Back on February 22, we posted the story of the Ole Miss students trying to select Admiral Ackbar, the commander of the Rebel Alliance Fleet in the Star Wars universe as it’s new school mascot. Well after seven years since Colonel Reb was removed as the teams mascot they school has picked Rebel Black Bear, who won 62 percent of the vote in a final poll.
The schools who’s motto is “we may lose a game, but we never lose a party” began stripping away its images of the Old South back in 1999 as the confederate battle flags were the first to go then mascot Colonel Reb, the goateed Southern planter who cheered on the Rebels from the sidelines since 1979.
Picking a replacement became a matter of statewide import and in the end, the smiling black bear inspired in part by longtime Oxford resident William Faulkner won out, defeating two other nominees. One was the “Rebel Land Shark,” based on the “fins up” hand motion started by late football player Tony Fein. The other was “Hotty Toddy,” a gray human-like character that aimed to personify a school cheer that begins: “Are you ready? Hell yes! Damn right! Hotty Toddy, gosh almighty! … “
The black bear is connected to Ole Miss through Faulkner, the Nobel Prize-winning novelist who penned “The Bear.” In it, Old Ben stands as a symbol of pride, strength and toughness. The tale of the “teddy bear” originated with the story that President Teddy Roosevelt refused to shoot a bear on a Mississippi hunt in 1902.
Margaret Ann Morgan, a co-chairman of the student mascot selection committee, said the bear was recommended because it had a Mississippi connection, would appeal to children and would be unique to the Southeastern Conference. More than 13,000 eligible voters voted in the final poll.
Former Baltimore Ravens linebacker and Iraq War veteran Tony Fein died early Tuesday morning in his hometown of Port Orchard, Wash., according to his agent Milton D. Hobbs. Fein was 27 years old.
Fein enlisted in the Army at age 19 after graduating from high school in Port Orchard, Wash. He served in the Persian Gulf primarily as a Delta scout before being honorably discharged after a three-year enlistment.
Fein was involved in a controversy while with the Ravens. He was arrested and charged with misdemeanor assault on a police officer during an incident at a Johnny Rockets restaurant in the Inner Harbor prior to a preseason game, which the arresting police officer thought he was pulling out a handgun. It was later revealed that the so called gun that officer Sgt. Joseph Donato thought Fein had in his possession was actually a cell phone. The charges where later dismissed on the first of October.
An undrafted free agent from Ole Miss, Fein was released by the Ravens during their final major round of cuts. Fein didn’t have any reported health problems or injuries during his stint with the Ravens. Fein had been working out back in Port Orchard and hoping for another chance to play football.
In the NFL lately its players have had trouble staying out of the police blotter but over the weekend Baltimore Raven rookie Tony Fein was arrested after he was the victim of police profiling. Fein was arrested and charged with assaulting a police officer after a security officer thought he saw Fein pass a handgun to a friend at the HarborPlace restaurant. The gun in question turned out to be a Verizon a cell phone.
When police questioned Fein, 27, he became belligerent and shoved the officer, police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said. But agent Milton Dee Hobbs said it was the officer who was aggressive and that Fein didn’t shove him. He said police approached Fein because he was a black man wearing a sweat suit and hoodie.
Fein attended Ole Miss and was signed as a free agent in June following a mini-camp tryout. He is an Iraq veteran who served in the Army for more than three years before playing college ball.
According to the police report, Sgt. Joseph Donato loudly told Fein: “Stand up, turn around and keep your hands where I can see them.” Fein reacted by pushing Donato with one hand while turning around from the restaurant counter, police said. Donato grabbed Fein by the sweat shirt, forced him to the ground and he and other officers handcuffed him, the report stated.Fein was booked for the misdemeanor charge.
As someone who grew up in the Washington D.C. which is not far from the said location I can attest to a high crime rate as well as a lot racial profiling that goes on. It’s very possible that someone who doesn’t play in the NFL jumped the “gun”.
Today October 1st the charges have been dismissed against Fein and accordingly to the state’s attorney spokeswoman Marty Burns.