What the heck is a Chanticleer, anyway?

Chanticleers’ logo
Chanticleers’ logo

Go Chanticleers! Huh?

Sounds like a cheer you’d hear at the local jousts or something, right?

Probably won’t hear it shouted at the College World Series game tonight when the Coastal Carolina Chanticleers (50-16) play the TCU Horned Frogs (48-16), either. They go by the nickname “Chants” (pronounced SHONTS).

What the heck is a Chanticleer, anyway?

A choral group from San Francisco, you might guess. And you’d be right. (Makes sense: Chanticleer is from old French, meaning “to sing clearly.”)

But technically, it’s a rooster, according to Webster’s. In the case of Coastal Carolina, it comes from Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, specifically, the Nun’s Priest Tale, about a proud rooster who dominates the barnyard.

“With all of his splendor and great looks,” the Chants’ website proclaims, “Chanticleer is also greatly feared and mightily respected by all.”

Well maybe not all. The mighty Horned Frog (actually a lizard which the Coastal Carolinians have probably never heard of) is fearsome in its own right. In Native American stories in the Southwest, horned frogs are depicted as ancient, powerful and respected, according to the TCU Horned Frogs’ website. “In some parts of Mexico, folklore persists that these creatures which weep tears of blood are sacred.”

It’s also the state reptile of Texas.

Prepare yourselves for a barnyard battle. Game time 8 p.m. on ESPN.

Tom Uhler: 817-390-7832, @tomuh