We use cookies to enhance your experience on our website. By continuing to use our website, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. You can change your cookie settings at any time. Find out moreJump to Main NavigationJump to Content
  • Text size: A
  • A

slobberknocker, n.

Brit. Hear pronunciation/ˈslɒbənɒkə/
U.S. Hear pronunciation/ˈslɑbərˌnɑkər/
Origin: Apparently formed within English, by compounding. Etymons: slobber n., knocker n.
Etymology: Apparently < slobber n. + knocker n.
Sport slang (originally U.S.).

 1. An American football player with a particularly aggressive style of play.

1967   Dallas Morning News 11 Oct. b2/2 (caption)    Don Pfrimmer..slobber-knocker from Texas.
1981   Knoxville (Tennessee) News-Sentinel 16 Apr. 23/3   The guys last year, like Greg Gaines, were super-aggressive. Gaines and Bates are very—what should I say?—slobberknockers. I don't claim to be a slobberknocker, even though I don't plan on people running over me.
2019   @NateSestina 10 Oct. in twitter.com (accessed 5 Nov. 2019)    Start Pratt. He's a slobberknocker.

1967—2019(Hide quotations)


 2. A match or contest that is particularly hard-fought or physically aggressive. Also: a violent or severe blow, collision between players, etc.Now the usual sense.In quot. 1982   referring to the name of a game, perhaps similar to dodgeball (dodgeball n. at dodge n.1 Additions). In other early uses usually in the context of American football.

[1982   Clarksville (Texas) Times 6 May 2/6   Jack Hilliard hit him in the head with a basketball and knocked him cold... We played slobber knocker all the time, and nobody had ever been knocked out before.]
1986   Port Arthur (Texas) News 9 Jan. 3 c/2   At least Sherril realized the opposition's strength. ‘We're going to have some slobber-knockers here next season.’
1997   New Castle (Pa.) News 4 Dec. 20/1   Defensively, Gardner became known because of his Slobber Knockers, the hits that cause promising young running backs to shift their attention towards less dangerous hobbies.
2018   Advertiser (Austral.) (Nexis) 24 Nov. 82   You reckon the battle between [racing drivers] SVG and McLaughlin is a slobberknocker?

1986—2018(Hide quotations)


This entry has been updated (OED Third Edition, June 2020; most recently modified version published online December 2022).