Last week I asked fans to answer a survey question about where the slogan "East Kennewick Ugly" came from. Fans of the Kennewick High School Lions embrace the term. My friend thought it came from a locker room pep talk by former coach Ed Troxel. No one who answered the survey could 100-percent confirm that, and several had differing stories. One of them is quite disturbing.

  • It happened in the 1990s. I am an alumni, EKU Class of '93. In 1990 a football player, I do believe it was a Mr. T. Puckett, coined the "Ugly." Trox repeated it! We may have been the poor kids school but we'll still kick your butt and it won't be pretty! It's tradition. It's unconditional Lion Pride for life.
  • Nathaniel Blum came up with it.
  • The players' parents came up with it.
  • Marty Rios said it in the 1990s.

And here's the disturbing explanation. I hope it's not true:

In the 1980s the Pasco Bulldogs wanted to call the Kennewick Lions "pussies" but were afraid of getting in trouble. So instead, they called them "uglies" from the slang phrase "bumping uglies." It evolved to "East Kennewick Uglies."

I don't know why my Alma Mater has embraced it."