The University of Georgia football team’s mascot, bulldog Uga VII, has died. He was 4 and had not yet served out two full seasons, the shortest reign in 54 years of Ugas at UGa. Uga was not only a mascot but a beloved pet to the Savannah family that provides the school with its bulldogs. “We are all in a state of shock,” his owner tells the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “We had no warning whatsoever.”
The Bulldog Nation, not just the family, is in mourning. “It's sad we won't have him on the sideline anymore,” Georgia’s coach says. But fret not—the owners will provide an interim dog for upcoming games, as they’ve done before, while a search of Uga VII’s considerable brood for Uga VIII gets under way. Meanwhile, there’s a burial to prepare for: Georgia is the only American university that inters its mascots in a mausoleum in the stadium.