'That We May Not Forget'
By Linda Montgomery
Uga VII made his debut at the Georgia vs. Georgia Southern game on Saturday, August 30, 2008. "Loran's Best" died unexpectedly during his second year on November 20, 2009. Uga VII totaled a 16-7 mark during his short stint as the most recognizable mascot in college sports.
"Damn Good Dog"
In 2007, Uga VI became the winningest mascot in school history and currently owns a record of 87-27. The mark surpassed Uga IV who ended his career with a record of 77-24-4. A changing of the guard occurred in 1999 when Uga V officially retired during pregame ceremonies at the Georgia-South Carolina game and handed the mascot duties over to his son, Uga VI.
Uga VI, who was only one year old at the time of his
coronation, is the biggest of all the mascots weighing in at 65 pounds
— more than 20 pounds heavier than his father — and like his
forefathers is a solid white English bulldog. His registered name is
"Uga V's Whatchagot Loran?" But he has two things to his credit that
his famous father, Uga V, never experienced — two SEC championships
(2002 and 2005).
Through the years, Uga has been defined by his spiked collar, a symbol of the position which he holds. He was given his name, an abbreviation for the university, by William Young of Columbus, a law school classmate of Seiler. Each of the Uga mascots is awarded a varsity letter in the form of a plaque, identical to those presented to all Bulldog athletes who letter in their respective sports.
As determined and published by the Pittsburgh Press,
the University of Georgia is the only major college that actually buries
its mascots within the confines of the stadium. Ugas I, II, III, IV and
V are buried in marble vaults near the main gate in the embankment of
the South stands. Epitaphs to the dogs are inscribed in bronze, and
before each home game, flowers are placed on their graves. The memorial
plot attracts hundreds of fans and visitors each year.
For the past 20 years, Uga’s jerseys have been custom-made at the beginning of each season from the same material used for the players’ jerseys. Old jerseys are destroyed.
Uga’s on-field home is a permanent air-conditioned doghouse located next to the cheerleaders' platform, providing comfort in the heat of August and September. The custom-made doghouse is a gift from the Bahamian Bulldog Club of Nassau, Bahamas, through the courtesy of Fred Hazlewood.From coast to coast and from generation to generation, the Uga heritage lives as one of America's proudest, and most unique, mascot traditions.