The fact of the matter is the Queen's football team is being referred to by two nicknames in the media during the lead-up to its highest-profile sports event yet this year. The issue is still not decided, one year after it was the source of much controversy with Queen's athletic director Leslie Dal Cin admitting to Kingston sportswriter Mike Koreen, "we have not changed this name. We're dealing with it as a phase two ."
Google news searches for Gaels and Golden Gaels reveal the longer moniker might have more penetration, at least in football stories. Ontario University Athletics and Canadian Interuniversity Sport uses the former, but it has not taken. Some papers have even used both names at least once apiece:
- Golden Gaels: Canwest News Service, The Canadian Press, Kingston Whig-Standard, Ottawa Citizen, Windsor Star, Belleville Intelligencer, Bay Today, newsdurhamregion.com,
- Gaels: Toronto Star, Thunder Bay Chronicle-Journal, Belleville Intelligencer, The Queen's Journal, Sudbury Star, Hamilton Spectator, Waterloo Record, Guelph Mercury, Windsor Star, North Bay Nugget
The point is, though, you can easier find a bullfighter in Napanee than find someone who is passionate about being "the Queen's Gaels." The media's editorial choices are beside the point. It's not necessarily wrong to use the bowdlerized name. This is me talking, but one conclusion to jump to is that using that name basically says (to me, anyway), "Hey, it's only OUA, no reason to think readers want anything beyond what's in the press release or want to know about the culture and history of these leagues." Or maybe it is being efficient. Everyone has her/his own labour-saving techniques.
Merely addressing this likely betrays the author's preference, which is neither here nor there. It would be like in The Girl Next Door when Emile Hirsch's buddy keeps telling him, "Learn to like it," if a formal change was made.
A compromise has been suggested: Golden Gaels in football, Gaels for the other Queen's teams and build the brand on the Q crest, if the longer name is so, so wrong. This is less about what name Queen's settles on than how people who are smarter, more talented and more likable than yours truly have carried out a half-measure.