Apparently, a lot of people agree with me that Georgia Gwinnett College needs a mascot even before it has, well, a college. It's just that some of those people don't appreciate my suggestions.
If you remember, one idea from my recent column was to call the college's sports teams The Razorbacks. Students, I said, could refer to their squads fondly as "The Pigs" and to their stadium as "The Poke."
Well, that fairly innocuous suggestion (in my view) released a firestorm of electronic activity, with Arkansas fans (primarily) unleashing an angry fusillade of e-mails in my direction. Who knew there were Arkansas fans?
A few samples of our correspondence:
Dear Rob: Ever hear of the Arkansas Razorbacks? We own that name. Find something else, dude. Dan.
Dear Dan: Yes, I believe I have heard of the Arkansas Razorbacks. Didn't they used to have a football team?
Dear Rob: How about calling your team the Dips---s? Razorbacks is not yours for the taking. Louise.
Dear Louise: Thank you for the suggestion, but evidently that name is already taken as well.
Dear Rob: There are lots of Lions and Tigers and Bears but only one Razorbacks, and they live in the hills of northwest Arkansas. If you do use Razorbacks, don't call them the pigs. Call them Hogs or Backs. Pigs are what we are called by those who hate the great Razorbacks. Robert.
Dear Robert: Thank you for the information. I had no idea "Pigs" was so widely used.
Dear Rob: Razorbacks is already taken. How about the Copycats? K.
Dear K.: I know you are, but what am I?
Other readers, like Tom, took issue with my assertion that animal mascots should exude fierceness and that, based on recent performance, Hawks and Falcons don't qualify.
Dear Rob: My son and I enjoyed your column but did not appreciate your comments about the Falcons. Where do you park your car? Tom.
Dear Tom: I'm glad you enjoyed the column. I park my car at the large football complex in Flowery Branch, in the space marked "reserved for Head Coach."
Seriously though, I don't mean to offend. I'm merely trying to identify the best possible mascot for our very own four-year college, which of course because it is located in Gwinnett County will one day be the biggest and best four-year college anyone has ever seen. It is therefore imperative that we find a mascot that does justice to this fine, though as yet nonexistent, institution.
Fortunately, I did receive a number of excellent suggestions, which will be unveiled in next week's column. Meanwhile, it's not too late to weigh in with your own idea for a mascot that captures the essence of the new school without blatantly plagiarizing. All four Arkansas fans are counting on you.
E-mail Rob Jenkins at firstname.lastname@example.org.