The Fastest-Rising Boys' Baby Names of The Year, 2011: Giddyup, Preppy Cowboys!

May 14th 2012

In 2010, the hottest rising boys' names of the year were Bentley and Easton. Both were surnames that used to sound as preppy as a seersucker jacket and bermuda shorts. But both had been transformed into Southern good ol' boys, with assists from country music stars Dierks Bentley and Easton Corbin.

In 2011, the hottest rising name name in America was:

Brantley.

No, not Bentley again, Brantley. A formerly preppy surname that has been transformed into a good ol' boy, with an assist from country music star Brantley Gilbert. And Bentley and Easton are far from done -- both rank among this year's top 10 hottest boys' names, too. It's fair to say that a large swath of the country should be prepared for a stampede of preppy cowboys in the years to come.

The rest of the hottest, as calculated by the Baby Name Wizard Hotness Formula, which takes into account both the percentage change and the impact in terms of number of babies:

#2. Declan
Aidans all around us! Liams lurking behind every corner! What's an Irish-name-loving parent to do? Declan is making its case as the next in line for the throne.

#3. Mason
Yes, it's a Kardashian name -- but more importantly, it's a trim tradesman surname that sounds like Jacob, Macy and Jaden all rolled into one. Or to put it another way: American boys' names are still living in the house that Jason built. (See previous post for more on Mason.)

#4. Iker
A warm welcome to the hottest Basque name in American history! The name Iker was apparently created by a Basque nationalist as a Basque equivalent to the Spanish Visitación. It has become a popular name throughout Spain, and was introduced to America by goalkeeper Iker Casillas of the World Cup Champion Spanish soccer team. (No, that doesn't make it the biggest soccer-inspired name trend in America. That honor remains with Mia, via American soccer star Mia Hamm.)

#5. Raylan
Raylan Givens is the Deputy U.S. Marshal at the heart of the tv series "Justified." The show is based on a series of stories by writer Elmore Leonard, who has said that he named the character after a young man he met in Amarillo, Texas. Like Mason, it's just a small tweak on other names of the moment (Jalen, Rylan, Riley), but this time with a distinct Texas twang.

Also noted...
The top 25 rising names include Jaxen, Jaxson, Jaxon and Jaxton, plus the more traditional Axel for good measure. Our national love affair with the letter X rages on.

 

Also be sure to check out the fastest rising girls' names, and the full top 1,000 names for boys and girls, with last year's ranks for comparison.

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