As we've seen recently, universities aren't afraid to go after high schools for copyright infringement on their logos and other trademarks. It doesn't really seem fair for schools like Florida State to go after high schools, but it's the world we live in where college athletics equal big bucks, and merchandise sales certainly add to it. Further north in the ACC, N.C. State now finds itself in a similar situation, though it isn't going after a high school. No, N.C. State is going after a small university in Louisiana called Loyola.
It seems Loyola calls its sports teams the Wolfpack, and N.C. State wants to make sure that it is the only Wolfpack in the country.
The Jesuit school in Louisiana has called itself the Wolfpack for more than a half-century, but N.C. State says it owns the exclusive legal right to use the Wolfpack name and logo.
N.C. State Assistant General Counsel Shawn Troxler last month notified Loyola officials that their use of the Wolfpack image constitutes trademark infringement. Loyola's use of Wolfpack could lead to confusion and misunderstanding in the marketing-intense, big-money world of collegiate sports.
"People could think something is being sponsored by N.C. State," Troxler said Sunday. "We're in the beginning stages of discussion of how they could use the term 'Wolfpack.' "N.C. State trademarked the name Wolfpack back in 1983, though Loyola has used the name since the 1930s. Though not trademarked, N.C. State didn't begin using the nickname until 1947. So I'm not sure how this will work in a courtroom, since I didn't study Mascot Law in college. What I do know is that N.C. State went through a similar case with Nevada, which ended up changing its name from Wolfpack to Wolf Pack. It's possible that Loyola may end up doing the same thing.