Who’s been in Theta Pond?

I was talking to a fellow alumnus about “fraternity” shenanigans that had me in Theta Pond. Apparently it isn’t entirely legal to go for a dip according to them. Can anyone verify? Anyone else tread the duck poo bottom?

*my fraternity wasn’t a traditional Greek organization, rather it was an ROTC affiliated organization called Pershing Rifles. I don’t think it’s active anymore.

You know… Gary Busey was expelled from OSU for having a pork chop dinner on the big island in Theta Pond.

That’s when he moved to Hollywood, played drums for Willie Nelson on a short California tour, and then got the role as Buddy Holly.


I have been in Theta pond on more than one occasion lol But don’t know anything about it being illegal. Pretty sure some of my buddies got caught by the cops in there once and all they said was, “you know that’s filled with decades of duck poop and condoms, right?”


It is illegal, just depends on who catches you whether or not you will get into trouble. There was also a biology experiment using Theta Pond water while I was in school that found a ridiculous amount of bacteria and they recommended avoiding the water because of it lol


:raising_hand_man:t3:Post 2014 Bedlam celebration here. May or may not have had a few drinks in me and my friends and I decided to run down the street and jump in. Surprisingly we were not the only ones who had that same idea.

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Fairly certain some kegs were floated out to the island when we made it to the Final Four (Seattle).

Got tossed in (“ponded”) in 1988 as a freshman. Cut my foot on broken glass on the bottom. Lucky I didn’t get a communicable disease!


I went in twice and that was two times to many. First time was as a freshman and my fraternity was trying to raise grades so did a pledge that if you did not make whatever grade you picked, you had to swim to the island first chapter meeting of the next semester. My dumb butt said I would do a 3.4 or something stupid and of course did not make it. We ended doing the swim on a January night and had to break the ice. Needless to say after several guys almost drowned they stopped that practice. The second time I went in it was not willingly as I was thrown in for getting engaged. Apparently it is not as bad as it used to be, my father went in back in the seventies and the duck poop was so thick that it sucked his shoes off like quicksand.

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I never found myself in the Pond, but my roommate was known as “Fishing Guy” at Theta Pond for a while and had an article written about him in the O’Colly. He would go probably 3 or 4 times a week and I joined him some. We heard legends of 20+ pound fish, but we never got anywhere close to that.


You are absolutely correct! There were also trucks going through the barn buying cases and then driving by the pond and throwing beers out to folks in the crowd. I was a freshman that year and it is probably one of my more vivid memories.

:raising_hand_man:t3:Frat brothers threw me in when I got engaged to my late wife. Would have been 1976.

Multiple times as a freshman. It feels as gross as you might expect.

ETA: 1998-2002

When I was there (2012-2016) it was a possible suspend-able offense to enter the pond, though those I spoke with that would have been in charge of levying that punishment said it was never used.