Ram History and Traditions

Colorado State University's roots go back to 1870, when the institution was founded as the Agricultural College of Colorado. The school first opened its doors to students in 1879 with President Elijah Edwards and two faculty members. From these humble origins, a world-class institution grew. Today, Colorado State University has nearly 27,000 undergraduate students, is a Carnegie Class I research institution with annual research expenditures topping $330 million. The university has approximately 1,550 faculty in eight colleges and 55 academic departments and boasts more than 170,000 living alumni. Included in this list are everything from state governors, heads of corporations, Olympic gold medalists, teachers, researchers, artists and many other leaders in society.


As a new CSU student, you are expected to know and participate in the below traditions as you represent over 140 years of CSU tradition!

The Fight Song

Fight on you stalwart RAM Team
On to the goal
Tear the Buffalo's line asunder
As down the field we thunder.
Knights of the Green and Gold,
Fight with all your might.
Fight on you stalwart RAM team!

Listen to the Fight Song

Alma Mater

Hail to thee, our Alma Mater;
Colorado State.
Memories are everlasting
of this place so great.
May thy Green and Gold unite us,
loyal ever be.
Colorado State, our Alma Mater,
Hail, all hail, to thee.

Listen to the Alma Mater

The "A"

The letter "A" adorns the western hillside of Fort Collins.  Colorado State University was formally called Colorado A & M, and students were referred to as "Aggies."  The "A" was first white-washed in 1924.  It became a tradition for freshmen to paint the letter every year.  The Tradition continues today.

CAM the Ram

CAM the Ram is the official mascot of Colorado State University.  His name bears CSU history in that he is named for Colorado Agricultural and Mechanical College (the university's former name). Alumnus William Simpson'46 won a contest to name the bighorn sheep as the official mascot.  CAM is a Rambouillet Ram and has his own troop of Ram Handlers to help him out.  CAM makes regular visits to University events and local schools.

New Student Convocation and Green Out at Ram Welcome

Each Fall, every new incoming student gathers in Moby Arena wearing their forest green Forever Green T-Shirts. They hear a welcome from the President, and for the first time as one community, sing their CSU fight song together.

Forever Green T-Shirts

The For-Ever-Green tradition, established in 2003 by ASCSU, is a campus-wide collaborative outfitting students and alumni in green CSU t-shirts in an effort to unite RAM Fans at University and sports events. As a cherished symbol of school spirit, the back of the shirt will display the Fight Song, while a unique design will be commissioned for the front each year.

Ram Ruckus

Ram Ruckus is the official student spirit group of the CSU Rams. Started in August of 2012, Ram Ruckus was created by students, for students to engage in athletics and expand into every other aspect of student life. The idea of Ram Ruckus was to create pride in everything you do at CSU, whether it’s walking though the plaza, taking an exam, or cheering as loud as you can, you’re a Ram Ruckus member. Click Here to Learn More and Become a Member!


Homecoming began as a University-wide event and has evolved into a celebration for the entire community of Fort Collins. For the past two years, the Homecoming celebration has also been combined with Family Weekend in an effort to bring the entire CSU Family (students, alumni and parents) together.  Popular festivities include: the Homecoming Parade, the Student Alumni Connection Pancake breakfast, the 50 Year Club Luncheon and the Football game.

CSU Oval

The oval serves as the heart of Colorado State University.  It was designed in 1909 as an aesthetically pleasing way to connect main campus buildings.  Surrounding the Oval are historic buildings including Johnson Hall, which was the original student center and the Music Building which was built as a library.  Old Main was the cornerstone of the oval until it was burned to the ground during a demonstration in 1970.

I Love CSU Day!

Each April 18th, the students of CSU celebrate their University with a "green out." Green t-shirts, hoodies, hats, and shoes pervade campus. Games and events are held on the Lory Student Center Plaza from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The governor of Colorado signs a proclamation declaring April 18th I love CSU day across the state of Colorado! Alumni are also encouraged to show their Ram pride and wear green and gold to work.

The Rocky Mountain Showdown vs. University of Colorado

Eight times since 1998, Colorado State and in-state rival Colorado have faced one another in the annual football battle in Denver at Invesco Field at Mile High. Since the game initially moved to Denver in 1998, the teams played before the largest crowds in state history to witness a college sporting event.