REDBLACKS Announce Mascot will be Renamed to Big Joe

The Ottawa RedBlacks have modified the name of their mascot from Big Joe Mufferaw to Big Joe after receiving criticism from the region’s Francophone community.

Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group said they originally named the mascot after a fictional lumberjack character that appeared in children’s books by storyteller Bernie Bedore and was made famous in a song by Stompin’ Tom Connors.

But the character was inspired by Joseph Montferrand, a real life Outaouais logger and defender of Francophone rights in the 1800s.

Many Francophones took to Twitter on the weekend to vent their frustrations with the choice, saying using Mufferaw instead of Montferrand was disrespectful to the man who inspired the character.

Francophones make up about 35 per cent of the RedBlacks market.

   
 

The team said the mascot’s name in French will be Grand Jos.

The Redblacks will kick off their inaugural season July 3 in Winnipeg, with their first home game scheduled for July 18 versus Toronto.

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