When I was around six years old, my family got our first dog. Having just seen Air Bud, I of course named him Buddy. Buddy was a yellow lab, full of life and love, the way dogs always are.
Dogs are special. They don’t care who you are, what clothes you wear, what kind of car you have, or where you live. They may be the only such creature in the world that feels this way. They love you unconditionally, they listen to you when no one else will, they nuzzle next to you when you need them and they slyly get you to give them your food by doing nothing but looking at you.
Dogs are more than special. They’re symbols. They represent you and they represent how you treat and love them. They’re a man’s best friend.
For Butler, Blue II was a schools best friend. Blue II rose to fame during Butler’s two Final Four appearances in 2010 and 2011 and the Bulldog never went away. The small school in Indy didn’t just have a dog, or a pet, it had a symbol. For Butler, Blue resonated with the team, the administration and the students. Blue represented Butler. He was tenacious, adorable and at times pesky, the same as any Butler team.
Blue II passed away this past weekend and the small school in Indy mourned the death as they would their own pet, because that’s what Blue II meant to the school.
Butler has now lost Brad Stevens and Blue II, but the good days are not behind them. Blue II’s twitter account tweeted out, “How do I know all dogs go to heaven? Because I’m there now,” after the university announced the Bulldogs passing.
Blue III is now the official mascot for Butler, and has been since Blue II retired earlier this year. Brandon Miller is now the head coach for Butler, being promoted after Stevens left for Boston. Butler will live on. And so will Blue II.
If you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to throw these onions away.