ATHENS. Ga. — This is going to be tough for Georgia fans to hear, but for the first time since the 1950s, Uga will be missing from the sidelines this season.
Unfortunately because of COVID-19 pandemic, the NCAA and Southeastern Conference won’t allow Uga X and other live mascots on the field. Only players, coaches and essential personnel are permitted on the sidelines.
“The thing that makes Uga great is he is very approachable. Well, this is not a time to approach. We were trying to think of a way to keep him involved,” Charles Seiler, whose family has raised the Uga line, told Channel 2′s partners at the The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “But there were problems in terms of congregation, too. So, it’s just not a good deal for us in what the dog typically does.”
Uga, who has been named one of the top mascots in college football, became a fixture at Georgia games back in 1956 and has rarely missed one since then.
There have been some road games that Uga has missed, but the last time fans didn’t see him on the sideline at Sanford Stadium was following the sudden death of Uga VII in 2009.
Georgia’s first home game is set for Oct. 3 against Auburn. While it will be strange not seeing the beloved bulldog, all is not lost. Georgia’s athletic website is working to create a set up for fans to see Uga virtually.