Ladies, gentlemen, furry/scaly/feathery creatures, it shames me to say this, but today’s post is about the Carolina Gamecocks. I grew up in a family of Clemson fans, and, in the true tradition of one of the bitterest rivalries in college ball, have never said anything pro-Gamecocks. Now I’m going to have to change that for Life with Arie’s Fish Week, as this college football team is doing something both hilarious and awesome–They’re making a betta fish a mascot of their usually chicken-led team.
You may have heard or read the phrase “Fear the Fish” floating around on Twitter, Facebook and beyond when the Gamecocks came up in conversation, but do you know the phrase’s origin? Some people do, some people don’t. It was new to me this week when I read it:
Gamecock third baseman LB Dantzler could not leave his beloved betta fish, Reptar, with the neighbor who usually looked after him while Dantzler was out-of-town. With the team leaving for a road trip to Auburn, Dantzler had to make a decision on how to best care for his fish–He decided that watching after him himself was the best idea. Reptar was transported in a Tupperware container on the bus, kept in a hotel room, and then into the bullpen on the field where the guys manning the area could care the fish. Dantzler told the Spurs Up Blog how he came to make the decision:
“I figured I’d leave him with the bullpen guys and let them take care of him, and they did a good job,” said Dantzler. “It was safer with them [in the bullpen] messing around than in the heat of the game [in the dugout.]”
Reptar proved to be an amazing lucky charm, as the team went on to deliver a series sweep. Throughout the game the Siamese fighting fish kept spirits high, even in the face of danger.
“Adam Westmoreland set him down [during batting practice] and about 30 seconds later, a home run ball landed less than a foot from him,” Dantzler shared. “That was a little scary.”
After the inspired luck of the game, Reptar continued to travel with the team, even flying to Arkansas with the players. For more information on Reptar and his luck-inspiring presence, including how he got his name, you can read the full story on the Spurs Up Blog.
While I’m sure Reptar is pretty stunning, I think Stanley could lead a team onto victory…maybe even an army. Or, maybe just a mafia crew? For now I think he’s content just to swim in circles around his plants.
Photo via Google Images.