New ESPN column today. I’ll add the link when it goes live. [Update: No ESPN column today after all. It'll run next week.]
Meanwhile: As I noted at the end of yesterday’s Uni Watch News Ticker, the Chiefs will presumably wear some sort of memorial tribute this weekend for team founder Lamar Hunt, who died on Wednesday. But Hunt’s passing has already provided some valuable uni-watchery, thanks to a memorial photo gallery that’s been posted on the Chiefs’ web site (first brought to my attention yesterday by reader Jacob Reed). Many of the pics feature great little uni-related details I’d never seen before. Check it out:
• Even better: Dig the amazing team-branded blazers worn by Hunt and Bud Adams in this 1962 shot, back when the Chiefs were still the Dallas Texans. Looks like Adams might also be wearing an Oilers tie tack.
• Speaking of the Texans, dig this shot of Hunt and his young son, the latter wearing a Texans T-shirt. Love to know what Goodwill outlet that eventually got donated to.
• Here’s something you don’t see anymore: a postgame celebration with one of the players (Sherrill Headrick, in this case) smoking a cigarette.
• Here’s Hunt presenting the NFL Man of the Year Award to Derrick Thomas in 1993. The uni detail that fascinates me here is the trophy itself: Like, when’s the last time you saw an NFL player wearing a poncho? Or maybe it’s supposed to be a superhero’s cape?
• How many NFL teams have uni-numbered ski caps?
• Check out Chiefs prexy Carl Peterson in this shot: He’s got the “58” button (a memorial for Derrick Thomas), the red-white-blue Chiefs ribbon (not sure what that’s for — the photo isn’t dated, but Thomas died in 2000, so the ribbon probably isn’t 9/11-related), and it looks like there’s a number on his tie (no idea).
• And in an age when Reebok dresses the coaches wear those ridiculous polo shirt designs, the elemental simplicity of this is quite refreshing.
‘Husker History: Reader Jonathon Binet has turned up a sensational little video chronicling the history of Nebraska’s football helmets. Check it out below:
Helmet Raffle Update: Speaking of helmets, I got a note yesterday from Pete Ellingsworth, winner of our Gridiron Memories helmet raffle. He says he’s taking the 1976-72 Indiana helmet — “I love the simple ‘I’ and stripes on the crimson
helmet,” he writes. “Plus I’m from Indiana (never mind the fact that I now reside in Burbank, California). I just wish IU would stop wearing those red on red unis!” Gotta love a contest winner who works a uni critique into his victory speech. Congrats, Pete!
No mas? No, mas!: My recent profile of No Mas led to a Wednesday-night sit-down between myself and No Mas principals I-berg and Large. Fueled by a pu pu platter and ample servings of chicken chop suey and “Richard Yee’s Style Chow Clams” (better than it looks), we discussed several weighty matters, including the possibility of creating a line of No Mas/Uni Watch co-branded T-shirts. Stay tuned.
Uni Watch News Ticker: Speaking of NFL coaches’ polos, check out the swash-“S” at the end of the insignia on Vince Lombardi’s shirt (with thanks to Robert Erdtmann). … An Orioles prole has been caught stealing team items, including jerseys and jackets, and selling them on eBay (as spotted on the police blotter by Matt French). … Turns out Daisuke Matsuzaka was fated to join the Red Sox all along — check out the stirrups he wore in high school (good catch by Richard Stover). … Remember Joe Pavelski’s upside-down Reebok logo, which first showed up about two weeks ago? Pavelski’s childhood friend and Uni Watch reader John Okray asked him about it on Wednesday. “He didn’t even realize it,” Okray reports. “He said, ‘I heard something about that. I forgot to look for it last night before I put my jersey on. I hadn’t noticed until somebody said something to me about it.’ Is it possible players aren’t as obsessed with their jerseys as we are? [There's a stunner. -- PL] The Sharks don’t have another road game until December 30th, so maybe the problem will be fixed by then.” … Okray also notes that Dwyane Wade, who was inexplicably wearing that Nike-branded Heat jersey on the cover of SI a week or two ago, now has three stripes shaved into his head. A mea culpa to Adidas, perhaps? … Good note from Chuck Miller, who writes: “Butte, Montana, is the hometown of motorcycle daredevil Evel Knievel. The city’s new CBA basketball franchise is not only named the Daredevils, but their uniforms are an interpretation of Knievel’s famous ‘Commander Jumpsuit’ motorcycle leathers.” All this was presumably done with Evel’s blessing, given his litigious nature. … A few days ago I linked to this photo of the 1905 Cherokee Male Seminary football team. I mentioned the noseguards that most of the players have hanging from their necks, but Michael Ferry has noticed something I missed regarding a few of the players seated in the middle row: “I was wondering if those are ‘helmets’ on the knee and arms, respectively, of those on the far right and left.” Looks like it, but those would definitely be the flimsiest helmets I’ve ever seen, so I asked Helmet Hut prexy Curtis Worrell, who said they’re definitely helmets. “Look at this,” he wrote back. “The helmet top far right has the same openings.” … The Marlins will have a sleeve patch next season celebrating the 10th anniversary of their 1997 championship. … Man, one lousy signature on a contract and suddenly you’ve got two Boston jerseys in one day. … Matt Corica notes that Seahawks’ “neon-snot sleeve stripe” was missing Deion Branch’s jersey last night, and from Nate Burleson’s too. … Looks like Mike Nolan went from wearing a suit to joining the janitorial staff.