Colonel Reb’s Replacement

It has been seven years since Colonel Reb, the mascot of the University of Mississippi, patrolled the sidelines at football games. The administration decided at the time that a caricature of a southern plantation owner and Confederate Army officer was not a proper mascot for a university where 14 percent of the students are black. But it was not until this year that the university banned the sale of licensed merchandise that included the image of Colonel Reb.

Now the university has unveiled a new mascot to replace Colonel Reb. The new mascot is a bear that happens to be black. Rebel Black Bear was chosen from among three finalists in a vote by students, faculty, alumni, and season ticket holders to Ole Miss football games.