Traditions

Landshark

 

At Ole Miss, Landshark is a term that was first adopted by the Rebel football team's defensive unit. As part of that identity, defensive players celebrate big plays by putting a hand to their forehead in the shape of a shark fin. A battle cry of "Fins Up" also contributes to the players' persona. With the popularity of both the players and the hand gesture, Ole Miss fans and student-athletes from other sports embraced the spirit of the Landshark, and in October 2017, the university announced the Landshark as the official mascot of the Ole Miss Rebels. The Landshark mascot is expected to be unveiled before the 2018 season.

Roots of the Landshark at Ole Miss date back to 2008. After four straight losing seasons, the Rebel football team returned to national prominence with a 9-4 record and a victory over 7th-ranked Texas Tech in the Cotton Bowl. Leading the charge was a defensive squad that ranked fourth in the nation in rushing defense and included All-American Peria Jerry and eventual All-SEC standout Jerrell Powe.

The term Landshark originated that season from senior linebacker Tony Fein, an Army veteran who served a one-year tour in the Iraq War before arriving in Oxford. A two-year letterman after transferring from Scottsdale (Ariz.) Community College, Fein was the 2008 recipient of the Pat Tillman Award by the Military Order of the Purple Heart. Fein passed away in October 2009, but his legacy at Ole Miss continues through the Landshark.

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