Kids Names Reflect Sports, TV, Bible
May 23, 10:04 am ET
OKLAHOMA CITY (Reuters) - Los Angeles Lakers basketball star Kobe Bryant and the cast of "Friends" are in heavenly company -- at least when it comes to naming children.
Parents in Oklahoma apparently like to thumb through the Bible, watch Bryant slam-dunk, or take in the popular television sitcom while mulling over names for their children-to-be.
According to statistics provided by the state's Health Department, there were 74 children born in Oklahoma in 2002 who were named Kobe or a derivative of the name.
Religious names were also popular for the 50,160 babies born in Oklahoma last year. Jacob was the most popular name for boys born in the state while Caleb, Joshua, Daniel, Samuel Matthew and Michael also made it near the top.
For girls, more Oklahoma parents chose Madison than any other name, with 363 children being handed that moniker.
Religious names like Hannah, Sarah, Grace and Faith also scored well.
For parents not looking for names related to the Good Book, the TV show "Friends" provided a good source of inspiration.
There were 91 girls named Rachel, a popular character on the show, although it was not clear if Rachel was chosen from the show or the Bible. As for the other "Friends" characters, there were 29 girls named Monica and 27 boys names Chandler.
Bad news for their TV buddies Phoebe, Joey and Ross, whose names barely registered a blip in the rankings.
And bad news too for Lakers star center Shaquille O'Neal. There were no boys named Shaquille or Shaq last year in Oklahoma.