Fresno Chaffee Zoo lion Kijani placed his bets on the Philadelphia Eagles beating the New England Patriots in Super Bowl 52 Friday. Photo by Donald A. Promnitz

published on February 2, 2018 - 1:55 PM
Written by Donald A. Promnitz

In what has become a tradition over the last decade, zookeepers at the Fresno Chaffee Zoo have given the animals a chance to pick the winner of professional football’s biggest night.

On Friday, male African lion cub Kijani placed his bets on the Philadelphia Eagles beating the New England Patriots in Super Bowl 52. The lion made his prediction by choosing between one of two cardboard boxes, one with a New England Patriots logo and the other with a Philadelphia Eagles logo. Each ball had a treat for Kijani, and the one that he picked was the predicted winner.

Last year, Kijani’s father Chisulo correctly picked New England to win over the Atlanta Falcons. While it initially seemed that the lion would get his prediction wrong for most of the game, he turned out to be right when the Patriots rallied in the fourth quarter to win in overtime, 34-28.

In 2016, lioness Zamaya correctly picked the winning Denver Broncos.

Amanda Ramsay, a carnivore keeper with the zoo, played up the lion pride’s 100-percent accuracy record so far.

“I’m petty sure we have the only omniscient pride in the world,” she said.

Related story: Fresno Chaffee Zoo’s lion picks Patriots to win Super Bowl 51

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