Charlotte Independence reveals its crest

According to Charlotte Independence they displayed 10 images of potential crests and asked fans to pick their favorite and give feedback. More than 5,000 votes were cast. The team and designer, Brian Casscles discussed and compiled all the feedback and chose the crest.

One of the most important elements was combining Charlotte's nickname the "Queen City," while using a soccer ball to distinguish the team from other sports.

According to Charlotte Independence the front office was not shy about using images of Captain James Jack in its preseason marketing, so it should come as no surprise that he is a central figure in the crest. Captain Jack is the man who delivered the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence - the team's namesake - to the Continental Congress in 1775. That date remains prominently featured beneath him. Also pictured below Captain Jack is a shadow in the shape of a lightning bolt. This is meant to pay homage to former American Soccer League Champions the Carolina Lightnin'. The 1981 Lightnin' remain the only Charlotte team to have won a professional sports championship.

Perhaps the largest feature of the crest is the scroll across the middle bearing the team's name, a clear representation of the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence. In another nod to the Meck Dec, one of the logo's prominent colors is a light tan, meant to mimic the appearance of parchment paper. Meanwhile, the Independence home kits will be royal blue to match the color of the Mecklenburg County flag. The navy blue accents are meant to provide contrast and also rated highly with fans in the online campaign.

Following the presentation of the crest and kits, Independence Managing Partner Jim McPhilliamy announced that the team will play its March 27 opener at University of North Carolina-Charlotte's Transamerica Field. The Independence will host local rival the Charleston Battery that Friday at 7:30pm. An announcement regarding a venue for the team's remaining home games in 2015 will be made in early March.

The Independence currently has seven players under contract for 2015, with an open tryout scheduled for Feb. 13-14 and training camp set to begin Feb. 23.