Cougars and lepers

The Tank

Draper, Utah, is now on the map for something other than being the home of the main state penitentiary.

The area of the state between the Utah and Salt Lake Valleys has been growing ever since I was out there, and with that comes the need for more housing, more infrastructure and, yes, more schools.

So, there is a new high school in Draper, called Corner Canyon High (part of the Canyon School District). Of course, along with the staffing and other educational needs, this place needs a mascot.

Sitting between Brigham Young University Cougar blue and University of Utah Running Ute red, the school held a contest among students to name the new school, and the Cougars won out.

Or did they?

After the results were tabulated, the Canyon School Board nixed the whole deal. There is no chance you can call your team that. Why?

It may be offensive to middle age women.

(Don’t worry, this column will still be here after you pick yourself off the floor from laughing so hard you pass out — I speak from experience.)

I knew that the moniker of Running Ute was seen as offensive to some in the Native American community, even though the Ute Tribe has given its blessing to the name (this gets into the whole name changing thing, which is another topic I feel is ridiculous), but Cougars?

The only way that I see this as offensive is if when the student body presented their results, they came with a Sarah Jessica Parker mascot.

Seriously, everyone in the state of Utah knew that they were naming their school after the beloved BYU mascot, and I am sure that the first thought in the minds of anyone outside that state was of the mountain dwelling cat, not anything to do with a nickname that has been given to middle aged women on the dating scene.

Keith Lobdell is the Editor of the Valley News. He can be reached at keith@denpubs.com.

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