Thursday, July 21, 2011

Yellow flags and penalty kicks

- Kansas State, or should I say "K-State", is followineg the lead of its cousin, the University of Kansas, by attempting to consolidate its brand approach to be more consistent. In the 2007-2008 school year, KU underwent a stringent brand identity shift in order to more consistently align the school's visual identity across academics and athletics. The move included standardization of school colors and the use of one common font across all identity opportunities. Even the visual use of "KU" was standardized as was how the Jayhawk would be portrayed and used. KSU is attempting to do the same but with one notable exception--the use of "K-State" as the common moniker. The school feels the recent exposure gained via the more visible basketball program, e.g., the "K-State" used on the front of the jerseys, made the name decision a logical one. KSU also plans to standardize the use of the Powercat logo and PMS 268 purple. While I applaud the desire for consistency, I have a hard time understanding the rationale to use "K" instead of "Kansas"--I wonder if school officials truly have researched the equity in "Kansas State" among more than just the KSU alumni, student and fan base? The brand identity focus is not a new one in the college ranks--prior to Kansas' efforts of five years ago were similar exercises from schools like the University of North Carolina and the University of Oregon.

- I'm just asking--if the U.S. mens soccer team would have suffered a similar meltdown, like the women did Sunday against Japan, in a World Cup final, would they have been given a pass like the womens team is receiving this week? There is a lack of media criticism of how the women lost which I think does beg the question.

- With the NFL lockout seemingly about to end, all eyes will turn to the NBA and their labor situation. Don't look for a full schedule by the professional basketballers, even though the league released a full season schedule yesterday.

- This year's British Open had the lowest ever weekend television ratings.

- The peace in the Big 12 is tenuous at best. There are reports circulating that Texas A&M is threatening to bolt to the SEC should the NCAA allow the University of Texas to broadcast Texas high school football games on the Longhorn Network. The issue for the Aggies, and others in the conference, is the believed recruiting advantage this would create for UT in a state where all 10 Big 12 member institutions seek players. If the NCAA says "okay," then Friday Night Lights would become the real deal--not a television series focused on the fictional town of Dillon, TX.

- Steve Williams says that he lost respect for Tiger Woods as a result of Woods' firing of Williams as his caddie. Hmm--so Williams respected Woods after the recent off-course issues but now doesn't? Right...

- Speaking of firing a caddie, the crew chief of Juan Pablo Montoya has been replaced. Earnhardt Ganassi racing announced that Brian Pattie is being replaced by Jim Pohlman, who has been with the organization since 2006. The timing of the announcement was interesting given that it's right before the Brickyard 400 (July 31), the race which Montoya was leading last year before a caution came out with 21 laps to go. Pattie made the decision to take four tires when teammate and eventual winner Jamie McMurray took two, thus creating friction between crew chief and driver even after Pattie acknowledged that the mistake was his.

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