FAYETTEVILLE — Tusk III will make his first official appearance as the University of Arkansas’ live mascot on Sunday as the Arkansas women’s basketball team hosts Alabama in the final home game of the 2009-10 season.
Tusk III will be located in his traveling trailer near the south entrance of Bud Walton Arena from Noon-2 p.m. prior to the tip of the game.
Tusk III steps into service after the death of his Tusk II earlier this year. Tusk III is the brother of Tusk II and both were second-generation Russian boars. A legacy program is underway to insure future Tusks. Razorback fans who wish to contribute to the support of the live mascot can make donations to the Tusk Fund, care of the Razorback Foundation, Inc. Keith and Julie Stokes and their family serves as the caretakers for the University of Arkansas’ live mascots.
There are only a handful of universities which maintain a live mascot program, and the outpouring of support for the current Tusk from the Razorback fan base is the primary reason why the University of Arkansas continues the tradition.
The tradition of a live mascot prior to Tusk dates back to the 1960s with a series of hogs that have proudly represented Arkansas.