Mike the Tiger

It’s college football season, and that means face paint, bands, rivalries and mascots.  Here are ten the Daily Dose likes a lot, in no particular order:

Mike the Tiger [LSU].  A live Bengal tiger is parked in a cage on wheels that opponent’s must pass in order to reach their locker room.  As if playing in Death Valley before 102,000 maniacs on a steamy Saturday night was not hard enough.  Did we mention that Mike is a live Bengal tiger?

Bucky Badger [Wisconsin].  The badger is a vicious omnivore not to be messed with, and Buckingham U. Badger is no exception.  On, Wisconsin!

Uga [Georgia].  A live English Bulldog has been patrolling the sidelines in Athens since 1956.  Sporting a spiked collar and red jersey with varsity letter, Uga is a damn good dog.

Sooner Schooner [Oklahoma].  When opponents see white ponies Boomer and Sooner pull the Conestoga wagon around The Palace on the Prairie, they know they are in for a long Saturday afternoon.

West Virginia Mountaineer [WVU].  The only human mascot on the list may also be the best.  Buckskin costume, percussion rifle, coonskin cap, beard.  Very Appalachia.

Goldy Gopher [Minnesota].  With three UCA Mascot National Championships in six years, this buck-toothed burrowing rodent is one of the most unique mascots in all of college athletics.  Too bad he can’t help the football team block and tackle better.

War Eagle [Auburn].  The official school mascot is Aubie the Tiger, who pales in comparison to the majestic golden eagle that swoops around Jordan-Hare Stadium before home games.  We are the Tigers who say War Eagle.

 Tree [Stanford].  Established in 1891, Leland Stanford Jr. University – known as The Farm – adopted the mascot “Indian” in 1930.  After succumbing to political pressure, the name was changed to “Cardinals” [the color, not the bird] from 1972 to 1981.  In November 1981, the singular was adopted.  First seen in 1975, we really have no idea what the Stanford Tree has to do with the school, but it makes the list for its uniqueness.

Gator [Florida].  The Daily Dose prefers wild animal mascots [see: Ralphie, Bevo, Renegade] and nothing would be better than a live gator inside Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on game day.  Albert E. Gator, the plush anthropomorphic American alligator that represents UF athletics, makes the list.

Smokey [Tennessee].  No ordinary hound, Smokey is Houn’ Dog in the best sense of the word.  Since 1953, the Vols have been led onto the field by a live Bluetick Coonhound.  The current canine – Smokey X – made his debut in 2013.

Didn’t see your favorite mascot?  Agree or disagree with this list?  Tell us what you think.  Ready, set…COMMENT!