The Rebels of Ole Miss

colonel-reb-and-black-bearRebel, the Black Bear, is the mascot of the Ole Miss Rebels, having replaced Colonel Reb as the official mascot in 2010. In 2003, Colonel Reb was removed from the sidelines at Ole Miss athletic events as the on-the-field mascot after facing criticism from some groups that the character was offensive and racially insensitive.

Designed in 1936, the Colonel served as the official mascot from 1979 until 2003. Several theories exist as to who originally designed Colonel Reb. Perhaps first published in the 1936-37 Ole Miss yearbook or making his debut in The Rebel humor magazine founded by a group known as the “Rebel Club” founded in 1937.

University of Mississippi historian David Sansing has noted that Blind Jim (Ivy) may have been the model for Colonel Rebel. Ivy, blinded as a teenager, made his way to Oxford in 1896 and became a peanut vendor. As an ardent fan for all of Ole Miss athletic teams, Blind Jim became a campus fixture for the next 60 years. In 1936, area sport writers voted and the name “Rebels” was formally approved. The earliest and widely recognized version of the “modern” Colonel appeared on the 1946-47 Ole Miss yearbook

The student committee that was charged with choosing a new mascot was formed on March 29, 2010. The three finalists were: the Black Bear, based on the legend that Theodore “Teddy Bear” Roosevelt refused to shoot a bound black bear in Mississippi; the Rebel Land Shark; and Hotty Toddy, derived from the popular Rebel cheer. After polling student, faculty, staff, alumni and season ticket holders, the committee ultimately selected the Black Bear named “Rebel” as the new on-field mascot for the University of Mississippi athletic teams.

Next week’s “Sign, sign, ….. everywhere a Sign” features the Tigers of LSU.  Good luck with your favorite SEC team this Saturday.



About Ruthie Curtis

About Ruthie I am a real estate agent in Columbus, GA and love my “job.” I enjoy being associated with the professionals at Bickerstaff Parham Real Estate and the folks that I come in contact with each and every day. I basically just love houses and all that is associated with them. It is so rewarding to help buyers and sellers reach their goals and to be a part of the process that makes it happen. I especially love gardens and how they can work to improve a property both in aesthetics and function. As a Master Gardener, I feel that I can add another dimension to the home buying and selling process. Partnered with my love of creatively doing the “what if we” changes to houses and my attention to detail, I can offer my clients a well-rounded approach to meeting their real estate needs while having some fun along the way. I have lived in Columbus for the past 25 years and have been actively involved in the community. My involvements include being the 1996 Race Director for the Steeplechase at Callaway Gardens; a past board member of Girls,Inc and the Columbus Regional Tennis Association (CORTA); a board member of the State Botanical Garden of Georgia, the Columbus Botanical Garden, the Chattahoochee Valley Camellia Society, and is a member of the Women’s Reading Club of Columbus and the Overdue Book Club. I am a member of St. Luke United Methodist Church where I serve on the Altar (10) I am a UGA Bulldawg – having grown up in Athens and attended the University of Georgia where I received a BA degree in Advertising. I have two daughters, two great son-in-laws, five grandchildren and a Jack Russell Terrier named Jasper. I live in the historic Overlook area in Columbus where I recently purchased an older home and enjoyed the experience of putting my creative knowledge and skills to work!
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