5 UC Legends You Didn’t Know That You Need to Know!

Whether you recently graduated or are a well-seasoned UC alumnus, you’re likely familiar with some of the university’s urban legends. Maybe you first heard about them while reading The Red & Black Book, while walking across McMicken Lawn to class, or hanging out with friends in TUC.

We’ll dive into five of the most popular UC myths and debunk if they are fact or fiction.

1. Nippert is buried beneath his memorial

According to legend, James Gamble Nippert, former UC lineman who died of an in-game injury on Thanksgiving 1923, is buried beneath his memorial in Nippert Stadium’s south end at the top of the student section.

Truth or False:

False. Jimmy was laid to rest in Spring Grove Cemetery, where Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity holds a memorial service each year.

2. A ghost haunts Blegen

Rumor has it that an apparition of a short male around 60 year old, wearing a tweed cap and jacket, roams the Archives & Rare Book stacks on the eighth floor of Blegen Library. The ghost is rumored to be a former classics professor who died in the 1960s.

True or False:

That is up for debate. Since the supposed ghost isn’t making himself readily available for questioning, the mystery still remains! 👻

3. Dead-end hallways in DAAP

If you believe the hype, then you might be convinced that the modern DAAP building has hallways and staircases leading to nowhere in particular.

True or False:

Very interesting and yet very false. Renowned architect Peter Eisenman did in fact design a dead-end staircase, but it just so happens to be in another Ohio city. At the Wexner Center for the Arts in Columbus, Eisenman designed a staircase that dead-ends directly into a wall, but he did not repeat this at the Aronoff Center for Design and Art at UC.

4. Worker entombed in Crosley Tower

The myth: Crosley Tower was poured as a single slab of concrete, one of the workers fell in, and since the pouring couldn’t be stopped, he was entombed there.

True or False:

Both! Yes, Crosley Tower was poured as a single piece of concrete -- but no, no one fell in or became entombed.

5. McMicken stone lions growl

The legend goes that the McMicken Hall stone lions, Mick and Mack (who have stood at the entrance of campus since 1904), will growl whenever a virgin walks by them. Oddly enough, Mick and Mack share this alleged tendency with the stone lions at the universities of Missouri and Michigan.

True or False:

Highly unlikely, but the verdict is still out. This is one of the university’s longest-living legends, dating back to pre-World War II. This urban myth is so familiar that it is documented on Snopes.com’s Urban Legend Reference Page!

Let us know which of the 5 urban legends you’re familiar with, which ones you maybe hadn’t heard of yet, and whether you have heard others!


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