Trojans, Red Wolves in Sun Belt Conference Tourney; New Logo Released


UALR Trojans, Arkansas State Red Wolves Face Top Seeds in Sun Belt Conference Baseball Tournament

The UALR Trojans baseball team (28-26, 13-17 SBC) will compete as the No. 7 seed and will face No. 2 seed South Alabama (40-16, 20-10 SBC) in the opening round of the Sun Belt Tournament on Wednesday, May 22 at 4 p.m. The tournament will be held at M.L. “Tigue” Moore Field in Lafayette, La., from Wednesday through Sunday.

UALR capped its regular season by taking two of three from instate rival Arkansas State in Jonesboro to not only clinch a spot in the postseason tournament, but slide ahead of the Red Wolves and lock up the No. 7 seed.

Earlier this season, South Alabama swept UALR in a three-game series when the two teams met on March 22-24 in Mobile, Ala. The Jaguars captured one-run victories in games one and two, before earning an 11-1 victory over UALR in game three.

This season the SBC tournament moves back to the double-elimination tournament after two years of pool play. Teams begin play on Wednesday, May 22 at 9 a.m. and the tournament will be conducted over five days culminating with the Championship Game on Sunday, May 26 at 1 p.m. CT. All games will be available via web stream on the Sun Belt Digital Network. The championship game will be aired on the Sun Belt Network.

The Arkansas State Red Wolves baseball team will begin play in the Sun Belt Conference Tournament Wednesday, May 22 at 12:30 p.m. against the top seeded Troy Trojans.

With a win over the Trojans, the eighth-seeded Red Wolves will advance to a second-round matchup against fourth-seeded Florida Atlantic or fifth-seeded Western Kentucky. An open-round loss would drop Arkansas State in the elimination against the loser of that same matchup.

The second-round winner’s bracket game is scheduled for 4 p.m. on Thursday, while the elimination bracket game is to get underway at 9 a.m. on Thursday.

2013 Sun Belt Conference Tournament Seeds (Season Record)

1. Troy (39-16, 20-10 SBC)

2. South Alabama (40-16, 20-10 SBC)

3. Louisiana-Lafayette (38-17, 19-11 SBC)

4. Florida Atlantic (35-20, 19-11)

5. WKU (28-27, 16-14 SBC)

6. FIU (25-30, 13-17 SBC)

7. UALR (28-26, 13-17 SBC)

8. Arkansas State (26-29, 12-18)

New Logo, Branding Announced for Sun Belt Conference

The new Sun Belt Conference logo was released Sunday, including team-specific treatments of the logo. Below are both the Arkansas State Red Wolves and UALR Trojans versions of the new logo, with the new conference marking and notes from the Sun Belt Conference on the updated look.

NEW ORLEANS – The Sun Belt Conference unveiled its new logo and brand today which comes after a nearly yearlong examination of the impact, sustainability and core values associated with the Sun Belt Conference.

“Together We Rise” is the new mantra for the conference and it is the foundation and essence of the contemporary logo that the league will begin using on July 1, 2013 – replacing the existing conference logo that has been in place since 1997.

Understanding market place competition and the need to standout from its competition, the Sun Belt Conference began examining and defining its brand identity and the need for a complimentary logo to embody that brand.

“The unveiling of our new logo comes after months of review of how we wanted to express the ‘new’ Sun Belt Conference,” said Sun Belt Conference Commissioner Karl Benson. “It is a very exciting chance for us to display the opportunity and optimism that exists in the Sun Belt Conference as we move forward.”

The league office and its member institutions worked with SME, Inc. for the project. SME is a renowned strategic brand development firm which was responsible for the rebranding of the Pac-12 Conference and Big Sky Conference among other prominent collegiate and professional sports properties.

The overarching goal of the process was to create a bold and fresh new identity built upon a foundation of unity that corresponds to the Sun Belt Conference’s future success and also honors the foundation built over the past 37 years.

“Like many conferences, the Sun Belt is undergoing change,” said Benson. “We saw this as an opportunity to embrace this change. We are taking a new direction, one that is modern and progressive in its approach. Our conference can be as good as we want it to be and we will all ‘rise together’ in the upcoming years. Our new brand is a perfect reflection of that mindset.”

“We wanted to be sure that the Sun Belt Conference brand was a compelling representation of the values and essence at its core,” said SME Senior Partner Ed O’Hara. “’Together We Rise’ became a driving vision for expressing member school’s collective desire to achieve greatness while positioning the conference as a united force to be reckoned with on the national stage.”

SME conducted a comprehensive quantitative and qualitative brand research project on behalf of the Sun Belt. The purpose of this research project was to present an evolved brand identity that helps point the brand forward into a new era of success and relevancy to stakeholders, uncover the unique and ownable assets of the Sun Belt that will enable it to stand apart, create a powerful set of unifying messages, and express brand findings in new and motivating ways, garnering higher esteem, awareness and prosperity for members. Key stakeholder participants included presidents, athletic directors, senior woman administrators, faculty athletic representatives, current students, student athletes, alumni and media.

“Great universities stir great emotions and the Sun Belt Conference is composed of great universities committed to moving our league forward,” said Sun Belt Conference President and Troy University Chancellor Dr. Jack Hawkins, Jr. “I am excited about the future for the Sun Belt Conference and this excitement is reflected in our new logo and brand campaign.”

The Sun Belt Conference logo is a dynamic and exciting new expression of the brand, which upholds and forwards all the promise that the Sun Belt name suggests in both opportunity and aspiration.

The logo itself highlights the sun as a powerful and iconic expression for the conference that suggests unity, strength, promise and ambition. The individual parts of the icon combine to create a unified whole and represent strength in togetherness; a foundational value at the core of the Sun Belt Conference brand. The band of blue across the diameter of the icon symbolizes the “Sun Belt” region, while dually creating the feeling of a sun breaking the horizon at the dawn of a new day.

Sun Belt Conference institutions will also feel ownership in the logo, as it has been designed in all of the school’s official colors. The new logo will appear on uniforms, fields and playing courts in each university’s colors.

Research showed that the Sun Belt Conference brand essence centers around four key principles:
AMBITIOUS – Our limitless ambition is captured by our essence, “Together We Rise,” and fueled by a fearless passion for competition.
AUTHENTIC – We are grounded in authenticity: real sports, real academics, real people, real fans, real hometowns.

LOYAL – We unify the tight-knit communities of our member schools by fostering school pride and ownership over our shared success.

ADVENTUROUS – Our adventurous spirit drives us forward in our endeavor to compete at the Bowl Championship Series and NCAA Division I stage.

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