[title_box title=”UT, Tennessee lawmakers compromise on Lady Vols name”]
It was announced Monday that a compromise was reached between UT and Tennessee state legislatures on the Lady Vols’ name change. While the university will not be reversing its initial decision to strip all women’s athletics teams, except women’s basketball, of the Lady Vols name, women’s teams will be given commemorative patches to wear during the 2016-2017 season honoring the Lady Vols’ legacy, according to an article from WATE.
Tennessee state legislatures have been reviewing House Bill 1451, a bill that would ultimately force the university to reverse its decision, since it was proposed in Nov. 2014 following the university’s decision.
UT made the decision to change the names of all its athletics teams to the Tennessee Volunteers to become a unified brand when it switched to Nike in June 2015. Women’s basketball will be the only team to remain as the Lady Vols.
Following Monday’s decision, UT Chancellor Jimmy G. Cheek said that the compromise for women’s athletics to wear honorary patches was a compromise “that is in the best interest of all parties to continue to honor the Lady Vols.” Female athletes will be given the choice to continue wearing the patch after the 2016-2017 season ends.
“We realize there have been differences of opinion with the choice to use the Power T for all of our women’s athletics teams, except for basketball,” Cheek said. “A new branding effort and a combined athletics department, however, will never erase history and tradition.”
“My goal has always been to keep the brand alive for decades to come and to continue honoring Pat Summitt who was a legendary coach for women who has inspired other women by her great mentorship,” said Knoxville Rep. Roger Kane who sponsored the bill.
“The memories last forever and the Lady Vol names and the words on those uniforms and memories that are associated with those two words last long beyond the game.”
Edited by Cody McClure