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Mascot Madness 2016: Meet the Mascots – Hudson region


Mascot Madness 2016 logo with mascots in background

Mascot Madness is the contest to see who New York’s favorite college mascot is. But who exactly are these characters? What makes them tick? Here’s your chance to find out, as we help you meet the Mascots competing in Mascot Madness 2016!

Here we have the Hudson region. See what makes these professionals tick and how their personalities help them to keep the spirit going strong at their respective campuses. After reading about each, make sure to vote for your favorite in this year’s tournament.

Blaze – Cortland | Jax & JJ – Jamestown CC | Rip – Columbia Greene CC | Privateer Pete – Maritime | Lucky – Delhi | Viking – Hudson Valley CC | General – Herkimer CC | Stinger – Broome CC | Duck – Schenectady County CC | Red – Oneonta

Blaze Dragon from SUNY Cortland

Blaze Dragon – SUNY Cortland

1) Who are you and what do you do?
Blaze the Red Dragon, the fierce, fire-breathing mascot of SUNY Cortland’s powerhouse athletic teams. What do I do? Whatever I want. Did you miss the part about fire-breathing dragon?

2) Where did you work before you were hired as a mascot?
Westeros. I was chief of security enforcement for Daenerys Targaryen during her hostile takeover attempt of the Seven Kingdoms. I left because I wanted something that would challenge me intellectually.

3) What is your most embarrassing mascot moment?
An allergy attack during our Cortaca Jug rivalry game. Big sneeze. Took out half the Ithaca College bench and scorched the scoreboard.

4) Which mascot would be your SUNY sidekick?
Let’s put it this way: 17 out of 19 SUNYAC Commissioner’s Cups and four national championships just last year. ALL of the SUNY mascots are our sidekicks.

5) What is your favorite part of New York State?
Cortland and Central New York in general. It’s beautiful, there’s a ton of active things to do, and you can get anywhere in New York from here pretty easily. Plus, it’s a great place for barbecue!

6) Have you ever studied abroad?
Does New Jersey count? But seriously, I studied history in Europe, art in Asia, biology in South America and education in Australia — all through SUNY Cortland’s amazing study abroad program, which was the first in the SUNY system.

7) What TV show could you watch all day?
“Barney & Friends.” It’s very popular sitcom among us anthropomorphic reptile types.

8) What is your favorite fast food spot?
The mall. During the holiday shopping season. I just wish I could get everyone to take their coats off: zippers get stuck between my teeth.

9) What song/music do you listen to in order to get hyped for an event?
I’ve got a bootleg mashup of DJ Khaled’s “All I Do Is Win,” and “Puff the Magic Dragon.” It. Is. Awesome.

10) What is the best class you ever took?
Geology. SUNY Cortland has its own field station where you get real-world experience. I found a pen I lost back in the Mesozoic Era!

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JJ the Jayhawk – Jamestown CC

1) Who are you and what do you do?
My name is JJ and I’m a Jayhawk. I flap my wings a lot and give tons of hugs and encouragement to my human friends on campus.

2) Where did you work before you were hired as a mascot?
I flew around the world aimlessly with little cause. I had no direction or ambition. Coming to JCC really changed my life. It transformed me into the mascot I wanted to be. The friends I’ve made here will be friends for life. I’m whole again.

3) What is your most embarrassing mascot moment?
It had to be the time when one student tried to take off my head to reveal my true identity. I’m just glad he didn’t try to pull off my legs.

4) Which mascot would be your SUNY sidekick?
It has to my man Jax from the JCC Cattaraugus County Campus. We have sort of a bromance thing going. Don’t tell him I said that.

5) What is your favorite part of New York State?
Jamestown. Hands down. People are so friendly here. I like it here so much that I’ve given up on ever flying again.

6) Have you ever studied abroad?
I spent four months in China with a few JCC students. It was a lot of fun. I befriended a few giant pandas. We still text each other.

7) What TV show could you watch all day?
I Love Lucy. Did you know that Lucy is from Jamestown? I took a selfie with her statue in town a couple weeks back. Check my Instagram account.

8) What is your favorite fast food spot?
There’s a Wendy’s down the street from campus. I love their baked potatoes. I tell you, that’s easier than chasing rabbits and squirrels around campus to fulfill my appetite.

9) What song/music do you listen to in order to get hyped for an event?
I love anything by Arianna Grande or Selena Gomez. I have pretty good moves on the dance floor, you know.

10) What is the best class you ever took?
American sign language, for sure. Since I can’t talk, this is a great way to communicate with all my friends on campus.

Jax the Jaguar – Jamestown CC

1) Who are you and what do you do?
My name is Jax and I’m a jaguar. I spend a lot of time roaming the woods, but I like to come out when big things are happening on campus, which is quite often.

2) Where did you work before you were hired as a mascot?
I was a greeter at Wal-Mart. Unfortunately, I scared a lot of the customers, and they let me go. But I’ve found a great home at JCC. I can be myself here. This is where I want to be every day.

3) What is your most embarrassing mascot moment?
Probably that time in front of a big crowd at our basketball game when I kept chasing my tail and couldn’t catch it. I still haven’t figured that one out.

4) Which mascot would be your SUNY sidekick?
I like JJ from the JCC Jamestown Campus quite a bit. We’re very good friends. We watch soap operas together all the time.

5) What is your favorite part of New York State?
Olean. That’s where I live. That’s where our campus is in Cattaraugus County. I love that there’s a lot of squirrels to chase around here. Keeps me busy.

6) Have you ever studied abroad?
I spent a semester in England a few years ago. While there I interned with Jaguar – you know, the automotive company. I thought I fit in well.

7) What TV show could you watch all day?
Has to be Glee. Mr. Puss is my favorite character. He’s my cousin, you know.

8) What is your favorite fast food spot?
My guilty pleasure is a Big Mac from McDonald’s. But I’ve been on a grass-only diet lately. Got to keep my speed.

9) What song/music do you listen to in order to get hyped for an event?
Eye of the Tiger. My heart beats intensely whenever I hear it.

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Rip Van Winkle - CGCCRip – Columbia Greene CC

1) Who are you and what do you do?
I’m Rip Van Winkle and when I’m not sleepin’ I’m bowlin’.

2) Where did you work before you were hired as a mascot?
Phfff! Work? Aint nobody got time for dat!

3) What is your most embarrassing mascot moment?
Well, I was trying to get into the men’s room, and my head got stuck in the door.

4) Which mascot would be your SUNY sidekick?
Orivs, the Pioneer from Alfred – we go WAY back – hunting rabbits and spitin’ chew.

5) What is your favorite part of New York State?
I must say that the country side of the state where it is quiet and peaceful. The Catskills of course! I know a nice shady tree…

6) Have you ever studied abroad?
No, it takes too long to travel by steam engine.

7) What TV show could you watch all day?
What in tarnation is a TV? One of those newfangled gadgets like the telly-graph?

8) What is your favorite fast food spot?
My favorite fast food place might be Chick-fil-A, but…Nah, no fast food for me. There ain’t nothin’ like squirrel slow roastin’ over a campfire.

9) What song/music do you listen to in order to get hyped for an event?
She’ll be comin’ round the mountain when she comes!! Whoot Whoot

10) What is the best class you ever took?
Distilling 101

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Privateer Pete of SUNY Maritime on football field.Privateer Pete – Maritime College

1) Who are you and what do you do?
My Name is Privateer Pete, I am the official mascot of SUNY Maritime College.

2) Where did you work before you were hired as a mascot?
Before being hired as the mascot at SUNY Maritime, I worked aboard Maritime’s training vessel The Empire State VI as a mate. I saw there was a job opening as the mascot in 1952, and jumped at the opportunity.

3) What is your most embarrassing mascot moment?
One time aboard the Empire State VI during Summer Sea Term my hat went flying overboard in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean on our way to Ireland. When I got back to campus in August, I had the worst sunburn ever!

4) Which mascot would be your SUNY sidekick?
I’d pick the Viking from Hudson Valley Community College, he is the only other mascot to endure life on both land and sea.

5) What is your favorite part of New York State?
During my down time, I enjoy sailing all the way from Lake Erie in Buffalo along the Erie Canal, then down the Hudson River before coming back to my home on the East River in the Bronx and SUNY Maritime.

6) Have you ever studied abroad?
Haven’t studied abroad, but I’ve studied “aboard” as part of the 90-Day Summer Sea Term that my fellow Privateers at SUNY Maritime take part in beginning every May.

7) What TV show could you watch all day?
Dancing with the Stars of course! I would love to someday be able to show off my dance moves on national television. I’ve also been brushing up on shows about outer space since Maritime Alum Scott Kelly ’87 recently finished his #YearInSpace on the International Space Station.

8) What is your favorite fast food spot?
My favorite fast food spot is Long John Silvers, who doesn’t like seafood…right?

9) What song/music do you listen to in order to get hyped for an event?
“Sail” from Awolnation gets me pumped up for all of our events at SUNY Maritime.

10) What is the best class you ever took?
I’ve taken a few great classes at SUNY Maritime, one of my favorites was Celestial Navigation. My other favorite was the fencing class…En Garde!

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Lucky the Bronco from SUNY DelhiLucky Bronco – SUNY Delhi

1) Who are you and what do you do?
I’m Lucky, the Bronco that brings good luck to SUNY Delhi.

2) Where did you work before you were hired as a mascot?
I worked at a dude ranch, but the trails were long and the work wasn’t inspiring.

3) What is your most embarrassing mascot moment?
When my hoof accidentally knocked over the Gatorade at a basketball game just moments before the victory celebration.

4) Which mascot would be your SUNY sidekick?
The SUNY Orange Colt. We could have our own herd.

5) What is your favorite part of New York State?
Saratoga…Man can some of those racing horses move!

6) Have you ever studied abroad?
Yes, I once traveled to Argentina to study the Pampas.

7) What TV show could you watch all day?
Game of Thrones. Don’t forget that it’s the horses that make the Dothraki cool.

8) What is your favorite fast food spot?
Basically any grassy field. There are lots along the Thruway.

9) What song/music do you listen to in order to get hyped for an event?
“Hey Ya!” by Outkast…I like to shake it like a Polaroid picture!

10) What is the best class you ever took?
Delhi offers Sports and Turf Management, so I audited a class. Who wouldn’t want to know how to grow a better source of food?

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The Viking from Hudson Valley Community College

Viking – Hudson Valley CC

1) Who are you and what do you do?
I am the official mascot of Hudson Valley Community College. My role here is to be an inspiration to students and an ambassador to our greater community. I stand as a symbol of the search for knowledge and opportunity, and a willingness to take risks and grow from every experience. Be bold. Be a Viking!!!

2) Where did you work before you were hired as a mascot?
Before I was hired by Hudson Valley, I traveled the globe. We were explorers – always in search of new opportunities – who found ourselves sailing up the mighty Hudson River. Long story short, I came upon one of the finest two year colleges in the nation just as I was searching for a place to call home.

3) What is your most embarrassing mascot moment?
I once walked into a meeting with a faculty member without competing my homework assignment. Believe me, not being able to participate in a meaningful way in the discussion was very uncomfortable. I made sure that never happened again. I even brushed up on my study skills at the college’s Center for Academic Engagement.

4) Which mascot would be your SUNY sidekick?
My sidekick is actually Southpaw from the Tri-City ValleyCats (a Houston Astros minor league baseball team that calls Hudson Valley home). This cool cat and I became fast friends about 10 years ago and we hang out together during home games at “The Joe.” Every Viking needs a trustworthy companion, right?

5) What is your favorite part of New York State?
From one corner of the state to another, there’s so much to see and do here in New York. As a Viking, I am naturally attracted to exploring, but I’m partial to the Capital Region for sure!

6) Have you ever studied abroad?
Once I traveled to Venice, Italy with Hudson Valley business students who were working with the Settamari Rowing Club to plan a trip to the States. It was a great experience, and I acquired a great appreciation other cultures.

7) What TV show could you watch all day?
Hulu’s “Behind the Mask” is one of my favorites because I can relate! Jeopardy, of course, is another since the quest for knowledge is a lifelong pursuit.

8) What is your favorite fast food spot?
There are plenty of places to eat in Troy, but I prefer to grab a bite on campus. My favorite snack is pizza, especially because it’s free every Wednesday in the Campus Center!

9) What song/music do you listen to in order to get hyped for an event?
Eye of the Tiger! You know, rising to the challenge, guts and glory, surviving… It’s a real classic. When I need to get pumped up, that’s my song!

10) What is the best class you ever took?
It’s kind of ironic, but the best class I ever took was public speaking. I know, I know…as a mascot, I don’t utter a word. But someday, maybe in a different career, I will need that skill and I’ll be ready. It’s important to come out of college well-rounded.

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Herkimer General from Herkimer County Community CollegeGeneral – Herkimer CC

1) Who are you and what do you do?
I am the Herkimer General, an honor bestowed upon me 50 years ago by Herkimer County Community College! My leadership skills have enabled me to inspire generations of student-athletes and earn the trust and respect of the entire campus.

2) Where did you work before you were hired as a mascot?
Before becoming the mascot at Herkimer, I was a leader in a major defense operation.

3) What is your most embarrassing mascot moment?
I work in a humbling field. One embarrassing moment which has stuck with me the most came just recently. It was during a NATYCAA Cup award presentation at which the Herkimer Generals were recognized for the second consecutive year as the #1 two-year college athletic program in the nation! President McColgin handed me the NATYCAA Cup, and I got so nervous, I nearly dropped it. Due to the incredible weight of the trophy, I dropped to the ground, all the while keeping the coveted NATYCAA Cup from hitting the ground. The crowd erupted in cheer!

4) Which mascot would be your SUNY sidekick?
My SUNY sidekick and biggest rival has to be Sullivan County Community College’s General, also known as @GeneralDunker on Twitter. His program doesn’t boast the 53 national championships Herkimer does, and I tend to remind him of that!

5) What is your favorite part of New York State?
It’s Herkimer County, of course! I love the friendly, caring people; the four season outdoor recreation opportunities; and the rich Revolutionary War history. Herkimer County is a great place to live, work, and play.

6) Have you ever studied abroad?
I never had the opportunity to study abroad, but my first choice would’ve been Great Britain. Many of our best soccer players hail from Great Britain.

7) What TV show could you watch all day?
This might date me, but when I first started watching television, it was all in black and white. Not until I was older did MASH premiere on CBS. It was based on tales told by surgeons in the Korean War. It depicted events occurring during a three-year military conflict, spanning 256 episodes in 11 seasons. The show captivated me! Now that Netflix offers the series, I can watch it whenever I want!

8) What is your favorite fast food spot?
Despite the endless ads I see about fast food, I have yet to try it. My diet consists of MRE’s (Meals Ready-to-Eat). There’s a multitude of choices, so this is difficult for me, but my go-to when I’m in a bind is the Southwest Chicken with Rice and Beans. However if it came down to something I could scarf down on a daily basis, I would go with the Homestyle Chicken & Noodles in Gravy!

9) What song/music do you listen to in order to get hyped for an event?
When in-season, I like to load cannon balls as a warm up before a game. It gets the blood flowing throughout all of my extremities! The song I listen to during this is the Star Spangled Banner! I tend to listen to it on repeat, but others on my ‘hit list’ are: “God Bless the U.S.A.,” “This Land is Your Land,” “God Bless America,” and “America the Beautiful.”

10) What is the best class you ever took?
I loved my Physical Education courses at Herkimer College! I like to keep myself prepared both mentally and physically, and the faculty at Herkimer act like every day is game day! It was a perfect match! I was taught how to improve myself mentally in the classroom, then physically using all of our amazing facilities.

Follow @HerkimerGeneral

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Broome mascotStinger – Broome CC

1) Who are you and what do you do?
Hi, I’m Stinger the Hornet! My job is to get the buzz going about SUNY Broome, my most excellent hive. Not only do I get pumped up at our sports games, I fly out to local community events and even tote boxes and bags during Move-In Day at our Student Village.

2) Where did you work before you were hired as a mascot?
Well, for a while I tried to get into the police force to work on sting operations, but then I learned I was misinterpreting “sting.” Good thing our Criminal Justice & Emergency Services students set me straight about that!

3) What is your most embarrassing mascot moment?
I forgot my hands at a campus event once. Technically, Hornets don’t really have hands, so I guess you could say I was going retro.

4) Which mascot would be your SUNY sidekick?
I have more than enough spirit for any mascot! But I’d let the Binghamton University Bearcat tag along if he could keep up. Baxter’s great, but he doesn’t have wings. The wings definitely give me an advantage.

5) What is your favorite part of New York State?
Broome County, of course! Known as the Valley of Opportunity, the area spawned a good deal of innovation — most famously IBM, which began in the neighboring village of Endicott. In fact, our college mascot was originally the Technicat to honor the area’s high-tech origins. As the Hornet, I represent the best the area has to offer: lightning-fast like our technology and, being a natural critter, the beauty of our Southern Tier environs.

6) Have you ever studied abroad?
Most definitely! Mexico, Italy, Ecuador, London, Haiti – I’ve been to them all. Now, we do have online students in our Business program in Siberia and I haven’t headed out to visit them — yet. Next up: Novosibirsk!

7) What TV show could you watch all day?
The Green Hornet, of course! But the show from the ‘60s, not that horrible Seth Rogan flop. You don’t mess with the classics.

8) What is your favorite fast food spot?
When I need a burger or some nachos, I head over to the Blueline Café in the SUNY Broome Ice Center. It’s a great place to grab a snack. The best part: I can strap on some skates and burn off all those calories before chowing down. I have to keep my insectoid figure, you know.

9) What song/music do you listen to in order to get hyped for an event?
Flight of the Bumblebee and anything by Sting, of course!

10) What is the best class you ever took?
First class — made the plane ride so much more enjoyable. Oh wait, you mean a class-class, right? There are so many great classes that it’s hard to pick! I really enjoyed the Mathematics of Gaming, which taught important math concepts while letting us play casino games. What a win, right? But my favorite, I have to say, is Health for Haiti over winter term. Over the past few years, my fellow Hornets have installed solar panels and a water purification system, and even helped deliver a baby! Helping people – that’s what life is all about, folks.

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Royal the Duck from Schenectady County Community CollegeDuck – Schenectady County CC

1) Who are you and what do you do?
I’m Royal the Duck and I am Schenectady County Community College’s official mascot. As a duck, I am resilient on land, water and sky. I’ve been known to get a crowd cheering whether it’s at the beautiful YMCA for our women’s and men’s basketball games, at Boulevard Bowl where our national champs, the Schenectady CCC bowling teams practice, on the banks of the gorgeous Mohawk River for an exhilarating regatta with our women’s crew team, at Central Park watching our men’s baseball team play or on campus greeting our terrific students at SCCC.

2) Where did you work before you were hired as a mascot?
? I could be found hanging out on the Mohawk River in Schenectady. I was always watching over Schenectady County Community College. Often I could be found greeting guests at the lovely Glen Sanders Mansion in Scotia overlooking the scenic Mohawk River. Glen Sanders is owned by one of our college alums, award-winning restaurateur Angelo Mazzone.

3) What is your most embarrassing mascot moment?
I was wearing my glasses one night because I lost one of my contacts. Anyway, like any good mascot, I do enjoy shaking a tail feather to get the crowd pumped. I shook a little too hard, the glasses fell off and cracked and oh boy, I was a real mess. But I pulled it together with the help of our basketball coach and finished the game like a champ.

4) Which mascot would be your SUNY sidekick?
I’d say the Plattsburgh Cardinal, Burghy. We birds of a feather stick together. Burghy’s red color complements my royal blue and gold colors.

5) What is your favorite part of New York State?
I know I’ve already mentioned it, so you can probably guess…it’s the beautiful Mohawk River. When I’m taking a break in between games and strolling around SCCC, I love to relax on the water right near campus and enjoy some rays. The Mohawk River is filled with history and is always a part of the history-in-the-making moments for Schenectady County Community College.

6) Have you ever studied abroad?
Sure – I tagged along with our culinary arts students this summer when they traveled to Italy to study under some of the best chefs in the country. The food was delizioso!

7) What TV show could you watch all day?
Classic cartoons with Donald and Daffy.

8) What is your favorite fast food spot?
My favorite fast food spot is, of course, Jumpin’ Jack’s on the Mohawk River in Schenectady. Jumpin’ Jacks is only open during the summer months. So during the other months of the year I work hard to stay in shape and to keep the energy up. When Jumpin’ Jack’s is closed, I prefer my staples – grass, weeds, algae, berries, fruits, snails and worms. (Don’t judge, what’s in YOUR fridge?)

9) What song/music do you listen to in order to get hyped for an event?
Anything played by our stellar music students and faculty. They rock. Oh, and Disco Duck – you know it’s a classic.

10) What is the best class you ever took?
That’s a tough one because I’ve taken so many great classes at Schenectady. It would be hard to pick just one, but I must say I love all our Aviation Science classes with Professor Barbara Jones. Flying is just an amazing experience. It thrills me to see students want to learn how to fly. Dr. Dean Bennett’s class The Viking World is right up there. It was really fascinating.

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Red the Dragon headshot from SUNY OneontaRed – SUNY Oneonta

1) Who are you and what do you do?
My name is Red. I cheer on the Oneonta Red Dragons at home games and help everyone celebrate their school spirit at Red Day. I love welcoming all the new freshmen every year at Pass through the Pillars, and posing for pictures with friends!

2) Where did you work before you were hired as a mascot?
I was a flame thrower in the circus.

3) What is your most embarrassing mascot moment?
When I got mistaken for Charizard at a Pokemon convention.

4) Which mascot would be your SUNY sidekick?
Probably Blaze from Cortland! We have a pretty fierce rivalry, but when the chips are down, we dragons have to stick together.

5) What is your favorite part of New York State?
The Catskill Mountains

6) Have you ever studied abroad?
Yes! Last summer, I traveled to Milan, Italy, and met up with some Oneonta fashion students studying at the Istituto Europeo di Design.

7) What TV show could you watch all day?
“Game of Thrones”

8) What is your favorite fast food spot?
My favorite snack is cold-cheese pizza, and luckily, there are lots of great pizzerias in Oneonta!

9) What song/music do you listen to in order to get hyped for an event?
“Burnin’ Down the House” by Talking Heads

10) What is the best class you ever took?
Physiology. Learning how the human body works gave me an even greater appreciation for our athletes!

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