The Prairie Fire of Knox College have battled rival schools for more than a century with only a name to represent them. But that's all changed as the new school year begins for the private liberal-arts school.
College President Teresa Amott and Athletic Director Chad Eisele led a ceremony during Knox's back-to-school party to reveal a fox as the school's new mascot.
Dustin Wheeler, a junior golfer for Knox College, said the fox is a fitting mascot.
"We’re the Prairie Fire, and foxes are native to the prairie. And they can also be red or orange, like fire. So it kind of just fits in there," Wheeler said. "And it’s also very like clever, sly, and smart. So it just kind of fits in with the students that go here."
Senior Kameron Wells liked the fox because it represents the inclusiveness of the Knox College community, and freshman Gloria Ponce also supported the choice. "I was so happy it was a fox. I'm so happy," Ponce said. "She's nice and it looks badass."
The fox mascot doesn't have a name. Students will have until September 19 to offer suggestions. The top three will then be voted on with the winning name to be revealed during Homecoming weekend in October. Megan Scott, Vice President for Communications, said she was looking forward to seeing students' ideas.
"I would be disappointed if someone did not submit an odd or weird name,” Scott said. “This is a very creative student body. An engaged and creative and enthusiastic student body, and I would imagine the names they submit are as creative and enthusiastic as they are.”
Scott said it took more than a year and a half of work to come up with the fox mascot. The mascot comes after the school unveiled the redesigned logo for its sports teams in February of last year.