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Fun Fact: Mean Green mascot brings spirit, charm to campus

ScrappyThe Homecoming 2011 theme is The Incredible Scrappy. During appearances, Scrappy, the superhero mascot, dresses for the occasion, but you won’t see him wearing what type of clothing?

A. Basketball jersey

B. Football jersey

C. Military uniform

D. Swimsuit

The correct answer is D: You won’t see Scrappy in a Speedo, although Scrappy visits the gym every day just like all student athletes. Eagles soar above the water before diving with claws extended to grab dinner. Or, metaphorically, to capture victory on the playing field or support a campus or community event.

Enter to win a UNT T-shirt, water bottle and eco-friendly shopping bag by sending an email to InHouse with “Incredible Scrappy” in the subject line by 5 p.m. Oct. 14. Winners will be selected at random from all responses.

Homecoming logo 2011Scrappy will show off the bird’s incredible self during Homecoming events, including the Oct. 21 pep rally, the Homecoming parade at 1 p.m. Oct. 22, pre-game tailgating and spirit activities and, of course, during the football game. The Mean Green play the University of Louisiana – Monroe at 6 p.m. Oct. 22 in Apogee Stadium.

Scrappy didn’t always have the current buff look and Mean Green style. The eagle mascot was selected by students in 1922 and a series of real and costumed birds were the official mascots for 45 years.

Scrappy the Eagle, 1960-61In fall 1960 – the senior year for the 2011 Golden Eagles – a real, live Scrappy, left, watched the then-largest crowd in Fouts Field history, 14,000, according to the Yucca yearbook.

In 1963 the first human eagle mascot was introduced by the band. Helen Wright of the School of Business Administration designed the costume made of leather and plastic, with chicken wire and a papier mache head. At the first football game, Eric Brewster, assistant drum major, flew into the stadium as the new mascot.

Traditionally, the names of students behind the costume are secret. There are five professionally created costumes with a new one added every few years. The oldest is used when Scrappy will be in the rain, one is dedicated to football and another to basketball. The other two costumes are used for spare parts and if Scrappy has to multi-task and represent UNT in more than one location. Scrappy dons military fatigues in honor of student veterans and for events such as Veterans Day.

Scrappy is protected by Talons, the official spirit and service organization at UNT.

While no rival has ever tried to steal Scrappy, a fired-up youngster once managed to pull off Scrappy’s tail.

– Rebecca Poynter, student assistant, University Relations, Communications and Marketing

 (Photo by Jonathan Reynolds)

Posted on: Mon 10 October 2011

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