Saint Louis University

The Billiken is a good-luck figure who represents "things as they ought to be." Designed and manufactured in the early 1900s as a bank and statuette, the Billiken was the national rage for about six months. By 1912, the Billiken and its value as a good luck charm were just memories for all except the loyal fans of Saint Louis University.

How the Billiken became attached to the University remains a matter of debate. It seems to have happened sometime between 1910 and 1911 at the height of Billikenmania.

A St. Louis sports writer decided that SLU football coach John Bender resembled the Billiken. Later, a cartoonist drew a caricature of Bender in the form of a Billiken and posted it in the window of a drugstore. The football team soon became known as Bender's Billikens.

One last point on Billiken luck: To buy a Billiken gives the purchaser luck, but to have one given to you is better luck.

For questions about the Billiken logos, please contact:

Declan O'Neill
Assistant Athletic Director
(314) 977-3235