It’s time to show Rocky the Rocket how much we appreciate his school spirit by supporting him in this year’s Capital One Mascot Challenge.Rocky won the 2012 write-in contest and is one of the 16 college mascots competing in this year’s national competition.
With the outstanding support from Rocket Nation, Rocky received the most votes in last year’s write-in contest when Toledo fans had the opportunity to vote their mascot into the challenge.
“It says a lot about our university and our ability as a community to rally behind a great effort because we beat out schools that were much larger than us,” said Lawrence J. Burns, UT vice president for external affairs. “We were very proud of the fact we won that write-in contest and that also gives us great momentum to win the entire Capital One Mascot Challenge.”
Rocky was created in 1966, but began his tenure as official mascot in 1968 under Director of Student Affairs Dan Seemann, who helped transform him into the powerful, charismatic character known and loved by many today.
The mascot challenge begins Thursday, Aug. 29, when voting lines open, and the season continues until Sunday, Nov. 24.
If Rocky were to make the playoffs, voting would continue through Sunday, Dec. 15, with the winner announced Jan. 1.
Rocky is going to need all the support he can get as he squares off against the Duck of the University of Oregon in his first matchup Monday, Sept. 2.
Students and fans will have the opportunity to continue to vote for Rocky in weekly head-to-head matchups against other mascots such as Sparty of Michigan State University and Bucky Badger of the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
“I think it puts us and our brand at the level we deserve to be,” Burns said. “We have spent a number of years increasing the UT brand recognition in communities such as Detroit and Columbus, and around the world for that matter. This is another visible step in the evolution of the UT brand to the world stage.”
Capital One is providing two new options to vote this year: a weekly 25-point challenge and a weekly 100-point challenge.
Fans wishing to earn 25 or 100 points for Rocky need to complete the challenge and post it on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram using the hash tag #CapitalOneRocket.
The first 25-point challenge is to write a cheerleader-type cheer for their mascot and post it to Facebook or Twitter using the correct hash tag for their school, which for UT is #CapitalOneRocket.
To earn 100 points, fans need to film themselves performing the cheer in public and then upload it.
Additionally, fans can continue to place single votes, submit content, and find information about the weekly challenges by visiting capitalonebowl.com and clicking “vote” for their mascot. Voting multiple times is allowed, so be sure to help Rocky as much as possible.