Revenge of the Nerds begins when super nerds and life-long best friends, Lewis Skolnick and Gilbert Lowe, enter Adams College as freshmen to study computer science. When the Alpha Beta fraternity, made up of mostly Adams’ football players, burns down their house, they need a new place to live. Coach Harris suggests the freshmen dorms at temporary living quarters, so that’s where they go.
To accommodate the displaced freshmen, Dean Ulich designates temporarily living space in the gymnasium, and allows the freshmen to rush the fraternities. Of course, Lewis, Gilbert, and several other nerds aren’t fraternity material; only the super pretty and super popular may join. They do use their smarts to get a dilapidated old house on campus, and fix it up to livable conditions.
Star quarterback and star Alpha Beta, Stan Gable is jealous the nerds’ success, and he and his fellow ABs prank the nerds. When the nerds turn to the campus police for help, their hands are tied because the Greek Council, which Stan is currently president, adjudicates all such pranks.
So, in order to become members of the Greek Council, the nerds seek out a fraternity that will have them. Lambda Lambda Lambda (the Tri-Lambs if you’re hip) is the only one that considers them. It’s an all black fraternity with U.N. Jefferson as its head. Even then, Jefferson is wary of them, but agrees to a probationary period.
Now somewhat bonafide, the nerds throw a party with the Omega Mu sorority. They too are nerdy with one of them being Gilbert’s girlfriend, Judy. They also invite Jefferson to attend the shindig.
The party is a dud until Booger whips out the high quality marijuana. The Alpha Betas and their horrible female side, the Pi Delta Pis (which Stan’s girlfriend Betty Childs heads), disrupt the party releasing pigs into the house. In retaliation, the nerds prank them back. This fight against the hazing impresses Jefferson, so he grants them full membership as Tri-Lambs.
Now fully bonafide, the Tri-Lambs appeal to the Council for help against the ABs, but with Stan as president, nothing happens. They realize the only way to get the Council to help is to put get a nerd in as president. To do that, they must win the Greek Games during Homecoming.
The Tri-Lambs team up with the Omega Mus to compete against the Alpha Betas/Pi Delta Pis during the athletic events. At the charity event, the nerds sell pies with topless pictures of Betty and other Pi Delta Pis on the bottom.
During the competition, Lewis, who’s in love with Betty, steals Stan’s costume, and tricks her into having sex with him (the U.S. legal system calls this rape). When Lewis reveals his true identity, of course Betty is surprised, but she later admits to Stan that she’s in love with a nerd because jocks only think about sports while nerds only think about sex. The last portion of the competition, the Tri-Lambs perform a techno musical number; winning the overall games. Lewis then nominates Gilbert for the Council’s new president.
Coach Harris can’t stand losing, and he screams at the Alpha Betas for losing to NERDS! So, Stan and the rest of the ABs destroy the Tri-Lamb house. Of course the Tri-Lambs are distraught with the realization that nothing is going to change even with their victory.
Gilbert storms into the middle of the Homecoming Pep Rally to confront the ABs. When the Alpha Betas try to stop him, Jefferson and the other national Tri-Lambs arrive and intimidate the players into backing off. They give Gilbert the microphone, and he gives a pep talk of his own about being discriminated against because he’s a nerd, and standing up to discrimination.
Lewis, the other Tri-Lambs, several alumni, and even Betty shame the Alpha Betas. Dean Ulich tells Coach Harris that the Tri-Lambs will now live in the Alpha Beta house, and the Alpha Betas will live in the gym until they repair the Tri-Lamb’s house for a happy nerd ending.