Fauquier football team replaces falcon helmet logos with county-shaped logos
The Fauquier Falcons have new logos on their football helmets this season. --Fauquier Times Staff Photo/Randy Litzinger
The Fauquier Falcons are emphasizing a different part of their name on their football helmets this season.
In recent seasons past, Fauquier's helmets featured an NFL Atlanta Falcons-style bird logo on each side. This season Fauquier's helmets will have an image shaped like Fauquier County on one side and a number on the other side that corresponds to a player's uniform number.
On each gray helmet, the white county-shaped logo appears outlined in red with a red star near its center.
Fauquier head football coach Jamie Carter and Fauquier athletic director Mark Holmes generated the new logo idea.
"We just wanted to do something that nobody else can have," Carter said. "As much as I love that style falcon, Atlanta still has it. It's a little bit different, but it's still very similar."
He also liked the idea of emphasizing the "Fauquier" aspect of the team's name on the helmets rather than emphasizing "Falcons."
"We're Fauquier High School," he said. "We've been the high school here [in the county] the longest. I just thought it was a cool thing" to emphasize.
"We both liked the idea," Holmes said. "I think it looks pretty good, to be honest."
Holmes has thought about incorporating a Fauquier County-shaped image into local high school athletics for a few years.
Previously, as Liberty High's athletic director, Holmes and Liberty boys basketball coach Pat Frazer talked about using that outline in the center of the school's basketball court, which would have replaced the circle traditionally used in that spot. Holmes also considered that idea for the gym floor at Fauquier once he became athletic director in May 2013.
Carter liked the idea.
"And I thought that'd be pretty cool on a football helmet," he said. "We just ran with it."
Putting players' numbers on their helmets also appealed to the coach, as well as the players.
"It just looks cool," he said. "The kids were asking for that for a couple years now."
Holmes said the school often tweaks its sports uniforms in some way each year.
"And the logo has changed throughout the years," he said.
When Holmes graduated from Fauquier High in 1981, for example, the Falcons' football helmets were solid red and had no logos, he said. Fauquier's first helmets in 1963 didn't have logos, either.
During much of the 1990s, Fauquier's helmets were white and featured a red 'F' logo, Holmes and Carter said. They even featured just the word "Falcons" during the early-2000s. Fauquier then began using the Atlanta-style falcon logo in the mid-2000s.
A vociferous group on social media seems to like that old falcon logo more than the new county-shaped logo. There have been complaints that logo looks like the state of California and that it's ruining Fauquier's "tradition" of wearing a falcon logo.
"That's one reason I don't do Facebook and I don't do Twitter," Holmes said Saturday. "I have not gotten one phone call or email" complaint.
Carter hasn't heard complaints directly from anyone in the community, either, he said Saturday, but he has seen the reaction on social media.
"It's just because it's different," he said. "It just takes time [to appreciate change]. I've heard a bunch of people that like it around school."
"People on social media, they're allowed to have their opinion," Carter said. "Hopefully we'll give people something more to talk about" once the season starts.
Meanwhile, the reaction in Fauquier's football locker room has been mixed.
"Not too sure about them yet," Falcons quarterback Louis Heisler said of the helmets. "They seem like a cool idea [but] I don't know how I feel. I'm going to have to wait for those Friday nights to see it."
Fauquier will play a benefit game this Friday against Potomac Falls and then they'll sport their new helmets for the first time in a regular season game Aug. 29 at Loudoun County.
"I've seen some people kind of question it a little bit, but it doesn't really matter," Fauquier senior center Zach Evans said. "It kind of represents us."
Who are they?
"We're [still] the Falcons," Heisler said. "Fauquier, baby."
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