Realistic rabbit gets mixed reviews as committee delays logo unveiling

Heather Mangan

Heather Mangan

The new jackrabbit logo is a few touchups away from unveiling, but some who have seen a close-to-final version think the contracted design firm may have missed the mark.

“I’m not overly impressed with the design firm,” said Students’ Association Senator John Sandstrom. “I don’t hate, it but I’m not jumping up or down.”

Alex Brown, SA senator, said that he and some students really liked a muscular version of the bunny, but the design committee had a “this is what we do” and “we know what is best” attitude.

“I think the design firm ignored a lot of student input,” said Brown, who saw preliminary versions as well as the latest look.

The structure of the rabbit is close to finished, and the Phoenix Design Works of New York is currently working on the logo’s colors and the official SDSU lettering, said Rob Peterson, associate athletic director and member of the logo committee. The latest version of the bunny was sent to committee members last week, and was passed around at the Jan. 29 SA meeting. A copy of the latest logo was also left in plain view in the SA office and at the front desk of the athletic department for coaches, staff, athletes and anyone walking through to look at it.

“What you’re going to see in the final product is similar to what we have seen,” said SA Vice President Kat Brandtjen, a member of the logo committee.

The committee refused to give the Collegian a copy of the logo for public display.

From a December version to the latest version, Rob Peterson said the committee asked the firm to soften the face, lengthen and define the legs and stretch the body.

Brandtjen said the latest logo isn’t the look she had pictured.

“They want to use it as an athletic mascot, but that is too much bunny,” she said.

“I feel more comfortable with our [current] Jackrabbit,” she said. “I think the logo will do what they want it to – we’ll look like a Division-I logo and we’ll blend in.”

Derek Peterson, University Bookstore manager, said he heard some comments that when the head is covered up, the current logo version looks like a dog.

Rob Peterson said he likes the new realistic look and has heard mostly positive responses.

“When you ask 300 different people, you get 300 responses,” he said. “There are some people who want the old bunny, but we can’t do that anymore.”

Some students who have also seen the logo like it better than the current rabbit.

“It took away from the down-to-earthiness of the old one,” said Steve Sprecher, a freshman agriculture and biology major. “It looks more aggressive.”

Derek said he has been somewhat frustrated because he asked to see the logo in different colors and sizes, but the design committee failed to meet those requests. He would like to see the primarily yellow and blue rabbit in other colors or on a non-white background. The attribution image is usually printed on 8 1?2 x 11 paper, and that doesn’t help him envision the logo 2 1?2 x 2 on a T-shirt. Although clothing is only one part of the equation, Derek said the rabbit has to fit every aspect of SDSU.

“He has to be who he is,” he said. “It’s very difficult to pull off a realistic rabbit.”

Rob Peterson said University Relations Director Jennifer Crickard, who has been the liaison between the committee and the design firm, has made requests that the bunny be different sizes and colors.

“We want whatever is best for the university and the entities that use it,” he said.

The committee tried not to have any perceived ideas of what the logo should look like as they began the process to find a new logo, Rob Peterson said. The design firm didn’t have a really good idea of what a jackrabbit looked like when they began the project, but Rob sees that as an advantage. He said a local company offered some suggestions before they officially began the logo hunt, but he really liked the idea of starting without any preconceived ideas of what a rabbit should look like.

“You want what’s best for the university, not just because they are (a local firm)” Rob Peterson said. “I think they did a lot of research and started from scratch. I think that helped us.”

The committee took all the suggestions and responses about the logos shown to different constituent groups and have come up with trends that will lead to the final design, Rob Peterson said.

“We thought they responded well. We feel that they have done a pretty good job,” he said. “They wanted to make it what we wanted.”

The logo committee had hoped to release the new bunny at the NDSU/SDSU men’s basketball game Feb. 3. But with the variety of input and revisions, it has taken longer that originally planned.

The company has usually had a pretty fast turnaround with revisions, but they have taken longer this time, Rob Peterson said. He said one possible date for the unveiling would be spring graduation, although that is not definite.

“We want to do this while students are here,” he said.

The Feb. 3 release date would have been ideal for Derek Peterson because February and March is the time he orders a majority of the bookstore’s products for the fall semester. He’ll still order products, but will have to set some items aside and will come back to those pieces once a final logo and font is picked. He does hope to have some products available at the unveiling of the logo.

“It’s going be a challenge,” he said. “I think we’ll still accomplish it, it’ll just make our job harder.”

Some members of the committee are eager to wrap up the logo project, but Derek said a majority of the committee is willing to wait.

“If it’s not right, it’s not right. Some of the stuff I’ve seen is not right,” he said. “I know we are closer than October, but how close? I don’t know. There are still things we asked to see.”

Although he would like to see something different, Brown said he can’t predict how people will receive the new look.

“They are going to either love it or hate it, and it will take time to get a real understanding,” he said.

Wonder why we don’t have a good photo for you?This version of the new jackrabbit logo was shown in Students’ Association meeting and left in the SA office in plain sight. It was also freely available for view in the athletic department. Despite this, the logo committee refused to give The Collegian a copy of the logo version. The photo is what’s sitting on the coffee table int he SA office. Feel free to stop by there and take a look.

#1.883842:4147136059.JPG:IMG_0023.JPG:This is the most recent black and white draft of the new jackrabbit logo. The logo committee is working on new color and lettering schemes, is still considering design changes, and hopes to unveil the new logo by the end of this semester.: