As I stated in a previous article, Harry Potter had a lot to do with the influences behind Lord of Columbia and Northern Knights in terms of Libertarianism, but it also gave me sort of an idea regarding turning the four Houses into eleven Complexes along with a twelfth commuting team.
Yeah, I needed more than four because I wanted it to kind of resemble the early NFL, which had fourteen teams prior to 1966, but I felt the original fourteen to sixteen was too much.
Anyway, in terms of sports such as shotball, I wanted it to resemble a collegiate/professional sports league, giving the Summit University League the name Summit Shotball League, or SSL, which was inspired by the National Football League, or NFL.
In the SSL, we have two conferences: the North Conference, which is made up of players and residents coming to Summit from North Columbia. There are five Complexes in the North, again with the sixth team being full of commuters. Then, we have the South Division, which we will cover today.
The South is made up of Santos, Leistung, Obranca, Vojaci, Kriger, and Arbete.
The South Conference was actually influenced by the old AFC Central in the NFL between the years 1999 and 2001, when the division bore six teams.
Each color scheme adopted by the following teams is directly derived from the 1999-2001 AFC Central, which many NFL fans will notice off the bat. While two of the old Central’s teams now play in the AFC South and the remaining four in the AFC North after the 2002 NFL Realignment, historic rivalries existed between most of the teams.
For instance, the Pittsburgh Steelers and Houston Oilers shared a heated rivalry throughout the 1970s while the two teams still share heated moments when playing against one another in the modern era (the Oilers have since been renamed the Tennessee Titans).
I’ve been long-waiting to write this article, since it kind of links Lord of Columbia to my other blog, the Helmet and Jersey Stop which is an online encyclopedia of NFL uniforms, the most recent containing a 4,000-word article of the Hall of Fame Game’s helmet histories.
But anyway, enough talk, let’s get these logos and color schemes out there and the meanings behind them, as everything you read in Lord of Columbia has a meaning.
Santos is the protagonist team which Cain and his crew are part of. Unlike in the Harry Potter Series, Santos is more resembling of Hufflepuff House, but keep in mind not a single Complex here expects special qualities; students are randomly divided into each.
The Knights’ name is sort of a nod to the NBA’s Cleveland Cavaliers and its G-League affiliate, the Canton Charge, but of course there’s another reason why in the books.
The color scheme of orange and brown is a direct relation to the Cleveland Browns while the logo itself is reminiscent of an old MLB team called the St. Louis Browns, who ironically moved to Baltimore, Maryland in 1954 to become the Orioles.
The St. Louis Browns shared a similar color scheme to the Cleveland Browns, and as I stated, the team’s logo is very identical to that of the St. Louis Browns, which can be seen here.
The Knights, despite their woes are regarded to having the greatest fans in the SSL, much like how the Cleveland Browns are said to have among the greatest and most loyal fan bases in not just sports, but in entertainment.
The word Leistung is German for power, and that’s what the Monarchs are, boasting more SSL Summit Bowl (derived from Super Bowl) Championships than any other Complex. Their style of play is aggressive and borderline dirty when the team is angry.
The fan base is also expectant of winning, much like their black and yellow counterpart, the Pittsburgh Steelers. Like Steeler fans, Leistung fans may put on an aura that they’re the greatest not just in the SSL but in sports, however, history shows little to no fan support when the team isn’t winning.
Like in Pittsburgh, teams like the Penguins received little support (drawing roughly 6,000 per game at the old Civic Arena)until the arrival of Mario in the 1980s while the Pirates are struggling to fill half the stadium. Then there are Steeler fans themselves, who tend to have a habit of leaving Heinz Field early when the team is struggling.
Like any Monarch, Leistung’s logo is that of a gold grown with a black background.
Obranca Fighting Braves
Obranca is said to also share a rivalry with Leistung reminiscent to Santos, as well as the Complex being on friendlier terms with Santos even in sports, dubbing the teams friendly rivals.
The Fighting Braves name is a nod to Native Columbian culture, despite the sheer prejudice the race faces even in the book’s modern setting, a rare honorable mention to such a great race of people.
Kriger is reminiscent of the NFL’s Baltimore Ravens, with a purple, black, and gold color scheme. Even the team’s shield logo resembles that of the Ravens.
Kriger plays a tiny role in the books, and are known as a tough defensive team, much like the Ravens are known for in the NFL, especially during the 2000 season when the team won the Super Bowl.
A defensive powerhouse that also loves fighting with Leistung Complex, Kriger has spats with the Santos’ fan base, as in a story unrelated to Lord of Columbia, a group of Santos’ best players joined forces with those in Kriger after being lured over to the Complex (Complex migration can and does happen often, especially in sports). Santos’ five best joined with Kriger’s six best, which in turn led the team to its first Summit Bowl appearance a year later and they ultimately won the Summit Bowl.
In Santos Complex, many believed that the five who joined Kriger would’ve led the Knights to its first Summit Bowl appearance in over six decades. This event occurred a little over a decade before Northern Knights. Kriger is also the newest Complex at Summit, not created until after the Split of Columbia two decades before the events of the books.
Arbete Dark Raiders
The fifth Complex founded a few years before Kriger, Arbete did something no one else ever did; they became the first expansion Complex to sweep a team in shotball (the Santos Knights). They set a record that season for the most wins ever by an expansion Complex, finishing 4-12 when they notched their second victory over Santos.
Founded during the events of my planned Prequel trilogy, Arbete set the tone as an expansion Complex from the beginning, becoming the only team to adopt teal as part of their overall color scheme.
The team was initially named the Raiders, but those in the Complex felt the name was too common since, at the time, Thomas University and Franklin University down in what would become South Columbian territory also held the name.
They have perhaps the smallest fan base in the SSL and are one of only two SSL teams (Richfield Complex being the other) to have never played in a Summit Bowl and are one of four Complexes to have never played in a Summit Bowl in the so-called modern era of shotball along with Santos and the Commuting Richfield Team, the Stallions, which began seventy seasons prior to Northern Knights.
Their real-life NFL counterpart is the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Vojaci is quite the shape-shifting Complex, sometimes friendly with the Santos crew and at other times, a sworn enemy. But there is a history here. Vojaci was not part of the Original Six, which consisted of Santos, Leistung, Obranca, Northcoast, Hallsburg, and Richfield Commuters, the latter three being in the North Columbian Conference).
However, a spat between Santos players and their coach, Paulie Vojaci, forced the latter out at a time Summit was looking to expand due to the influx of students coming to its grounds from all over Gaia, not just South Columbia. Thus, Vojaci became the Complex of international students in its beginnings.
Collier, however, still owned much of Santos’ equipment, so he packed it up and used it once appointed by the School Board President to found Vojaci Complex. He simply replaced brown with black and as a result, Vojaci’s uniforms greatly resembled that of Santos for years.
When Summit University split with the rest of Columbia thirty years later, it was Santos Complex that proposed the North and South Conferences other than pitting the Original Six against the Expansion Six that sprouted in the years prior, namely so they could share a rivalry with Vojaci. Santos also invited Leistung into the fray as well. As a result, Kriger, Obranca, and Arbete also joined the South.
Their counterpart is the Cincinnati Bengals.
That does it for the South Conference. Stay tuned to find the origins of the North Conference and the evolution of the entire SSL, which I’ll be designing soon enough. Also, stay tuned for more history-based articles that helped inspire the main plotlines in Lord of Columbia. As I’ve stated many times, I like to balance the light and dark articles to give my readers a bit of a mental break….and myself as well because research is a chess game, let me tell you!
So, enjoy my sports-based articles as well as a little bit of backstory and for further secrets to the entire Lord of Columbia Saga, as well as updates, you can join my mailing list by scrolling toward the top of this page and clicking the e-book entitled ‘The Eurean Kingdom’ which will funnel you to my email signup page on Prolific Works, which will also gift you with your own free copy of The Eurean Kingdom, a Prequel to Lord of Columbia.
Thank you all for reading yet another article here at Lord of Columbia Series, please come back soon.