The bottom line is that they should be the Rough Riders. They won’t be, but they should. So what to do now?
Well, if you’re an Ottawa sports fan, you probably want the name to start with an “R”, you want the colours to be red, black and white, and you want to see the team trot Russ Jackson out as much as possible.
So that leads to the coming announcement from the new CFL club in a couple of weeks that will almost certainly be the Ottawa RedBlacks.
RedBlacks? RedBlacks, you say? What the heck is a RedBlack? Sounds like a soccer team. Sounds like a college team. Sounds somehow not right.
The only thing renegade about the Renegades was their refusal to win games
The reaction from fans across the Internet has been, let’s say, less than excited about the RedBlacks moniker.
Personally, I think the Ottawa Red & Black would be a little easier to wrap our heads around (and would translate much better for the team’s Gatineau fan base), but my initial reaction to RedBlacks is one of intrigue, not disgust of laughter like most people on the Internet.
I actually think RedBlacks is pretty bold and is certainly better than Renegades ever was (Renegades in Ottawa? Really? The most buttoned-down city in the country had a team called the Renegades? The only thing renegade about the Renegades was their refusal to win games).
Off the bat, fans are going to be fans… a lot of people will hide behind pseudonyms and write nasty things on websites and some media are sure to write funny columns about the name. But I think in time, the Ottawa franchise is going to win people over by being a good team and fans will adopt the name and logo as part of a winning brand.
How creative is a name like the Cincinnati Reds? Or the St. Louis Cardinals – they were named for the colour, not the bird (they added the bird later)? There are no Eskimos in Edmonton and everyone gladly accepts that name and brand.
The reason the Reds, Cardinals, Esks, and a lot of other team names are adored by so many is that these franchises have built histories and a winning cultures.
Sure, the reactions off the bat haven’t been great, but Ottawa indeed confirms RedBlacks as the team name (possibly at a June 8 press conference), the team will be starting with a fresh slate, a creative identity, and most importantly, good football people running the show.
If the Ottawa RedBlacks win games, no one will be discussing their name.
Photo gallery of possible logos: http://slam.canoe.ca/Slam/Microgalleries/2013/04/26/20774541.html