Tech’s very own Awesome Eagle recently received a second place bid to the 2014 National Cheerleading and Dance Team Competition. This is the fifth time Tech has entered this competition since the 90s.
Although Awesome hasn’t placed in national competitions until recently, he did participate in a few competitions in the 90s. Awesome placed in a national-level competition for the first time in 2012.
This will be the third time Awesome has competed at a national level. In the past two years, Awesome has placed both second and third.
“It only makes sense to win first place this year,” said a spokesperson for Awesome Eagle.
There are two divisions for which any mascot across the nation can qualify. Mascot division IA covers the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) and will have 10 schools compete, including Auburn University’s Aubie, UT-Knoxville’s Smokey, and Wisconsin’s Bucky Badger. The open mascot division covers the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) and has 5 schools competing, including Tech’s Awesome Eagle, University of Delaware’s YouDee, WU Shock from Wichita State, Wiley D Wildcat from Wilmington University, and Roomie the Lion from Southeastern Louisiana University.
In order to enter this competition, mascots must submit a video that counts for 50 percent of the total score if offered a bid. The video is judged based on five categories: game situations, crowd involvement, cheer band and dance integration, campus activities, and community involvement.
The open mascot division gives out five ranked bids. Awesome Eagle received the second place bid this year.
The other 50 percent of the final score comes from the finals competition, held at Disney World in Orlando, Fla. during Martin Luther King weekend. There, the mascots will have to perform a live 90-second skit. During the finals, mascots are required to use props, but cannot use more than ten.
“I can’t tell you this year’s theme just yet because I don’t want the enemy to be reading the Oracle and getting in [Awesome’s] plans, but I can let you know it is going to rock the competition right out of their fur,” said Awesome’s spokesman.
Awesome Eagle will be competing at the National Cheerleading and Dance Team competition Jan. 17-19, 2014 at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fla.