Well? Where’s Mike VII?

Ever since last week, when the news broke that LSU had identified the new tiger headed to campus to assume the title of Mike VII, the anticipation of bored fans and supporters – this is August, of course, and the summer drought of LSU sports eventually gets to us all – has led to some zany, if predictable, results.

Specifically, this…

The tiger habitat on campus isn’t finished yet with its renovations, so obviously it’s premature to demand there be a tiger in it. Those renovations will be completed later this month, and they’ll include two major changes.

One is a relatively obvious and proper change – namely, that the center post holding up the netting at the top of the habitat is being altered to look more like a tree. It’s a little surprising given how lavish the habitat is that this wasn’t done sooner.

The other is a “high-tech resting rock” for the tiger to lay on. Apparently, the rock will be climate-controlled so that it’ll be cool in the summer and warm in the winter. No word on whether these will be available for humans to purchase for their own purposes.

By the end of August the renovations will be complete and the habitat will be ready to accomodate Mike VII, and it would appear the anxious (and bored, since it’s August) Tiger Nation can survive that wait.

But nobody knows what the tiger looks like. Nobody has seen a definitive picture of him.

We’re told that at the Wild at Heart Wildlife Center in Okeechobee, Florida, where he’s currently residing, the tiger’s name is Rocky. Mike VI went by Roscoe before coming to LSU; Rocky is a perfectly appropriate name for a tiger even if that name recalls unpleasant memories of an atrocious pop song overused at LSU sporting events for more than three decades.

But we’ve not seen his picture. And at the Facebook page for Wild at Heart Wildlife Center, at which there are posted lots of pictures of the 12 tigers currently in residence, there have been denials that any are of the future Mike VII. They’ve even denied Rocky, who’s pictured just below, is the next tiger on the LSU campus…

That could well be a convenient denial; mum is the word both at LSU and at the refuge in Florida.

But that won’t stop people from prowling the internet looking for the identity of the new LSU mascot. And the attention is only going to increase – this being August and LSU fans being bored, and all.

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