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Goshen College President Jim Brenneman, in one of his final acts before leaving office, has signed an executive order to change the college’s mascot from “Maple Leafs” to the more grammatically correct “Maple Leaves.”
After an online petition started jointly by students from the English department and the baseball team demanding the change reached 1,894 signatures, the president felt pressure to change the 59-year-old mascot name.
“Clearly our students, staff and alumni feel strongly about pluralization,” Brenneman said. “We always thought the name was fitting and made us distinct, in a fun way. I guess not.”
Tony Miller, Goshen College Sports Information Director, said that the spelling has caused confusion for years and that he was tired of other teams making fun of the mascot.
“If I had a dollar for every time someone from another school said ‘Oh, it’s Maple Leafs, not Maple Leaves? I thought you were supposed to be able to spell in college,’ I’d be rich.” Miller said.
Others cited the similarity to the NHL’s Toronto Maple Leafs as a reason to change.
“As an institute of higher learning, we shouldn’t have anything to do with those knuckleheads in Toronto,” said Kris Schmidt, associate professor of biology and avowed Vancouver Canucks fan.
One question that has been brought up is whether this decision will be immediately overturned by the next president, yet unnamed.
Brenneman doesn’t beleaf so.