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Richmond Times Dispatch (Virginia)

 

William & Mary introduced a new athletics logo Wednesday, and the dark green and gold "W" and "M" linked by an ampersand will appear on the Tribe's gold football helmets starting with the program's 125th season, which kicks off Sept. 1 at Bucknell.

The school is phasing out the script "Tribe," which adorned football helmets, jerseys and other sports gear. The new logo identifies the school in a way the nebulous "Tribe" logo has not.

"While we remain the Tribe, the new logo provides us with a more powerful connection to the university and will allow us to more seamlessly elevate the entire institution's visibility on a national scale," Samantha Huge, W&M's athletics director, said in a school release.

In addition to the script "Tribe," William & Mary has been using a horizontal, or offset, "W&M" logo.

A new secondary logo involves The Griffin, a mythological creature introduced as W&M's mascot in 2010. The Griffin features the body of a lion, representing the school's 1693 creation by royal charter in London, and the head of an eagle, which symbolizes W&M's role in the American Revolution.

The NCAA determined in 2006 that feathers protruding from the interlocked "W&M" in the previous logo, when combined with the nickname Tribe, constituted a violation of the NCAA's policy regarding the use of American Indian mascots, names and imagery.

In the mid-1970s, W&M dropped the nickname "Indians, " its American Indian mascot, and all other athletics-related imagery linked to American Indians, except the feathered logo. At that time, W&M's sports teams began to be primarily known as the Tribe.

According to the school, the Tribe stands for "community and a group with common interests."

joconnor@timesdispatch.com

(804) 649-6233

@RTDjohnoconnor

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