Sports Illustrated Owes Cowboy Joe An Apology [OPINION]
Sports Illustrated recently ranked the top 10 mascots in college football. Their list includes a red blob, a giant orange, and a tree...but not Wyoming's beloved Cowboy Joe.
Clearly, Sports Illustrated owes him an apology.
Sure, Ralphie the University of Colorado Buffalo belongs on the list. So does Uga the Georgia Bulldog, Bevo the Texas Longhorn, Cocky the South Carolina Gamecock, Mike the Tiger from Lousiana State, and Smokey the Tennessee Volunteer coonhound. But the Stanford Tree? Really, Sports Illustrated? The Stanford Tree?
The questionable SI mascot list also includes the Oregon Duck, Otto the Syracuse Orange, and Western Kentucky's "Big Red", which looks like a bad Sesame Street character. None of those mascots are even close to Cowboy Joe.
The legend of Cowboy Joe began in 1950 when the Farthing family discovered a Shetland pony who was starving after his mother had died. As they nursed the orphan back to health, the family was so impressed with his resilience, they donated him to the University of Wyoming.
Nearly 70 years later, Cowboy Joe remains one of the most beloved icons in Wyoming. When the original Cowboy Joe retired in 1965, the Farthing family donated another pony from their ranch. Cowboy Joe II served until 1981. The current mascot, Cowboy Joe V took over in 2013. That same year, he was named the Cutest Mascot in College Football.
Evidently, Sports Illustrated didn't think our legendary miniature horse was cute enough. On the bright side, at least Cam the Ram didn't make the list.