CLEMSON, S.C. (WYFF) - Clemson and LSU players are getting set for the biggest college football game of the year.
The matchup on the field between both tigers is set to impress.
Off the field, both universities are working together to save tigers around the world.
“It’s a fun mascot, and it’s something that we cannot take any more chances of losing, nor can we sit by,” Dr. Brett Wright, a professor at Clemson, said.
Wright leads Tigers United, a collaborative effort between Clemson, LSU, Auburn and Mizzou.
The four major land-grant universities use the tiger mascot.
“Our goal is to save those in the wild and protect that biodiversity for future generations, so that when future Clemson and LSU and Auburn and University of Missouri students say, ‘Go, tigers,’ that they’re still there in the wild, as majestic in their habitat as they’ve always been,” Wright said.
In the consortium, the four universities share research and funding focused on tiger conservation. One facet to the approach involves sending research students to study how to better preserve and restore the dwindling population.
“There’s less than 4,000 [tigers] in the wild right now,” Wright said. “That’s about the size of one of our enrolling classes each fall here at Clemson.”
Wright and other leaders in the program have already raised more than $1 million in about two years of collecting donations.
There are four goals in the consortium’s most recent report: training and capacity building, research, technology transfer and awareness and outreach.
Rose Luo said she works in student international affairs on campus.
"It's definitely a great initiative which might attract more international students to come to Clemson," she said.
It’s an initiative Wright hopes will expand.
“At this game, tigers cannot lose, we just can’t,” Wright said. “So we’ve just got to let people know about our mascot and why we’re so fond of it.”
Those wanting to contribute to the fundraising effort can donate to Tigersunited.org or text ‘Savetigers’ to 41444.
For more information on the collaborative, click or tap here.