For $5, We’ll Take the Buffalo
The University of Colorado Boulder adopted the buffalo as a mascot in 1934, after a national, student-led contest generated more than 1,000 responses. Boulder resident Andrew Dickson ultimately was credited for the first of six submissions proposing the buffalo. He won a $5 prize.
Once ubiquitous in the western United States, the American bison quickly became the primary symbol of CU-Boulder’s athletic teams and, to some extent, of the university itself.
The graphic below displays iterations of the CU-Boulder Athletics logo — some formal, some informal — over the decades.
The current athletics logo, which includes both the buffalo and the interlocking letters “CU,” was updated in 2005 with the help of designers at Nike.
Whichever representation you like best, perhaps you’ll agree — there’s no substitute for Ralphie herself.
Illustrations courtesy CU Athletics