One wet Wildcat
Arizona mascot lands on her feet after tumble into harbor
Posted: Tuesday December 29, 1998 09:45 AM
SAN DIEGO (AP) -- Wilma Wildcat got her fur drenched but otherwise was unhurt when she tumbled off the pier into the harbor at a Holiday Bowl event Monday on the San Diego waterfront.
Witnesses said the Arizona Wildcat mascot ran toward the fence at the edge of the pier, then lost her balance and fell into the water.
Arizona athletic director Jim Livengood declined to identify the student inside the costume but said she was unhurt. The buoyancy of the costume helped keep her afloat until she could be fished from the water, Livengood said.
Wilma had joined the Arizona and Nebraska football teams and the school's marching bands for a tour of the USS Peleliu and the 32nd Street Naval Station, an annual pre-Holiday Bowl event.
"I can safely say that in our 20 years, we've never had anybody fall into the drink before," Holiday Bowl spokesman Bruce Binkowski said.
Wilma, who wouldn't give her real name, suffered a leg bruise, a lower back sprain and a minor concussion but said that won't stop her from performing at tomorrow's Holiday Bowl between Arizona and Nebraska.
"When I was sitting in the emergency room after I had all this stuff done, I started to laugh," she said. "It's funny when I think about how it must have looked. At other times, I think about how scary it was. I could have died."
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