Louisiana State University has gone through many trials that have hampered its development. Several closings, fires, destruction of books and equipment, frequent relocations, post-war economic crises, staff turnover due to lack of salaries, deaths of students during World War I and World War II, allegations of corruption and bribery – all these events interfered with the normal growth of LSU. But the educational institution coped with the challenges of fate. It continued to evolve and eventually became a research institution with a huge number of training programs. He currently owns a campus of 250 buildings and 21 sports teams.
Meaning and History
What is LSU?
LSU is the abbreviation for Louisiana State University. It was first mentioned in 1853 as a military academy. A little later (in 1860), the educational institution became a university. Its location is in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The main campus was built in 1926 and today includes over 250 Renaissance buildings. The university has been awarded the highest level of research activity.
There was a period in the history of Louisiana State University when it had the status of a military school, and its students were considered cadets. It began in 1860 with the founding of the Louisiana State Seminary of Learning & Military Academy. The university received its current name in 1870 after moving to a boarding school for the disabled when a fire destroyed most of its property. The modern campus was opened in 1926.
LSU has adopted a unique visual identification system to differentiate itself from other educational institutions in the state and country. The logo represents the outreach, research, and teaching activities of the university. Its distribution is regulated by the Office of Trademark Licensing and the Division of Strategic Communications. There is also a seal used on documents, including various contracts, certificates, and diplomas. The Office of the Registrar controls it. Both elements of the identity reflect the university’s long history and roots.
This symbol was inspired by the official government seal that first appeared in 1812 when Louisiana became a state. According to archival data, the then governor William C. C. Claiborne changed the image of an eagle to a pelican feeding the chicks with his blood. Perhaps this is how the new official decided to show respect for the Catholic heritage because the pelican personified atonement, the sacrifice of Christ. By the way, in one of the prayer books, the painted bird looked the same as on the state’s debut seal. The design of the national sign often changed: there were versions with and without blood, as well as with a different number of chicks.
The LSU university-wide seal contains a white pelican that bowed its head over a nest with three chicks and spread its wings wide, as if in an attempt to protect them from danger. The artists decided not to depict blood on the bird’s chest, but it is implied there because this is the whole meaning of the symbol. The developers tried to give the graphic elements a circle shape due to sloping wings and a semicircular nest.
What is the LSU logo?
The LSU logo features an abbreviation. The abbreviated name is made in the original form in capital letters, which resemble graphic signs. This impression is created due to the rounded bevels of the S and U, while the L has the appearance of a clear rectangle. The university’s seal depicts a pelican leaning over a nest with three chicks. It is surrounded by a ring from the name of the university.
The drawing is placed in a ring of text. Above there is a bold inscription “LOUISIANA STATE UNIVERSITY,” which has an arched appearance. Dots separate the name of the institution on both sides. Below is the phrase “AND AGRICULTURAL AND MECHANICAL COLLEGE,” curved in the form of a reverse arch. A smaller font is selected for it. And right under the nest is the year the LSU was founded: “1860”. The main print color is black. It is combined with a white background.
Branding is based on a logo with an abbreviation. It is used to identify the communication environment of the campus, as well as everything related to Louisiana State University. Its history begins with the LSU Tigers logo. This speaks to the inextricable link between the research institution and its sports teams.
LSU is printed in magenta with stylized letters. Due to the combination of rounded and right angles, “S” looks unusual, and “U” has an asymmetrical shape. The high contrast of the lines explains the unusualness of “L”: the horizontal stroke is almost two times thinner than the vertical one.
LSU Tigers Logos
All Louisiana State University sports teams are called Tigers. They compete in 21 sports and represent LSU at the Southeastern Conference, competing at the NCAA Division I level. Only three women’s teams (athletics, cross-country, basketball) are known as Lady Tigers.
The sports department of LSU has been around for a very long time. The Tigers have become the first US varsity football team to travel to another country to compete. The game took place in 1907 in Cuba. Despite the big height difference, the American footballers defeated their rivals from the University of Havana. Another major event was the opening in 1924 of the Tiger Stadium, the eighth largest stadium globally.
In addition to football, Louisiana State University sponsors other NCAA-sanctioned sports. These include volleyball, athletics, tennis, diving, softball, golf, cross-country, beach volleyball, basketball, and baseball. They all have one common nickname – Tigers (or Lady Tigers).
They were named not after the felines but after the military units formed in Louisiana during the American Civil War and received the unofficial nickname Tigers. The 141st Field Artillery Regiment’s crest still features the head of a snarling predator.
But now, LSU teams have begun to abandon their historical heritage. University officials claim that the institution’s name, mascot, and emblem symbolize the tigers that have lived on campus since 1924. This statement came after an anonymous author petitioned the LSU to rebrand the sports division because Louisiana’s Tigers had some drunkards who mistreated slaves.
Louisiana State University has been using the tiger mascot since the 1890s and will not change it. The leaders made concessions only once, removing the image of the predator’s head from the logo of the teams. This happened in 2014.
1955 – 1966
In 1955, the sports department got an emblem that looked like a portrait of a cartoon character. The tiger frowned expressively, wrinkling his nose and lifting his upper lip. The artists painted the details using contrasting colors:
- They made all the outlines and stripes purple.
- The central part was painted over with orange.
- The edges, eyes, and the area around the nose were left white.
On the head of the anthropomorphic predator was a sailor’s uniform cap without a visor. On the side of the headdress, there was an orange inscription “LSU.” She indicated the belonging of the teams.
1967 – 1972
After the 1967 redesign, the animal became more realistic. The artists have detailed fur, mustache, and nose wrinkles. At the same time, they depicted sharp fangs and ears pressed to the head so that it was clear that the tiger was roaring menacingly. The drawing was placed in a thin purple line arch. Below was the abbreviation “LSU,” written in a stylized font. The orange letters were outlined with a dark outline around the edges. Most unusual of all looked “S,” which consisted of two corners.
1972 – 1980
In 1972, the designers removed the inscription and the arch, leaving only the tiger’s head. She was depicted at a slight angle, with the predator growling with its mouth wide open. The drawing style has changed: the animal has become variegated and not as realistic as in the previous logo.
1980 – 1989
The color scheme first changed in 1980. The emblem’s designers used black instead of purple, repainting all the outlines, tiger stripes, and the sides of the letters in this color. The head of the animal peeked out from behind the inscription “LSU,” located diagonally. The abbreviated name of the university was the nickname of the teams. It was done in white, slanted sans serif characters.
1990 – 2001
At the turn of the century, the sports department of Louisiana State University renewed its identity again. The head of a snarling predator has disappeared from the logo. The abbreviation “LSU” has turned purple and moved to the background. The designers chose a polygonal geometric font for it. The word “Tigers” has been enlarged and repainted golden. A handwritten semi-connected typeface was used for it. The decals now have outlines, linear gradients, and shadows that create a three-dimensional effect.
2002 – 2006
In 2002, the ceremonial return of the tiger took place. The designers made the predator jump out from behind the letters “LSU” as if defending the university’s honor. In this version, not only sharp fangs were visible, but also powerful paws with long claws. The gradient has disappeared, but the school’s initials have a double black and white outline and an orange border. The word “TIGERS” was on the bottom of the black trapezoid. It was written in white capital letters. The common background for all elements was a purple spiral shape. It looked like a portal from which a predator jumped out.
2007 – 2013
The designers of the emblem removed the legs and body of the tiger, leaving only the head, which was circled in a wide black line. The sports department nickname has also disappeared, as has the dark background behind it. The inscription “LSU” remained almost unchanged, only the letters were slightly stretched horizontally, and the white outline turned orange.
2014 – today
In 2014, the head of a tiger disappeared from the logo. All attention turned to the abbreviated name of the university, the design of which has not changed. The abbreviation, as before, is colored purple and has a thin light orange outline.
Previously, Louisiana State University teams used tiger head symbols. The dangerous beast growled, embodying the warlike spirit of athletes and intimidating opponents. Recently, the tiger appeared at competitions only as a mascot, and the logo is limited to a short inscription “LSU” without additional elements.
The designers chose the custom font Geaux Extended for the logo, which belongs to the university. It was developed in 2002 and has gradually evolved. Teams use it for sports names as well as for writing on uniforms. All Geaux letters are capital, angular, with uneven line width.
The LSU Athletics branding guide states that the wordmark can be magenta (# 461D7C), gold (# FDD023), white (#FFFFFF), or black (# 000000) depending on the background color. The most popular is the magenta version with a gold outline.
Font and Colors of the Emblem
What font does LSU use for its logo?
The LSU logo uses the university’s typeface, developed in 2002. It is called Geaux Extended and is the basis of the modern identity of the university. The letters included in it are characterized by angular cuts with rounding and uneven thickness.
The LSU Branding Guide provides typography guidelines. For headings and text, Proxima Nova and ITC Caslon 224 serif sans serifs are welcome. But none of the proposed fonts is used in the graphic symbols of the university. Unless the design of the lettering on the print is very remotely reminiscent of the typefaces from the Proxima Nova family. The letters in the acronym logo were designed from scratch.
The word “LSU” can be colored in one of the four official colors: LSU Purple (# 461D7C), white, black, 50% Gray (# 999999), or LSU Gold (# FDD023). In this case, magenta is the main one. Printing is predominantly black and white.