It’s not just a new brand for the Jaguars but a new energy they hope the community takes on.
“Keep it fresh, keep it relevant, keep it dynamic, keep it contemporary,” says Owner Shad Khan.
In a “State of the Jaguars” address Tuesday, Khan was joined by President Mark Lamping, Head Coach Gus Bradley and GM David Caldwell to unveil the new team brand and logo, among other changes to kick off the 2013 season.
Their new identity is designed to capture the intensity and passion they want to carry forward. “Stand United” is the movement, with “Proud. Bold. Committed.” the team spirit.
“It’s awesome. What a phrase to use,” Bradley says.
For Bradley, the united theme is important because the team is tied so closely with the city, that it’s important for the fans to unite behind the team. He says the new team message really defined what he felt while working through the interview process, so to see it be the team’s direction is exciting.
Bradley told me this was the first time he had seen the new logo- which is supposed to look more realistic and fierce. While he- as well as all the other management- were holding footballs with the new image, all he could say was “wow”.
And he thinks the team and fans will say the same.
“I’m sure, as anything, it take awhile to get used to, but this is gunna come real quick,” he says.
Lamping told me it’s important to have a difference, but at the same time they didn’t want to stray too far from the logo to which some fans have grown very loyal.
“If you’re not moving forward, you’re going backwards,” he says.
The extended logo features new typeface as well- something edgier and sharper with a more subdued color scheme.
The team also unveiled a military-style patch, which is designed to relate closely with the Jacksonville community. Lamping says it’s important for Jacksonville to realize just how connected they are, and how much support the team has for the city.
The Jags will be holding some town halls over the next few months in order for fans to get to have their own input in the team and its direction. Lamping, Bradley, and Caldwell will all be involved in the forums, and you can see a full list of when and where they will take place in the “Jaguars Highlights” to the left.
“We did a lot of talking today, now we need to do a lot of listening,” Lamping says.
I asked management whether he thought it was important for the team to make these changes in order to amp up the fans after the last season. While Khan says the change comes at a natural time for the team- celebrating its 20th anniversary, Lamping admits that it wouldn’t hurt to make sure they have a reason to be excited.
“Our fans would have been extremely disappointed after being 2-14 had we not made major changes,” he says.
Bradley says that show of support, however, is a two-way street.
“I’ve always believed that the community is so important, and the Jacksonville community- we need that support,” he says.
He hopes that showing the city the team is committed to them, the fans in turn will stay committed to the team.
One of the biggest investments the Jaguars are making, which Lamping thinks should show that commitment, is the stadium.
“If we weren’t focused on Jacksonville, we wouldn’t be wasting our time on saying ‘here’s what we need to do in the stadium’,” he says.
One of the biggest improvements they are now shooting for is the scoreboard. Lamping says improving that would be great not just for Jags fans, but for bringing other events like the BCS Championship to Jacksonville. He says it’s hard to make a case for the game when most of the colleges playing would have better technology than what EverBank has.
“I think the city’s highly supportive of having a venue here that’s really world-class,” Khan says.
But that particular investment is one that would require a lot of people coming to the table, and Lamping hopes it’s something that can be done soon.
There will be more $35 seats open in the next season because of high demand last season. The section will be designated the “Diehards’ Den”, a section with about 1,700 seats available. Most season ticket rates will remain flat.
There will also be some premium seating sections they hope to unveil, including hospitality and amenities.
The Jaguars have received a surprising show of support in London ahead of the game against the San Francisco 49ers next year. Lamping says they have even christened a fan club overseas, although there is still some trouble when it comes to properly pronouncing the team name.
The game is now sold out, and he says that’s inspired them to create a full time position in London for a sale executive to work exclusively on overseas sponsorship. Between that and the ticketing revenue the game is expected to bring, Lamping says the game is good for Jacksonville and the team at large.