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Memphis News & Weather | Memphis, TN | WATN - localmemphis.com

Animal activists call on University of Memphis to stop using live tiger mascots

Tom the Third will currently not be at Liberty Bowl Stadium because of AAC restrictions.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Thousands of people are calling on the University of Memphis to stop using live tiger mascots.

Supporters of "In Defense of Animals" have written emails to the university, saying using a live mascot is unethical and unsafe for people and the endangered animal.

The group did get part of their wish: Tom the Third will not be at Liberty Bowl Stadium because of AAC restrictions that only football teams are allowed on the field.

This is the first time a live tiger will not be on the sideline in more than 40 years.

Tom
TOM: Tigers Of Memphis For over 35 years, the sideline mascot for the University of Memphis has been a Bengal Tiger named TOM. TOM attends all Tiger Football home games, and he can also be found at many other University events throughout the year as a powerful and majestic symbol of Tigers Athletics.