Panther shares more of his game experience
Ramesh C. Reddy
Ramesh: When we beat Pitt St 12-0, was your friend the Nittany Lion?
Ramesh: Have you missed any games being a Pitt mascot and if so why?
Panther: Yeah, I have missed games. I always miss the West Virginia game because I really donít have any time to go home and see my family. At Thanksgiving I like to be with my family.
Ramesh: I understand.
Panther: I live pretty far away so I go home every West Virginia game. Thatís pretty much all I miss except sometimes I would miss basketball games because I have work that I have to get done. Sometimes she doesnít take me. There are only a couple of Away games she didnít take me too and that are pretty much it. Sometimes I donít go to Away games because they base it on seniority. When we go to places like Miami, Boston, stuff like that they only take based on seniority.
Ramesh: Based on whose seniority?
Panther: Like the cheerleaders who have been here for 4 years.
Ramesh: Okay! In the past you used to play fight with mascots of other teams but it has not happened recently; can you tell me why?
Panther: Well, ever since Sept 11, a lot of mascots that come to Pitt are not allowed to wrestle around as much. A lot of people, athletic directors of other schools, are trying to calm it down and make it more of a fun stuff than beating each other up. Some are not allowed to fight, some have been. The Hokie and I we went at it last game. The athletic directors are the problem right now. They donít want mascots showing at it.
Ramesh: How do you feel about that?
Panther: I think it is just tradition. Mascots are supposed to fight. I look forward to fighting a mascot at every game. Thatís the way I feel about it.
Panther: When was the last time you can remember your tail being pulled off? What did you do?
Panther: (Laughing) It was ripped off first in Pittsburgh. I was crowd surfing when it happened. All of a sudden I felt someone pull and it was ripped of and I got down and I grabbed it real quick.
Panther: The last time it happened I was at Temple. They have two mascots there. They have a Little Hooter and the Hooter; they are the Temple Owls. I was over there wrestling and one of my friends, who is a cheerleader for Temple and we went to high school together, she came back and pulled on my tail and it ripped off.
Ramesh: What did you do?
Panther: I just picked up and started beating the Owl with it.
Ramesh: People would never try to hug a real Panther. How many hugs do you think you have received and given as a Pitt Panther?
Panther: Oh my! Hundreds, thousands, so many hugs, every game I bet there are at least 100 kids wanting a hug, probably hundred students that want a hug. There are thousands of pictures that I could not even count. There are thousands of hugs in pictures.
Volume I, Issue IV