The University of Wyoming is facing criticism after paying an out of state marketing firm $500,000 for a new advertising campaign centered around a slogan already in use by Oklahoma State University.

OSU launched a campaign with the phrase "The World Needs More Cowboys" to promote their Know a Future Cowboy program last fall. UW recently announced the same slogan as the proposed centerpiece for their new recruitment ads.

University of Wyoming Associate Vice President of Marketing Chad Baldwin acknowledged that UW and the Boulder, Colo. based marketing firm they hired to create the campaign were aware that Oklahoma State had previously used the catchphrase.

According to Baldwin, UW discussed the slogan with Oklahoma State and obtained their permission to use the phrase. Baldwin also noted that Oklahoma State's primary slogan is "America's Brightest Orange" and that "The World Needs More Cowboys" has been used sparingly by their marketing team.

Wyoming and Oklahoma State have a history of legal battles. In 1993, the Universities settled a federal trademark infringement lawsuit over the use of the popular mascot Pistol Pete. In 2014, Oklahoma State filed another lawsuit against New Mexico State University for their use of the Pistol Pete mascot. Last year, Oklahoma State was involved in a separate dispute with Ohio State University over their attempt to trademark "OSU".




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