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Cougar Kickoff Countdown: 52 Days

Nearly halfway done with the 100 day countdown to UConn!

George Frey

What you probably already know is that the Victory Bell is located at the southwest corner of the Marriott Center and is rung after every home victory in both football and basketball. But do you know the history of this tradition at BYU? Its roots go back to the mid-1800's when the Mormon pioneers crossed the plains to make a new home in what is now called Utah. Originally it was called the Y Bell and used to call people to meetings and to announce deaths in the community. It has been used to keep classes on schedule, although it's primary use from the time it was donated in 1875 has been to signify a victory.

There have been several different bells. One was destroyed in a fire. Another was vigorously rung until it cracked after BYU beat Utah in basketball in 1949. At one point it was placed on a trailer to travel with the team to away games. This probably made it easier for pranksters to steal and ditch in nearby Springville. It was then placed in a tower overlooking the Smith Field House until the dedication of the Marriott Center in 1973 when the bell was rung and fell from its mount. The bell was moved to its current location by the Marriott Center in 1978 and was quickly renamed the Victory Bell. Today, after a home victory a few players are taken to the Victory Bell to celebrate wins with the fans.