Friday, October 12, 2007

Fargo's New Franchise Is Officially Named

Come next season, the Fargo Force will be visiting your arena.

Fargo's USHL Team to be a Force

The United States Hockey League's newest member, to be based in Fargo, North Dakota, announced their new team nickname and unveiled their logo at a press conference on Friday, October 12.

Following a "Name the Team" contest in which over 1,200 entries were submitted, the team was named the Fargo Force. A total of 13 entrants suggested the name Force.

"We intend to build a strong team, a force to contend with. Our goal was to create a powerful brand, with fury and flash," said Force head coach and general manager Dean Blais.

The logo consists of laser force beams and flames, with the flames forming two artistic "F's." Team colors are blue, silver and white. The team tagline is "Fire. On Ice."

"The Fargo Force will be all about fire on ice. And let's face it -- a fun factor for the crowd," Blais said.

The Force began building their team last week in the USHL's Futures Draft. There, they selected eight players that they hope will be the foundation of their first-ever roster. St. Cloud (Minn.) Cathedral defenseman Nate Schmidt was the team's first selection.

"These are exciting days for all of us involved, the community and the entire region," said team owner Ace Brandt. "This brand was selected for both hockey and entertainment. We look forward to the many activities our guests will experience when they arrive at the games."

The team is slated to begin playing in the USHL in 2008. Their home rink, the Urban Plains Center, is currently under construction in South Fargo.

The Force will be the third USHL team to call Fargo home. The first, the Fargo-Moorhead Bears, played out of the Moorhead Sports Arena. In 1995-96, the Bears, coached by Steve Johnson, finished third in the USHL with a 27-18-1 record. They folded after just one season. The second was the Fargo-Moorhead Ice Sharks. The Ice Sharks began play in 1996-97, playing out of the Fargo Coliseum. They stayed in Fargo for four seasons before moving to Chicago where they became the Steel. The Ice Sharks had only one season over .500, that being 1997-98 when they finished 26-23-7. They were led by Tyler Arnason, who topped the league scoring chart with 82 points in 52 games. Arnason currently skates with the NHL's Colorado Avalanche.

The USHL is America's only Tier I league and the premier path for developing players in America. The league has over 100 current players committed to Division I colleges and 19 players that have been selected in the NHL Draft. For more information on the USHL and its member teams, visit us on the web at

To me, the logo really lacks. I guess I don't see "Force" as a great hockey team name. Maybe they will be able to force their way up the standings once they begin, or something to that extent.

And with this Fargo entry, I felt this article about their arena ties together.


yeti said...

Fargo Force??


Anonymous said...

Sounds kind of quirky and WNBA-esque to me.

Anonymous said...

Do you know what happened to Mannino after he was waived out of the OHL? Did he end up with any of the USHL teams? I checked the transactions but didn't see his name. I know that you are the USHL expert, and just wanted to know.

Ryan said...

I have not seen or heard anything on Mannino.

Anonymous said...

Well, it's interesting, I guess. Another vague sort of thing that doesn't scream any sort of particular mascot.

Plus, my entry didn't, so I don't have to like it, right? ;)

-gbpuck fan

Anonymous said...

They could have always just gone back the Ice Sharks. Their logo was a little bit more entertaining.

I guess it's not the name FORCE that I dislike, I'm just not sure about the logo. Not too intimidating to me.

Anonymous said...

Ryan don't be so close-minded. Ice?, Steel?, Blue Jackets?, Stars?, Storm? Hmmmmm. Give it some thought though. It's not a traditional name like Blackhawks or Bucs But it's the 21st Century and it has a king of cyberspace ring to it. It is a smart marketing strategy that the fans will be able to have fun with. I can see it now......Laser light shows etc. It will have a futuristic feel to it!

Anonymous said...

I can live with the name Fargo Force. Like it or not, we are now in an age of getting our customers to help create a brand. In this particular case it was a "name the team contest". Fine...

The "stylized" F's are generic at best. Google "bike flames" and you will get many iterations of the same boring overused shapes. Thankfully a team isn't all about the logo, as there are many other facets that go into a fan experience. With that said, I for one would NOT be proud to be wearing any jersey with that blob on it.

tiffany said...

Would anyone happen to have any old programs or anything that has fargo ice sharks rosters with player numbers? Looking for who wore #24 and the season. Thanks guys