The Associated Student Body announced Friday night that out of more than 4,100 students who voted, more than 81 percent of students voted in support of the Landshark becoming the official mascot of the Ole Miss Rebels.
While this outcome is a step toward changing the mascot, official changes will not be made as of now, the announcement signed by ASB executive officers read.
Following this announcement, ASB will present an official document to university leadership before the homecoming game, detailing the vote’s outcome.
“We hope this will be a catalyst for a transition toward a new mascot, the Landshark,” the announcement read. “We believe that affection for the Landshark serves as a symbolic rallying point, something lovingly embraced among students from a variety of backgrounds- races, religions, creeds, or political affiliations. To that end, it is clear that the student body believes the Landshark deserves to represent our school’s spirit on the field, in the Grove, and in our hearts.”
Although multiple mascot debates have now been going on for more than a decade, ASB announced an official vote with a letter from ASB President Dion Kevin III that debuted a campus-wide vote to change the Black Bear mascot to the Landshark.
In the letter, Kevin urged students to vote in support of the change.
“Be a part of this unifying, student driven movement and make the Landshark the official on-field mascot of the Ole Miss Rebels by voting ‘YES’,” Kevin said in the letter. “I support the Landshark, and I am an Ole Miss Rebel.”
Originally, the option to vote was supposed to be on the personality elections ballot Tuesday, but it was expanded to take place over a four-day period on ASB’s online OrgSync poll, ending at 7 p.m. Friday.
You can read ASB’s full statement on the vote here.