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College Sports Logo Spotlight on the Michigan State Spartans

August 24, 2014

I really like Michigan State’s ‘Spartan’ logo. I just don’t know why, exactly…

 
 
Does it feature unique detail? No.

Do the colors complement the graphic? Umm, you mean ‘color’, singular? And no.

Maybe the symbolism makes is special. No…no, it doesn’t.

I’ve noted before how the road to simplicity often includes great detail along the way. These are the logos I tend to prefer–the ones that aren’t all over the place like a fight scene in Transformers–but still include complexities that make it more than just the combination of geometric shapes.

MSU’s ‘Spartan’ has got the simple part covered, but nothing more. Despite this, there’s something about it that I enjoy. After looking at it for several minutes, I think I finally figured it out…

A logo’s emotions or actions remain frozen in time, no matter whether it’s team wins or loses or whether it sees you as a fan or an enemy. Yet, that doesn’t mean our emotions are void of vacillation.

For instance, if your team loses a heartbreaker, chances are you won’t react favorably to the victorious team’s logo. Maybe your friend is an obnoxiously ardent fan of a particular squad and when you look at their logo it just spews annoyance. Whatever the case, our familiarity with the work of those who wear the logo can play a role. Yet, for me, this isn’t often the case and that’s why it’s taken me so long to realize why I like the Spartan.

I have a lot of respect for the Michigan State basketball program and the success it’s achieved under their charismatic coach, Tom Izzo. After spending two years covering Michigan State athletics, that respect grew and that same respect for the football program was born.

The old-school Spartan graphic is cool and I like green, but I don’t “love” either. But when I look at the logo, it personifies respect and success and that’s why I like it.

What can I say? I look at most logos more analytically. I think the Green Spartan emanates fear in its opponents on the hardwood and with its growing gridiron reputation for physical, blue-collar defenses; I think it’s doing the same on Saturdays in the fall. And while the marriage between school and nickname is nothing more than the product of a contest, that doesn’t compromise the long Greek history of the Spartan warrior.

Maybe it’s the personal connection, but there are some logos you look at and think, “Cool!” and that is the MSU Spartan for me.

Awesome Sports Logos has several of these logos. Simple but they tell a story as well. Each sports logo has local meaning, many featuring great history. Check out their awesome t-shirts.

 

Thanks for reading,

Jared Sandler

Awesome Sports Logos Columnist

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