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John Antonio Dies: Clemson Tiger Paw Logo Creator Dead At 83

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A Clemson flag is seen during a game between the Furman Paladins and the Clemson Tigers at Memorial Stadium on September 15, 2012 in Clemson, South Carolina. (Photo by John Powell/Replay Photos via Getty Images)
A Clemson flag is seen during a game between the Furman Paladins and the Clemson Tigers at Memorial Stadium on September 15, 2012 in Clemson, South Carolina. (Photo by John Powell/Replay Photos via Getty Images)

CLEMSON, S.C. -- The man who designed Clemson's tiger paw logo has died.

The university said 83-year-old John Antonio died Thursday in Greenville after a long battle with cancer.

Antonio was with an advertising firm in 1970 when he was asked to design a new logo for the Clemson Tigers. He noticed that most other Tigers logos across the country were of the entire animal.

Antonio asked a Chicago museum for a plaster cast of a Bengal tiger's paw. He used the cast to make the logo.

The school says athletic director Frank Howard was not impressed when he first saw the tiger paw logo on stationery. But when Antonio pulled out an orange helmet with the logo on it, Howard loved it.

A memorial service will be June 15 in Greenville.

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