With new episodes of According to Jim still on hold due to the writers’ strike, I know you’re starved for entertainment. Let’s not waste another second, then, and plunge headlong this morning into the third and final installment of Need-to-Know Wednesday’s SEC Mascot Profiles. For you squares (L7’s) out there, the previous installments can be found here, here and here, daddy-O. See them now before you have to pay for them in the upcoming compendium People who have written about SEC Mascots and What They Wrote About, Volume IV. You can thank me later. Now, on with the show.
Team: Auburn University
Mascot: Aubie the Tiger
Aubie is one of the few NCAA Mascots with credentials, winning a record six national mascot national championships and being among the first three mascots inducted into the Mascot Hall of Fame, which I’m sure is a fascinating place to visit if you have twenty minutes to spare. Created by a cartoonist in 1959, the costumed version of Aubie made his first appearance in 1979 and open auditions were held at the university for the role. 31 students applied, with 30 no doubt slinking back to smoke pot and listen to Foghat in a van airbrushed with a wizard riding a whale. Non-Auburn students, it should be noted, are strictly forbidden to wear the Aubie head, which may be one of the contributing factors as to why Lee Corso drinks and cries himself to sleep each night.
Pros: Sometimes rides a scooter.
Cons: Often wears Zubaz pants.
Fun Fact: Aubie’s look has changed throughout the years. In 1962, he donned a blue tie and straw hat. In 1984, he wore an “I ain’t ‘fraid of no ghosts” tanktop bearing the Ghostbusters logo. In 1992 he dressed as Doug Hopkins of the Gin Blossoms, and in 2040 Aubie will wear a metallic spandex unitard, just like everyone else in the world.
Team: University of Mississippi (Ole Miss)
Mascot: Colonel Reb
Until 1936, it should be noted that Ole Miss’ teams were affectionately known as “The Flood.” In 1936, after poor communication prompted several misinformed and citified journalists to report that Ole Miss athletics was responsible for the deaths of thousands in the state each year, the school’s newspaper held a contest for the new mascot. Enter Colonel Reb, the charming and debonaire Southern Gentleman. In 2003, the university administration inexplicably banned Colonel Reb from on-field activities, but he can still be seen at tailgate parties, wandering school grounds on gameday and watching Dukes of Hazzard reruns in countless dorm lobbies.
Pros: Foam head/hands
Cons: Foam misogyny/racism
Fun Fact: After Colonel Reb’s banning from the sidelines, the school held a contest to design a new mascot — with the final choice being between “Rebel Bruiser” and “Rowdy Rebel.” Ironically, pop-country troubadour Toby Keith won almost unanimously.
Team: University of South Carolina
Mascot: Cocky the Gamecock
If you bone up on your SEC mascots, you’ll have a ball with South Carolina’s Cocky the Gamecock. Plump and full and donning a giant pecker, the bird…What? You get the hilarious double entendres? Okay. Designed to be the anthropomorphic version of Big Spur, an actual rooster who had been attending games since 1978 as the unofficial mascot of the university, Cocky made his debut during South Carolina’s Homecoming game in 1980, wowing the crowd with his choreographed routine to Joy Division’s “Love Will Tear Us Apart.” The original Cocky suit was worn by John Routh, who later went on to become Florida baseball’s Billy the Marlin mascot, which may be one of the contributing factors as to why John Routh drinks and cries himself to sleep each night.
Pros: Early riser.
Fun Fact: Many young college-aged males think they are being cool and ironic by wearing a “COCKS” hat. These people are douchebags.
Whew! What a great ride, eh? I hope you’ve enjoyed these profiles as much as I have, which would mean you enjoyed them slightly more than a LOT! Until next week, friends, enjoy the following nuggets of video joy.
That is all.