Mascot for University of Illinois?

Guenther defenders are the only thing I hate more than the doughboy idea.
A rare COMPLETE disagreement with you on my part. The doughboy is one of the only "mascot" ideas I find even remotely acceptable while still maintaining some amount of dignity and uniqueness. When we had the Chief, we were sort of "above" having a mascot; we carried a certain amount of swag that allowed us to look down on the likes of Herky the Hawkeye and that goffy-!!! Gopher that Minnesota has. Overanalyzing, sure, but I think a lot of Illini fans had that attitude, and I think more than a few rival fans would at least concede that the Chief was cool and unique and set us apart in an admirable way.

I would learn to live with some "funny" adaptation of Abe to show state pride, but the WWI connection is really the only way to even gain some of that "being above a corny mascot" aura back, IMO. It's fair to speculate that we can't gain that back with anything other than the Chief at this point, but I still think it's important to try. Honoring the "Fighting Illini means Illinoisans who fought in WWI" and the ties that idea has with Memorial Stadium is a legitimately cool idea, and I personally would be happy if we ran with it.
 
Four unrelated things:

1. Mascots are for kids. They're big and goofy. The doughboy thing just totally contravenes that whole concept. If our mascot can't do entertaining hijinks on BTN commercials with Purdue Pete and Brutus Buckeye there's no point.

2. The whole concept only arises from a bad and unnecessary premise, which is "the NCAA wants to take our history away but Fighting Illini is REALLY about..." blah blah blah everyone has already fallen asleep. It's a defensive maneuver in a dead argument that was over before our current students were in middle school.

3. The politics don't work. Chief people and doughboy people are the same people. The idea has no natural constituency. There are three groups in the Illini Mascot Culture War, the Chief people, the PC people, and they "hey would everybody just lighten up" people. Doughboy is unsuitable to all three.

4. As I said before ANY top-down imposed mascot would be awful. This isn't doughboy-specific, but it applies here.


The underlying premise of the doughboy is that we MUST have a mascot, we MUST have some iconography that establishes what a Fighting Illini "is". That premise is totally wrong. The status quo is absolutely fine. Michigan and Indiana, two peer schools and rivals who have great brands and great visual identities have no mascot and no plans to develop one and it's fine.
 
A rare COMPLETE disagreement with you on my part. The doughboy is one of the only "mascot" ideas I find even remotely acceptable while still maintaining some amount of dignity and uniqueness. When we had the Chief, we were sort of "above" having a mascot; we carried a certain amount of swag that allowed us to look down on the likes of Herky the Hawkeye and that goffy-!!! Gopher that Minnesota has. Overanalyzing, sure, but I think a lot of Illini fans had that attitude, and I think more than a few rival fans would at least concede that the Chief was cool and unique and set us apart in an admirable way.

I would learn to live with some "funny" adaptation of Abe to show state pride, but the WWI connection is really the only way to even gain some of that "being above a corny mascot" aura back, IMO. It's fair to speculate that we can't gain that back with anything other than the Chief at this point, but I still think it's important to try. Honoring the "Fighting Illini means Illinoisans who fought in WWI" and the ties that idea has with Memorial Stadium is a legitimately cool idea, and I personally would be happy if we ran with it.
Maybe they do this currently and I am not aware of it, but I would rather try to establish some sort of "hype" video before games that go over that tradition of why we are the fighting illini. (I know Iowa does this with Kinnick and why the stadium is named after him.) I still think a lot of work needs to be done on owning the narrative on the fighting illini name and it not being a direct native American reference. I think this could be a cool way to pay some remembrance to the past and history, and not be stuck with a mascot on the sideline. Because nothing will be as cool as the chief was, and goofy soldiers seem more like disrespect to me.
 
OFL Supplier, BU's Brylcreem
Virginia
Can't we just get a guy dressed like a WW1 soldier? Any of these would be a potentially interesting concept to start the discussion and would be true to the actual inception of the name "Fighting Illini."

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I dunno... is that war paint I am seeing? ;) That aside - I like the 3rd from the left, but am not sure we actually need a mascot that looks like a human being. My first impression (without giving this a ton of thought) is that animals or caricatures seem to elicit more emotional attachment (all Chief references aside) unless you can tie them to some deeper meaning. To have a WW1 soldier - we'd have to figure out how to honorably create emotion (pretty quickly) behind the character. The Chief came out, and performed, quickly followed by an emotional/touching, crowd engaged song. All of those elements created emotion. Would a WW1 soldier standing on the sidelines clapping or cheering give the same?

OTOH - characters or animals that look cute, and/or are humorous can create emotion quickly if performed well (SD Chicken, Philly P, etc.) (Although I've never gotten Otto the Orange). And since it should be current, I am all for the Fighting Illini Goldendoodles.. :cool:
 
Four unrelated things:

1. Mascots are for kids. They're big and goofy. The doughboy thing just totally contravenes that whole concept. If our mascot can't do entertaining hijinks on BTN commercials with Purdue Pete and Brutus Buckeye there's no point.

2. The whole concept only arises from a bad and unnecessary premise, which is "the NCAA wants to take our history away but Fighting Illini is REALLY about..." blah blah blah everyone has already fallen asleep. It's a defensive maneuver in a dead argument that was over before our current students were in middle school.

3. The politics don't work. Chief people and doughboy people are the same people. The idea has no natural constituency. There are three groups in the Illini Mascot Culture War, the Chief people, the PC people, and they "hey would everybody just lighten up" people. Doughboy is unsuitable to all three.

4. As I said before ANY top-down imposed mascot would be awful. This isn't doughboy-specific, but it applies here.


The underlying premise of the doughboy is that we MUST have a mascot, we MUST have some iconography that establishes what a Fighting Illini "is". That premise is totally wrong. The status quo is absolutely fine. Michigan and Indiana, two peer schools and rivals who have great brands and great visual identities have no mascot and no plans to develop one and it's fine.
Basically all of this is your own opinion that your projecting on other people and stating as fact, when in reality, these are just your thoughts/feelings. I appreciate your opinion, but please don't just assume everyone else agrees with everything you say.

Also, I wasn't saying that we should go with a mascot. I'm fine without one, honestly, but I was suggesting something because this is the MASCOT THREAD.
 
but please don't just assume everyone else agrees with everything you say.
If I did, I wouldn't bother laying out my argument, now would I?

I respect your opinion, I just think it's misguided, and your instinct that we don't need a mascot is the right one.

What a good mascot would be is ultimately a matter of taste about which there is no right or wrong answer, but what would be a popular and unifying decision for the University to make that wouldn't damage its brand or needlessly inflame the culture war Chief stuff is ultimately a factual question. That doesn't mean I'm right of course, but there is ultimately a right and wrong answer.

If you'd like to disagree I'm all ears, but it sounds like you also feel that it's a situation best left alone.
 
aka "Captain Oblivious"
Cynthiana, Kentucky
"Instead of endorsing Chief Illiniwek, the Peoria responded by releasing the tribe's most absolute and damning statement ever regarding Chief Illiniwek.
It reads in part: "The image portrayed by Chief Illiniwek does not ... honor the heritage of the Peoria Tribe ... and is a degrading racial stereotype that reflects negatively on all American Indian people."
It continues, "The Peoria Tribe of Indians does not endorse or sanction ... Chief Iliniwek as mascot for the University of Illinois, nor do they have any future plans to rescind the tribal resolution" — and then, just to twist the knife a little deeper — "which was approved by a unanimous vote."


http://www.news-gazette.com/opinion...entary-death-certificate-chief-illiniwek.html
 
I was thinking something like this would fall in line with the WW soldier idea. inspired by captain america. the administration could work something out with marvel/disney just like oregon did with disney on their duck mascot.
 
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Likes: greenstillini
Little Rock, Arkansas
Lovie’s beard should be our mascot. Or at least something that naturally evolves from it that the students cultivate.
 
I don't how we are going to find a mascot that pleases everyone, and offends no one. I have finally come to grips that the Chief is gone. I have always held a glimmer of hope that something could be worked out. I do think the University needs a mascot, an identity, a brand, something. But I'm clueless what that would be. Is there a Pokemon that is appropiate that isn't offensive? Ha, Ha right?

Has the Board, Chancelor etc put forth any ideas for a replacement mascot?
 
Ordained Dudeist Priest
Johns Creek, GA
I don't how we are going to find a mascot that pleases everyone, and offends no one. I have finally come to grips that the Chief is gone. I have always held a glimmer of hope that something could be worked out. I do think the University needs a mascot, an identity, a brand, something. But I'm clueless what that would be. Is there a Pokemon that is appropiate that isn't offensive? Ha, Ha right?

Has the Board, Chancelor etc put forth any ideas for a replacement mascot?
The last time we rode this merry-go-round, the "campaign" to find a mascot was run by an anti-Chief group, so let's not do that again. Although I almost never want to model after the Indiana University, they do just fine without a furry on the sidelines.