The New Arkansas Razorback Logo – Hot or Not?


New Arkansas Razorback Logo Is Official

Is it Hot or Not?

The new Arkansas Razorback logo is part of a “brand and identity system” which is the product of a “two-year collaboration with Nike to ensure the Razorback brand remains one of the most recognizable for years to come,” according to a University of Arkansas release.

Last week, an item appeared at the Razorback shop online store that got many wondering if the new logo had been accidentally released early. It had been.  Click here for that item.

You can click here for a complete view of all of the new Razorback uniforms and typography used.

“We are pleased to introduce an update to our Razorback brand identity program,” said Vice Chancellor and Director of Athletics Jeff Long. “For more than 100 years, the Razorback has held a unique place within intercollegiate athletics and has helped define our program, university and state. Over the years, the Razorback brand undergone evolutionary changes while maintaining the core attributes that are extremely important to the long history of our program and to all those who call themselves Razorbacks. Our partnership with Nike has allowed us to take the next step in the evolutionary process and further integrate two of the most recognizable brands in intercollegiate athletics.”

The athletic department also says: “To complement the primary mark, a forward-facing Razorback has been designed to use as a secondary mark for the entire Razorback program. The logo is valiant and intimidating, and serves as a contemporary representation of the Razorbacks’ straightforward style of play. Through these brand identity updates, the University of Arkansas creates separation and distinction in the marketplace while respecting the past and representing the future.”

Below the “Hot or Not” poll is a video of the unveiling of the new uniforms and Arkansas Razorback logo.

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Part of the official Razorback “pre-release” on the unveiling of the new “brand and identity system” is below.

Evolution Not Revolution

Brand identity is at the forefront of college athletics. It encompasses how institutions tell their stories. Brand identity includes diction, type font, colors, graphics, imagery and logos. All of these elements combine to create building blocks that help tell the Arkansas Razorbacks’ story and shape the public perception of Razorback Athletics. 

With an updated brand identity, Arkansas looks to evolve its brand rather than revolutionize its brand. Although some of the elements of Arkansas’ new brand identity are bold, they function to recognize, value and uphold the rich history and tradition of the Arkansas Razorbacks athletics program.

The brand objectives for Arkansas fully align with creating an evolutionary brand identity. The updated brand identity will provide clarity, establish credibility and motivate fans to become more active and loyal supporters and champions of the Arkansas brand.

Being a Part of Nike’s GIG

Each year Nike selects approximately three institutions to participate in GIG, Graphic Identity Group. The purpose of GIG is to work extensively over the course of 18 months with an institution to reimagine the identity and branding goals of that particular university. In 2014, Nike chose to collaborate with Arkansas, Illinois and FSU.

The phases of GIG were centered on understanding the traditions at Arkansas and responding to constant feedback from University constituents. Nike visited the University of Arkansas campus and met with coaches, student-athletes, alumni and staff members. Then, the Nike team provided feedback and insight into their proposed strategy based on what they heard and saw during their visit. Afterwards, Nike revealed the initial design concepts and provided an opportunity for feedback. The new brand expressions and designs were then incorporated into uniforms and apparel with an additional opportunity for feedback. Finally, Nike provided Arkansas with a comprehensive style guide and launch strategy. Members of the University of Arkansas branding team also traveled to the Nike headquarters in Beaverton, Ore., to collaborate on the project.

Respect the Past. Represent the Future. #NeverYield

In 1910, Arkansas changed its official mascot from the Cardinal to the Razorback. To stay relevant in the current landscape of intercollegiate athletics, the Razorback brand must change again to keep pace with the needs of the university. Nike and the University of Arkansas have created an identity system designed to evolve. It both pays respect to rich tradition at the University of Arkansas and simultaneously makes way for an exciting, bold representation in the future.

Here is a link to all new uniforms, logos and colors, or as someone from the UA’s marketing department might say, “Here is a link to the Arkansas Razorback brand and identity system.”

The University of Arkansas released three trailers to promote Nike’s collaboration with the Razorbacks. The purpose of the videos was to build momentum and generate interest surrounding the new Arkansas Razorback logo. The three trailers below:

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