ATHENS — Uga VI, mascot for Georgia football teams that won six bowl games among 87 victories over a nine-year span, was interred at the university’s football stadium on Monday in a mausoleum with the remains of five predecessors.
Uga VI died from heart failure Friday in his hometown of Savannah. The body of the English bulldog, whose registered name was Uga V’s Whatchagot Loran, was flown to Athens along with his master’s family in the university plane.
The body was carried inside Uga’s kennel on the back of a golf cart across the field at Sanford Stadium on Monday afternoon accompanied by the song, "The Battle Hymn of the Bulldog Nation," which is played before Georgia football games.
"There are probably some who think it odd to pay this much attention to an animal, a puppy, a dog," university president Michael Adams told the gathering. "I would suggest to you that Uga is a very powerful symbol, symbolism of the tenacity and strength of the university, Uga VI, particularly."
The Rev. Claude McBride of Athens, a Baptist preacher and former football team chaplain, offered words of gratitude and appreciation to the family of Savannah lawyer Frank "Sonny" Seiler, which has provided Georgia’s bulldog mascots since 1956. He then offered a prayer, which he ended with, "Sic ‘em, Uga. Woof, woof! Amen."
Dan Magill, long a part of the university’s athletic program as sports information director and tennis coach, recalled how the first Uga was chosen.
"We had an old brindle bulldog before that and he died. Coach (Wally) Butts told me to find another one," Magill said.
"Sonny was working in the ticket office at the time and his wife happened to have a bulldog puppy, the grandson of our Rose Bowl dog. I went and saw it and thought it looked like a fine dog."
A successor will be announced at a later date, the Seiler family and the university’s athletic association announced.