With the forthcoming retirement of Smokey X, Vols everywhere are about to gain a new best friend in Smokey XI. Here are 11 things you need to know about the new pup soon to take over the biggest job on Rocky Top.
August 8, 2021
GOOD OL’ DAD
Smokey XI will be following in the paw prints of his dad, Smokey X, who began his official UT duties in 2013.
DON’T FORGET MOM
Smokey’s mom has the perfect name—Tennessee Sweet T.
Just like his dad, Smokey XI was born at Davis Branch Blueticks in Shelbyville, Tennessee.
HOME SWEET HOME
Smokey XI lives with his dad and the Hudson family—Cindy, Sam, and Katherine—in Knoxville.
Smokey XI was born into a litter of seven pups. Three of his siblings found homes with former Smokey handlers from agricultural fraternity Alpha Gamma Rho.
THE BERNIE & ERNIE SHOW
What’s better than one puppy? You guessed it—two. Smokey XI, whose nickname at the Hudson house is Bernie, is besties with his brother Ernest. Their names harken back to Bernie and Ernie, the famous 1970s Vol basketball duo Bernard King and Ernest Grunfeld.
The pup’s long ears helped him win the job of Smokey and the hearts of Vol fans everywhere when he debuted in a video from UT Athletics on Valentine’s Day. Watch the video at tiny.utk.edu/SmokeyXI.
According to Cindy Hudson, Smokey XI likes to chew on his right ear.
SMOKEY IN TWO WORDS
Clumsy and super-loving
LIVING HIS BEST LIFE
Smokey spends his days in training at puppy school and lounging in the sunshine. And every evening he loves to snuggle and fall asleep in the recliner.
Smokey X, who turned 10 in February, will continue his duties this fall while his son is still in training. But Vols can expect to see Smokey XI, long ears and all, running through the T very soon.
Help support a Tennessee tradition. Donate to the Hudson Family Smokey Endowment to support our favorite hound!
Smoky 11 is SO adorable! Has there ever been a female Smoky? Also I’d love to see him chewing on his ear. Would be a fun post.
My concern would be personality differences. We don’t have to make him female just because we can. Let’s please not do that, don’t ruin everything men have.
Exactly. We don’t have much left as it is.
Thanks enjoyed that
Give me a break. Now we are looking for Justice and equality among actual living animals used as mascots? This is absolutely exhausting.
No, it sounded more like she was just curious. Why is everyone so easily offended?
Smokey XI is so cute!
Smokey XI is adorable! I know he will make his dad proud! I will miss Smokey X when he does retire, because I’ve known him his entire career. I pray he gets to lay under the shade tree for many a moon🧡
He’s fun to watch and will be a great ambassador. Smokey is still one of my fondest memories of campus life 45 years ago!
Loved Smokey X. And love Smokey XI, but do agree that girls would make a great mascot too! They are as smart,cute,and lovable!
Would love to see dad on the sidelines while son is on duty! And maybe a ‘family’ appearance for homecoming!
My nephew, Willis Jepson was the handler a few years back.I was born in Oliver springs,Tn.
I grew up with Blueticks Long Island, NY, so ironic that my Daughter is a TN VOL🧡 Love the history of Smokey!