Who we are...
The origin of the term "Knucklehead"
During the American Revolution, the British referred to the
Americans with what was supposed to be a derogatory word,
"Yankee", and taunted the revolutionaries with the singing of
"Yankee Doodle". Ironically, the Americans adopted the term and
the song. Now most of us are proud to be called "Yankees", and
"Yankee Doodle" has been a song that has led the nation into
battle and is played at many patriotic events.
One could say that the term "Knucklehead", as it relates to
Purdue football enthusiasts, came into use in a similar way.
Sometime in 2001, in a telephone call-in show called "Talk to Tiller"
aired on 96.5 WAZY out of Lafayette, Indiana, head coach Joe Tiller
was asked a question about a rumor regarding some aspect of the
Purdue football program. In his response, he indicated that the
rumor was false and had been perpetuated by "...a bunch of
Knuckleheads...who have nothing better to do than gossip about
Purdue Football on the internet...and who need to get real jobs...".
Within hours of the statement, nearly everybody who participates
in Purdue Football message boards had changed their monikers to
include the term "Knucklehead". "TexasBoiler" became
"TexasKnucklehead", Hillsdale Boiler became "Hillsdale
Knucklehead", and so on. Since Tiller made the comment, most
Purdue message board participants now consider themselves
"Knuckleheads", and have formed a sort of fraternity which has
included special events and fund raisers to send needy kids to
sporting events (see http://www.knuckleheadcharities.org). "The
Knuckleheads" have made themselves known to Coach Tiller and
the Athletic Department, and have developed a good relationship,
because they recognize that most people who call themselves
"Knuckleheads" are die-hard Purdue fans who truly love Purdue
and want to support Purdue athletics in the most positive of ways.
The "Lot D" Knuckleheads (Meet the Founders)
There are a whole host of people who now call themselves
Knuckleheads. We are the "Lot D Knuckleheads". We organized
our first meeting at the Purdue vs. Illinois State game in 2001 by
means of the Old Gold Free Press Mr. Gridiron Fan Forum. We
first met in Lot T on the Purdue golf course, but have met in Lot D
ever since. We differ from many Knuckleheads in that we have no
problem losing our message-board anonymity in exchange for
some great tailgating and fellowship with Purdue Football fanatics.
We meet in Lot D for every home game. We also designate an
"honorary Lot D" at select away games. Despite the original
definition of Knuckleheads our regular members include two
lawyers, several ex-players, one retired and one active police
officer, two Ph.D. scientists (one a biologist, one a chemist), a
successful businessman and author, engineers, current students,
and the list goes on. We love Purdue, and we love Purdue
How to Join
We represent a group of people who got tired of spending our
game-days either alone or in small groups. Many of us watched
the tailgating scenes from the outside. The Lot D Knuckleheads
gives Purdue fans (especially those who participate on the Purdue
Football message boards such as Mr. Gridiron) to gather and
share their love of Purdue Football. Membership only requires
that you 1) e-mail Hillsdale Boiler to get your name on the e-mail
distribution list, 2) come to the Knucklegates, 3) share your
message-board moniker, and 4) bring a contribution to the potluck
dinner (main dish, chips, soda, snacks, etc.).
*Requirment 4 is currently waived for Purdue students.