South Carolina's live mascot is now called The General, the university announced on Monday.
The new name of the mascot pays homage to Thomas Sumter, a Revolutionary War general whose nickname inspired the Gamecock moniker used by USC.
“We know Gamecock fans are passionate about our traditions and seeing the live mascot at games and other Athletics events is something they look forward to,” South Carolina Deputy Athletics Director Eric Nichols said in a press release. “When we realized that we would have to change his name to keep that tradition alive, it seemed fitting to go back to where ‘Gamecocks’ got started.”
The Post and Courier first reported the live mascot, formerly called Sir Big Spur, would receive a name change after a disagreement between the rooster's owners. The bird's former owners, who have naming rights to Sir Big Spur, wanted its new owners to cut the bird's comb, which is what keeps it cool in hot temperatures. The dispute led to a search for the mascot's new name.
The State conducted a poll on Aug. 25 asking its readers what the rooster's new name should be. Cock Commander, a name that originated from The Daily Gamecock after a misprint in a 2004 print issue, received 78% of the votes. The General received 2% of the votes.
The General will make its first appearance of the 2022 football season during South Carolina's home opener against Georgia State on Saturday at 7:30 p.m.