The student government at Miami passed a so-called “bird bill” at a session on Nov. 11 that will allow handlers from the Hueston Woods to bring a red-tailed hawk to various Miami sporting events, per an article from The Miami Student. The school joins over 40 others in NCAA to have live mascots, including Arkansas, Army, Auburn, Baylor, Cincinnati, Colorado, Georgetown, Georgia, Georgia Southern, Houston, Kentucky, LSU, Mississippi State, Navy, NC State, North Carolina, Northern Illinois, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, South Carolina, Texas, Texas A&M, Temple, Tennessee, Washington, Wyoming, and Yale, among others.
The hawk, who is named Colonel, will come to sporting events at no cost to the University, while the Associated Student Government agreed to sponsor fundraising and awareness events for the Hueston Woods in return for the service. Colonel has lived at Hueston Woods’s rehabilitation center for nine years, as some of the animals at the center are unable to return to the wild to their inability to live on their own.
With a live mascot, alcohol being sold to the general public at Yager Stadium, and all the new facilities being put up around Yager, fans can see a tangible commitment from the athletic department to the football program, and that commitment is being rewarded with Miami’s best season since 2010. All of these developments will help make RedHawk football a major event on campus, and the program will be better off because of it.