A freelance artist is suing NYU because she says her alma mater stole her mascot design and used it for merchandise without compensating her. 22-year-old Ariel Fleurimond (MySpace) was a psychology major working as an equipment room clerk in the athletic department in 2007 when associate director Noah Lefebre asked her to create a mascot. Fleurimond says she came up with a cartoon cougar she called "Orion" and submitted the illustration, but never heard anything about it. Cut to last summer, when she discovered, painted on the floor of the gym, her cougar—which she says has been appropriated as NYU's bobcat. NYU's legal department reviewed her complaint and decided that Fleurimond had been fairly compensated for her work in the athletic department, but her lawyer tells the Daily News, "She was paid to pick up dirty towels." Fleurimond hopes to get millions because she copyrighted her cougar cartoon, but it's important to remember that the bobcat is a relatively new mascot at NYU. NYU teams are the "Fighting Violets"; bobcat is a macho portmanteau of "Bobst Catalog," the school's filing system. NYU's spokesman says, "We fully expect to prevail." You go, Violets!