SBD/January 6, 2012/Colleges

Univ. Of Utah Will Keep Utes Nickname, Drum And Feather Logo

Utah has permission from the Ute Tribal Council to use the name and logo
The Univ. of Utah will "remain the Utes and the 'drum and feather logo,' will stay, but for how long those Native American symbols will remain symbols of the school is uncertain," according to Lya Wodraska of the SALT LAKE TRIBUNE. Utah announced Monday that it was "keeping the drum and feather logo, which it has called the 'circle and feather' logo for the last two years although it is sensitive to the use of the symbols for native tribes." Utah AD Chris Hill said that the university "made the decision after discussing the logo with various student groups, university administrators and representatives from various Native American tribes." Utah has "permission from the Ute Tribal Council to use the term 'Utes' and the drum and feather logo." The school uses the logo "on uniforms, media guides and ads, but not on structures deemed 'permanent,' or lasting more than a year, in case a change is necessary" (SALT LAKE TRIBUNE, 1/6). In Utah, Brad Rock writes the school "should dump its nickname, and logo, not because it might offend someone, or because the Pac-12 would prefer it, or because a few self-aware faculty members want it removed." It should change because Utah Utes is "strange sounding (try saying it five times in succession) and few people outside the state even know what a Ute is anyway." A "lot of the talk about changes includes the suspicion that the Pac-12 is involved," but Hill has said that there "has been no pressure from the conference" (DESERET NEWS, 1/6).

MASSIVE REBRANDING: The Univ. of North Dakota last Friday announced that the "rebranding of several organizations" is a result of the "retirement of the Fighting Sioux nickname and logo." The GRAND FORKS HERALD reported the university's varsity athletics teams will "operate without an official nickname or corresponding logo until at least Jan. 1, 2015, as mandated by the North Dakota State Legislature." The Fighting Sioux Sports Network on TV has been "renamed the UND Sports Network, and the Fighting Sioux Radio Network has been renamed the UND Radio Network." The university's official website,, has been "renamed" (GRAND FORKS HERALD, 12/31).
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