Meet Kaboom, the new face of Bradley University. He is a gargoyle and he will arise many conflicting emotions deep inside of you.
He made his much-anticipated debut Saturday night with the help of pyrotechnics and flashing lights. It was a seminal moment in human history if you believe those associated with the Braves athletic department.
“It fits in the sweet spot between powerful, fierce, intimidating and approachable,” Bradley athletics director Dr. Michael Cross said. “I don’t know if I’d use the word cuddly, because it’s a rock, when it’s all said and done, but it’s something that will work very well in different settings.”
Kaboom! was modeled after the gargoyle, The Thinker, which watches over Bradley’s west side of campus, and sits atop the Hayden-Clark Alumni Center. Since the school’s beginning, gargoyles have been a fixture among architecture on Bradley’s campus, most prominently on the school’s marquee building, Bradley Hall.
The school hasn’t had an official mascot since 2000. How they’ve stomached this millennium without the help of an over-caffeinated student in a sweaty suit is anyone’s guess.
As you may suspect, Kaboom’s arrival has pushed some students to the brink of dropping out of school and finding part-time employment. This is, after all, pretty serious stuff here.
Bradley students weren’t as kind. Many booed from the fan section, while some took to Twitter almost immediately following the reveal.
“(Be right back) transferring… I don’t wanna be a gargogyle….” Kayla Peterson (@Kay_Petey) tweeted along with a picture of Kaboom! during its intro.