The Wildcat mascot originated during the 1976-77 academic year at UK. Gary Tanner was the original Wildcat, dancing and entertaining thousands of UK fans at Commonwealth Stadium and Rupp Arena during athletics events.
A few years later, he was joined by another Cat – walking on stilts – who made his appearance during UK’s twin tower era of Melvin Turpin and Sam Bowie. Even today, the original mascot is joined by Scratch, who’s a more child-friendly mascot and serves as the host of UK’s official Kids Club.
In Fall 2003 and 2004, Scratch was named to the Capital One All-America Mascot Teams and competed for the title of the Capital One Mascot of the Year.