Tokyo University's First Rowing Team
The first record of rowing at Tokyo University was when a student raised funds for a boat in 1879/80. It had four oars and it was used recreationally. The administration then bought three more boats at the request of students. The boats were stored in a boathouse called Noda-ya, and were never used for racing. When the boats became unusable, a student sold them. Then, in 1883, rowing became popular as a competitive sport and a group of students founded the MBC (Member of Boat Club). Many other rowing clubs formed soon thereafter. In order to differentiate themselves from other clubs on the water, the MBC wore rowing caps with white yarn on top of green flannel. Eventually, these caps became required for racing. Clubs later started wearing square hats, which became academic hats at the university (Kochi, 451-453).