When is a Gator not a Gator?

What may be the biggest story at this year's SEC Media Days is coming from Gator country. It seems the big mistake has left University of Florida students with a Gator scowl instead of a Gator growl.

The University of Florida and its students may be known as the Gators, but the football team's new media guide has a crocodile on the cover! Not an alligator, but a crocodile.

A spokesman for the university says the school "asked for an alligator" and "paid for an alligator", but got a crocodile instead. And, in case your wondering, there are several characteristics that differentiate the two reptiles.

Telling Alligators and Crocodiles Apart
American Alligator
(Alligator mississippiensis)
American Crocodile
(Crocodilus acutus)
Broad snout Narrow snout
Blackish coloration in adults Olive brown coloration
Only teeth of the upper jaw visible when jaws are closed Teeth of both jaws visible when jaws are closed
Southeastern United States
Range: In the U.S. found only in the southern tip of Florida. Also the Caribbean, Central and South America. The American Crocodile is an Endangered Species. Only a few hundred remain in the U.S.
Nesting: Nest is a mound of vegetation, constructed by the female alligator in freshwater environments Nesting: lays eggs in a mud or sand nest in brackish or saltwater environments.

Chart courtesy U.S. Park Service

As for the Gator's media cover, despite the mistake, the athletic association says it's going to keep the crocodile on the cover. Down the road, it just might become a valued Gator collector's item.