Goodyear has officially unveiled the latest installment in one of its more creative Cotton Bowl traditions: tire art statues of both participating teams’ mascot.

Yes, you read that correctly: Goodyear created a statue of the Symbol of Our Best and Memphis’ mascot, Tom the Tiger, out of its own tires as part of the celebrations prior to this year’s Cotton Bowl Classic between No. 10 Penn State football and No. 17 Memphis.
(Photo: Matt Strasen | Associated Press courtesy of Niko Burton)

According to a press release, each sculpture weighs more than 200 pounds and is comprised of more than 260 Goodyear tires. Completing both sculptures required the use of 450 hidden screws — which is why they look as good as they do — and more than 400 man hours of work.

Goodyear commissioned an artist named Blake McFarland, who played minor league baseball from 2011-2017, to create the tire-based replicas of both teams’ mascot. He was given this task for the fourth consecutive year. Each tire art sculpture will be proudly displayed in and around AT&T Stadium throughout the weekend, and Goodyear will give each piece of art to their respective universities once the Cotton Bowl Classic wraps up.

“Goodyear’s annual tire art build has quickly become a beloved tradition for the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic,” Rick Baker the Cotton Bowl Classic’s President and CEO, said in a release. “Our ongoing collaboration with Goodyear continues to enhance the Cotton Bowl Classic experience every year for players and fans alike, and we look forward to creating more memories together.”
A closer look at the Nittany Lion’s tire art statue. (Photo: Matt Strasen | Associated Press courtesy of Niko Burton)

If you’re in north Texas for the game and want to see the Nittany Lion in tire form, here’s a full rundown of where it’ll be throughout the weekend (Note: All times listed are Central):

  • Goodyear Big Play Luncheon: 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on December 27, Hilton Anatole’s Chantilly Ballroom (2201 N. Stemmons Fwy., Dallas)
  • Pregame Display: 7-11 a.m. on December 28, West Plaza of AT&T Stadium, 1 AT&T Way, Arlington, TX 76011

Please choose an option below.

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Mikey is a senior majoring in journalism and Onward State’s Sports Editor. He grew up in Bedminster, NJ and is way too obnoxious about all the best things his home state has to offer. Mikey loves to play golf, but he sucks at it because golf is hard. If you’re dying to see more hockey/golf content on your timeline, you can follow Mikey on Twitter @mikey_mandarino. Send all hate mail, death threats, and your vote for the best chicken parm in State College to [email protected]

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