BY GEOFF HOBSON
The Bengals unveiled their contribution to Cincinnati's Pig Gig today, a 418-pound pig evolving into an official "Pigskin," football.
Actually, the statue is 50 pounds of fiberglass sculpted by Western Hills artist John Wilson and features Bengal-striped ears and tail, a body molded to resemble the leather of a football, and eyes filled with images of the new Paul Brown Stadium. Two gold medals with the numerals XVI and XXIII signifying the club's Super Bowl appearances dangle from the neck. The signature of Hammissioner I.L. Tailgatewithu is stamped on the pigskin, as is where it was made: "Porkopolis, USA."
"That's some pig," said Bengals President Mike Brown, echoing the line about literature's most famous pig, E.B. White's Wilbur of "Charlotte's Web." "We're going to make sure we put him in a prominent place in the stadium. We want to put another medal on our pig."
After "Pigskin," joins the other pigs on display throughout the city, Brown would like his stall to eventually be at one of the stadium's entrances. Several of Wilson's paintings of such figures in franchise history as Paul Brown and Ken Anderson dot the walls of the club's Spinney Field offices, but this was his biggest project for the club. He figures it took him 30 hours over the last month and was especially proud of the "PBS 2000 stamped on the pig/football.
"To most people that stands for Paul Brown Stadium," Wilson said. "But consider it, "Playoff Bound Swine."