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The Illini Student Referendum Elects New Mascot

The students have spoken. Now its time for the administration to officially approve the new University of Illinois mascot.

Photo: ILLUSTRATION COURTESY OF SPENCER HULSEY

The Illini have a new mascot, elected by the students:

Photo: The Champaign Room

The Belted Kingfisher bird would take the place of Chief Illiniwek, who was banned in 2005. The Fighting Illini name would remain in tact, but the Belted Kingfisher would be the new mascot.

Now, I’m neutral on this. Obviously, I’m happy they are keeping their name, but the idea of having no mascot is a bit lame. I mean, this mascot definitely tops the dancing “I” they had on occasion when I was in attendance at games as a student. The University of Illinois administration would still have to approve the mascot addition, so that remains in the wings. We will see if it becomes official soon.


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