Iowa State Cyclones Tickets for Sale

In 1954, a group of students that included pep council president Chuck Duncan, brainstorming on how to build more school spirit, approached Collegiate Manufacturing of Ames on creating a school mascot. Since the consensus was that you "couldn't stuff a Cyclone," a bird figure using the school colors (cardinal and gold) was the eventual choice. Duncan and the Pep Council then got a green light from ISU alumni director "Red" Baron, sports information Director Harry Burrell and Cyclone Club director Ray Donals.
A cardinal-like bird was introduced at the 1954 Homecoming pep rally. A contest was held to determine the cardinal's name. The entry "Cy" won. Cy is short for Cyclones, and the cardinal figure represents the school colors as well as the original Iowa State nickname.
In the summer and early fall of 1895, an unusually large number of what were then referred to as "cyclones" wreaked havoc upon the state of Iowa. Had the United States Weather Service known a little bit more about climatology at that time, Iowa State might today be known as the "Tornadoes."

That fall, however, an underdog Iowa State 11 played at Northwestern. After building a commanding 30-0 halftime lead, the Cardinals, as ISU's teams were then named, went on to post a shocking 36-0 rout of the Wildcats.

The game story headline in the next morning's Chicago Tribune read "Iowa Cyclone Devastates Evanstontown," and since that famous moment in Iowa State gridiron history, the athletic teams have been known as the "Cyclones."