AUGUST 28, 2019…WELLAND - The Niagara College Knights are heading into 2019-2020 with a new look.
On Wednesday, the College's Athletics and Recreation department revealed a new athletics brand, as they get set to kick-off a new season in the Ontario Colleges Athletic Conference (OCAA).
College staff gathered at the Welland Campus Athletic Centre as part of Niagara Day – an annual staff and faculty get-together heading into a new school year–and were treated to the official reveal of the Knights re-brand.
The new logo represents a new era in Knights history, paying homage to what a Knight represents - courage, honour and excellence.
"The new Knights logo captures our competitive fire and pride of representing Niagara College," said associate director, athletics & recreation, Michele O'Keefe.
In the mid-to-late 1960's in which the team name originated, the Knights were a common sports team name, which fit well with Niagara College for its alliterative quality.
Athletics at the College got its start with an ad hoc hockey team started by former athletics coordinator, Peter Rylander, dubbed the Blue Knights. By 1968, the Niagara College athletics department was created and all other varsity teams simply adopted the name.
The Knights brand has gone through four logo evolutions in their 50 years of existence at the College. The very first drawing of a Niagara Knight, designed in 1969 by Bob Aroe.
The Knights-rebrand will also bring a sense of community and sportsmanship to campus with newly formed partnerships within the post-secondary institution. As of today, staff, faculty and students will be able to purchase Knights wear from the bookstore, as well as at selected Knights home games.
"We are both proud and excited to have the opportunity to leverage the campus store's expertise to celebrate everything that is Niagara College," said Campus Bookstore Manager, Dan Lewis. "The vision for Knights Athletics is truly impressive and we are happy to be able to enable the College and Niagara community access to the Knights brand."
Knights branded beer is also available for purchase, thanks to the Niagara College Teaching Brewery. The English Pale Ale and Pilsner will pay respect to Knights history on the label. The new cans of beer will be available at NC Brewery, The Core and The Armoury.
"This re-brand has given us a tremendous opportunity to continue our work with traditional and non-traditional partners on campus," continued O'Keefe. "To have a Knights beer that celebrates our athletes is a tremendous honour. And to do able to offer Knights merchandise for sale to Knights friends and family at the book store and occasional pop-ups, is filling a demand that we have had. This truly has been a collaboration that spans the whole College. And for that we are grateful."
The Knights will kick off the 2019-2020 varsity season on September 6 with men and women's soccer taking on the Humber College Hawks. The women will open things up at 6 p.m. at Youngs Sportsplex, followed by the men at 8 p.m.
For full varsity schedule, please visit goknights.ca