9 Great Sports-Inspired Baby Name Stories

November 22, 2015 Abby Sandel

By Abby Sandel

How far would you go to show your loyalty to your team?

You’ll buy season tickets, of course. Play the team’s signature song at your wedding reception? Maybe. Name your pet after a star player? Possibly.

But give your kiddo a name that clearly honors the team?

That’s devotion.

A Croydon couple has named their newborn Bermondsey Millwall Den after dad’s favorite football team – that’s soccer to us Americans. A little deciphering for the uninitiated: Millwall Football Club, or Millwall F.C., is the team. The Den is the stadium where they play, which is located in South Bermondsey, London. The club has been around since 1885, and in this location since 1993.

The new mom didn’t know that her husband would register their son with the superfan name until after he’d filled out the birth certificate.

She says she’s not mad. I’m not sure I’d be so forgiving!

Of course, there are plenty of sports-inspired baby names that fly under the radar. I’ve met a Jordan named for Michael, and the rise in names like Peyton and Brady proves that a game-winning quarterback can inspire namesakes galore.

Then there are the more obvious. Let’s take a look at some recent stories of sport-inspired baby names, starting with the subtle.

Calder Meaghan Mikkelson won Olympic gold as a member of Canada’s ice hockey team. Husband Scott Reid plays professional hockey, too, so it’s no surprise that their son’s name is a nod to the sport their family loves. Frank Calder was the first president of the National Hockey League, and the Calder Memorial Trophy is awarded to the rookie of the year. It’s also the name of the trophy won by the minor league championship team. Mikkelson and Reid sourced the name via Twitter. It’s a cool name with an obvious ice hockey connection, but it’s not too extreme.

Camden Camden has been catching on in recent years, possibly bolstered by fans of the Baltimore Orioles. The baseball team has played at Camden Yards since 1992. Baltimore’s Serra family are big O’s fans, so naturally they named their firstborn son Camden. His little sister’s name? Yardley. Her middle is Ruth, as in Babe.

Shea – The most popular baby name inspired by a stadium might be Shea, home to the New York Mets from 1964 until 2008. Actor Kevin James has a daughter named Shea. He’s said that he chose the name because he’s a long-time Mets fan, but he was lucky that his wife just plain liked the name. Since the Mets have moved to their new stadium, the Irish name has left the US Top 1000. Yet it remains a wearable sports-related name.

Cooper Callahan – A Florida couple decided that their son’s name should pay homage to ice hockey team Tampa Bay Lightning. Like Camden, Cooper is a Top 100 name in the US, but it’s also the last name of Lightning coach Jon Cooper. Ryan Callahan is one of the team’s star players.

Malkin Crosby Just a few months after Cooper Callahan’s birth, a Pittsburgh family named their son after two Pittsburgh Penguins playersRussia-born Evgeni Malkin and Canadian Sidney Crosby. Malkin is less subtle than Cooper, but it’s still not the most outlandish name on this list.

Drew Brees – Doubtless plenty of boys have been named after Drew Brees, the New Orleans Saints’ quarterback, just like Eli and other gridiron favorites have inspired parents. But one family went even farther, naming their son Drew Brees – first and middle names. The little guy happens to share a birthday with the former Super Bowl MVP.

Krimson Tyde – The University of Alabama’s sports teams are known as the Crimson Tide. Their football team is among the most successful and storied programs in college sports. Maybe it’s not such a surprise to see a birth announcement for a boy called Krimson Tyde in honor of the team. After all, I’ve seen more than one story about girls named Scarlett Gray after Ohio State University’s colors.

Elloebee – The Seattle Seahawks defense is nicknamed the Legion of Boom – L.O.B. for short. A few months ago, Seahawks fans turned the initials into a name for their firstborn daughter, Elloebee. It’s a truly unusual choice, but in our age of Ella and Emily, it does sound like a girl’s name. Another pro-Elloebee point? Players can be traded to rival teams, while names that honor the history of a team or a sport are less changing.

Ynwa – This might be the most unusual sports-inspired baby name story. A Norwegian couple named their daughter Karoline Ynwa. Ynwa comes from Liverpool Football Club’s anthem, “You’ll Never Walk Alone.” The song originally comes from the musical Carousel. There’s something quite lovely about the sentiment, beyond the associations with soccer. It’s quirky and daring, but works well as a middle name.

Have you ever considered a sports-inspired baby name?

About the author


Abby Sandel is nameberry's Senior Editor and resident Name Sage. Look for her baby name news round-ups every Monday, and her Name Sage columns on Wednesdays. Abby is the creator of the baby name blog Appellation Mountain and mom to Alex and Clio. For a chance to have your questions answered, contact Abby at

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