Bates unveils bold new look for the Bobcat

Bates student Tim Campbell sports his new Bobcat T-shirt at Saturday’s Bates-Tufts men’s basketball game. The new Bobcat was revealed at halftime of the game. Photo by Phyllis Graber Jensen/Bates College.

The new Bobcat logo shows a distinguished and proud Bobcat head, with ‘BATES’ in a custom font.

LEWISTON, Maine — Bates College made public its new Bobcat logo at halftime of today’s Bates-Tufts men’s basketball game, unfurling a garnet banner depicting a bold, new look for the college mascot.

Created by Skye Design Studios (SDS), the new Bobcat strikes a familiar note with the 17-year-old design it replaces, while making a fresh and stylish departure from the logos of other institutions and teams using the Bobcat nickname. Owned and operated by Maine native Skye Dillon, SDS is a brand identity and design firm located in the greater New York City area.

“Timeless in nature, the new Bobcat icon’s confidence is rendered in a clean, one-color graphic that serves as a metaphor to Bates’ distinguished reputation, as well as the simple lifestyle associated with Maine,” said Dillon. “The Bobcat’s head-only pose engages with the viewer, representing the intimate nature of Bates’ tight-knit community.”

Representing the entire college, the new Bobcat will eventually be visible throughout campus, yet will likely be seen most often in relation to Bates’ 31 varsity athletic teams. It will figure prominently in Bates’ forthcoming redesigned athletics website (a project in which the college is partnering with PrestoSports), and may appear on some uniforms as early as spring 2013.

The college’s athletics marketing committee, including four students and alumni, recommended an update of the Bobcat logo and oversaw its development.

“The committee worked extremely well together to create a logo that would appeal to all members of the Bates community, past and present,” said Luke Matarazzo, a Bates junior and committee member. “The new Bobcat conveys confidence, fearlessness and valor — all characteristics that we value here at Bates. The development of the new logo took lots of time, effort and cooperation, but it was well worth it.”

In September and October the committee engaged Dillon as designer, and then canvassed the Bates community — students, alumni, faculty and staff — for artistic direction.

Dillon visited campus in October, taking in a variety of athletic contests, meeting with the committee and poring through archival photographs.

“The input contributed by the campus community provided an authentic perspective on the school’s identity,” said Dillon.

“Skye is a natural collaborator,” said McHugh, “a real pleasure to work with.”

Dillon’s design precisely meets the qualities the survey suggested:

  • the Bobcat head alone (not a full body or something in between);
  • preference for “distinguished,” among logo styles described as “modern,” “traditional,” “distinguished,” “aggressive” and “whimsical”:
  • resemblance to the 1997 logo, rather than a clear departure from it.

“With the input of both current students and alumni, the committee got a unique perspective on how the Bobcat functions for different people,” said senior Catherine Tuttle, another member of the athletics marketing committee. “The Bobcat is something we all wear proudly, and I’m thrilled with the new, more regal look.”

The Bobcat was adopted as the college mascot in 1924, during an all-campus vote in the Bates Chapel. “It is small, but oh how it can fight,” said one supporter.

17 Responses to “Bates unveils bold new look for the Bobcat”

  1. Bob Greenberg '54 says:

    Impressive. It is nice they spelled Bates correctly.

  2. Bill Cummings '54 says:

    I’ve seen a lot of bobcats in the wild here in CA deserts and mountains, but never one that looked distinguished,scholarly, pensive or blissful. The new mascot will certainly provide some relief for adversaries on the gridiron, courts, diamond and track.

  3. Clinton says:

    Class of 2007. Love the new logo. It’s perfect. It’s clean and precise. I’ve seen some other Skye Design work and we got this guy before he explodes and is doing much bigger and much better.

  4. Bill Jack '08 says:

    I’ll echo what others have said: when you hear about a new logo, you worry that the new one won’t be good. However, I really like this new one. In fact, I like it so much better than the one that we used to have. Whether or not you think that it is distinguished, I do think that it looks much classier than the previous one. Good job to all who were involved in choosing this. Go Bobcats!

  5. Susan Stucke Funk, '78 says:

    Beautiful new logo. The samples shown on the survey were totally underwhelming, and i was worried about the potential outcome. But this one is excellent and successfully avoids the common error of collegiate logos designed only for the sports teams and appealing primarily to current students. This one works for alumni and parents too. I’ll be proud to wear Bateswear with this new look. Nice work!!

  6. Sharon Williams says:

    I like it! It looks updated and fresh.

  7. Krista says:

    love the new Bobcat look! Great job, Skye Dillon and Bates!

  8. Anne Dillon says:

    Very nice job – regal and elegant – and the font is great too. Somehow I don’t think I’ll forget the designer’s name.

    Go Bobcats! The pictures reminded me of cheering on Fred Criniti (’82) and his teammates.

  9. Jay R P'2016 says:

    Love the new logo. Great job by all involved. Looking forward to seeing it on athletic uniforms.

  10. Chris Fahy, class of 75 says:

    I like it. It’s a much better reimaging than we did here at Boston University. Our relatively new mascot is Rhett, a mean, rabid Boston terrier who looks perpetually angry.

  11. Chris Terp Madsen '73 says:

    Relieved about new mascot. I was afraid it was going to be either too cutesie or too severe. I think it strikes a good balance. It keeps the right amount of Bobcat fierceness with the right amount of Bobcat catch-me-if-you-can-ness. And the best part is that it’s not an elephant or a mule!

  12. Tom says:

    Kind of disappointed with the logo. “Distinguished” to me reads more as unoriginal and generic.

    I would of preferred something of the whimsical nature, like many long-standing proud institutions, that convey the atmosphere that all collegiate athletics should: fun, enjoyable, and a good-time.

  13. Robert Peretti '86 says:

    The new mascot image looks good. Who won the basketball game?

  14. Geri FitzGerald '75 says:

    Bobcat fever! Love the pic of Clayton, Meg and the Alumni Council. Kudos to all who collaborated on the new Bobcat logo project and designer Skye.

  15. Victoria Stanton says:

    Thanks for the feedback, Alex! We will have more photos posted to this page shortly.

  16. Alex Wood. '66 says:

    I’m impressed by the prompt post from yesterday’s game and new mascot image. Can we not have a few more photos of same, as some were taken with Clayton and alumni council members decked out in the new T-shirts. Thanks.

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