Denis Tangney Jr/Getty Images The Ohio State University
The Ohio State University has officially trademarked the word "THE."
"Ohio State is pleased to have received a trademark for THE on branded products associated with and sold through athletics and collegiate channels," Ben Johnson, OSU's senior director of media and public relations, said in a statement obtained by PEOPLE.
"THE has been a rallying cry in the Ohio State community for many years, and Buckeye fans who purchase official Ohio State gear support student scholarships, libraries and other university initiatives," Johnson continued, going on to state the school's licensing and trademark program generates over $12.5 million every year.
Per NBC News, the trademark is specifically for official school merchandise with just "THE" featured.
The official Twitter account for the school's football team, The Ohio State Buckeyes, celebrated with a short and sweet social media post, sharing an illustration of "The" scrawled on a page.
Choosing to let the image speak for itself, the team posted it without a caption.
As for why the school calls itself "THE" Ohio State University, the origins of the moniker date back to the 1870s.
"In 1986, a new University logo was introduced in the hopes of moving away from the 'OSU' symbol, which had been used since 1977," reads a post on the school's website. "University officials wanted the institution to be known as 'The Ohio State University,' again, since OSU could also mean Oregon State and Oklahoma State University."
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"However, the 'The' was actually part of the state legislation when the university was renamed in 1878," the explanation continues, noting that the institution was previously called the Ohio Agricultural and Mechanical College.
The website adds, "Legend also has it that 'The' was used to show the other colleges which institution was supposed to be the leader in the state - both in size and in financial support from the legislature."
Ohio State began pursuing the trademark in August 2019 shortly after designer Marc Jacobs filed a separate application, according to the school's statement.
"In 2021, the university was pleased to reach an agreement with Jacobs that allows both parties to register THE branded products for continued use and license," the statement concluded.