Wednesday, 25 March 2009

NCAA Logo Watch - Part Two

Here we are, back for Round Two. As we saw yesterday, there were some definite misses. All of yesterday's examples were in black-and-white which doesn't help creativity. Colour is important when trying to promote something. And, if you happened to pay attention, all of the Frozen Four logo were for the men's tournaments. The reason for this is that the NCAA didn't include a women's hockey tournament until 2001. However, with the women playing collegiate-level hockey, the demand for a Women's Frozen Four put the wheels in motion at the NCAA, and gave us a second logo each season. Let's take a look at the current millenium's logos.

2001 saw the Men's Frozen Four moved back to Albany, New York to the Pepsi Arena. Personally, this logo says nothing about hockey. If I were a hockey fan, would I look twice at this logo? Probably not. The action on the ice saw the end of a long streak come to fruition. The Boston College Screaming Eagles and University of North Dakota Fighting Sioux met for the second-straight year in the Final, and Boston College put 51 years of misery behind them by winning the NCAA title over the Sioux on a 3-2 overtime victory. BC's Krys Kolanos scored the game-winner, and was named to the All-Tournament Team. BC's Scott Clemmensen and Rob Scuderi were also selected for the All-Tournament Team while teammate Chuck Kobasew was named to the All-Tournament Team and brought home Tournament MVP honours.

The first Women's Frozen Four took place in Minneapolis, Minnesota at the Mariucci Arena on the University of Minnesota campus. This logo is worth something. It's a celebration of women's hockey, as seen with the confetti. I like this logo because it's simple, but says a lot about the event. On the ice, the University of Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs squared off against the St. Lawrence University Saints. UMD's strong play earned them a 4-2 victory over the Saints, and the first NCAA Women's Ice Hockey Championship. UMD's Maria Rooth was named as Tournament MVP.

The 2002 Men's Frozen Four was held in St. Paul, Minnesota at the Xcel Energy Center. This logo is, again, another great example of logos produced by the folks in Minnesota. St. Paul's logo has the stick-out-of-puck similar to the Minnesota Wild's logo that the NHL uses, and deserves a litte recognition. On the ice, the University of Minnesota Golden Gophers used the hometown crowd to advance to the Final where they would tangle with the University of Maine Black Bears. It took a game through overtime where the Golden Gophers where they would defeat the Black Bears by a 4-3 score on a goal by Grant Potulny for Minnesota's first NCAA title since 1979. Potulny was named to the All-Tournament Team, and the Tournament MVP. Former Maple Leaf and current Lugano player, John Pohl, of the Swiss League was also named to the All-Tournament Team.

I could not find a logo for the 2002 Women's Frozen Four, but the ladies played their Final in Durham, New Hampshire at the Whittemore Center. The Final featured the University of Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs in their second-straight final against the Brown University Brown Bears. The Bulldogs completed the repeat by defeating the Brown Bears by a 3-2 score. Kristy Zamora of the Brown University Brown Bears received Tournament MVP honours.

The 2003 Men's Frozen Four moved to Buffalo, New York in the HSBC Arena. This logo is pretty bland, but I do like the image of Niagara Falls in the logo. They could have done more, so this logo doesn't rank highly on my scale, especially considering Buffalo's hockey history. The University of Minnesota Golden Gophers were looking for the repeat as they advanced to the Final against the University of New Hampshire Wildcats. With a 5-1 victory, the Gophers secured their second-straight NCAA title, and fifth overall. Notable All-Tournament Team members include Minnesota's Paul Martin and Thomas Vanek, who also was named Tournament MVP.

The 2003 Women's Frozen Four was played in Duluth, Minnesota at the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center, or DECC. Not bad, but I'm sure what the lighthouse has to do with Duluth. In any case, the hometown Bulldogs were looking for their third-straight NCAA title, and ran up against the Harvard Crimson in the Women's Final. It took double-overtime to crown a champion, and the University of Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs captured their third NCAA title in as many years by a 4-3 score. Caroline Ouellette of the champion Bulldogs was named Tournament MVP.

The 2004 Men's Frozen Four went back to the FleetCenter in Boston, Massachusetts. This is definitely a step backwards for the logos. Yes, the patriotic aspect is there, but Boston's previous version was much better. This one scores low. In the Men's Final, the University of Denver Pioneers, appearing in their first Frozen Four since 1986, met the University of Maine Black Bears. In exciting fashion, the Pioneers won their sixth national title with a 1-0 shutout over Maine. The most notable name on the All-Tournament Team? Maine's Dustin Penner. Denver goaltender Adam Berkhoel was named the Tournament MVP.

The 2004 Women's Final Four moved to Providence, Rhode Island into the Dunkin' Donuts Center. I'm ok with the net as the background and border. The puck in the "O" of "Frozen" seems a little amateur. I do like the anchor to include the marine lifestyle of Providence, though. Overall, a very decent logo. The University of Minnesota Golden Gophers met up with the Harvard Crimson in the Final, and the Gophers controlled the game. At the end of the action, Minnesota secured their first NCAA Women's Championship by a 6-2 score. Krissy Wendell was named as Tournament MVP. In a match of Tournament stars, Krissy Wendell and John Pohl were later married. Congrats to those two hockey stars!

The 2005 Men's Frozen Four moved to Columbus, Ohio in the Value City Arena on the Ohio State campus. The outline of Ohio is alright, but why is the puck the only hockey-related item on the logo? This logo seems to be lacking compared to some others. On the ice, we had another Frozen Four first. All the participants - Colorado College, University of Denver, University of Minnesota, and University of North Dakota - were from the same conference. Denver and North Dakota advanced to the Final where they would tangle for the NCAA title for the fourth time in history. After a 1-1 tie in the first period, Denver began to control the game. At the final buzzer, the Pioneers had defeated the Fighting Sioux by a 4-1 score. There were a number of notable All-Tournament Team members in this game: Denver goaltender Peter Mannino who was also named Tournament MVP; Denver defenceman Matt Carle; Denver forward Gabe Gauthier; Denver forward Paul Stastny; and, North Dakota forward Travis Zajac.

The 2005 Women's Frozen Four went back to Durham, New Hampshire into the Whittemore Center Arena on the University of New Hampshire campus. Again, not much to speak about in regards to this logo. The mountains in the background are a nice touch, but is this for hockey? Curling? Football? No mention of the sport of hockey whatsoever. In any case, the University of Minnesota Golden Gophers returned to the Final to face the Harvard Crimson for the second-straight year. And just like the year before, the Golden Gophers came away as the victors. This time, they downed the Crimson by a 4-3 score. Minnesota's Natalie Darwitz was named as Tournament MVP.

The 2006 Men's Frozen Four went back to Milwaukee, Wisconsin's Bradley Center. This logo takes away from the previous logos that Milwaukee had done. It has a hockey player so you know what sport is being played, but not much in the way of being a memorable logo. The state outline in the background is ok, but it is starting to wear thin. On the ice, the Wisconsin Badgers defeated the Boston College Screaming Eagles by a 2-1 score to win their fifth NCAA title. All-Tournament Team members included Wisconsin goaltender Brian Elliott, defenceman Tom Gilbert, and forward Adam Burish. Forward Robbie Earl was named to the All-Tournament Team, and was selected as Tournament MVP. He has only played in nine NHL games to date. As a defenceman.

The 2006 Women's Final Four doesn't seem to have a logo available on the Internet. Or I can't find it. Which is probably more likely. The Women's Final Four was played in Minneapolis, Minnesota this year. The Wisconsin Badgers met the Minnesota Golden Gophers in the Final with Minnesota looking for their third-straight NCAA title. However, the Badgers sent the Minnesota fauthful home disappointed as the #1-ranked Badgers defeated the Golden Gophers by a 3-0 score. Winconsin goaltender Jessie Vetter recorded the shutout, and was named to the All-Tournament Team. Her name will be repeated again in this article.

The 2007 Men's Frozen Four was held in St. Louis, Missouri at the Savvis Center. The Arch is always a welcome sight when speaking about St. Louis, but this logo seems so plain. Not much to speak about on this one, so it can't get high marks. The Michigan State Spartans returned to the Final to meet the Boston College Screaming Eagles who were looking to avenge their loss from the previous season. However, MSU defeated BC by a 3-1 score after Tournament MVP Justin Abdelkader scored with 18.3 seconds left in the game to give MSU the lead. Notable All-Tournament Team players include Boston College's Brian Boyle and Nathan Gerbe.

The 2007 Women's Frozen Four took place in Lake Placid, New York. Apparently, creativity and fun aren't allowed in the NCAA logos anymore. These logos are all the same: state outline for the background, flashy font, a puck. Doesn't anyone have any original ideas? The action on the ice had the top-ranked Wisconsin Badgers taking on hockey powerhouse University of Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs. Wisconsin defeated the Bulldogs by a 4-1 score to win their second-straight NCAA title. Wisconsin's Sara Bauer was named Tournament MVP, and goaltender Jessie Vetter was named to the All-Tournament Team once again.

The 2008 Men's Final Four took place in Denver, Colorado at the Pepsi Center. There is a definite change here as the mountains replace the state outline, and there's a hockey stick and puck! Still pretty boring, though. The Boston College Eagles, having lost in the Final over the previous two years, met the Notre Dame Fighting Irish for the NCAA title. The Eagles finally added their third title as they defeated the Irish by a 4-1 score. Tournament MVP honours went to BC's Nathan Gerbe.

The 2008 Women's Frozen Four was held in Duluth, Minnesota. I'm not sure what that thing is that somewhat resembles a hockey net, but I'm convinced that the NCAA is simply recycling whatever they can to save money/maximize profits. I went into detail last year for the women, and you can read that info here. The UMD Bulldogs defeated the Wisconsin Badgers by a 4-0 score. Kim Martin was named the Tournament MVP after posting the shutout.

The 2009 Men's Frozen Four kicks off this Friday, and it will take place in Washington, DC. I really like this logo. The font is the same as it was for the previous two years, but the addition of a very famous Washington landmark and the US flag makes it very unique to Washington. I am a fan of this logo. Boston University would have to be the favorite being ranked as the #1 seed, but Notre Dame, Denver, and Michigan may have something to say about that.

The 2009 Women's Frozen Four just wrapped up in Boston, Massachusetts. Pretty boring logo, but the flag is a nice touch. Anyway, the Wisconsin Badgers returned to the top of the mountain in NCAA Women's Ice Hockey after defeating the Mercyhurst College Lakers by a 5-0 score. Jessie Vetter was named as the Tournament MVP after posting the shutout.

Looking forward, 2010 will see the men head to Detroit, Michigan for the Frozen Four Tournament. I really like that logo despite it not reflecting hockey whatsoever. 2011 will see the men head back to St. Paul, Minnesota. 2012 will take the men to a warm climate as they will square off in Tampa Bay, Florida. I'm guessing that isn't the official NCAA logo, but I like the creativity in that one.

The women will return to Minnesota in 2010 to the Ridder Arena on the University of Minnesota campus. 2011 will move the women to Mercyhurst College's Tullio Arena in Pennsylvania.

So there you have the complete rundown of all the logos from the last eight years. Again, I apologize for the delay in posting this due to my technical difficulties, but we finally got it up. Congratulations to all the players named above for their wonderful seasons. I do have one question, though. What are your thoughts on the logos? Any that you liked or disliked? Let me know!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!


JTH said...

Actually, the 2010 Detroit logo does have some hockey imagery. You have to look closely, though. There's a puck and crossed sticks on the "license plate."

Of course, the placement of the plate makes it look like a last-minute addition. On a real car, that thing would be dragging on the ground any time the driver hit a bump.

It's almost as if someone looked at it and said, "Hey, great logo, but there's nothing that says 'hockey' on it." The artist's solution was to slap that on there.

JTH said...

Oh, and the Duluth stuff...

1) The lighthouse: I think there are a handful of active lighthouses in and around the city.

2) The "thing that somewhat resembles a hockey net" is a bridge.

Photo showing the bridge and a lighthouse.

Teebz said...

Oh... I do it see it now. Thanks, JTH! I needed the "second perspective". :o)

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