You are viewing this article in the archives. For the latest breaking news and updates in Ann Arbor and the surrounding area, see
Posted on Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 11:57 a.m.

Michigan athletic director Dave Brandon says no one working on a mascot and 'it may never happen'

By Pete Cunningham

Eagerly waiting for the unveiling of the University of Michigan’s new mascot?

Don’t hold your breath.

Michigan athletic director Dave Brandon said no one is working on a mascot and that Michigan may never have one.

Last week in an article on Michigan Today, an online newsletter for Michigan alumni, Brandon said the department is interested in the idea of a mascot. But in email to, Brandon said it is not something anyone on his staff is actively working on.

“There are many other priorities at the present time. And it may never happen,” Brandon said in the email. “It is a difficult thing to do well, as we have found out with past efforts in this area.”

Michigan is one of three Big Ten schools without a mascot, along with Illinois and Indiana.

Pete Cunningham covers sports for He may be reached at or by phone at 734-623-2561. Follow him on Twitter @petcunningham.



Tue, Jun 21, 2011 : 11:19 a.m.

Simply put, "much to do, about nothing".

Huron 74

Tue, Jun 21, 2011 : 4:39 a.m.

Please, fellow Blue Fans, let's don't jump on the goofy bus. UoM has always been the class act of college sports. I can't imagine that Bo or Lloyd Carr would have wanted some goofball in a fuzzy suit jumping around like a clown during games. We can make a statement about pride, tradition and respectability by NOT bowing to that kind of silliness.

Terry Star21

Tue, Jun 21, 2011 : 12:46 a.m.

No need to put a clown on the field like other Big Ten teams - that circus atmosphere is only good for the other eleven Michigan wannabe teams. These teams wish they could have the Michigan tradition - a game day free of all the fake hoopla, advertisements and distractions. Pure Michigan Football - the greatest show on earth. Besides, look what happened to that buckeye mascot last season. The other teams mascot beat the stuffing out of it and it was defenseless - just like the osu football team this November at the Big House ! MgoBlueForTiM !!!!


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 11 p.m.

Tradition, that's why. Don't mess with tradition.

David Paris

Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 10:19 p.m.

I hadn't even noticed we didn't have one... which to me implies that we don't need one. I've never really thought, while trailing OSU, for example, "Darn, if we only had a mascot...".

Terry Star21

Tue, Jun 21, 2011 : 12:50 a.m.

And we most certainly won't need one this year and every year after while we're pounding the osu to oblivion ! MgoBlueForTiM !!!!1

Solar Blue

Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 9:24 p.m.

Hey "The OSU", you are right, the Wolverine is part of the weasel family, you can move up from the back of the class. Do you also know that a Wolverine will take on a full sized bear for food? Go to YouTube for some excellent footage. Like it's relative the Mongoose (taking on a King Cobra), it is fearless and very dangerous. A buckeye on the other hand is basically an acorn, a hairless nut. And you are mocking our mascot? Wow.

Terry Star21

Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 9:54 p.m.

I think the new buckeye pawner mascot, to be revealed soon will be much better.


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 9:05 p.m.

Hey, I used to love the way that the student section would pepper the Ohio State players that dared to score a TD, with Ice Balls!! How about a hugh Ice Ball with Legs, sort of like the thing Saracuse has but the color of Ice, Opps How about Clean Ice!!! Sorry!! Lost my head there for a minute. !!


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 8:58 p.m.

PS: I loved the previous article's post that points to the fact that a wolverine is merely an overgrown weasel.

Terry Star21

Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 9:52 p.m.

Compared to buckeye pawner - very acceptable !


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 8:56 p.m.

One of the fun things about hating Michigan, is laughing at the arrogance of Blue's fans. "We're Michigan, OUR football program is too important/special/different/unique to have a mascot." Someone please land this spaceship and get these people back to reality on planet earth. Get over yourselves. Wings on helmets are FUNNY, not special. The rest of the world merely views your attitudes as elitist, not superior.

Terry Star21

Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 9:50 p.m.

So sorry about your program.....


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 7:55 p.m.

I have no problem with Michigan bringing back Bullwinkle the Moose. It's the only mascot that makes sesnse.

Terry Star21

Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 9:49 p.m.

The 'Mighty Hulk' would be fitting 1


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 9:48 p.m.

Bullwinkle is the ideal candidate


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 9:06 p.m.

could be Bullwinkle and the entire gang!!


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 7:50 p.m.

The only acceptable mascot we could ever have would be a live Wolverine in a cage. But given the previous experiences with that, it better be titanium alloy bars...

DaLast word

Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 7:34 p.m.

Bring back Brandy BUT any mascot at this point would be made fun of.


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 7:29 p.m.

Forget the Bears, we need Willie the Wolverine back.


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 7:25 p.m.

A mascot is below us. Far, far below us. And as for damage done by mascots, MIT just released a study that demonstrated schools with mascots have 4 times the number of alumni working at Mcdonalds as those without mascots. Do you want to see our future graduates taking jobs from MSU people? A friend of mine with a thorough grounding in theology is quite sure that a mascot at Michigan would be the first sign of the apocalypse. Who can be sure? So please, no mascots. And yes, I made that up about the MIT study.

Terry Star21

Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 9:48 p.m.

Here here - agree. A mascot is like a clown in the ring !


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 7:06 p.m.

I don't understand why everyone is against the idea of a mascot. What are the possible negatives? Someone please explain...

Ken Boyd

Wed, Jun 22, 2011 : 2:57 p.m.

Mindless traditions and pointless superstitions are the only things that separates us from the animals! We at MEEEECCHHHIIGGAANN are not animals! Therefore; we must not have a mascot, since we have not had one in the past. TRADITION! The same applies to night games, electicity is a fad. Games are to start at noon. TRADITION! We must run an obsolete form of football because of a dead over rated past coach because,TRADITION! I ask you burton163, how long have you lived in this state?


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 7:18 p.m.

In my opinion, it does nothing to ADD to the experience of the teams or the sporting events. In fact, it almost makes it a cartoon. I don't mind other teams mascots, but it just does not add anything. I oppose the piped in music, too, because our band is great to listen to. But at least I understand that the students think listening to white stripes and Ozzy is good for their soul. But a mascot? What are the positives? More T-shirts sold?


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 7:06 p.m.

It's not like the team is called the Ducks or the Gohphers; we're talking about a live bleeping wolverine here. They are dangerous and it would be animal cruelty to take a caged wolverine to games and functions. This is almost as stupid and dangerous as taking a terrarium full of rattlesnakes to a game because your team is called the "rattlers." I hope this idea never gets off the ground. The only way it will work is if the team changes its name to the "bandwagoneers." They will be able to find plenty of those right now; they are the same ones who disappeared the last three years, and will disappear if the results of the new regime aren't what they currently project. They are easy to feed, happy to take warm and fuzzy pictures in Maize and Blue, and will tell you all about "tradition" for as long as you want to listen and then some.


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 7:29 p.m.

Ah, yes, that's a good suggestion. The bandwagoneers. The fans who support anything put in front of them wearing the M, even if ruins the franchise. I see.


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 6:52 p.m.

It's funny how much Michigan fans despice change. I'm glad the fans let go of the leather helmets, when other schools went to hard shell type- that could have been painful for a wolverine! LOL!

Terry Star21

Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 9:46 p.m.

Change is good - in everything but college football, tradition rules.


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 7:16 p.m.

Bogie: There must be a reason to change. I am very progressive in many things I do--such as workflow at work on computer, music choice, etc. But change for change sake or worse--for money sake--really flies in the face of what tradition is. I LOVE the tradition at Michigan as much as I love Michigan, and to change it for no good reason is just folly. Chasing fools gold, even if it mints millions. Everybody loves those scoreboards--I could do without them just fine, but that is a whole different beast than the Adidas designed money grab-er, uh, jersey and *yikes, a mascot which is NOT needed.

Jake C

Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 6:38 p.m.

@Craig: "If nobody is working on it why bring it up at all? " Did you read the original Michigan Today article? To me, it simply sounds like a writer had a piece written up about U of M's mascot history, and asked Brandon to give a quote about what he thought about the subject. "Sure, we'd consider a Mascot in the future if it will make us licensing & sales money, and it doesn't annoy too many old-school fans," Brandon basically said. That doesn't mean that Brandon gave that quote completely unprompted, or that he's spent more than 2 minutes thinking about the subject in his tenure here. I'm guessing that a new mascot ranks pretty low on the list of things a relatively new AD has to worry about on a daily basis.

Terry Star21

Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 9:45 p.m.

Must be a slow day for college football......


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 6:33 p.m.

Bill Martin and Our King care about football and football only. Brandon seems to only care about ruining the tradition that Bo and Our King have established. Night game: Bo would have puked. Rugby uniforms: Nice for a Rec & Ed team. New scoreboards: Colossal waste of money. Pro set: Exactly the OPPOSITE of how winning football is played. Mascot: OK for msu, osu, nd, etc. (helps students forget where they are actually enrolled). Mary Sue, please bring us some leadership.

Terry Star21

Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 9:44 p.m.

Agree Theo buddy..... Football @ 12:00pm on a Saturday, Uniforms are fine as is, and this is A okay. Other teams mascots like a clown in the ring, Michigan representation should win everything. I'll reserve comment on the scoreboards, as long as there are no advertisers listed. MgoBlueForTiM Theo the Moderator A+


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 6:02 p.m.

No mascot, please!


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 5:15 p.m.

So, Dexter the Black Bear.... came to Dexter for nothing?

1st Down

Wed, Jun 22, 2011 : 12:32 a.m.

A Wolverine will kill a bear. Google it.

Craig Lounsbury

Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 5:09 p.m.

bring back the marshmallows!!!!!!!!!!


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 7:13 p.m.

And the toilet paper thrown after TDs (pretty much gotten rid of after the dorms changed to those mega locked down rolls).

Lorain Steelmen

Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 4:53 p.m.

Dave, no mascots please! Keep one thing foremost in your mind...even before you think about dollars. Namely, everything that is done regarding UM athletics, must be done consistent with the experience of , and in the best interests of 1.) the student, 2.) the student athletes. You've already 'created' a legacy unifirm to generate dollars, for the ND game. Now you want to create a 'mascot', for a student body that doesn't want or need one. Dave, stop the crase money chase. and let the students build their own traditions, spontaneously, from the ground up. So, 'Keepa ya handsd off'!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Craig Lounsbury

Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 4:22 p.m.

The mark of a true leader...stick your finger in the air, see which way the wind is blowing, then straddle the fence.


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 7:09 p.m.

Does gauging public interest automatically make one a fence-straddler? If you consider Dave Brandon's previous moves (bold moves by Michigan standards) as Michigan AD, I say no. And what's wrong with considering an idea? It's just an idea. Clearly, it's low priority to Dave Brandon and isn't an idea he'll implement unless it makes sense for the betterment of Michigan. I guess you'd prefer a leader without any ideas on how to better the program, who keeps quiet and allows the program to remain unchanged and stagnant? I'm not exactly crazy about the idea of a mascot, but Dave Brandon wants to build on Michigan's image nationally, and I see how a mascot could become the face of the program to many, especially those less familiar with football. Unless Dave Brandon's team can create a mascot as iconic and recognizable as the Nittany Lion or Florida's Albert E. Gator, it sounds like a no-deal. I'll happily wait to see the idea materialize (if it ever does) into a potential mascot before I stomp it to death.

Craig Lounsbury

Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 6:10 p.m.

Mascots are really embraced by the youth demographic and we want to take advantage of that, for all the reasons that are obvious." "We're interested in doing a mascot but it has to be something that fans love, that children love and everyone can embrace," Brandon explained. "So far we haven't figured out a way to do it. Until we come up with something we love, we don't have a mascot." "Brandon said it is not something anyone on his staff is actively working on." If nobody is working on it why bring it up at all? Unless your checking the wind?


Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 5:48 p.m.

Yeah, because he surely straddled the fence on scheduling that tradition-breaking Alabama game in Cowboy Stadium next season, installing permanent lights in the Big House and instituting night games, allowing the team to wear throwback uniforms during the first one, for the first time, to boot. I've heard more Michigan faithful complain about these departures from tradition than I've heard support them, and yet they're happening. Dave Brandon has a vision of the Michigan football program's future, and he's pursuing it in spite of the traditional wishes of many Michigan fans. Like his decisions or not, Brandon is doing what he thinks is best for the program, and I believe that is the mark of a true leader. Go Blue! P.S. Obviously you believe Brandon is backpedaling, but it made me happy to hear the institution of a mascot was low on his priority list. I take it he is working on bigger, more important things. Take a look at what Michigan State's AD is working on in comparison: <a href="" rel='nofollow'></a>

Blue Marker

Mon, Jun 20, 2011 : 4:09 p.m.

Give Dave credit, most of the time when the people speak he listens.