Louie The Loper

Louie The Loper

Operated by the Office of Student Life, in partnership with the departments of Athletics and UNK Marketing, Louie is an antelope and wears a blue football jersey and blue shorts during the summer and fall, and a white basketball jersey with white shorts in the winter and spring. Although the jersey changes numbers over the years, we think Louie’s favorite jersey number is 22.

Louie attends all home athletic events, special events and activities such as Commencement, Freshman Convocation, New Student Enrollment, and Blue and Gold Welcome Week.

Louie the Loper remains one of the most popular school spirit figures in Nebraska, and is the only Loper mascot in the country. In 2011, Louie was a national finalist in the Annual Mascot Madness competition hosted by SportsTalkNY.

What's A Loper?

In 1910 the student body selected the antelope as the school mascot, because “it symbolized strength, swiftness and the ability to adapt to adverse conditions.”

From the school student paper: the antelope is “the swiftest, most beautiful and most graceful animal in the Western plains. (The) Antelope appeals as a fitting emblem of a school located on the broad prairie of Nebraska, where the antelopes once roamed so freely.”

So while Loper legend is that the mascot is a North American Antelope, fact is, there are no antelopes in North America. The pronghorn, which looks much like an antelope and is commonly called an antelope, is most likely what the students in 1910 were referring to.

During the 1950's, The Kearney Hub began using a shortened version of antelopes – Lopers – to refer to the school’s athletic teams. The student paper quickly picked up “the Lopers” and the name stuck.

Did You Know?

There are 91 species of antelope indigenous to regions in Africa and Eurasia.

The Antelope is the second fastest mammal in the world and can run at speeds of more than 60 miles per hour – only the Cheetah is faster.

Baby antelope are called kids.

Antelopes have horns, not antlers. Antelope do not replace their horns (not antlers) annually. Rather, they grow continuously throughout their lifetime.

According to a U.S. wildlife census conducted in 2013, there were more pronghorn in the state of Wyoming than there were people.

An antelope's eyes are larger than an elephant's and their vision is eight times better than humans. In fact, antelope can see the slightest movement from four miles away

Request Louie the Loper for your Event!

If you are interested in having Louie the Loper at your event, contact the Office of Student Engagement at 308-865-8523 or click here to complete the online request form. 

**Requests must be made at least two weeks prior to the event.  We encourage you to make your request as early as possible. We tend to be extremely busy at the beginning of each semester and may not be available during scheduled academic breaks, exam weeks, or home football game days. Since our mascots are students, they are typically more likely to be available in the evenings and on weekends.