Victor E. Knight, SUNY Geneseo’s mascot, will replace Viking as a result of his loss in Mascot Madness, next year.
“We told [Viking] that he had to step up his act,” said Peter Lambert, director of athletics. “When he failed to do so, we made the final vote to adopt Victor.”
Mascot Madness has held glory and respect for schools and mascots throughout the SUNY school system since its beginnings in 2013.
“It’s a great opportunity to show who’s the best,” said Red, SUNY Oneonta’s mascot, about Mascot Madness. “Some mascots have what it takes, some don’t.”
Red was the mascot who ousted the Viking in the third round of the competition. In round two, the Viking managed to defeat SUNY Herkimer’s mascot, the General by a narrow margin but did not hold onto his lead.
This change from Viking to Knight comes as a result of quite a bit of heated debate over the four years Hudson Valley has stood behind in the tournament. He was warned several times that if he didn’t start winning volleyball games for the college, he should start looking for new employment. The combination of the volleyball record and the Mascot Madness loss was the cause of this decision.
The task of changing over all of the Hudson Valley’s spirit gear, posters, pamphlets and other articles featuring Viking will take time according to Abigail Rojand, director of mascots. The college will begin fining students $50 if they are seen wearing or possessing anything with Viking on it after Sep.1.
“When you think about the sheer amount of equipment – shirts, athletic wear, lanyards, bumper stickers, letterhead, etcetera – that bear Viking’s image or name, it’s quite overwhelming. We expect this process will spill over into the upcoming fall semester, though we will be working vigorously on it over the summer,” Rojand said.
There has even been talk of ripping up the gym floor in McDonough to replace Viking’s face with Knight’s. Because construction on the new athletic complex has already been set in motion and funds are tight, this project is still in the idea phase, though Rojand is pushing hard to make this a reality.
“Out with the old and in with the new,” she said. “If we’re going to make the switch, it needs to be complete.”
School colors will also be changed from green and gold to blue and white in honor of the Knight, which will require a change in all new Hudson Valley gear. Hudson Valley has not had a color or mascot change since 1997.
Knight is excited to be representing two SUNY schools as their mascots.
“I’m super pumped that I can now represent Hudson Valley and Geneseo at their sports games,” Knight said.
When asked how he planned on attending sporting games from both schools, Knight said, “The details are not as important as the fact that I bleed blue and white.”
The Viking declined to comment on his replacement.
Lambert said, “We’re sad to see him go, but we switch mascots with the hope that our teams might win us a title after years of fruitless hard work.”