Quack a Tiger By The Tail

Meeting Mike the Tiger at LSU

With JJ Kwashnak

October 2010

Having spent time at many colleges around, as well as spending time with the alma mater of many friends, Tufts University, NOT is used to the various mascots around. While he never got to meet the stuffed remains of the original Jumbo, who burned in a fire in 1973, he does occasionally get to meet other mascots.

At Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, the schools' mascot is the tiger, specifically Mike the Tiger. Currently the schools is on Mike VI, a Bengal-Siberian hybrid tiger.

When NOT was attending a lecture at the LSU Museum of Natural Science, he had time to take in the exhibits around the museum. Turning a corner he came face to face with a fierce tiger posed in a display case.

This was no ordinary tiger however. This was the original Mike the Tiger.

Mike the Tiger

A sign nearby tells his story:

Mike I was LSU's true symbol of courage and pride. He arrived on campus on October 21, 1936. Though his name was originally Sheik, it was decided that Mike should be his named in honor of Mike Chambers, LSU's athletic trainer at the time. Mike I lived quite a long and eventful life. Most of these events were linked to Mike's strong personality, except for one day in 1950, when Mike was captured by Tulane's students. Fortunately Mike was returned safely to campus thanks to LSU athletic director T.P. Heard. Mike was 20 years and 8 months when he died on June 29, 1956.  

North American Travel

United States Travel

Louisiana Travel

Photos courtesy of J.J. Kwashnak

Last Updated December 2010