Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Saddened by CornBelters

The Normal baseball team has had a name voted for them. Honestly the name choices were lame. Apparently it's completely wrong to have a team with any native history (Indian) assigned to it, and animals have become a hard sell anymore as well.

I guess all new teams are going to some name that indicates the area they are from. The Lakers are a great example of that. Everyone knows L.A. for it's lakes..... Maybe when the team moves it needs to also come up with a new name to reflect the current area. The Lakers could be renamed to the rioters.

Here in Central Illinois an Independent league minor league baseball franchise is going to start next year. I'm excited about it and hope to make it to several games. It's a very minor league though. these are players that were never drafted by a pro team to be in one of their 5+ minor league systems, or players that were in there and didn't cut it.

Now to the name. The choices were lame. One was the Coal-Bears (in honor of Stephen Colbert). Originally it was winning, but the voting had to be started over due to ballot stuffing. Second was my favorite the Nutz, in honor of Beer Nuts which started and continues to make it's home here in Bloomington (the sister city to Normal). At least of the bad name choices this one would have had some sense of character. And the winner, the CornBelters. As if Central Illinois is the home of corn. Sure we have a lot of corn, and are in the corn belt, but that's pretty lame.

A team mascot and name should be able to be used as a source of pride. Something to focus on and an attitude to take on in order to be one. If you play for the Bulls you want to be a Bull. You want to be ferocious and attack head first. If you are a Bear you want to rip apart your opponents. If you are an Indian you want to use cunning and skill to defeat you opponents. If you are a CornBelter you can use... I don't know, the thought of popcorn?

I hate that team names are becoming this nondescript thing. They don't provide a rallying cry, or a sense of unity and pride, they are just there because teams need a name. In my town the school is the Maroons. Which the kids are fond of labelling themselves the morons. The lack of a good name is not lost on them.