University at Buffalo puts 'Buffalo' back on its logo
BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) Step aside, ''New York.'' The name ''Buffalo'' is reclaiming its place of prominence in the University at Buffalo Bulls sports teams' logo.
The change was announced Tuesday as part of a school-wide rebranding initiative, and ends a three-year experiment during which the Bulls attempted to market themselves as a ''New York State'' program.
Instead, ''Buffalo'' will be prominently featured on the Mid-American Conference school's jerseys. It replaces the wordy and sometimes confusing ''State University of New York Buffalo'' fixture, in which ''New York'' was emphasized.
The emphasis on New York was introduced by former athletic director Danny White in a bid to expand the school's profile. White believed the Bulls would generate additional national attention because more people identified with New York than Buffalo.
White justified the re-emphasis on New York by noting Buffalo was the flagship school in the state's university system. White left Buffalo last year to take over as AD at Central Florida.
''The intent for branding with emphasis on New York was to stimulate discussion about UB's stature in New York,'' said athletic director Allen Greene, a member of the school's brand council. ''Our research showed us that `Buffalo' has a very strong place in the hearts and spirits of the UB community.''
The change three years ago proved confusing at times with some questioning whether ''New York'' stood for New York City rather than the state.
It also created a backlash from alumni and Buffalo-area residents. They complained Buffalo was taking a backseat to New York, and questioned why other state schools such as Albany emphasized their city location and not state.
Numerous letters complaining about the ''New York'' logo were published in The Buffalo News last month after the Bulls men's and women's basketball teams qualified for the NCAA Tournament.
''Apparently, someone is ashamed of Buffalo or doesn't want it to be known the campus is in Buffalo,'' David Schaff wrote in a letter published on March 27. ''Anyone on a national level will think the school is in New York City. A slap in the face.''
As part of the rebranding, the school is introducing a tag line that refers to Buffalo as ''New York's Public Powerhouse.''