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December 10, 2012 - 12:19am

In Other Ivory Towers: WVU mascot will no longer hunt with school rifle


The man who plays the West Virginia Mountaineers mascot will no longer hunt with his mascot rifle after online videos of him killing a bear surfaced last week, the Daily Athanaeum reported.

Jonathan Kimble, who plays the mountaineer, did not violate any laws or University codes in hunting with the university’s rifle, and WVU defended his actions as part of the persona of the Mountaineer mascot. However, the videos sparked outrage from students, who questioned the hunting methods, the age of the bear and whether Kimble should be hunting with the university-distributed rifle.

Kimble defended his actions by telling the newspaper that past Mountaineers have hunted with the rifle and called hunting part of West Virginian culture and tradition.

He said he would continue hunting with his own rifles, but agreed with WVU officials that doing so with the mascot rifle was inappropriate after meeting with them in the wake of the backlash.

“He agrees that’s not a good thing to do,” WVU representative John Bolt told the newspaper. “There was nothing prohibiting what he did, but he’s not going to do that again.”

Maryland president forms commission to smooth Big Ten move

Wallace Loh, the president of the University of Maryland, will form a commission to study how the College Park-based institution can maximize the benefits of its move to the Big Ten Conference, the Diamondback reported.

The commission, officially named the President’s Commission on UMD and Big Ten/CIC Integration, will look for the best ways to support student-athletes during the transition and the best practices to use the conference’s revenue sharing to better the university’s academics.

It will also create a plan to fund the university’s athletic department for the next 20 years, the Diamondback reported.

“This is not just something the university administration should closet in a room and do by itself,” Loh said in an announcement last week, according to the newspaper. “There’s never going to be 100 percent agreement, so what you want is as open, as transparent, as broadly represented conversations as you can possibly have.”

Officials at the university are hoping the commission can soothe frustrations that the university did not consult faculty and students before deciding to move to the Big Ten. Samantha Zerling, a member of the commission and the school’s Student Government Association president, told the newspaper students will be able to have input on how the university allocates the added revenue.