Which Olympic sport is your uni?

If these articles were one, we’d have a gold medal by now

You can’t escape the Olympics: it’s on every screen in every pub, every front page of every paper and everyone’s lips in every single conversation.

If you’re a student, you’re probably more aware of it than most. After all, what else have you got to do during summer? You’re probably watching all the events you can – and you’re probably wondering which one your university would be.

OK, maybe you’re not. But we’re going to tell you anyway.

Oxford – Polo

Polo hasn’t been played in the Olympics since 1936, which is the year in which everyone at Oxford thinks they’re living.

Oxford Brookes – Water polo

You say you play polo, but then have to clarify that you actually play water polo. The one that’s basically handball in a pool, not riding around on sick horses and smashing balls around with long sticks.

By the time you tack “Brookes” onto the end of Oxford, all interest in you has disappeared – after all, the closest you’ve come to playing a real sport is beer pong before Bridge.

Durham – Shooting

We get it, you’re posh. You don’t have to shoot massive, noisy guns to remind everyone and wear weird clothes all the time – the locals are going to hate you anyway, rifle or not.

Newcastle – Pistol shooting

Although it’s near to shooting, it really lacks the same sophistication and recognition. Put it this way: if the Russell Group were the Modern Pentathlon, Newcastle would be the bit that no-one really cares about.

Northumbria – Cross-country running

If you’re trying to get away from your parents in the home counties, what better way is there than to run cross-country to the arse end of Newcastle.

Cambridge – Archery

Cambridge. Archery. Both of them look so good in the films – old-fashioned yet dynamic, and frequented by good-looking upstarts with the wistful air of times-gone-by.

Then you actually see the people in real life, and you realise with horror: it’s just loads and loads of nerds.

Bristol – Gymnastics

Because watching people contort their bodies in weird ways and dance around with floaty ribbons is bound to give you PTSD flashbacks of the Motion dancefloor.

Leeds – Cycling

It’s the age old question. Who consumes more drugs: Leeds students or professional cyclists?

People who go to Leeds think they’re a bit cool for knowing about HighRise, much like anyone with a £2k bike and lycra thinks they’re the business – but all you’ll gain from going to uni here is a 2:2, some retro sports gear and a mild doping habit.

Leeds Beckett – Rugby sevens

Speaking only in the language of grunts and physical violence as they barge their way through scrums on the Pryzm dancefloor, when you’re talking to a Beckett student it always feels like there’s just something missing.

Put it this way – they’re a few players short of a team.

Sheffield – Basketball

Allegedly it’s good, although no-one in the UK has ever seen any actual evidence to back this up.

Manchester – High jump

You live in Fallowfield – obviously you’re better at getting high than anyone else. Take some tips from your spiritual athlete cousins, then, and the barriers at Pangaea next year should be a piece of piss.

Man Met – Hammer throw

Always hammered, always throwing up: the typical Man Met student is much more atuned to lifting heavy things with grunts than anything too academic.

You only live a hammer’s throw away from Koh Tao though, so who’s the real winner here?

Salford – Javelin

Because announcing that you were going to Salford through clearing was like throwing a javelin through your parents’ hearts.

York – Tennis

Both bastions of Britishness: strawberries and cream, dull surroundings and an atmosphere more flaccid than a graduation ceremony in Central Hall. Andy Murray would fit right in here, wouldn’t he?

York St John – Table tennis

Riding on the coattails of an actual sport, lumping table tennis in with tennis is like allowing YSJ to have “York” in their name. One’s not a sport, the other’s not an academic institution.

Exeter – Equestrian

The only reason you’re here is because daddy’s money could pay for all the tutors and teaching to get you in.

The horse-faced gurners in The Cavern trot around the dancefloor like they’re doing dressage, knowing full well they’ll never be quite as popular as their mates who went to Manchester or Leeds.

Liverpool – Fencing

Don’t be fooled by how posh everyone is – make one wrong move and you run a real risk of getting stabbed.

UCL – Relay

In a relay race, the most important thing is the baton. Now imagine that instead of a baton, it’s a giant pile of money. And instead of a toned runner waiting to receive it, it’s the gaping financial abyss which is living in London.

The only redeeming feature of this whole setup is that you’re only forking out for rent once a semester, although with how much you’re paying it might as well be four times a minute.

Imperial – Judo

People who do martial arts often use it as a cover for their weird Google search history. You probably have multiple samurai swords hanging up around your bedroom and you’re really into anime and other weird stuff.

Imperial students should venture outside once in a while – there’s a whole world outside of your bedroom and your judo robes.

King’s – Skateboarding

Skateboarding is the sort of thing you do if you think you’re super gnarly, but are actually extremely mainstream.

Like going to King’s College, growing dreads and going to political protests, but still spending every Wednesday downing VKs in Walkabout.

LSE – Canoe

Canoeing is the geekiest sport in the world. Who cares if you can go really fast in a banana-shaped bit of plastic using a paddle?

Yeah, you have to be really fit to do it, just like you have to be really intelligent to get into LSE – but it also comes with the side effect of not having a personality.

Hull – Hurdles

Never graceful, never desirable and never anyone’s first choice. You’ll have to jump over a lot of hurdles in your life, but the hardest will be trying to get a job with a degree from the University of Hull.

Warwick – 50km race walk

When you go to the University of Warwick, you become accustomed to travelling long distances at a snail’s pace: whether you’re travelling between Leamington Spa and campus or between your halls and Smack, 50km is a doddle to you.

Keele – Steeplechase


Sussex – Discus

If ultimate frisbee were an Olympic sport, the students of Brighton would win gold every time. However the closest thing is discus, which unfortunately requires a lot more muscle than you often see on the top-knotted vegans of the University of Sussex.

Lancaster – Pole vault

Lancaster is so high up the league tables that going there feels like a real achievement – it’s only when you get to the top that you realise you’re leaping into a bang average uni and a bang average degree.

Your tumbling descent into self-pity will be swift, but at least you have the crash mat of daddy’s money and nights at Sugarhouse to protect you.

Coventry – Shot put

Coventry man throw big rock at sky.

Chester – Diving

Bet you didn’t do a triple-tuck back flip when you fell all the way to the bottom of the league tables.

Southampton – Badminton

Just like the university of Southampton, you can never be that proud of your achievements if you’re a badminton player.

Sure, it takes skill/AAB to get in – but for some reason, like the fact you enjoy Jesters, it’s the sort of thing you don’t really want to tell anyone about. 

Aberystwyth – Running

Because you must have been running away from something to end up at fucking Aberystwyth.

Falmouth – Sailing

Sailors at the Olympic games have a pretty rough time. Unless it’s a city near the sea, they’re housed miles away, don’t live with everyone else and have fuck all else to do.

At least, unlike the students of Falmouth, they didn’t choose this miserable existence.

Bath – Field hockey

On paper, both Bath and field hockey have the potential to be great, what with all the beautifully toned people doing technically skilful things.

But when you look a bit closer, you see it for what it really is: vacuous blonde people doing very few things of note in a place/sport which very few people care about.

Nottingham and Nottingham Trent – Volleyball and beach volleyball

Volleyball is not an easy sport to play, just like Nottingham is not an easy uni to get into. It has all the excitement of watching a real sport. But if you do watch a game of volleyball, you’re probably going to be left wanting just a little bit more.

Thankfully it’s always overshadowed by it’s fitter, funner, sunnier cousin just down the road. And just like most Trent students would rather be a poly than a cunt, most people would rather take the beachy option any day of the week.

Birmingham – Football

Saying that you like football or that you go to Birmingham receives the same shrug of indifference.

Yeah, it’s a good uni, but it’s just a bit middle-of-the-road. You can’t make your own decisions about what you like and don’t like, so you hedged your bets and just went for a uni in between your friends who went north and the rest who stayed south.

Aston – Handball

No, that’s not real. We don’t believe you.

Loughborough – Triathlon

How do you have the time for so many sports? Do you have time for anything else?

Triathletes obviously weren’t good enough to specialise in one of the three disciplines, which makes them similar to Loughborough students: people who didn’t go to uni through academic merit, but because they can throw and catch.

UEA – Swimming

Everyone at UEA is so wet, you’d think they had their lectures in a swimming pool. Is the butterfly stroke something to do with swimming, or is it what you do to your BFF’s hair while holding it back when she’s had too many shots at the LCR?

RHUL – Synchronised swimming

It’s not real swimming and it’s not really in London.

QUB – Boxing

Hard as nails and fearsome in the ring and on the dancefloor, the Irish famously won in the last Olympics when it came to “riding and fighting.”

It’s understandable, as you’ll inevitably end a night at Limelight shirtless, with a blacked-out memory and a few missing teeth.

St Andrews – Golf

Literally the only interesting thing about St. Andrews is its golf course – and just like golf, it’s unnecessarily stuffy, dominated by Americans and a good night out there is about as common as a hole-in-one.

Edinburgh and Glasgow – Long jump and triple jump

Both will get you far and both look pretty glorious, but one of them is just a bit weirder than the other.

Cardiff – Weightlifting

You have to be pretty strong to be at the bottom of the Russell Group pile, the weight of all the other good unis on your shoulders.

Stirling – Marathon

After four long years of slogging here, people are going to start asking questions. What are you running away from? Who hurt you? Other universities do exist south of the border, you know.

Plymouth – Wrestling

Wrestling with the fact that you spent £27k on a degree from Plymouth is possibly harder than wrestling a big Azerbaijani chap for a gold medal.

Kingston – Bobsleigh

No, the other Kingston. The one in London.