'Big Blue' an all-round great guy, and that's no bull
November 25, 2008 | Big Blue is known for pumping
up the crowd at Utah State University's home games and
events on a weekly basis. He is known to be a magnet
to kids and a trademark of USU. Blue is responsible
for entertaining and welcoming everyone involved in
men's basketball, women's basketball, volleyball, soccer,
softball, gymnastics and many other events.
Blue attends practice in the early morning where he
stunts, tumbles, and dances to prepare himself for games.
Once practice is over Blue is on his way to class, where
he is an outstanding student.
Yes, Blue is one busy bull at USU but there are some
things that no one hears about him, such as how much
he loves community service. Some of Blue's favorite
community projects most people never even hear about.
The Special Olympics, which is held every year for people
with disabilities, benefit dinners for youth, Shriner's
Hospital visits, The Teddy Bear Run, personal visits
and birthday parties.
Blue frequently accompanies the Spirit Squad to visit
preschools and elementary schools to be a part of small
programs to talk to young kids about drugs, goals, dreams,
manners, and to just have fun with them.
Blue loves to make personal visits to kids who are
ill. For a child that has been diagnosed with cancer
a visit from Blue can make such a positive impact from
just a single visit. For the last two years Blue has
made a couple visits to Trey Raymond who is a seven
year old boy from Logan that was diagnosed with cancer
in October 2006.
"It is so rewarding to be able to put a smile on these
young kid's faces, and help brighten their day," Blue
says. Trey is now recovering and is still a huge Big
Blue fan. Trey is at every Utah State basketball game
on the second row where he sits with his family.
Doug Raymond who is Trey's dad says, "Big Blue made
such a great impact on Trey when he would personally
come to our house just to check on how Trey was doing.
Trey still talks about his relationship with Blue, and
is excited whenever he gets to see him."
Blue is involved in the annual Mascot Bowl that is
held in Lehi each year to benefit the "Firemen and Friends
for Kids" charity. All of the professional mascots throughout
Utah come together to play a football game against 8th
and 9th grade football players to raise money. Mascots
include the Cosmo from Brigham Young University, Swoop
from The University of Utah, and many others.
There are times when young kids just can't warm up
to Blue and have a real fear of him. When this happens
these young kids are allowed to have some one on one
time with Blue, where he will take off his head to show
the kids that he is really just a normal person inside
and let the kids get more comfortable with him.
"We want everyone around Big Blue to feel comfortable,
this is why we bring kids behind the scenes so they
have a chance to get to know Blue." Linda Zimmerman,
the Spirit Squad coach, said of Blue.
Big Blue began in 1989 when a student came to Zimmerman
and wanted to make Big Blue a part of Aggie tradition.
This person was very persistent in calling the athletic
department as well as Zimmerman to achieve his goal
of getting a mascot to USU. Several years before the
idea of Big Blue in a suit as the USU mascot, there
was an actual white bull named Gus
that was painted blue before each game.
Throughout his years, Big Blue has become a well known
icon and a huge ambassador for Utah State University.