The people have spoken.
On Tuesday, I wrote about the results of a Yahoo! Sports poll on what fans wanted the Washington football team's next name to be. It came back with "Redtails" and "Warriors" leading the way, which enraged quite a bit of you.
Why the outrage? Because Yahoo!'s poll excluded "Red Wolves," a fan-favorite and preferred option of a number of former Washington players. "Other" ended up getting the third-largest share of the vote and fans' love of "Red Wolves" certainly had something to do with it.
After witnessing fans' dismay with Yahoo!, we ran our own poll to see how differently the results would look if "Red Wolves" was involved. Safe to say, things went a tad differently.
The debate continues...— NBCSports Washington (@NBCSWashington) July 14, 2020
Which of these names do you like best?
Based on over 8,000 votes cast, "Red Wolves" dominated the poll, earning 72% of the vote. Here's a look at how four names performed in our poll vs. Yahoo!:
Washington Red Wolves: 72% (N/A on Yahoo!)
Washington Warriors: 13% (23%)
Washington Redtails: 11% (28%)
Washington Redhawks: 4% (8%)
The fanbase's love of "Red Wolves" is abundantly clear, but the name faces a few hurdles before Washington could officially make it their choice. Arkansas State holds the rights to "Red Wolves" and is already in a legal dispute with a pro soccer team over the name.
It wouldn't be impossible for Washington to gain the rights from Arkansas State, but there's a good chance that the process takes a while. Given the name change is reportedly expected to be "buttoned up" by training camp, it's not an ideal situation.
If the fans can get through to the organization by howling for "Red Wolves" over and over, the franchise could take the advice of several industry experts, opt for a temporary name like "Washington Football Club" for 2020 and afford themselves more time to acquire the rights to their permanent name.
Practically all of this still needs to play out, and if it already has then few people outside the organization are aware. But hey, we heard you. "Red Wolves" is your favorite. Yahoo! should not have excluded it in their poll. Message received.
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