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OU Mascot

The University of Oklahoma mascot has evolved through the years and the mascots involved just adds to the lore of Soonerdom. Though the different mascots were completely different from each other, make no mistake: They were all Sooners.

Mex ... OU’s First Mascot

During OU football and baseball games from 1915-1928, Mex the Dog wore a red sweater with a big red letter “O” on the side. One of his main jobs was to keep stray dogs from roaming the field during a game in the days when the football field was more accessible to non-ticketholders.

Before his career as a mascot, Mex was just a helpless “dog waif.” Then, a U.S. Army field hospital medic found him in Mexico in 1914 during the Mexican Revolution unrest. Mott Keys was stationed along the Mexican border near Laredo, Texas, and found the dog among a litter of abandoned pups one night on the Mexican side.

Mex was adopted by Keys’ company, and when Keys finished his duty and moved to Hollis, Oklahoma, he took Mex. He later attended OU and Mex followed him again.

At OU, Mex’s experience as an Army medic company mascot landed him the job with the football team and a home in the Kappa Sigma fraternity house. He quickly became Oklahoma’s most famous dog.

“A joyous staccato bark cheered Sooner touchdowns” at football games and a “victory woof” punctuated home runs at baseball games. But Mex began to gain national attention in October of 1924 after OU lost a game to Drake University 28-0. The Sooners also lost Mex.

Mex did not board the train heading home in Arkansas City, Kansas. Rumors spread across the Missouri Valley, the conference OU played in at the time, that Mex was returning to attack the Drake Bulldogs and avenge the loss.

A 50-cent reward was offered, and Mex was found by upset OU graduates J.D. Hull, Hughes B. Davis and J.C. Henley. Mex was discovered pacing in the train station platform in Arkansas City. The men drove Mex to the next Saturday game at Stillwater. After Mex was once poisoned by non-Sooner fans, the dog learned to eat only from the hands of his caretakers.

Mex died of old age on April 30, 1928 and he was so popular among students and faculty that the university closed for his funeral and procession on May 2, 1928. He was buried in a small casket somewhere under the existing stadium.

Little Red

On April 17, 1970, President Hollomon banished Little Red, the unofficial mascot who danced on the sidelines of Owen Field. Although he was never the official OU mascot, the Indian dancer had become a traditional part of the games since the 1940s.

Sooner Schooner

The Sooner Schooner is a Conestoga, or covered wagon, reminiscent of the mode of travel of the pioneers who settled in Oklahoma. The Schooner is powered by matching white ponies named Boomer and Sooner and ventures onto Owen Field as a triumphant victory ride after OU scores. Although the Schooner was introduced in 1964, it did not become the official mascot until 1980.

Besides being a constant part of gamedays, the Schooner is well-recognized by college football fans across the country and it also makes regular appearances at university functions.

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