A school is not complete without its mascot – the physical representation of a school’s passion, energy, and strength. All three of those words combined is what makes up Minnesota State University, Mankato’s very own mascot, Stomper.
Stomper was born in the fall of 1993 during a “Name the Mascot” contest during Homecoming Week. Since its inception, countless nameless students have been behind the eyes of the electrifying steer.
Currently, the unnamed person under the mask has had the pleasure of being the face of MNSU’s pride for 3 years now and has been enjoying being a mascot since their days in high school.
As with all mascots, the current incumbent spoke with the Reporter under the cover of anonymity about their time as Stomper. Speaking about their day to day life as the mascot, whose main role is pumping up the crowd and running around to different locations throughout the large sports facilities before, during and after games.
Surprisingly though, they see the role of mascot as stress free with the positives far outweighing the negatives.
“I’m what you would call an adrenaline junky. So, once I put the head on, the adrenaline starts flowing and I get real excited,” says the anonymous mascot.
There is definitely a certain talent someone would have to have to be the voiceless energetic, anthropomorphic bull during sporting and other events. But the three-year veteran mascot says all you really need to do to succeed at being the mascot is to just be yourself.
Being anonymous behind the mask of a mascot has the perk of being able to mess up now and then and still get the desired reaction from the crowd. Discussing some moments of his time as Stomper, they tell us just that.
“Nobody knows who you are so everything is pretty much a ballgame if you want to do something crazy. I’ve pulled off every dance move you could think of and I’m not a good dancer at all, but I whip out the Dad dance so I usually get quite a few laughs,” he said.
The daily routine of Stomper consists of listening to rock music to pump themselves up before heading on the ice to excite the crowd. Once that is over Stomper exits to the locker room, replaces skates with regular shoes and walk around the arena to meet and greet fans.
During this time Stomper will take at least 50 pictures with fans before heading up to “Stomper’s Stomp” to pump up the crowd again and then a frantic cycle of taking pictures and pumping up the crowd begins.
As intense and, at times, tiring job, the current owner nevertheless sees it as a once in a life time opportunity to be as over the top and entertaining as possible and will greatly miss doing it once they graduate.For the next fortunate person to take the reins, the current Stomper’s biggest advice is to just be themselves and to not be afraid doing it the first time.
Feature photo by Maria Ly | MSU Reporter.