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There are varying accounts of how Centralia High School was given their nickname, the Orphans. Most notably, a Chicago sportswriter said "they looked like a bunch of orphans but they sure could play basketball". During the great depression, Centralia High School and community was hit hard. The team was forced to wear uniforms that were reduced to rags. In the 1970's Centralia introduced girls athletics to the school and it was only fitting to name them the Orphan Annies.
In 1964 when Cobden made the state basketball playoffs, an opposing fan made the comment, "Whoever heard of a bunch of Appleknockers winning such a thing"? The name stuck and the school has been the Appleknockers ever since. Cobden is located in a farming community and surrounded by apple and peach trees. When fruit would get too large during the spring, the workers would use a large stick or pole to knock the fruit off the trees, hence Appleknocker.
The Cornjerker nickname was given to the Hoopeston High School sports teams around 1920 by Bob Poisall, a local sportswriter. A cornjerker was a laborer that pulled or jerked the ears of corn from the stock before modern machines were built to do it. Over the years, the Cornjerkers mascot has grown in popularity. The mascot, Jerky, has its own fathead and has had many articles featuring him.
Polo High School wasn't always known as the Marcos. At one time they were called the Apostles. No one knows why the school decided to change its nickname, but in 1939 the school held a vote and Marcos won with 163 votes, with the official mascot as an explorer.
In 1935, local fans and businessmen gave Coach J.H. Griffin a pair of wooden shoes carved by a local shoemaker, George Deymann. Deymann spent the majority of his life making shoes for residents of Teutopolis, which were worn during the winter months. Coach Griffin suggested that the shoes be painted gold and silver and then used as trophies for the annual homecoming games. Ever since, Teutopolis has embraced the name and are known as the Wooden Shoes.