HAMMOND, La. (LOCAL 33/FOX 44) – Dion Grossnickle, like many on social media, either felt bad or spooked by the Clemson tiger mascot’s head and eyes during the College Football Playoff National Championship game.
But a joke about it on his Facebook page led to something else.
“I just wanted to make fun of it and get some of my friends on Facebook just to kind of laugh and giggle, knowing we were gonna come back,” Grossnickle said, adding, “It turned into something I didn’t expect.”
Grossnickle started a GoFundMe to buy Clemson a new mascot costume.
“I thought bad for The Clemson Tiger,” he posted on the fundraising page. “It seems that the University purchased their mascot costume from the clearance rack from TG&Y in 1981.”
So far, people seem to agree, donating more than double his $1,000 goal.
“I’m shocked you know. I’m completely shocked that it’s raised so much money in a short period of time, he said.
We told Clemson about the fundraiser. Here is their statement:
“We congratulate LSU’s football team on winning the game! Clemson’s Tiger mascot has been a proud part of our department for decades. While we appreciate the initiative to replace our department mascot, we hope that the funds can do some real good.
We hope the individual will consider donating the funds to Tigers United, a consortium which includes both Clemson and LSU dedicated to the preservation of tigers in the wild. You can find more information about it at tigersunited.org.
The consortium’s website says there are fewer than 3,900 tigers remaining in the wild.
Grossnickle said: “If one post can bring out some good in the world and some smiles and some laughs, what a great thing.”