The photos include a half mustache, glaring eyes and absolutely funny expressions.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on September 26, 2022. It has since been updated.
Most people's images of athletes are that they're strong, serious and confident. And team photos normally display that essence of strong and disciplined personalities. However, the Santa Clara Men’s Cross Country team opted to go in a different direction with their team headshots. Citius Mag, which documents the sport of distance running, collaborated with the team and produced a series of photos that show the humorous and playful side of its star athletes, reported SB Nation. The headshots were filled with smoldering expressions, frightening eyes and distinct mustaches. Each team member understood the humor and played along with these headshots, which became viral on the internet.
👏 Santa Clara Men’s Cross Country team headshot roundup.— CITIUS MAG (@CitiusMag) September 20, 2022
An annual CITIUS MAG tradition like no other.
If facial hair is the key to running fast, the men of @SCUXCTF just became the heavy favorites for NCAAs. 👨🏻 pic.twitter.com/SnH656zWyT
In one of the portraits, Ej Odovayen Cruz can be seen sporting a half mustache and staring directly into the camera. There is a subtle eyebrow raise on the half-stache side making the two parts of his face seem like different personalities. Before picture day, they spent some time growing and trimming their hair and perfecting their best grins for the camera, per Neatroma. People on social media had different reactions to the headshots. One person wrote on Reddit, "Nicolas (third bottom from the left) looks like a 50-year-old alcoholic divorcee back from a bender and a fight with the ex-wife." Another wrote, "They have a lot of time to think about being funny. Good job, boys."
Some people commented on the humorous nature of cross-country athletes. One user wrote, "Went to a cross country party one night and it ended with dudes running around naked. An interesting breed." Another commented, "It totally is. A very specific type of kid runs cross country and they all seem to have this type of humor." A Reddit user further wrote, "This made me laugh so hard. I love everything about it. Runners are a weird breed of people and I’m glad these guys are obviously having fun."
This actually made me laugh. I thought it was a parody ad or something to that effect. 😂😂— AK GORDARI 💎🚀 (@AKGordari) September 21, 2022
Citus Mag posted the series of photographs on Twitter and wrote, "An annual CITIUS MAG tradition like no other. If facial hair is the key to running fast, the men of @SCUXCTF just became the heavy favorites for NCAAs." People on Twitter absolutely loved these photos with one user writing, "This is amazing. It's like when you do the regular team photos, then the silly/obnoxious photo. Excellent stuff!" Most of the people called it the best team photos they have ever seen.