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Meet Ralphie VI: CU introduces new live buffalo mascot

This is the 55th season that a live buffalo has led the CU football team onto the field.

BOULDER, Colo. — The University of Colorado at Boulder (CU) will have a live mascot for the first time in nearly two years beginning Friday.

Ralphie VI will make her debut Friday night at Folsom Field at the football team's season opener against the University of Northern Colorado (UNC).

The new Ralphie is just over 15 months old. CU said she was born on May 27, 2020 on a ranch in western Nebraska.

An orphan rejected by her mother at birth, she was adopted and raised in part by a beef cow. Ralphie VI now tips the scales at just under 500 pounds.

CU said the previous five buffalo mascots eventually weighed around 1,300 pounds, but it is hard to predict just how big VI will grow.

Credit: CU

The 2021 season is the 55th that a live buffalo has led the football team on the field at the start and second half of games.

The school's last live buffalo retired after 12 seasons at the end of the 2019 season. Ralphie V, who will turn 15 in October, continues to live on her ranch under the program's care as previous Ralphie's have done, the university said.  

CU said Ralphie V is in good health and is enjoying “retirement.” 

Ralphie V will also make public appearances on behalf of the school as other retired Ralphies have done.

“I couldn’t be more excited to introduce Ralphie VI this Friday night,” said CU athletic director Rick George. “This will be a really special moment in our Ralphie history as Ralphie VI makes her first appearance to open our 2021 season.  Colorado football is synonymous with Ralphie and I’m ecstatic to continue this tradition with Ralphie VI as the best tradition in college athletics.”

Credit: CU

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Credit: AP Photo/David Zalubowski
Handlers guide Ralphie V across the field on the bison's run before an NCAA college football game against Colorado State, Friday, Aug. 30, 2019.

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