Dear readers, I come before you this day to humbly tell of you a great travesty that has been done, however inadvertently, by the citizens of this fair metropolis.
This past Saturday, I watched the warriors of the Blue and Gray end their year bloodied, bruised, but unbeaten and unbowed, having outscored their foes by nearly six to one over the course of the season. They truly lived up to Coach Lester Barnard’s motto of “Every Man a Tiger”.
And why shouldn’t they? On campus, at games and in student publications they are already known as the Tigers. It is a secret cant for students and alumni, used to glorify their gridiron champions. But, one doesn’t extend beyond the walls of academia. The newspapers of the city refuse to call them anything but the Blue and Gray, and thusly the citizens don’t know any better.
I think it is time for that to change.
I say, if they act like tigers, if they fight like tigers, who are we to tell them that they are not, in fact, Tigers?
Memphis, we should let them be what they already are.
Farewell to the Blue and Gray Warriors. Long live the Tigers.
The University of Memphis (going to call it that for clarity’s sake) sports team was originally called the Blue and Gray Warriors. Somewhere along the line the students started saying that they fought like tigers, so they became commonly know as “the Tigers” by those that attended the school. But, the local media in town refused to refer to the team as anything but the Blue and Gray, even during Coach Barnard’s time. The team name wasn’t officially changed until 1939.