Mason Welcomes New Mascot
Nov. 17, 2008
George Mason University debuted a new mascot at the men's basketball game against Brown earlier tonight. The 7-foot 240-pound mascot which resembles a Patriot can be described as an athletic, strong and agile and reflects the spirit of the University. The mascot has yet to be named and will be given a name through a month-long contest.
"The new mascot is a great representation of who we are as a University and will be a great addition to the spirit teams at Mason," Andy Ruge, Associate AD said. "I want to applaud the committee for their due diligence in creating a mascot that members of the Mason community can take great pride in and a mascot that will be etched into the George Mason tradition forever."
A blue ribbon panel was originally created two years ago by the University to assess and evaluate proposed designs for the university's mascot. The committee was composed of representatives of Mason's primary constituencies: students, alumni, staff and faculty. The committee also was charged with what to do with Gunston, the athletics green furry mascot at the time. In March 2008, the panel made the recommendation to pursue a new mascot and because of his appeal to children to move Gunston into a new role with the University in community relations.
The group reviewed designs submitted by several professional mascot designers in response to a proposal issued through Intercollegiate Athletics. One design was to be an updated look for the current Gunston character, and the second was to be an entirely new mascot reflecting "patriot spirit in the 21st century."
The contest to name the new mascot began today and suggestions will be taken from the Mason Nation until December 17. Like the new mascot, its name should reflect the spirit of the University, Athletics and the patriotic roots of the founding father for whom we are named.
Proposals can be submitted online at GoMason.com or through a text message. Text the word "mascot" followed by your name suggestion to "96943". Standard text message rates apply. The Blue Ribbon Panel Mascot committee will choose the winning name from the list of entries. The name will be announced at a future basketball game. The winner of the contest will receive a FREE reserved parking spot for one year compliments of Parking Services. If there is more than one person who suggested the same name a winner will be randomly drawn from that group.
Gunston's storied career began on December 12, 1995 in a men's basketball game against Ohio State. Gunston, named after Gunston Hall, the home of founding father George Mason, entertained fans with his spirit and enthusiasm and became a national figure during the men's basketball run to the 2006 NCAA Final Four.