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Cocky to Challenge 11 Other Fuzzy Foes for National Mascot of the Year Title

Aug. 4, 2003

McLean, Va. –
Capital One recently announced Cocky of the University of South Carolina was selected to the second annual Capital One All-America Mascot Team. Cocky joins 11 other B.M.O.C.s (that’s “Big Mascots on Campus”) whose fur, feathers and scales will be featured in an upcoming national television advertising campaign showcasing their competition for the Capital One National Mascot of the Year title.

The 2003 Capital One All-America Mascot Team
Albert – University of Florida
Aubie – Auburn University
Big Red – Western Kentucky University
Brutus Buckeye – Ohio State University
Chip – University of Colorado
Cocky – University of South Carolina
Hairy Dawg – University of Georgia
Harry the Husky – University of Washington
Monte – University of Montana
Scratch – University of Kentucky
Smokey – University of Tennessee
YoUDee – University of Delaware

“Last year, college mascots flocked to join the All-America mascot team, and this year the contest for the 12 coveted spots was even more ferocious,” said Pam Girardo, mascot spokesperson at Capital One. “We look forward to watching the finalists go beak-to-beak and snout-to-snout to claim the Capital One National Mascot of the Year title beginning in September. May the best mascot win!”

Capital One started the All-America Mascot and National Mascot of the Year contests last year to pay homage to the top college mascots in the country. Mascots traditionally have been the Rodney Dangerfields of the sports world.

“Capital One is all about challenging the status quo,” said Girardo. “While most people glorify the star quarterback or lineman, Capital One wants to recognize the unsung hero of college football – the mascot. They embody the true spirit of college football and it’s time they had their day in the sun.”

This year’s pack of characters was chosen from Division IA and IAA athletic programs with college football teams. A panel of judges, including original Phillie Phanatic David Raymond; mascot guru and historian, Dr. Roy Yarbrough; and representatives from ESPN and Capital One, selected and notified the 12 finalists in June. Judging criteria included interaction with fans, sportsmanship and community service.

The selection of the team sets the stage for a fierce battle for the coveted Capital One National Mascot of the Year title beginning in early September. Fans across the country will be able to vote for their favorite mascot of the 12 through real-time, online polling at The winner will be selected based on the judges’ ranking (50 percent) and the on-line voting results (50 percent). The Capital One National Mascot of the Year will be announced during the Capital One Bowl on January 1, 2004.