Bevo XV hangs out in his place of honor on the field during pregame warmups before the Longhorns' game against UTEP on Saturday, Sept. 10, 2016, in Austin. (Rodolfo Gonzalez/American-Statesman)

BEVO BEAT

Bevo banned? ESPN discusses PETA’s call for end of live mascots

Posted October 14th, 2016

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Will Bevo XV be the last steer to attend Texas football games? If PETA has its way, yes. In light of the death of LSU’s mascot, Mike VI,  the animal rights nonprofit group has called for the end of universities using live animal mascots to represent their sports teams.

The topic was discussed Friday on ESPN’s Outside the Lines. The program touched on what universities have mascots, and the beloved Texas longhorn was mentioned, including the trivia that Bevo I was the main course of the Texas football banquet in 1920 because food and care for the steer were too costly.

“I think he symbolizes what we’re all about,” Texas assistant coach Vance Bedford said in a recorded clip. “Something that’s strong and stands tall.”

RELATED COVERAGE: Welcome, Bevo XV: Sunrise Spur makes his debut as Texas’ mascot

OTL’s host, Bob Ley, interviewed PETA spokesperson Liam Cronin on the push for banning mascots. After citing Barnum & Bailey’s decision to get rid of elephants from its circuses this year, Cronin stated that ridding sidelines of Bevo, Colorado’s Ralphie and A&M’s Reveille among other mascots is “the next step on our march to stop having animals in these kinds of conditions.”

Cronin also believes a ban on live mascots will finally allow handlers to treat them like members of the family:

 

Editor’s note: The original version of this story was edited to correct the name of Colorado’s mascot.

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