It is a well-known fact that the Pirate is Seton Hall’s mascot, but not many people know who is under the suit. Brendan Kane, a senior sports management and marketing major, said he was one of the students who has worn the suit since June 2016.
Kane explained that it was always a childhood dream of his to be the mascot, and he went to apply after learning from a peer advisor they were looking for more students. Kane said he didn’t take the job at first, as he didn’t want the childhood dream to end, but he went back and accepted the job 10 minutes later.
Kane added that there are four students rotating this season, and if he isn’t in the suit, he is making sure the logistics are running smoothly with whoever is in the suit.
Kane said one of his personal goals for every game is to make three fans’ day and make their game experience a little better.
“It’s the natural high for me; I really take that very seriously, and I’m very appreciative of it,” Kane said.
Kane said being the Pirate has opened a lot of doors for him, such as, getting an internship with Fox Sports’ media relations department. Kane also said he started the Pirate’s Instagram and Twitter, as a way for the Pirate to speak without actually talking.
He said he has also been contacted by professional teams, such as the New Jersey Devils and San Diego Padres, about different career opportunities after seeing his work with the Pirate.
“It’s more than just a guy in a suit really, I kinda took it to the next level, and made it more of my lifestyle,” Kane said.
A freshman diplomacy and international relations major who wished to remain anonymous said he wasn’t looking for the job as the mascot when the job found him. He said that Kane approached him at the involvement fair, and after trying on the suit and being the Pirate at a soccer game, it felt like a good fit. He added that one of his favorite things about being the Pirate is the interactions he has with kids, while his least favorite thing is the heat and sweat that comes with wearing the suit.
A freshman physics engineering major who also wished to remain anonymous, said he was the leader of his student fan section in high school, and his father was also a collegiate mascot.
“It’s just a lot of fun to motivate everyone, and get everyone hyped up,” he said. He said one thing that is difficult is trying to tell fans he can’t speak without talking to explain and only having four fingers while wearing the suit.
The person also said that it has also been helpful to have connections with the upperclassmen Pirates, especially for advice on college as a whole.
Kyle Gaydo, a sophomore English major, said his first interaction with the Pirate was taking a photo with him the day he moved in freshman year.
Gaydo said he thinks it’s exhilarating to be the Pirate, but wouldn’t want to be it, as he said he doesn’t think he could handle standing out so much.
Ryan Woodhams, a freshman sports management major, said his first interaction with the Pirate was getting a high-five and photo with him at Pirate Preview last April. Woodhams said he imagines being the mascot is more work than people realize, but he hopes the smiles the Pirate brings to SHU students and fans are worth it.
“If there was ever an opportunity, I would most definitely want to take his place for a day,” Woodhams said.
Kane said with two out of four Pirates graduating this spring, they are looking for more students to add to the rotation. Kane said the perfect range in height is 6’1” to 6’3”, regardless of gender. The height can be only slightly flexible he added, because the Pirate won’t have the same stature and the suit may look to baggy.
“It’s an experience like no other, and it’s really gonna make you appreciate Seton Hall University more and more,” Kane said.
Kane said interested students can reach out to him at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Veronica Gaspa can be reached at email@example.com. Follow her on Twitter @GaspaVee.