Burdick’s new Ninja Warrior course named “The Jungle”

By: Mary-Ellen Davis, Staff Writer

Photo by Brendan Felch/ The Towerlight

After receiving almost 100 submissions during the naming contest for the Ninja Warrior-style obstacle course in Burdick Hall, Campus Recreation unveiled the official name  as The Jungle” via social media Nov. 20.

The naming contest for the course took place throughout the month of October, and ended Nov. 9. Submissions were sent in via email from a wide array of people, including students and alumni of the University, said Assistant Director of Fitness for Campus Recreation Eric Barron.

“We allowed people to submit more than one name, so total submission was almost 100,” Barron said. “Because we had a couple people that submitted multiple, we had about 75 people submit at least one name or more. So, we had about 100 total different names to choose from.”

Kacy Catanzaro, who graduated from Towson University in 2012, was the first woman to complete the Warped Wall and a City Finals course on the television sports challenge show “American Ninja Warrior.”

Despite all of the submissions, however, no one voted to keep the name as the Ninja Warrior Course. Barron said that while some kept the name similar, there wasn’t one with the exact name.

“A lot of people just altered it a little bit, so it was like Tiger Warrior, American Tiger Warrior, so they just kind of changed the names a little bit.”

To keep the submission process fair, Barron used a point system after all of the submissions were in. Barron gave each member of the Campus Recreation professional staff an opportunity to allot points to their top three names. Their favorite name got three points, their second favorite got two points and their third favorite got one point. From there, Barron narrowed it down to the top three that had the most point values.

“It wasn’t an arbitrary choice by me just saying, ‘Oh, I like this one the best,’” Barron said. “Then from there I submitted that to our senior leadership team, so that’s the director of campus recreation and the associate directors. And then from there they chose the final name.”

According to Barron, Campus Recreation selected the course’s name this way to get students involved in the naming process.

“I thought this would be a unique way to get them involved and get them excited for something,” Barron said.

The Towson University Campus Recreation Department will be the only one in the nation with a course like this one.

Barron said he had his own list of names in mind, but that he was never able to settle on one.

“I’ve juggled around several names,” Barron said. “The reason I’ve never really decided [on] one was [because] I know on the back end, administratively, the [title has to be a] functional title, but also [a] catchy title. I liked the idea of utilizing its heritage, which was Japanese heritage.”

Sophomore Emma Kehrman said she really likes the name of the course, and that she would be sure now to blast the song “Jungle” by the X-Ambassadors while using the climbing wall in the gym. Her only concern is that the name is a frequently used trope.

“I feel there are many fitness places that have been nicknamed ‘The Jungle,’” Kehrman said. “Even cities are called the concrete jungle, so I fear that name will be swept up into a large pile of nameage [sic] and be forgotten.”

Freshman Sarah Oliver has similar feelings. Though she likes the name, Oliver believes the name may have been better if it was closer to a ropes course.

Nevertheless, Oliver is very excited to use the course and the rest of the gym.

“I hope the gym finishes soon,” she said.

Campus Recreation will host a grand opening celebration for the 94,000 square foot Burdick Hall expansion on Jan. 31.


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