The Preakness Stakes has a new mascot, Kegasus. It’s half man and half beast, which is actually a pretty good description of the typical infield patron at Pimlico on Preakness Day. Pat McDonough, a state delegate from Baltimore, says he’s disgusted by the Kegasus campaign’s vulgarity, but that’s the whole point: Pimlico is quite openly courting the lout demographic, figuring that a once-a-year invasion of uncouth spendthrifts is worth a bit of tut-tutting from respectable quarters. One might expect better from the sport of kings, but even kings have been known to misbehave.
Still, Kegasus, while perhaps no match for the incomprehensible Whatizit, seems a prime candidate for membership in the Bad Sports Mascots Hall of Fame. If the Preakness folks were intent on using a keg-related mascot, they would have done better to borrow Dartmouth College’s Keggy, the best thing to come out of Dartmouth since Dinesh D’Souza (well, second-best, after former NR intern Emily Esfahani Smith). Here he is in action:
Keggy was semi-officially adopted by the college administration a few years back, three decades after Dartmouth gave up its Indians nickname for a new one (Big Green) that could not easily be anthropomorphized into something that wanders through the stands acting stupid. Dartmouth certainly has its share of frat-boy behavior, at football games and elsewhere, but as Keggy shows, the administration isn’t uptight about it. And now, with Kegasus, there’s finally a sports mascot that makes Keggy look tasteful and restrained in comparison.