It was bad enough when Golden West College PC-ized their cowboy mascot, Rustler Sam, by removing his cigarette and stubble. But now they want to put him on a surfboard or run him out of town altogether. Some consultant convinced GWC that their beach-side location (over three miles inland) meant they needed a new nautical mascot.
In March 1966, just months before GWC opened, a College Council of students, administrators and instructors voted to adopt the "Rustlers" name. Some of the also-ran nominations were the Batmen, the Gladiators, the Crusaders, and the Bruisers (with black and blue school colors).
A few years later, Rustler Sam was designed for GWC by "Tumbleweeds" comic strip creator Tom K. Ryan. I'll be the first to admit that Sam is goofy looking. But that's his charm.
If the students and alumni had decided on their own to nix their mascot, that would be fine. I could even understand the arguement that rustlers were criminals and that Sam should be re-christened Cowboy Sam or Marshall Sam. But ending a tradition on the advice of a consultant just stinks.
Link: Register article.
Link: L.A. Times article.