Now Americans Can Focus on the Really Important Election: Capital One Mascot of the Year; Heated Mascot Contest Hits Mid-Way Point as 12 Finalists Vie for Top Dog in the Land
MCLEAN, Va.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nov. 16, 2004--Pollsters are closely monitoring the hotly contested, highly anticipated slug-fest among the 12 members of the Capital One All America Mascot team. The election for Capital One Mascot of the Year has split the nation's voters into 12 distinct fanatical camps (and dog houses).
Now at the half-way point, competition for the big bird on campus has reached a high perch across colleges nationwide. Fans have been flocking to www.capitalonebowl.com to cast nearly one million votes for the biggest crowd-pleaser. With only six weeks left, voters can still make a difference in determining the outcome of this influential election.
The Contenders Air Force Academy - The Bird Auburn University - Aubie James Madison University - Duke Dog University of Georgia - Hairy Dawg University of Kentucky - Scratch University of Maryland - Testudo University of Montana - Monte University of Nevada/Las Vegas - Hey Reb University of South Carolina - Cocky Virginia Tech - Hokie Bird Western Kentucky University - Big Red University of Minnesota - Goldy Gopher
According to current standings posted at www.capitalonebowl.com, James Madison University's "Duke Dog" is leading the pack, with University of Minnesota's Goldy and Auburn University's Aubie right on his paws.
"The 12 contenders have wildly supportive fan bases," said Pam Girardo at Capital One. "The mascots and their supporters realize the power that comes with Mascot of the Year status and have been aggressively encouraging their constituencies to visit www.capitalonebowl.com to cast their votes. We've seen fliers, billboards, posters, e-mail campaigns, stadium signage...you name it. The Air Force Academy's Bird even skydived into Falcon Stadium waving a vote for me flag."
Cast Your Vote!
Voting consists of 11 weekly match ups between the finalists (polls close on Dec. 26). The mascot with the best win/loss record will win the online portion of the contest. This "popular" vote will be combined with a judges' ranking from the initial round of competition (50/50 weighting) to determine who gets the ultimate title. The National Mascot of the Year winner will be announced on Jan. 1, 2005 during the nationally televised Capital One Bowl on ABC.
This year's diverse crew was chosen from Division IA and IAA athletic programs with college football teams. They made the squad after being ranked on mascot musts such as: (1) interaction with fans, (2) sportsmanship and (3) community service. The panel of judges, including mascot guru and historian, Dr. Roy Yarbrough; former college mascot and current sports marketer from Richmond Sports Backers Scott Schricker; and representatives from ESPN and Capital One.
Over the past three years, Capital One has helped thrust the spotlight on these unsung heroes of the gridiron. Team members star in a national advertising campaign, which this year features the mascots as they vie for the heart of "Maiden Melissa" in ads spoofing reality dating shows. In addition to hooplah, each mascot receives $5,000 for its school's mascot program. Mascot of the Year receives an additional $5,000 scholarship to help fund its school's mascot program.
About Capital One
Capital One Financial Corporation (www.capitalone.com) is a holding company whose principal subsidiaries, Capital One Bank and Capital One FSB, offer consumer lending products. Capital One, a Fortune 500 company headquartered in McLean, Va., is one of the largest providers of MasterCard and Visa credit cards in the world. Capital One trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "COF" and is included in the S&P 500 index. Capital One's affiliation with college football began with the sponsorship of the 2001 Capital One Florida Citrus Bowl (now the Capital One Bowl) and ESPN's Bowl Week. In addition, Capital One sponsors ABC's College Football Halftime Report and numerous other college sports programs.
CONTACT: Capital One, McLean
Pam Girardo, 703-720-2351
Stephanie Smith, 212-468-4057
SOURCE: Capital One