This week UNLV unveiled a new logo that has people scratching their heads over what it is supposed to be and what it cost — $50,000.
The comments on social media have ranged from “What is it????? It kind of looks like a folded pile of clothes with a cowboy hat” to “It’s a dog’s breakfast.”
Lest we forget, the current logo was designed by illustrator Mike Miller — an advertising agency exec and longtime contributor to the morning newspaper — and sold to UNLV in 1982 for the princely sum of $1.
“It seemed at the time the right thing to do,” Miller said of giving the university exclusive rights to use the character. “I was trying to be a good community citizen and a friend of the university.”
The logo was supposed to represent an exploring mountain man rather than the previous mascot incarnations as a Confederate soldier, which the university was trying to shed.
After Miller’s death in 2014, UNLV reposted a 2011 story about the history of Hey Reb!
That story quoted Miller as saying, “Pathfinders were severely independent people who went all around the West looking for new trails, agriculture, gold mining, and everything.”
He said rugged men ventured into uncharted Nevada, mapping trails, discovering new resources, and building new communities. “I don’t think anyone really understands this until you look at the streets downtown,” said Miller, before naming off Carson, Ogden, Bonneville, Lewis and Clark, all streets named after famous frontiersmen.
He said his children gave him a hard time about giving away the valuable logo for a dollar.