As the Longhorn fans went wild, players took turns taking pictures with the Golden Hat, and head coach Charlie Strong was hoisted into the air, one thing was notably absent from Texas’ celebration on the sideline, beloved mascot Bevo XIV.
Bevo XIV was unable to travel with the team for the Red River Shootout against Oklahoma on Saturday as it was reported that he was suffering from a life-threatening illness.
On Tuesday the school announced that Bevo XIV has been diagnosed with the Bovine Leukemia Virus, and that he will retire immediately.
“BEVO XIV is a special animal,” Ricky Brennes, executive director of the Silver Spurs and BEVO XIV’s regular travelling partner, said via TexasSports.com .“He truly embraced his role and loved engaging with people at games and special events, and at his ranch — where he will continue to live — he was clearly the leader of the herd.”
Bevo XIV had a long tenure stretching back over a decade. He took over mascot duties in 2004, and saw the good times with the bad. He was there for back-to-back Rose Bowl victories which includes the Longhorns last National Title win, and he was at President George W. Bush’s second inauguration.
“BEVO XIV has served as part of a great tradition, and was a rallying point for Longhorns fans,” said UT President Gregory L. Fenves. “We all have warm memories of him as he heads in to retirement.“
It’s only fitting that Bevo’s final game as mascot was big win over arch rival, in what we could look back on as the beginning of Texas’ return to greatness.
The search for Bevo XIV’s successor will begin immediately. The Silver Spurs Alumni Association is leading the search, and it’s their hope that Bevo XV will be on the sidelines by the start of next season.