On Thursday, Sept.22, the University of Wisconsin-Stout will unveil the first official mascot at the Don and Nona Williams Stadium. The mascot, a product of collaboration between administrators and students, will lead the men’s football team onto the field to kick off the start of the football game against the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh Titans at 7 p.m.
About two years ago the university began discussing the idea of a mascot, and Megan Jurecki, a former art and design student, of Burlington, Wis., researched what schools with a similar mascot were doing. From there, Jurecki decided to put together some of the best concepts and came up with six different prototypes. The committee developed an idea that people seemed to like and took it to Chancellor Charles W. Sorensen for approval.
The Stout Student Association (SSA) handed out several hundred T-shirts of the caricature and it was well received by the students. “We tweaked the design to accommodate what the students wanted,” said SSA President Neal Peterson of Mapplewood, Minn.
This is the first mascot created by the students for UW-Stout. The Blue Devil will make regular appearances at university athletic contests and other school functions. Fans attending the Sept. 22 game are encouraged to wear blue and white to show off their school spirit and officially welcome the new mascot.
“We have not had a personified mascot to be able to come to the games, lead cheers and represent the institution,” said Phillip Lyons, a member of the mascot committee. “I arrived to UW-Stout four years ago, and the Blue Devil was never an image that was on any athletic apparel.”
The new mascot aims to give fans a symbol of school spirit out on the field during home games, and it’s just in time to kick off the homecoming celebration, marking 100 years of UW-Stout football.
“100 years of football, how crazy is that?” said Lyons. “That anniversary calls for a special celebration. We have a whole number of things coming together for Thursday’s unveiling, and it’s going to be a lot of fun for everyone. It’s rare to have an opportunity to see our football team play under the lights, and it’s the first time fans will see the new mascot.”
The Blue Devils will hit the field Thursday night, led on by UW-Stout’s very own mascot.