(Photo by Jonathan Newton / The Washington Post)

On Monday, Vox.com published maps of the most distinctive baby boys’ and girls’ names of 2013 by state. Using data from the Social Security Administration, Vox’s methodology involved dividing the number of babies with a given name in each state by the number of babies with that given name in the United States. (The SSA provides lists of the top 100 boys’ and girls’ baby names each year.)

Vox’s maps suggest that sports (and current events, in general) influence what parents name their children in a given year, which is hardly a new phenomenon. The potential effect is noticeable in Virginia and Maryland.

The most disproportionately popular boys’ name in Virginia in 2013 was Bryce, perhaps a result of Bryce Harper’s 2012 National League rookie of the year season. The most disproportionately popular boys’ name in Maryland in 2013 was Camden, perhaps a nod to Baltimore’s Camden Yards. Incidentally, there were an equal number of babies named Bryce and Camden in Virginia in 2013, according to the SSA’s data. The most disproportionately popular baby boys’ name in D.C. in 2013 was Khalil and I don’t have a sports explanation for that one. Maybe we’ll find out that 2014 was the year of Marcin.

Other distinctive boys names from Vox’s maps that could be partly explained by sports:

– Braxton in Ohio, thanks to Ohio State quarterback Braxton Miller. (There could be an uptick in Cardales if sophomore QB Cardale Jones leads the Buckeyes to a national championship on Monday.)

– Iker in Texas, thanks, perhaps, to Spanish goalkeeper Iker Casillas?

– Peyton, which regularly ranks among the top 100 boys’ names in Tennessee, thanks to former Vols quarterback Peyton Manning.


(Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports)