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What was the reason given for UWM changing to the Panthers? I understand dropping red and white, but what was wrong with the name?
I actually did some digging in the archives at the campus library today... apparently the "official" reason given by the student council was that the cardinal wasn't a dynamic enough mascot for what the campus was aspiring towards. Really though, I think it was just that they wanted different colors and it didn't make sense to keep the cardinal if they were going to use anything but red.
FWIW, the other color choices (besides black & gold) were blue & white, and green & white; and the other mascot choices (besides Panthers) were Hawks, Beavers, and Clippers. In hindsight, Clippers was the only one that could've potentially made for a decent identity. Instead, we ended up with a generic byproduct of committee thinking that's still not befitting of the university's aspirations.
Anyway, this was all research that I'm working on for a blog about UWM's branding problems... I'll shoot you a link when I'm done if you care to read it.