BOWLING GREEN, Ky. - For the sixth time in the last eight years, Western Kentucky University's mascot Big Red has been named to the 2009 CapitalOne All-America Mascot Team. Consisting of 12 mascots from around the country, Big Red will now compete for the coveted title of CapitalOne Mascot of the Year.
Big Red was announced today as the 10th of 12 competing mascots, joining: Billy the Goat (Navy), Testudo (Maryland), Sebastian the Ibis (Miami), Bearcat (Cincinnati), Bucky Badger (Wisconsin), Mike the Tiger (LSU), SuperFrog (TCU), Jack Rabbit (South Dakota State), and Butch T. Cougar (Washington State). The final two particpants will be announced soon.
In week four of the upcoming football season, Big Red will square off against Billy the Goat as WKU visits Annapolis, Md. for the Hilltoppers' first-ever showdown with Navy on Saturday, September 26.
Competing in 2002, 2003, 2004, 2006, 2007, and 2009, Big Red is by far the most experienced contestant in the group that includes three rookies and only Testudo (Maryland) who has participated in more than two competitions.
Big Red is a huge, furry, lovable creature who made his debut in 1979. He was the centerpiece of ESPN's promotion of the 25,000th SportsCenter, airing in August, 2002. Big Red has also been recognized by USA Today as one of the top mascots in all of sports as well as making celebrity appearances on "Deal or No Deal" and "Wheel of Fortune."
Voting for the CapitalOne Mascot of the Year contest begins on August 31 and runs through December. Log onto www.capitalonebowl.com to vote for Big Red. You can also visit Big Red on Twitter or Facebook.