"He was just going to say hi."

Meghan Overdeep
January 2, 2019

The showdown between the Texas Longhorns and the Georgia Bulldogs took a literal turn in New Orleans Tuesday night.

About an hour before kickoff, Texas’ hulking brown and white mascot, a 1,600-pound longhorn steer named Bevo, made a play for Georgia’s unsuspecting canine mascot, a 62-pound English bulldog named Uga X.

Luckily Uga, who was wearing a red Georgia sweater, was pulled out of the way just in time and Bevo was restrained, but not before he managed to knock a few metal barriers and photographers to the ground. In the end, all humans, canines and bovines are said to have emerged from the scrap without injuries.

Not surprisingly, the video of the thwarted tussle became a social media sensation.

Even though the footage looks like Bevo set out to attack sweet Uga, the steer’s handlers say otherwise.

"We were trying to turn him around to take a picture, and he made a run for it," Patrick Dowell, a Texas senior and one of Bevo's handlers, explained to ESPN. "He was just going to say hi."

Texas athletics spokesman John Bianco told the Associated Press that "all established safety and security measures were in place for Bevo" at the Sugar Bowl, including two halters, two chains and six handlers to hold him.

For his part, Uga X, who has spent time on a cotton farm with three steers, appeared unphased. "I had him turned around," Charles Seiler, who was handling the famous pup at the time, told ESPN. "He heard it and he didn't wait. He ran. And I ran.”

After Bevo and his team trounced Uga and the Bulldogs 28-21, some are saying the now-viral brush between the animal mascots was a sign of things to come.