The N.C. State Athletics Department unveiled a new midfield logo for Saturday’s Homecoming game against UNC-Chapel Hill. The logo, a red-colored state of North Carolina with a wolf’s head in the middle, was meant to tie to the University’s “This is our state” campaign, according to Chris Boyer, Senior Associate Athletics Director for External Operations. As expected, N.C. State received backlash from UNC-CH students for claiming the state as ours, but the University received harsher criticism from students at a school we have yet to play: East Carolina University.
ECU fans berated the new midfield logo because it is very similar to the midfield design that their university has been using for years. “While we were aware our Homecoming field stencil was similar to the current ECU field design, this specific N.C. State stencil design was based on an existing N.C. State bumper sticker design,” Boyer said.
But this isn’t the first time the University has been accused of creating slogans and images that are strikingly similar to those of other institutions.
In August, reports surfaced stating that N.C. State’ men’s basketball introduction video appeared to be practically identical to Louisiana State University’s 2010 football intro video. LSU’s video says, “It is a pantheon of concrete and steel. It is a city that rises defiantly in the delta alongside the father of waters. It is the cathedral of college football.”
The N.C. State video says, “It is a pantheon of concrete and steel. It is a city that rises defiantly in the Triangle alongside the famous tobacco road. It is the cathedral of college basketball.”
The parallelism continues throughout the rest of the video. To see the full comparison video, search “Death Valley N.C. State remix” on YouTube.
Not only did we copy our video and midfield design from other schools, but we also stole our slogan. In 2011, Mississippi State posted billboards that read “Welcome to our State” and subsequently used “This is our state” as its logo. The following year, N.C. State began using the same slogan.
“It is not unprecedented for marketing slogans to be used by more than one entity,” Boyer said.
This lack of originality is pitiful at best. If a student at N.C. State turned in an assignment in which he or she copied the work of someone else, that student could face expulsion.
But if the University requires students to produce original work, why shouldn’t it hold the Athletics Department to a similar standard?
Win or lose, any true Wolfpack fan will support N.C. State, but we at the Technician would rather lose with dignity than win touting a slogan stolen from another school.