The University of Akron Zips today unveiled a new series of logos to be used across their athletic program.
The design features a “modern” and “stylized” letter A in navy blue with a subtle “Z” worked into it to form the initials of the Akron Zips athletic team name. The logo was designed by Joe Bosack & Co. This Pennsylvania-based firm has developed numerous collegiate brands over the years, including some previous Zips logos such as those featuring Zippy the Kangaroo, first debuting in the early 2000s.
“One of the significant recommendations of last year’s University-wide Athletics Working Group—whose members included student-athletes, faculty, staff, alumni and community representatives—was to streamline UA’s athletic branding, which had become a jumble of no fewer than eight logos,” said Charles Guthrie, Akron’s Director of Intercollegiate Athletics in the press release. “This new approach simplifies and aligns our identity across all settings, makes a statement about who we are, and will increase the impact of the Akron Athletics brand.”
Akron says the new logos reflect “the tradition of Akron’s program” as well as “establish[ing] a more complementary and reinforcing linkage to the University’s overall brand identity.” The re-design process included eight months of focus groups with numerous university groups, with feedback from those sessions incorporated into the final design.
“I am very gratified by the overwhelmingly favourable response I heard when I previewed the design with numerous stakeholders,” said University of Akron President Gary L. Miller. “This new mark pays homage to the University’s heritage and its unbreakable connection with the City of Akron and presents a strong image that reflects our determination to rise and excel.”
The new logo is the sixth different primary logo that Akron has used since the turn of the century, with many of those changes the result of promoting previous secondary or alternate marks to primary status.
“It was the right moment to optimize our brand footprint and remain fiscally responsible,” added Guthrie. “The InfoCision Stadium Summa Field turf had reached the end of its useful life, and the funds to replace it were provided by a donor. In addition, we needed to start changing our uniforms to reflect our Nike sponsorship, which will take some time. Starting that process now, in coordination with the field turf replacement, was particularly advantageous.”
The new logo will begin appearing immediately across media and digital platforms, and the various athletic teams will adopt it as their respective new seasons commence.