There is nothing that Western Kentucky University is more known for nationally than their mascot, “Big Red”. “Big Red”, (pictured above), has appeared numerous times on ESPN’s silly commercials, the 2005 and 2006 Southern Sports Awards, and recently appeared on NBC’s Deal or No Deal. “Big Red” won the “Key to Spirit” award – the highest honor presented to team mascots at the time – at the Universal Cheerleading Association competition.
In 1980, 1981 and again in 1983. In 1996 Western’s mascot got to the “Final Four” of ESPN SportZone’s “Battle of the Mascots.”
in public balloting on the Internet. I guess what I am trying to say is that this guy is no slouch when it comes to “mascoting”, no matter what he looks like. I mean, the dude has only been around since the 1979-1980 basketball season and he has already put his mark on college sports in a “Big Red” way.
To you “mascot experts”, none of the information printed above is news to you at all, but this might be. “Big Red”, the mascot of The Western Kentucky Hilltoppers, is the illegitimate son of Charles Barkley and an 18th century marionette. I know, it’s shocking and very disturbing. If you don’t find it to be so, you probably don’t realize that a marionette is a puppet. That is right TGR readers! “Big Red” is the offspring of Charles Barkley and a damn Muppet, basically. If you still are not either vomiting or unable to move due to overwhelming shock, you probably don’t know who Charles Barkley is. Charles is known around my hood as “Sir Charles” or “The Round Mound of Rebound”. He played his college ball at Auburn and never won an NBA championship because he played in the same era as Michael Jordan. He now works on the broadcast of NBA games on TNT and plays golf, badly may I add. Are you disturbed yet? Look at that picture up there, you can’t tell me that is not a very furry and red version of Sir Charles.
The details of who raised “Big Red” to adulthood are unclear at this point. The only point as clear as day to this writer is that Barkley has skipped out on his duties to take care of his child for years. Barkley has never commented on his relationship with “Big Red” nor has he ever even thought twice about the lovable mascot. I realize Charles has had issues with alcohol, gambling, and eating large amounts of food, but are those good enough reasons to essentially disown your child?
“Big Red”’s mother, the aforementioned marionette, suffered a terrible end to her life many years ago when the prop warehouse she was staying in burnt to the ground. While in show business in the newly formed, United States, she appeared at several statesmen’s birthday parties and was a guest of an early version of “Big Bird” at a puppet convention in 1789. She went by several names over her lifetime as an entertainer, including “Wakka Wakka Flakka”, “Miss Bo jangles”, “Muddy Britches”, and” Fire Crotch” to name a few. It has been rumored that she had only one experience with Mr. Barkley, which is how “Big Red” was created according to reports.
In closing, when you see “Big Red” on the WKU sidelines tomorrow jumping around with his mouth wide open, try not to laugh at him. This is a very disturbed and trouble creature. This being is to be comforted and loved by all and not to be jeered. I hope Kentucky fans will do just that this Saturday. I also hope that Charles “mans up” and at least sends him a birthday card this year. Go cats!