We're in Louisiana for a week visiting family and going to LSU's game with Auburn. My mom, dad and I kicked things off with a pilgrimage to Mike VI's sprawling habitat on LSU's campus in Baton Rouge.
Mike, a 2-year-old Bengal-Siberian mix, is the university's newly crowned mascot, replacing Mike V who passed away last spring. He's a stunning creature in person. Already, he's as big as his predecessor, and he's expected to nearly double in size over the next few years.
This guy took care of Mike for the first two years of his life at a tiger rescue facility in Indiana. We happened to arrive at the habitat just as the guy was paying Mike his first visit since leaving Indiana two months ago.
Mike was able to pick him out from the 70 other people who were gathered around the viewing areas. They both seemed really happy to see each other.
The habitat is a huge enclosed green space with a waterfall, a pond and lush landscaping. It sits between Tiger Stadium and the Pete Maravich basketball arena.As we were leaving, we bumped into LSU Athletic Director (and legendary former baseball coach) Skip Bertman.