Over 10,000 students left Spirit Splash disappointed and empty handed Friday afternoon after a single student managed to catch every single rubber duck through the use of one extremely large butterfly net.
During Spirit Splash, UCF’s most popular homecoming tradition, students rush into the reflecting pond outside Millican Hall hoping to catch one of the coveted rubber ducks hurled into the crowd by event volunteers. However, this year’s event was thrown for a loop when senior James Mitchell managed to catch all 2,000+ ducks in a 200 foot wide net that he covertly smuggled into the pond.
“They said they didn’t want us to bring nets to Spirit Splash, so I knew I would have to be subtle,” Mitchell said, “that’s why I left my commercial fishing net at home and instead opted for one pretty large butterfly net.”
The event as a whole (including the distribution of the ducks) was reportedly so chaotic that most students and volunteers didn’t even notice that Mitchell was the only one collecting ducks.
“I worked my way to the middle of the pond” said senior Daisy McDonald. “I’ve caught a duck all six years I’ve been here, but for some reason every time one came my way, it seemed to pause for a moment, get caught in something, and veer toward the back of the pond. I thought it was weird, but I didn’t really expect any fowl play initially; I got a bit suspicious when I was walking home duckless, after the splash, and saw this one guy slowly trudging away from the pond, dragging a bag of over three hundred pounds of ducks behind him.
Mitchell was almost exposed mid-Splash when Knightro attempted to crowd surf and found himself dangling ten feet above the crowd with his foot caught in the net. However, with a few vigorous shakes Mitchell was able to free Knightro before too much suspicion mounted.
According to the Homecoming Committee, Spirit Splash ducks are meant to be an enjoyable and unique memento of one’s time at UCF, a reminder of the fun and memorable experiences one has as an undergraduate and a distinctive symbol of UCF tradition and culture.
Mitchell plans to sell them for thirty bucks each out of the SGA printing lab.