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WVU mascot told to stop firing musket at wildlife

WVU mascot told to stop firing musket at wildlife

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) The musket toted by West Virginia University's Mountaineer isn't just a prop - it's a bona fide weapon, and mascot Jonathan Kimble demonstrated that when he brought down a black bear with it in the woods.

Now WVU has ordered Kimble to stop using his university-issued weapon on hunting trips after a video of this week's kill was posted online. He says hunting with the gun is a Mountaineer mascot tradition.

The 24-year-old Franklin resident accompanied more than a dozen friends and family on the trip in Pendleton County on Monday. In the video, Kimble is shown firing the musket at the bear in a tree.

``Let's go Mountaineers!'' Kimble yells afterward. He also posted a photo of himself with the bear on Twitter.

The WVU mascot wears buckskin and a coonskin cap and fires the musket - loaded with black powder but minus ammunition - at home athletic events and other sponsored activities. Hunting isn't one of them.

``While Jonathan Kimble's actions broke no laws or regulations, the university has discussed this with him, and he agrees that it would be appropriate to forego using the musket in this way in the future,'' said WVU spokesman John Bolt.

Kimble said Friday that he's been hunting all his life and this was the first black bear he's ever killed. He said all his friends have congratulated him for that.

``Hunting can be a controversial topic,'' Kimble said. ``I apologize to any of those who took offense to the video. It definitely wasn't my intent to offend anybody.''

Kimble said he taking the musket on hunting trips has become a tradition with the mascots.

``Other Mountaineers have gone and shot multiple deer with it before. I've taken it with me deer hunting before, also.''

Some WVU fans stood behind Kimble on Friday.

``This is a smart young man from West Virginia who did nothing wrong, who was celebrating who he is,'' said Robert Hickman, who holds two degrees from WVU and lives near Fairmont.

``If you're from West Virginia and you love the outdoors, or if you hunt or don't hunt, or if you fish or don't fish, it is a celebration of this state. As a former WVU graduate, I'm thrilled to death with him. Happy as can be.''

The Mountaineer mascot first appeared at athletic events in the 1936-1937 school year. The Mountaineer is selected each year and the mascot's outfit is custom tailored to fit the winner.

Last February, the bearded Kimble was chosen from among 13 applicants.

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A poll of 250 college basketball coaches reveals 74% want a semi-normal schedule this year

A poll of 250 college basketball coaches reveals 74% want a semi-normal schedule this year

Several college conferences across the country are preparing for the fall sports season amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The Big Ten announced on Thursday that it will go to a “conference-only” model for all fall sports. The Pac-12 followed announcing football, men’s and women’s soccer, and women’s volleyball will play only conference games. Earlier in the week, the Ivy League announced no sports would be played until January 1.

RELATED: MAYBE OTHER LEAGUES SHOULD FOLLOW THE IVY LEAGUE'S LEAD

More conferences are likely to follow shortly. But after fall sports, what will happen with winter sports and, specifically, with college basketball? Stadium basketball analyst Jeff Goodman conducted an interesting poll.

Of the 250 Division I head men’s basketball coaches (of a 353 total), 74% want a season with non-conference and conference play. Only 24% of coaches want to push the start of the season to January and play exclusively conference games.

One of the unique aspects of early-season college basketball is the non-conference matchups, sometimes in exotic locations. One of the most notable, the Maui Invitational, is planning to move forward as scheduled.

A handful of local teams are scheduled to travel to tournaments this November. Virginia and Georgetown will both head to Anaheim, Calif. for the Wooden Legacy. VCU is part of an eight-team field at the Charleston Classic and George Mason is reportedly traveling to the Bahamas for the Junkanoo Jam.

There is plenty to be sorted out before the start of the college basketball season but for now, we will take some optimism from the men on the sidelines. 

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SEE IT: Dwayne Haskins is in favor of these Washington Red Wolves jerseys

SEE IT: Dwayne Haskins is in favor of these Washington Red Wolves jerseys

The Washington Football to Red Wolves transition has gained an unreal amount of support -- and not just via social media, but nationwide. 

It now seems as though the concept has another supporter, specifically of this particular style and color scheme, QB Dwayne Haskins.

Take a look.

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Howl to the #Redwolves? (Concept done by @catchtheblitz)

A post shared by Jordan (@redskinstoday) on

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If you look closely in the comments you'll see the 23-year-old chime in with his thoughts. 

"Not gone hold you. I can fw this," Haskins said. 

In this setting, I can't specifically tell you what the acronym fw stands for (Urban dictionary it), but I can tell you it is used as a term of favoritism for said post.

RELATED: RED WOLVES WAS THE SOLUTION TO ANOTHER NAME CHANGE

Moving past the QBs comments, the concept is extremely clean, maintains the burgandy and gold color scheme that so many fans yearn to maintain, and keeps the #HTTR hashtag intact (sort of). 

While none of us actually know what the name may be, we do know which name some key players on the roster favor.

Just saying. 

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