Duck identity crisis?

EUGENE, Ore. -- Ask University of Oregon students what they call their beloved Duck, most say one name.

"I think his name is Puddles," said UO sophomore, Christine Leasure.

"Puddles," said junior Matt Kamery.

"Puddles," said UO graduate Ben Vermillion.

While they may love their Ducks, these Duck fans have it all wrong. This duck isn't named "Puddles" after-all. This discovery was shocking to many students.

"I might just drop out of college now," joked senior Nick Ray.

"So is this like a conspiracy?," asked Kamery. "What's going on here?"

Officially, the webfoot's name is "the Duck". Over the years, there's been evidence the University is trying to separate itself from the name "Puddles".

Last year, The Duck Store sold posters with Puddles' name crossed out. So is Puddles just a pet name? Nope. There's actually story behind this bill, one that goes back nearly a century.

The name "Puddles" really refers to a live duck, one Duck fans brought to football and basketball games in the 1920's. Students would come to the Millrace and pluck a duck out of the water. They'd take it up to McArthur Court and let it go during basketball games.

Puddles and his various offspring were part of the UO sports culture until the 1940's when repeated complaints by animal rights activists brought the tradition to an end. The name withstood the test of time and will continue to do so with fans who say it simply fits the bill.

"I'm pretty attached to Puddles so I don't know how I feel about this," said Kamery.

"I'll probably still refer to him as Puddles," said UO graduate Claire Dewey.

If you want to get your hands on one of those Puddles posters, you are out of luck. The Duck Store said they are sold out.