The finals for the Pac-12's second-best mascot

And recapping the semifinals, featuring a nailbiter that none but I will ever fully appreciate.

It’s the phenomenon that’s taking the internet by storm—and it’s coming to a close, to the disappointment of the threes and threes of you who are actually reading, voting, or commenting. We’re entering the final round of the WFC tournament to crown the second-best mascot of the Pac-12.

The seeding for our bracket was decided by an internal vote and the actual contests are being decided by our readers/Twitter followers. Here’s the bracket, where Cinderella came to die:

Let’s recap the results from the semifinals. After #1 Ralphie’s dominant performances in our seeding and against Wilbur and Wilma Wildcat, I was a bit surprised to see her give up so many votes to #4 Benny Beaver—more than a quarter of the votes! I didn’t realize you were so into buck teeth.

Our other contest was absolutely insane—speaking as the one person who cared. As a little backstory, #6 Harry the Husky’s road to glory started with a speed bump. Harry was initially tied with Swoop, so I held a quick interal run-off poll between the two, which Harry the Husky lost. Furthermore, this loss would bump him into the opening/play-in round while giving Swoop a bye. Harry was lucky enough to go up against Nick Kranz’s favorite mascot—the damn Tree—and get an easy victory, but I expected his future match-ups to be tough as a lower seed. By pure coincidence, he would move on the Apple Cup and give us our first (and thusfar, only) upset of the contest, taking down #3 Butch T. Cougar. Moving on to another real rivalry—the biggest of all rivalries, in facts—they met Oregon and their Duck. I thought the Duck was a relatively popular mascot and given that this site is ATQ South, I expected the clock to strike midnight for Harry… but after the first 24 hrs, Harry actually had the lead. Oregon was able to take the lead, but in the final hours, Harry the Husky was starting to come back. Fairy tales almost came true with our Cinderella coming within just one vote of forcing the tie—one of the few instances in life where your one individual vote actually matters. (Go ahead and @ me. I’ll mathematically argue the point until the day I die that—although it’s important for everyone to be informed and vote—your one vote is effectively useless.) But close only counts in horse grenades, so the Duck shall stave off the competition and move to the finals.

It all comes down to this. #1 vs. #2. Me writing way too many words relative to the value we’re getting in engagement. A live mascot and an absolute spectacle vs. a costumed mascot that’s unique and generally appealing through its humor.

Who will win—#1 Ralphie or the #2 Duck? Vote in the Twitter poll below and please leave a comment. Please. I’m so alone in this quarantine. Is anyone there?