IPFW athletics rebrands to Fort Wayne

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IPFW is rebranding its athletic program to Fort Wayne in order to increase visibility, according to a release from the school.

The school will remain IPFW for all academic parts of school, but the rebranding for athletic purposes — specifically recruiting — is very interesting.

With so many Division I programs going by letters, it can be tough for recruits and fans outside of certain regions to know where some of these schools are from. By naming the school Fort Wayne, the Mastodons are hoping for positive branding and better name association with the general public.

“After careful study and some compelling research results, it became clear that this is the right move for us. This branding initiative also addresses consistency issues, including those by the national media and other institutions, which have arisen since 2012,” IPFW athletics director Kelley Hartley Hutton said in the release. “This shift also strongly appeals to the student-athletes we recruit, as well as the coaches and staff.”

It’s interesting that Hartley Hutton would mention the appeal to recruiting, because schools are starting to get savvy when it comes to marketing names and gaining recognition with recruits. Other schools might begin to consider this type of move.