"The University of Georgia's mascot, Uga VI, has died of congestive heart failure. The university said Saturday that the 9-year-old English bulldog died after being taken to a veterinarian. Its owner found the mascot breathing heavily at home the night before.
The dog became the mascot in 1999 for the school's teams, known as the 'Bulldogs.' He was a regular on the sidelines of home football games in a shirt stitched with the letter 'G.'
Damon Evans, the university's athletic director, called it a 'sad day for the entire Bulldog nation.'"
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution newspaper ran this profile of each of the six Ugas and their reign.
Since 1956, the University of Georgia's live mascot has come from a line of solid-white English bulldogs named Uga, each owned by Sonny and Cecelia Seiler of Savannah. Here is a closer look at each Uga (with tenure and records):
Uga I (1956-66, 53-48-6)
The dog who started it all, this Uga was a belated wedding gift to the Seilers from one of Cecelia's friends. He was there when Theron Sapp "broke the drought" against Georgia Tech and was around for three coaches (Wally Butts, Johnny Griffith and Vince Dooley) and one SEC title (1959). He retired Oct. 22, 1966 and died 18 days later.
Uga II (1966-72, 42-16-3)
He was the first Uga to occupy the "fireplug" abode on the Georgia sidelines. By finishing the 1966 season for his father, he was around for Dooley's first SEC championship (and two years later for Dooley's second). After the 1966 season, he participated in the Cotton Bowl parade in Dallas.
Uga III (1972-81, 71-32-2)
His tenure included the 1980 national championship season and the introduction of Herschel Walker into Bulldogs lore. Georgia won two SEC titles (1976, 1980) during his reign, and Uga III retired in a ceremony before the 1981 season opener as the winningest Uga.
Uga IV (1981-90, 77-27-4)
His résumé included SEC titles in 1981 and '82 and a visit to the Downtown Athletic Club in New York (wearing a formal collar and black tie) to witness Walker receive the Heisman Trophy, the first mascot invited to the Heisman banquet. Also, he was there for Dooley's last game and Ray Goff's first.
Uga V (1990-99, 65-39-1)
During his tenure, Georgia's "Uga" mascot became a national phenomenon. During a game in 1996, he leaped at Auburn receiver Robert Baker on the sideline, seemingly trying to bite the player after he had startled the dog. The next year, Uga V appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated, was "interviewed" by National Public Radio and appeared in the film "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil," which featured Kevin Spacey and John Cusack.
Uga VI (1999-2008, 87-27)
With the success of Mark Richt, this Uga's 87 victories easily surpassed Uga IV in the record book. He was around for three appearances in the SEC championship game, including victories in 2002 and 2005, and for Georgia's No. 2 finish in the AP poll in 2007. He was present for the transition from Jim Donnan to Richt in 2000.
Uga will be buried in a vault in the Southwest corner of Sanford Stadium with his predecessors. Private ceremonies are expected early next week.
My heart goes out to the Seiler family and the entire Bulldog nation.