Capital One announces sixth annual 2007 All-America Mascot Team and opens polls for HokieBird in race for Mascot of the Year
HokieBird prepares to challenge its brethren for mascot fame and fortune
September 4, 2007

McLean, Va. - HokieBird from Virginia Tech has been named to the sixth annual Capital One All-America Mascot Team, made up of a group of 12 over-sized and often under-appreciated characters - including three birds, two bears, a cougar, a dog, a gopher, a kangaroo, a cavalier, a piece of 'fruit' and a big red creature. Each one of these mascots will be putting their best claw, paw and talon forward while vying for the most coveted title in the land - "Capital One Mascot of the Year."

Starting September 10th, fans can vote online at www.capitalonebowl.com, for their favorite All-American, who will be announced during the Capital One Bowl on January 1.

"We're just excited to be a part of the Capital One Mascot program," said Jeremy Wells, Assistant Director of Athletics for Sports Marketing and Promotions at Virginia Tech. "This is the second time HokieBird has been selected and it's a tremendous honor for the university."

HokieBird will be competing in a weekly head-to-furry-head face-off among this year's All-Americans:

The Contenders
University of Akron - ZippyUniv. of Southern Mississippi - Seymour
Brigham Young University - Cosmo CougarSyracuse University - Otto
University of Georgia - Hairy Dawg UCLA - Joe Bruin
University of Minnesota - Goldy Gopher University of Virginia - Cavman
University of Montana - MonteVirginia Tech - HokieBird
University of South Carolina - CockyWestern Kentucky University - Big Red

"We created this contest to celebrate the unsung heroes of college football," said Steve Schooff at Capital One. "Last year, a cougar from Washington State clawed its way to the pinnacle of mascot stardom. This year, we're looking forward to see what mascot can put their best claw, paw or talon forward to ascend to the throne of Capital One Mascot of the Year."

The fan vote is the sole determinant of the winner; the people choose. Voting consists of 11 weekly head-to-head match ups between the All-Americans. The mascots with the best win/loss records face off in online playoffs starting in November. The winner will be pronounced Capital One National Mascot of the Year on January 1, 2008 during the Capital One Bowl.

"Mascots work as hard as anyone on the field, but are lost in the shadows of the flashy all-star quarterbacks and running backs," said Dr. Roy Yarbrough, mascot guru and historian. "This is a great tribute to them, and fans should show their support. Bragging rights are on the line."

This year's fuzzy crew was chosen from Division IA and IAA athletic programs with college football teams. They made the squad after being ranked on mascot musts such as interaction with fans, originality and pedigree. The panel of judges included mascot guru and historian, Dr. Roy Yarbrough, and representatives from ESPN and Capital One.

Over the past five years, Capital One has helped thrust the spotlight on these unsung heroes of the gridiron. HokieBird will be starring in a national advertising campaign, which this year features the mascots participating in the Capital One Mascot Open, a series of unusual (and fictitious) golf competitions. In addition to the hoopla, HokieBird received $5,000 for its school's mascot program. Mascot of the Year receives an additional $5,000 scholarship to help fund its school's mascot program.