Smokey Blue Tick Hound?

Smokey is the mascot of the University of Tennessee sports teams. These teams, named “The Volunteers” and nicknamed “the Vols”, use both a live and a costumed version of Smokey.

At halftime of the Mississippi State game that season, several dogs were lined up on the old cheerleaders’ ramp at ShieldsWatkins Field for voting. Tennessee’s first mascot met a sudden and tragic end in 1955, as he was fatally struck by a car after escaping from his home.

In 1955, students from the University of Kentucky kidnapped him for eight days, dressing him in a blue and white blanket with a large K and parading him around at a Wildcats pep rally. A week later, three Vanderbilt students tried the same heist at the Brooks house, but ended up taking an old hunting dog instead. In 1963, Smokey died in Lexington shortly after the Vols’ game against Kentucky, reportedly because someone fed him a chocolate pie.

[4] He compiled a 105-39-5 record, attended ten bowl games, and presided over two SEC championships during his tenure. [7] During the 1991 UCLA game, Smokey suffered heat exhaustion in the 100+ degree temperatures and was listed on the Vols injury report until he returned later in the season. Smokey VIII was the most successful of the live dogs, presiding as mascot as the Vols compiled a record of 91-22, claimed two SEC titles, and won a national championship in 1998.

[5] Born on November 10, 1994, Smokey VIII began his reign in 1995 and retired after the 2004 Peach Bowl in Atlanta after being diagnosed with a nasal tumor in December 2003. [11] “He served with distinction, weathered storms, cold and heat”, recalled Earl Hudson, who owned the dog since it was two months old. [12] Smokey VIII died on March 17, 2006 after suffering complications from high blood pressure and kidney disease.

An ESPN article said a Crimson Tide receiver fell on the dog when the player jumped out of bounds for a pass. [14] On game days and while attending to official mascot duties, Smokey is handled by members of UT’s Alpha Gamma Rho fraternity. Tennessee attempted to create a more realistic looking hound costume in 1982, but the end result was panned by the students and this iteration of Smokey was quickly retired.

Smokey‘s new, more realistic look initially garnered mixed reactions from the Volunteer fanbase, but the redesign quickly became a fan favorite and remains the face of Tennessee athletics to this day. Smokey is occasionally joined by a female counterpart that appears at the women’s athletic events.

Is Smokey a blue tick hound?

Smokey is a Bluetick Coonhound which became the official dog breed of Tennessee in 2019.

What breed is Smokey the dog?

Tennessee’s top dog is a bluetick coonhound named Smokey. Ten dogs have carried the legacy of the Vols beloved mascot since 1953, each lovingly cared for by members of one family and adored by thousands of Big Orange fans.

Who owns Smokey the dog?

Hudson, owner and trainer of the famous line of “Smokey” mascots for more than 20 years, died on June 24 in Knoxville. He was 91. Since 1994, Mr. Hudson has worked with the line of blue tick coon hounds that serve as the University of Tennessee’s canine mascot.

How old is the current Smokey the dog?

The current Smokey, Smokey X, was actually born on February 21, 2012. It was Sept. 26, 1953, when the Big Orange welcomed the first of ten (so far) bluetick coonhounds as its new mascot. The history behind Smokey is just as treasured as he is.

Since 1953, there have actually been 10 different Smokey dogs, most of which came from the same bloodline as the original Brooks Blue Smokey. And then there’s the huge Smokey mascot, too, who also shows up to Tennessee games and functions.

The original Smokey mascot was nominated during halftime of a football game with Mississippi State. The UT Pep Club organized a contest to select a coonhound as the mascot, and Rev.

Smokey VIII attended the 1998 national championship win for the Vols, but not without a minor hiccup. Handlers notices Smokey was acting strange, and a vet determined that he had eaten a hotel washcloth .

Smokey (mascot)

There is an actual Bluetick Coonhound mascot, Smokey X, who leads the Vols on the field for football games. The Alpha Gamma Rho fraternity cares for the hound on the University of Tennessee campus. There is also a costumed mascot that appears at every Vols game and has won several mascot championships.

History[edit]

In 1953, the University of Tennessee Pep Club held a contest to select a coonhound, a breed common in Tennessee, to serve as the school’s live mascot. Announcements of the contest in local newspapers read, “This can’t be an ordinary hound. He must be a ‘Houn’ Dog’ in the best sense of the word.”The late Rev. W. C. “Bill” Brooks entered his prize-winning bluetick coonhound, “Brooks’ Blue Smokey“, in the school’s contest. At halftime of the Mississippi State game that season, several dogs were lined up on the old cheerleaders’ ramp at Shields–Watkins Field for voting. Each dog was introduced over the loudspeaker, and the student body cheered for their favorite. “Blue Smokey” was the last hound introduced. When his name was called, he barked. The students cheered and Smokey threw his head back and howled again. This kept going until the stadium was in an uproar, and the University had found its mascot. “Blue Smokey” would compile a 10-10-1 record during his two seasons as Vols mascot. Tennessee’s first mascot met a sudden and tragic end in 1955, as he was fatally struck by a car after escaping from his home.The live hound mascot has been featured in television news segments.

Costumed Smokey[edit]

The costumed version of Smokey made his debut in the 1980s. Until the late 1980s, this costume was designed as a cartoon-like orange and white dog. This version of Smokey would often drink orange juice out of a bottle to cool down, mostly because of the color of the drink.Tennessee attempted to create a more realistic looking hound costume in 1982, but the end result was panned by the students and this iteration of Smokey was quickly retired. The orange Smokey reigned until 1988, when the University tried once more to redesign Smokey. Smokey‘s new, more realistic look initially garnered mixed reactions from the Volunteer fanbase, but the redesign quickly became a fan favorite and remains the face of Tennessee athletics to this day. The costumed Smokey‘s body is black, leading to occasional misidentification as the more familiar Black and Tan Coonhound. However, his white blaze firmly identifies him as a Bluetick Coonhound.In 2006, Smokey made it to the quarterfinals of the Capital One Mascot Challenge, also making several appearances in Capital One commercials.Smokey is occasionally joined by a female counterpart that appears at the women’s athletic events.

The original Smokey

The original Smokey mascot was nominated during halftime of a football game with Mississippi State. The UT Pep Club organized a contest to select a coonhound as the mascot, and Rev. W.C. “Bill” Brooks entered his prize-winning bluetick coonhound “Brooks’ Blue Smokey,” according to the University of Tennessee’s history website.When “Blue Smokey” was introduced, the hound howled. Students cheered, Smokey howled more, and eventually the entire stadium was cheering and howling, and UT had a mascot.

He’s got a strange appetite

Smokey VIII attended the 1998 national championship win for the Vols, but not without a minor hiccup. Handlers notices Smokey was acting strange, and a vet determined that he had eaten a hotel washcloth.Despite this, Smokey led the team out onto the field without a problem. The washcloth was removed after the championship game.

Defending his territory

Smokey IX served as mascot between 2003-2012. He defended his stadium well, drawing blood from an Alabama player during warmups in 2006, according to then-Alabama coach Mike Shula and the UT website.