Everyone loves to claim that their teams’ mascots are the best on the planet. It's human nature. You love your mascot. Your mascot is a part of you and your school/team/life.
But these mascots really are the greatest.
Just like everybody loves to argue that their mascots are the best, people love to say that their dogs are the cutest. Therefore, it stands to reason that fans of these institutions would fight to the death to prove that their real-life doggy mascots are the best, the brightest and the most adorable in the universe.
Let's just call it a draw. They're all pretty cute.
From: UNC Asheville
As the proud parent of a rescue dog, there is nothing that warms my heart more than seeing doggies get saved. So props to you, UNC Asheville, for making Rocky the rescue dog your mascot.
I introduce you to this Victorian bulldog, who has reignited the tradition of having a living bulldog mascot on campus. Asheville had four from 1948 to the early '80s, and Rocky stands as its fifth.
Math professor Ed Johnson '96 is the proud owner and caretaker of Rocky.
From: Texas A&M
Meet "the first lady of Aggieland."
The very first Reveille arrived on campus in 1931, and though there have been a few interruptions in her tenure, she has long been recognized as the official mascot of Texas A&M.
Reveille is a full-blood Collie and is one of the most revered members of A&M community: She is addressed as "Miss Rev, ma'am," and if she barks in the middle of a class, that class must be immediately dismissed.
From: University of Tennessee
There's a fake version of Smokey, too, but this guy here is the real deal.
Smokey has very important responsibilities as mascot of the Vols, such as leading the team onto the field during football games—and his role is so important that when he can't go on a game day, he's listed on the injury report.
To this day, there have been 10 iterations of Smokey, and the current one is pretty new to the gig—he's only been around since 2013—but he's learning fast.
From: University of Washington
You know your mascot is big-time when he has his own blog and Facebook page. Dubs is a pretty big deal.
Dubs is the 13th live dog to represent the University of Washington. He's an Alaskan Malamute who hails from Burlington, Wash., and has served in his current position since 2008.
Dubs is a bit of a ham and enjoys taking selfies of himself destroying his fellow mascots and posing with Santa.
From: Georgetown University
Not to brag or anything, but Jack is pretty important: The American Kennel Club has ranked him eighth among pop culture's 125 most famous dogs.
Jack made his debut on Georgetown's campus in the early '60s, and though students originally attempted to name him "Hoya," he only responded to Jack. And what Jack says, goes.
The current English bulldog mascot has been back on Georgetown's campus since 2003 and, when he's not representing Georgetown on the sidelines, can generally be found in the lobby of the Jesuit Residence.
From: Mississippi State
Just look at that face. So adorable. So dignified.
This English bulldog is the mascot of Mississippi State and has been—at least in an official capacity—since 1935. Bully I was tragically killed in a campus bus accident in 1939, and the entire MSU campus mourned him as he lay in state in a glass coffin prior to a half-mile funeral procession.
Bullys since have been known to live in frat houses, but the current Bully resides at the College of Veterinary Medicine.
From: Adrian College
In 2009, Adrian College in Michigan officially dubbed a 10-week old English bulldog, named Bruiser, its mascot. From that moment on, Bruiser accustomed himself to a busy lifestyle that includes plenty of special appearances around campus and cheering on students in various capacities.
Though Bruiser's history may not be as storied as that of Handsome Dan or Reveille, the institution has watched over the last several years as he has blossomed into a creature that perfectly embodied school spirit.
Bruiser lives with Adrian College neighbor Janine Grier and made his rousing debut at a men's hockey game in January '09.
From: Michigan State
Everyone loves a good old yellow lab. It's classic, just like Michigan State football.
Zeke the Wonder Dog, as he's known in Lansing, is a lab that performs stunts (such as catching Frisbees) during halftime shows at Michigan State football games. The tradition has been in place since the 1970s.
The first Zeke retired in 1984, and his responsibilities were assumed by Keze, who performed for just one season before she was killed in a car accident. Eighteen years later, the tradition was resumed by Zeke II.
The current Zeke, otherwise known as Boo Coo, has been performing since September 2007.
From: Carnegie Mellon
Scotty may be mysterious, but no one can deny that he's super cute. And he dresses pretty snazzy, too.
The Scottish terrier was officially named the mascot of Carnegie Mellon after an identity task force performed an in-depth study in 2006. A popular vote determined that Scotty was the chosen one, and the real-life version of Scotty debuted in 2008.
Scotty is known for his "keen, alert, intelligent expression" and, though he comes in a "small package," he is both thoughtful and powerful. Thus, as the university tells it, he's the perfect ambassador.
Now, we come to one of the most renowned doggie mascots in sports. No, really—he basically had a cameo on Gossip Girl.
Another of Handsome Dan's claims to fame is the fact that he was the first live college mascot in the nation—possibly even in the world. There have been 17 dogs who have served as the real-life Handsome Dan since 1889.
The current Handsome Dan (otherwise known as Sherman) has served in his position since 2006 and is a 50-pound bulldog. Handsome Dan XVII is a pretty big deal and has chilled with President George H.W. Bush and Sir Paul McCartney because that's how he rolls.
From: University of Georgia
Like Handsome Dan, Uga comes from a long line of very dignified, very renowned canines bulldogs who have served as mascot of the university since 1956.
The tradition of Uga began when Sonny Seiler was given an English bulldog as a wedding present, and he brought that dog to a Georgia home football game. Then-coach Wally Butts requested that the dog be used as Georgia's mascot. Thus, the tradition of Uga the Georgia Bulldog was born.
Since 1956, there have been nine Ugas, but unlike some of the others on this list, all of the dogs have been descendants of the very first Uga.
From: New Orleans Saints
Now, we come to the only live NFL mascot on our list. Gumbo was a Saint Bernard representing the New Orleans Saints, though the real-mascot idea is currently on hiatus. Gumbo is very mysterious, but this is what he looks like. A Saint Bernard was chosen to represent the Saints because Orleans Parish shares a border with St. Bernard Parish.
Obviously, he's named Gumbo because when you think of New Orleans, you think of eating gumbo.
Gumbo once served as co-mascot of the Saints, joining Sir Saint.
From: Northern Illinois University
Plenty of schools have adorable dog mascots. But not all of them can perform awesome tricks like Diesel.
Shortly thereafter, Diesel sadly decided to call it a career, retiring from his position after nine years of service. Diesel was honored on Senior Night along with the Huskies' departing players. He will now serve as mascot emeritus and will be succeeded by a two-year-old husky named Mission.
From: NC State University
NC State may be the Wolf Pack, but the school is represented by a Tamaskan dog named Tuffy. Tuffy hails from Finland, and according to the school's official website, he "is known to excel in agility, obedience and working trials."
Tuffy may not be high-fiving any cheerleaders on the sidelines, but he does know how to pull sleds. So that's pretty cool.
The main reason Tuffy was chosen to represent the Wolf Pack, however, is because this particular rare breed of dog bears a strong resemblance to wolves, despite the fact that they don't have any wolf ancestry.
Don't forget to like him on Facebook.
From: Eastern New Mexico University
Vic and Tory aren't as well known as Handsome Dan. At first glance, they may not seem as cuddly as Tuffy or Scotty.
But they're rescue greyhounds, and that is pretty admirable. So they, and Eastern New Mexico University, deserve props for that.
Vic and Tory are former racing greyhounds, according to the school's official website, and they joined the ENMU community in December 2009. They were adopted through the New Mexico Greyhound Connection, an organization dedicated to finding homes for ex-racing greyhounds. The school has also assembled a support fund for them.
Above, you can see Vic and Tory's induction into the ENMU community at Greyhound Arena.