After two stints as the University of Georgia’s interim mascot, “Russ” will be promoted to Uga IX, the school announced Thursday.
Georgia, in a news release, termed the removal of Russ’ interim tag a “battlefield promotion.”
A ceremony will be held before the Sept. 15 football game against Florida Atlantic to crown Russ, the 8-year-old half-brother of Uga VII, as next in Georgia’s continuous 56-year line of official English Bulldog mascots.
“Like many great and memorable Bulldogs, Russ has earned the opportunity to serve in this capacity,” UGA president Michael Adams said in a statement. “I am confident that he will represent the Bulldog Nation very well and continue the grand tradition of Ugas.”
Russ first served as interim mascot following the November 2009 death of Uga VII, filling in for the final two games of that season and the first six games of 2010. Georgia turned the job over to Uga VIII in the middle of the 2010 season but again called on Russ when illness sidelined the new mascot from the 2010 Liberty Bowl. After Uga VIII’s death in February 2011, Russ remained interim mascot for all of last season.
Georgia is 14-9 with Russ on the job.
“Russ has endeared himself to the Georgia people over the last three years,” UGA athletic director Greg McGarity said in a statement. “His dedication to duty when called upon has been exemplary, and it’s fitting that he takes his place in the official line of Georgia mascots.”
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