WACO, Texas (KWTX) The Lady Bears, the No. 1 ranked women’s basketball team in the country, are ready to take on the NCAA tournament with their unofficial mascot, Kannon Reid Fuller, the grandson of head coach Kim Mulkey.
Kannon Reid Miller with the Lady Bears.
Kannon has turned out for almost all of the team’s games this season and was there to help cut down the net and sign the championship ball after the Lady Bears won the Big 12 tournament.
He has also made appearances in post-game interviews, including the ESPN’s selection show, during which Mulkey passed Kannon over her shoulder during an interview.
Mulkey said her staff is always ready to come off the bench and take care of Kannon.
“My coaches have been with me for years they know to take him, it’s great teamwork,” Mulkey said.
Kannon was born almost a year to the day after Mulkey lost her first grandchild, Scout Marie.
Scout Marie Fuller, Mulkey's granddaughter, died in November 2017 before she was born of Turner Syndrome, a chromosome disorder affecting only females, mostly in the womb, before she was born.
“Kannon is what we call a rainbow child, he came a year after the still birth of Scout Marie,” Mulkey said.
Kannon’s mother, Makenzie Fuller, a former Lady Bears player who is also a member of her mother’s staff, said she’s never too concerned about her Olympic-gold-medal-winning mom’s baby-handling skills.
“I trust her completely and she is kind of stealing him from me, I kind of want him some of those times but I wouldn’t have him anywhere else,” Fuller said.
“He’s like our big good luck charm…we haven’t lost any games he has been at, so he’s undefeated so far, so he is just going to have to tag along this tournament,” Fuller said.
While Mulkey may be all business on the sidelines she’s a softy at home where she’s better known as “Yaya.”
“Listen to me, people that know me, know that family always comes first,” Mulkey said.
Mulkey said there would be no greater way to cap off Kannon’s first year of life than going home with a national championship.
The Lady Bears start tournament play at 4:30 p.m. Saturday against Abilene Christian at the Ferrell Center in Waco.
In the second round on Monday, the winner plays the winner of the California-North Carolina game, which begins at 2:30 p.m. Saturday at the Ferrell Center.