Skip to content

Washington prepares for LSU by utilizing a live tiger

Paraguay Trapped Tigers AP

Teams traveling to Tiger Stadium to play LSU have often blasted loud music during practice to simulate the crowd noise for a game in one of college football’s most intimidating venues.

Washington coach Steve Sarkisian thinks that’s child’s play. For Tuesday’s practice, Sarkisian brought in a live, caged tiger to represent Mike the Tiger, which opposing teams must walk by within the confines of Tiger Stadium. Washington travels to Baton Rouge to play LSU this Saturday.

If Sarkisian really wanted to prepare his team, he’d have opened the gate.

Here’s a picture of Sarkisian with the majestic feline from Sarkisian’s Twitter account.

While there’s no official video footage of the tiger at practice, we imagine the whole ordeal went down like this.

Learn to play with the fear, Washington. Play with the fear.

Permalink 18 Comments Feed for comments Latest Stories in: LSU Tigers, Pac-12 Conference, Rumor Mill, Southeastern Conference, Top Posts, Washington Huskies
18 Responses to “Washington prepares for LSU by utilizing a live tiger”
  1. southernpatriots says: Sep 4, 2012 7:21 PM

    “If Sarkisian really wanted to prepare his team, he’d have opened the gate.” Good line, Ben. There are some Tulane fans who know how to let Mike the Tiger out of his cage, so they could help Washington really prepare.

    LSU’s record v. Washington: 2-0.

    LSU’s record so far against PAC teams:

    LSU is 21-4 all time against present members of the PAC12, and 4-0 under Coach Les Miles.

    LSU has won 11 games straight against PAC12 teams.

    Washington fans we have met are some of the best fans in college football. They are very supportive of the Huskies, but are very classy and love Cajun food and hospitality. As we warned last season when Husky fans indicated they were coming, do not let “Tiger Bait!” upset you, just smile and say it is your first time at Death Valley and fans will try to make you comfortable, trade team jerseys with you, ply you with great food (and drink) and you will have a great time.

    Allons les Tigres! Bon temps roulet!

  2. goodellsadouche says: Sep 4, 2012 7:54 PM

    Bring your big boy underwear for this roadtrip……you’re gonna need em.

  3. overratedgators says: Sep 4, 2012 9:04 PM

    WTF did he think this was going to do as a motivational device? They play the Vikings the following week; is he bringing in an opera singer in a horned hat to stand around?

  4. tigersgeaux says: Sep 4, 2012 10:35 PM

    You posters on this thread are funny. Of course, the coach for Washington started it. Maybe if he would get a recording of a 747 twin jet engines starting to mimic the overwhelming sound reverberating in Death Valley on Saturday night, that could prepare his team for that kind of shock.

    I think Miles and crew will be prepared, and hope that Zach continues his progression from the first game and is able to throw for about 250 yards with some longer completions. The LSU running backs hopefully will combine for about the same on the ground. The key may be LSU’s defense and special teams, but I am hoping for an offensive output and balance we did not enjoy the past couple of years. Maybe all that is too much to ask in the second game of the season, but I hope. Geaux Tigers!

  5. pdcooper08 says: Sep 5, 2012 1:39 AM

    @Southernpatriots: I’ll be arriving to town Friday and headed to the game. Are you still unable to attend or where you able to get work off. It would be nice to find that tailgaiter and throw back a few. You still cleaning up from last week?

  6. oldforester says: Sep 5, 2012 3:27 AM

    Husky fans attending this Saturday’s game just remember those LSU fans taunting you with their “tiger bait” chants are the children of the adults that were featured in the movie Deliverance. You have been warned!

  7. southernpatriots says: Sep 5, 2012 3:48 AM


    You are kind. Thank you for your inquiry. We had planned to go to the game before the hurricane. We had wind damage (roof damages), wood fences down, large trees uprooted and across our home and buildings, floodings (more than 1) and still so many friends and neighbors we know without power.

    We have two other families now living with us, and two more living with a dear friend who is a widow next door we are taking care of at this time. I don’t see how we can make to this game or even the next home game. Along with volunteer firemen and some police officers (and some sous chef younger members of our family!) we are continuing to provide hot meals for those displaced by the storm as well as those working hard trying to make repairs to our area (CLECO, Entergy, Georgia Power, etc.)

    oldforester: Wrong movie. We ARE the “Swamp People” and we love bigots with a generous supply of Louisiana hot sauce.

  8. 1historian says: Sep 5, 2012 7:53 AM

    #1 – it looks like animal cruelty to me – a wild animal in a cage where it can barely even turn around and 80,000 people screaming their damn fool heads off.

    Very cosmopolitan

    #2 – you better hope that tiger never gets loose because one of 2 things will then happen – probably both – people will get torn to shreds or the tiger will be shot on live TV in front of the whole damn world.

  9. parkcityute says: Sep 5, 2012 7:57 AM

    Is Coach Steve Sarkisian going to bring a Ute from Utah to team practices the week before we come into town in November? Where is this going to end? Is this a gimic? What motivation does it provide? Maybe this is just a joke to get media attention.

    I wish LSU would invite Utah to come play them in Louisiana. I love Cajun food and can’t find any in my area. I love the “Swamp People” tv series. By the by, who won the “King of the Swamp” title by catching the most alligators? My money was on the native American father and son who spoke Cajun. They are great. But maybe it was that other guy, because I think he purchased more tags.

  10. alligatorsnapper says: Sep 5, 2012 8:33 AM

    parkcityute: If I remember properly, it was a very close contest to the last day, but I will have to check to see which team actually won.


    In keeping with your alias, I am sure you have Googled “Mike the Tiger” and through numerous listings and pages, noted that:

    1. Mike the Tiger has been released before and wandered around campus…those Tulane fans received retribution.

    2. Mike the live Bengal tiger mascot has the best habitat in North America, maybe the world and receives the very best care. Mike’s average lifespan is 18 years, twice as long as in the wild.

    3. I am sure you read the following:

    “The new environment created for Mike is over 15,000 square feet in size with lush planting, a large Live Oak tree, a beautiful waterfall and a stream evolving from a rocky backdrop overflowing with plants and trees. The habitat has, as a backdrop, an Italianate tower, a campanile, that creates a visual bridge to the Italianate architectural vernacular that is the underpinning of the image of the entire beautiful LSU campus. This spectacular new habitat features state-of-the-art technologies, research, conservation and husbandry programs. It is, in essence, one of the largest and finest Tiger habitats in the United States.”

    Mike only goes to games he wants to. The keepers do not force Mike to get into the cage and sometimes he does not feel like it, so he does not go to games.

    1historian, if you wish to help with Mike’s care, you can donate to the fund, also listed on Google.

  11. 1historian says: Sep 5, 2012 9:13 AM

    AS – I did not know that. Thanks for telling me but I still maintain that putting a WILD animal in a cage like that and taking him out where there are about 80,000 people screaming their heads off – for their amusement? is cruel.

    It’s nice to know that life for Mike when he’s not at the games is good. It’s life for Mike when he is AT the games that I worry about.

    Once again let me thank you for telling me new information.

  12. 1historian says: Sep 5, 2012 9:18 AM

    AS – “Mike the tiger has been released before and wandered around campus.”

    In other words – a fully grown Bengal tiger has been released and allowed to wander around the campus with any restraint?


  13. mydixienormus says: Sep 5, 2012 9:41 AM

    Remember this LSU Fans?

    This was a Pac-10 team that wasn’t very good too.

  14. alligatorsnapper says: Sep 5, 2012 10:03 AM


    Troy is known as “King of the Swamp” but last season on Swamp People, it was RJ and his son who purchased 500 tags (the largest amount sold) and filled them all. That is the word we have received.


    Back in those days, it apparently was easier to break into Mike’s enclosure. Tulane fans did about 3 am one morning and released him. A few hours later some startled students saw Mike wandering around campus. He never attacked nor threatened anyone but his presence was enough to send many into panic. Within minutes he was secured by his caretakers who had been called. That kind of breach has not been possible for many years now. His habitat is double protected with not only an enclosure inside an enclosure but also special locks and alarms. I think there is a “Tulane watch” for sneaky Green Waves also. smile.

    The issue of Mike being around 92,ooo plus fans and within another year or so to be about 99,000 fans is best discussed by those experts who care for him. They have addressed the concerns of PETA and other groups who have had similar concerns as you have expressed over the years. Several of these activists spent time at LSU and followed for a week how Mike was handled, fed, exercised, and treated during that week, leading up to and including his trip to Death Valley across the street.

    These animal rights activists had their concerns satisfied by the end of the week. So far, for many decades this tradition has been followed, Mike has never threatened any fans or others, though he has unnerved a few opponents from time to time. He has several close “friends” whom he recognizes and responds to in friendly overt ways, one of which is also named Mike.

    For some years now Mike has been part of the preservation of the species world wide project as Bengal tigers were very feared and killed by Bengalis and others in their natural habitat, almost to extinction.

  15. houndofthebaskervols says: Sep 5, 2012 11:42 AM

    Very cool move by Sark. I’m hoping he can be an equalizer long term for Oregon and USC, unfortunately he aint no equalizer for LSU.

    LSU 35-13

  16. kattykathy says: Sep 5, 2012 6:36 PM

    UW 17
    LSU 16

  17. tigersgeaux says: Sep 6, 2012 3:17 PM

    A night game at Death Valley where LSU seldom loses. 92,000 screaming fans, like being inside a drum. Signals cannot be heard, noise reverberates through your body. LSU will be prepared. LSU will be ready.

    LSU special teams will score at least one touchdown. LSU defense will score at least one touchdown.
    LSU offense will score at least 4 touchdowns.

    Final score 42-14. (I am cheating a little here because I am not good at scores, so I asked the doctor at southernpatriots and that is the score he predicted and I agree).

  18. tigersgeaux says: Sep 9, 2012 9:42 AM


    You are a Washington Husky fan? If so, you have my respect and honor. Always the Husky fans have been so great.

    However, like me you can’t predict scores to games. I can usually pick winners but when I try to advance that to scores, I really mess up. For this reason I “borrow” the score predictions from the physician at southernpatriots who has followed college football for over 60 years. He is not always right, but MUCH more than am I.

    Several things you should have considered in making a prediction on the LSU v. Washington game. Venue? LSU Death Valley at night. History–LSU almost never loses. Sound levels have registered as an earthquake, with almost 93,000 fans the sound will be deafening to opposing QBs, confuse signals, interrupt rhythm, and un-nerve opposing players.

    Defense: LSU’s defense is one of the very best in the nation. Washington does not play against such a defense all year in the PAC12. You cannot practice against something you never face. LSU’s defense shut down the Husky running game. After the first field goal, did the Husky’s score again?

    Record: Washington has never beaten LSU. When LSU played at Washington the game was closer, but this time the reciprocal game at LSU.

    Results: A little worse than the beating Oregon took last year in the first game of the season v. LSU. This was a beating. Mike the Tiger took a large chunk out of the Husky rear.

    It reminds me of what southernpatriots lived through with LSU in in 197os. LSU played Notre Dame home and home. The first game was at South Bend where it snowed and had an ice storm. The LSU players did not know how to play in such inclement weather completely unfamiliar to them. The Irish won 3-0. Now for the reciprocal game at Death Valley LSU. LSU beat the Irish up and down the field. They wiped the Irish out. Final score 27- 7, I think. Was not even that close.

    I wish the Huskies the very best. I hope they win all the rest of their games. They played their hardest on Saturday night. Husky fans are some of the very best anywhere. I wish you the best.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!