LSU fan's joke over 'clearance rack' Clemson mascot turns into real fundraiser for wild tigers
BATON ROUGE - What began as a lighthearted jab between college fanbases has turned into a full-blown fundraiser to help wild animals.
LSU fan Dion Grossnickle started the GoFundMe page to buy Clemson a new costume for its mascot as a joke during LSU's National Championship win on Jan. 13. The story went viral overnight, but he had no idea it would actually pull in thousands of dollars.
“I would have never imagined people would have donated a single dollar to a page that was obviously a joke,” Grossnickle said on Facebook.
As of Thursday, the fundraiser had brought in more than $3,100.
The man behind the fundraiser says he reached out to the Clemson athletics department to see what it wanted to do with the money. Instead of putting it toward a new costume, it was decided the money would go the Tigers United University Consortium. The organization is a partnership between Auburn University, Clemson, LSU and the University of Missouri - all schools with tiger mascots- with the goal of saving wild tigers around the world.
"One of our goals is to harness the power of the fan base of all of our tiger mascot universities into action and support for wild tigers," the group said on Facebook. "We will designate these funds to our elementary school education program that will launch later this year."
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