The fictional Tennessee head coach has taken the sports world by storm.
College football has always had a long sign of extremely successful head coaches, spanning from Bear Bryant to Bobby Bowden to Nick Saban and Dabo Swinney. Recently, the torch has been passed, and Gus Duggerton has become the hottest and biggest name in the sport.
Duggerton’s Tennessee Volunteers look every part of a national title contender. With Heisman candidate quarterback Caleb Pressley leading the charge,alongside speedy running back Jojo Smalls and a formidable group of receivers including Rico Burgerton helping out Smalls in the backfield.
If you haven’t heard of Duggerton yet, there may be a good reason why–he’s a video game character. Duggerton, often referred to as Coach Duggs or Air Duggs, is a coach created in the timeless NCAA Football 14 game by Barstool Sports’ Dan Katz (better known as Big Cat) who has taken over the sports and video game world.
Big Cat created Coach Duggs following the cancellation of the NCAA basketball tournament, and the fictional coach has stayed in the public eye through stops as the offensive coordinator at Toledo, Florida State and USC as well as the head coach at Texas Tech and Tennessee. On Twitter, there’s a person who impersonates Duggs due to their striking similarities, and Twitter accounts for the team Duggs is coaching will live tweet about the games that Big Cat is playing as if they were actually happening. In addition, on more than one occasion a confused fan will wonder what happened to their prior head coach or coordinator when the team announces their “hiring” of Duggerton.
When Big Cat streams through the “Pardon My Take” Twitch account, he’s almost always the #1 streamer on the site, sometimes accumulating more than 75,000 views; for comparison, this is more than popular streamer Ninja usually got while he was still streaming on Twitch.
Big Cat was already a popular figure in the sports world and had a prior base who would consume his content anyway. But the numbers that he’s putting up while he streams show just how hungry people are for any sort of sports content,with the sports world effectively shut down to Covid-19.
With Sunday night’s overtime win at Alabama in Tuscaloosa, Duggerton has the Vols in the top five nationally, their sights set on the national championship game. Duggs has already taken the sports world by storm, and a national championship would be the icing on the cake to complete his legacy.