Rebrand boldly declares Texas’s first college is residence to the Pirates.

The Southwestern College Pirates are unveiling a brand new athletics brand in a model relaunch that boldly reaffirms Southwestern’s historical past as the primary establishment of upper studying in Texas.

Southwestern’s origins hint again to 1840, just some years after the formation of the Republic of Texas. On April 21, 1884, Southwestern performed within the first intercollegiate baseball sport within the state of Texas, defeating the College of Texas 52-12. The College added soccer in 1894 and formally entered intercollegiate athletics in 1908, holding the primary homecoming on document in 1909.

“If you consider Texas sports activities, you consider summer season on the baseball diamond, fall afternoons tailgating and cheering beneath stadium lights, and, in fact, homecoming,” Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Glenn Schwab says. “Colleges love to indicate off their Texas pleasure, however not each college will get to say they had been Texas’s first. I am proud to see Southwestern athletics celebrating our historical past via this rebranding.”

Southwestern takes pleasure in its innovation and in empowering its pupil physique. As such, Southwestern’s athletics rebrand was accomplished totally in-house. In an period when intercollegiate athletics applications companion with giant advertising and marketing corporations to create new identities, the rebrand was a collaborative effort between the College’s Artistic Director Matt Madsen and student-athlete Mason Biggers ’21, who was a crew captain on the 2020-2021 soccer crew.

Biggers approached Madsen for help on a undertaking for his graduate-school utility, starting a course of by which the duo researched Southwestern’s huge historical past to create a contemporary look whereas paying homage to the previous.

“I spent 4 years at Southwestern, so I really feel like I can inform the story of the College and my expertise there. By doing all of it in-house, it retains all the things on-brand and, extra importantly, genuine,” Biggers says. “Universities are the place college students come to study and develop, and I feel the best way Southwestern empowered me to work with Matt on this undertaking exemplifies how everybody right here desires everybody to turn into the perfect model of themselves.”

Rebranding the athletics brand is a part of a brand new initiative by Southwestern to tout its tight-knit tradition and improve its nationwide visibility. “We now have simply launched our 2021-2026 Tactical Plan to tell apart Southwestern as a high liberal-arts college within the nation,” says Scarlett J. Moss, chief advertising and marketing and communications officer and Southwestern alumna. “Introducing this contemporary athletics model not solely gives a renewed sense of pleasure and neighborhood amongst Pirates all over the place, but it surely reveals off the inventive and collaborative method this college takes with all the things we do.”

Main Emblem

In designing the brand new major brand, Madsen and Biggers leaned closely on the Pirate identification and Southwestern’s wealthy historical past. The Jolly Roger is without doubt one of the most distinct, evocative symbols in historical past, and the brand new brand takes from that image’s design components to create a glance that stands out amid a sea of collegiate athletic manufacturers.

“At first look, the first is daring and intimidating, which is all the time a objective with athletics. Within the design course of, I wished to guarantee that when stacked towards any sports activities brand, be it skilled or collegiate at any stage, our marks are top-shelf. Weaving in Southwestern’s DNA and key components of its historical past is just going to maintain the model robust and related for years to come back. A majority of sports activities groups and universities outsource tasks like this, so having the ability to knock it out in-house and are available out the place we did is actually particular,” says Madsen. “It speaks rather a lot to what will be achieved right here.”

The Pirate cranium, adorned in plunder black and doubloon gold, is a visually hanging picture. The menacing scowl with its jagged enamel pays homage to Southwestern’s first athletics brand. The left eye’s scar is a reminder that the Southwestern Pirates are battle-tested and no strangers to adversity, having competed in intercollegiate athletics for greater than a century.

The tattered tricorn pirate hat evokes rogue waves in stormy waters—a reminder {that a} easy sea by no means made a talented Pirate. Displayed prominently on the cap is the star of Texas, exhibiting SU’s pleasure in being Texas’s first college. Beneath the tricorn, a bandana falls to the southwestern aspect of the Pirate’s face.

Secondary Emblem

The secondary brand is a stylized Texas pirate flag in plunder black, siege white, and doubloon gold. Instead of the Lone Star is the form of Texas with Southwestern’s founding 12 months of 1840.


Southwestern’s new Pirates wordmark once more options the star of Texas prominently within the center. The typefaces chosen show a nautical high quality, bringing to thoughts wind shifting via sails.

Madsen and Biggers created greater than 150 variations of major logos, secondary logos, and wordmarks, drawing from Southwestern’s previous. The Pirates’ first brand, created in 1929, was a fundamental skull-and-crossbones motif, with numerous pirate pictures taking middle stage over time till being phased out within the mid-Nineties in favor of the interlocking “SU” and sabers.

The duo settled on a clear, back-to-basics rebrand to provoke college spirit not solely inside the Southwestern household but additionally inside the Georgetown neighborhood and throughout Texas.

Most significantly, the world will know Texas’s first college is residence to the Pirates.

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