But during Tuesday's episode, the penultimate one of Season 6, his name was revealed. And it became clear why he's been Schmidt for all these years.
Schmidt's name is Winston, which is the same name as his former roommate Winston Bishop (Lamorne Morris), who retained rights to the name while Schmidt became Schmidt. But Schmidt decided he wanted to reclaim his identity, much to Winston's displeasure.
"Schmidt, I think that is a very bad idea," Winston told him. "There ain't nothing but pain down that road."
The way Winston said it, it sounds like there's more to it than he just wants to be the only Winston. Schmidt probably only became the successful businessman he is today by casting off his old name, which is associated with his humiliating childhood. Going back to Winston might cause him to regress in other ways, like gaining back a lot of weight.
It led to a Winston-on-Winston showdown until Cece (Hannah Simone) called Schmidt Winston in bed, which was so traumatic they had to return to the status quo.
This was the best name reveal since Mac (Rob McElhenney) from It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia's real name turned out to be Ronald McDonald. And like Mac, if Schmidt starts packing on mass, it'll be cause for concern.
New Girl's Season 6 (and possibly series) finale airs Tuesday, April 3 at 8/7c.