Wednesday, December 05, 2007
Pederson to Drop "H" from Pittsburgh Panthers Lettering
In one of his first moves as returning athletic director to the University of Pittsburgh, Steve Pederson announced that he is dropping the last letter from the city name for the Panthers athletic department. All teams will now be officially know as the Pittsburg Panthers on all university athletics logos and memorabilia.
“At this juncture in the evolution of the athletic department, I am correcting a past wrong,” explained Pederson. “In 1891 when the city of Pittsburgh was ordered to drop the h from its name, for whatever reason the University didn’t follow suit. In that act of defiance the University set a precedence for rebelliousness that began a path of decadence and moral debauchery that cumulated in the alternation of ‘fight Pitt fight’ to ‘Penn State Sucks,’ in the Pitt Victory Song. I believe that by following the proper lettering of the word ‘Pittsburg’ we will be setting a precedent for our student athletes that when the United States Geographic Board makes a decision, you need to follow it…even if you follow it 116 years later.”
Initially the announcement has been met with confusion from many students and alumni, many of whom have never been aware of the brief period of time when Pittsburgh was spelled without an h.
“We have a 5-7 football team and this jag is concerned about reverting the spelling of our team’s name back over one hundred years?” questioned Pitt alumn Donny Lewsheski. “Is it me, or shouldn’t this guy be licking Terrell Pryor’s nuts instead of getting caught up in a spelling bee with the rest of the country. Un-f’ing believable.”
While many share Lewsheski’s concerns and outrage over the change, one elderly Pitt alumn is enthusiastically embracing the change.
“I remember when mummy told me about the modification [in restoring the h to Pittsburgh in 1911], I cried like the dickens I did…for nearly a fortnight or two as I recollect. Oh, I was so upset about it,” recalled 102-year-old and CAS 1928 graduate Virginia Pickforth. “I was so accustomed to writing the city’s name without the h and then all of a sudden, with no warning I was told to put this strange letter at the end of my city’s spelling? I couldn’t fathom it, still hardly can. But back then bread only cost a ha’penny and cars were called motor coaches. It was a different era, and much simpler times. Times that weren’t confused by unphonetic spellings. And I’m just tickled pink that this Pederson chap sees it similar and can remedy the situation for us. He seems like a fine fellow, does that Pederson. I reason he’ll do all right at the ol’ alma mater.”