Hammerheads. For those of you who like trivia, players who have donned the Thresher cap include Chase Utley, Cole Hamels, Ryan Howard, and Pedro Martinez.
6. Clearwater Threshers
Obviously, when it comes to sports teams named after sharks, Florida is number one.
Anyway, the Jacksonville Sharks plays in the Arena Football League. They won ArenaBowl XXIV in 2011, which is probably the only pro sports championship the city of Jacksonville will ever get.
(Get it? Because the Jaguars suck?)
5. Jacksonville Sharks
The Sale Sharks are based in the town of Sale in the Borough of Trafford in Greater Manchester. (FYI, English geography is confusing.) They play in the Aviva Premiership, the top professional rugby league in England. They're mascot here is named Sharky, which is really original.
4. Sale Sharks
The Sharks, based in the KwaZulu-Natal province of South Africa, play in both the Currie Cup (South Africa's top club competition) and Super Rugby (which is like the Champions League of rugby in the Southern Hemisphere).
You probably don't want to mess with their fans. They're pretty hardcore.
3. KwaZulu-Natal Sharks
Up next we have yet another rugby team, this time from the National Rugby League, Australia's number one rugby competition. As you can see, they run out of the tunnel through a giant inflatable shark mouth, which probably reminds you, dear North American reader, of the...
2. Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks
Yes, at number one, we have probably the only team on this list you've ever heard of. The San Jose revolutionized NHL uniforms in 1991 with their teal sweaters, and to this day they still have one of the best crests in the league.
Unfortunately, while real sharks are known to swallow their prey whole, the hockey Sharks usually choke on their adversaries.
Just ask the L.A. Kings.