Quick Kicks: Best Lower League Crest
I picked this subject for today’s Quick Kicks, because there’s not a lot of soccer going on at the moment. Certainly the NPSL Member’s Cup is going on, but that’s basically a series of friendlies with little at stake other than bragging rights. So I decided to do a fun subject for Quick Kicks, enjoy! - DV
It’s hard to pick a single crest and I had to rule out several great badges (FC Grande, Cosmos, Little Rock) that I dearly love. For me a badge should connect your club to the place they represent. If there’s history, that’s even better, but I can’t demand history in a soccer landscape that has seen so much change and upheaval. I love simple lines and simple color scheme. I often think about how easy a crest would be to screen print. You don’t get much simpler than the bold lines that dominate the Bugeaters crest.
Bugeaters is an old nickname for people from Nebraska, so I love that connection to where they are from. The tractor is a beautiful addition to continue to farmer analogy. And the tractor sits on top of the simple soccer ball, but in a way that almost seems to imply domination of the globe. Yes, we’re from Nebraska and we’re down-to-earth farmers, but we will dominate the soccer world. The shield shape perfectly frames the elements of the logo.
Bugeaters made the switch to independent and will soon join a new league, but their connection to their homestate is obvious in their bold, yet simple, crest.
Big Green SC
Literally impossible to choose my one favorite. I don’t have one. So, I’ll go with Big Green SC, a 3rd Division club in the Buffalo & District Soccer League. Love the clean design and color scheme. It’s simple but immediately catches your eye. But, the jewel in the center is the goat headbutting the soccer ball.
We’re in a time period where US soccer branding and design are firmly in the traditionalist trenches. I’m all for clubs embracing the tradition and history of the sport. It connects a club and its fans to the greater game. But, US clubs have gone all in for incorporating European and South American traditional elements rather than looking back to the history of US soccer itself.
Big Green SC’s goat is full-on mid-century Americana and I’m so here for it.
AC Chehalem Valley
AC Chehalem Valley’s is currently my new favorite lower league soccer crest – heck, it might be my favorite badge in all of US Soccer right now. The club has only recently been announced and is planning to play in the NW Premier League of Washington and Oregon. Of course, that might be a biased opinion, as It’s me who has provided the concept and elements to CalyX Design and they nailed it. You might know CalyX Design from their work in the last two years with PDX FC of the NPSL.
The elements are all relevant to the community; the hazelnut-shaped badge calls out one of the agricultural products of the region, the colors and gentle waving wordmark is a nod to the rivers flowing through our valley, and the blue heron can be found in our wetlands and lakes. She’s in full flight, showing that “She Flies” is more than just a part of our state motto, here in Oregon, but that when she is powerful enough to fly on her own.
Dekalb County United
My favorite crest in lower league soccer would have to be Dekalb County United’s. I had the pleasure of working with the club over the summer by volunteering for a few games, and got to meet the great people people that make up the club and the community, so I might be a little biased. However, I never would have thought a soccer ball could look like corn on the cob until I saw this crest. Dekalb is located about two hours west of Chicago and one of the largest contributors to corn production in the state. While an ear of corn with a soccer ball as the cob makes up the main part of the crest, barbed wire lines the top above the club’s name. Barbed wire was actually invented in Dekalb back in 1874. Not only is the design clever and unique, but the crest features elements that embodies the city of Dekalb, Illinois. The club’s main goal is to represent and to unite the community, and I think they should be held as an example to local teams in the way they are run and what they stand for.