With bowl season upon us, Christopher Wheeler pointed me toward this Orange Bowl history page, which turns out to be chock-full of uni-notable photos. Here’s a chronological rundown:
1937 (Duquesne vs. Mississippi State): Love the pre-zebra-era officials. They must have had quite a time figuring out which team was which in this dark-vs.-dark contest. The teams were Duquesne and Mississippi State, although I don’t know which is which in the photo.
1938 (Auburn vs. Michigan State): What’s going on with this runner? Like, is that a ribcage protector, or a girdle, or what?
1942 (Georgia vs. TCU): By now the officials were wearing zebra stripes, but they were button-fronts, not pullovers. Again with the dark vs. dark, too.
1943 (Alabama vs. Boston College): Now that’s a set of zebra stripes! Never seen anything like that before. Anyone know more about that design?
1945 (Tulsa vs. Georgia Tech): Love the front “T” logo. Does it stand for “Tulsa” or “Tech”? I have no idea which team is which.
1949 (Texas vs. Georgia): Whoa, look at that football/globe thingie on the scoreboard. Sort of a worldwide “manifest football destiny” icon.
1952 (Georgia Tech vs. Baylor): Sorry to keep harping on the officials, but that cap patch/logo thingie looks interesting.
1953 (Alabama vs. Syracuse): Look along the lower-left edge of this photo. Did they cut that sideline yard marker out of construction paper or what?
1967 (Florida vs. Georgia Tech): This appears to have been a very good-looking game. Both teams could do a lot worse than to revive these designs as throwbacks.
1974 (Penn State vs. LSU): We’re so used to seeing Penn State wearing blank helmets that it’s hard to process the sight of them with TV numbers up there. According to the Helmet Project, they wore that style “during at least two periods: 1961 (and possibly earlier), and again from 1967 to 1974.”
1976 (Oklahoma vs. Michigan): Wow, looks almost heretical to see the upper portion of those Wolverine facemasks defiling the winged helmet design.
1978 (Arkansas vs. Oklahoma): Someone recently wrote to me and complained that I seem to think striped socks are the solution to every problem. And look — they are!
1982 (Clemson vs. Nebraska): You know how today’s linemen like their jerseys to be super-tight? That wasn’t the case in ’82.
1984 (Miami vs. Nebraska): Note that both teams have added shoulder logos for the occasion. I believe this was the first time that happened in the Orange Bowl.
1985 (Washington vs. Oklahoma): More shoulder artwork.
1998 (Nebraska vs. Tennessee): Adidas’s three-stripe logo creep doesn’t look so bad compared to this.
Thanks to Christopher for pointing me toward this great material.
Uni Watch News Ticker: Strat-O-Matic baseball is incorporating Negro Leaguers into its player sets. … Barcelona wore their orange jerseys while winning the Club World Cup on Saturday but donned their primary striped jerseys for the trophy presentation and photos. “You can still see the orange peeking out at the waists, and the orange socks too,” says Matt Brukman. “They pulled the same stunt after winning the European championship in 1992.” … I was intrigued by this 1949 World Series photo, which ran in Sunday’s New York Times. Pretty interesting that an usher would greet Tommy Henrich before he reach home plate. Looks like another usher is about to join the party, too. … Now that’s a hat (great find by Nate Morris). … Absolutely spectacular graphic slideshow detailing how Fenway Park is being prepared for the Winter Classic here (big thanks to Jay Sullivan). … Meanwhile, two boarding school hockey teams got to play at Fenway the other day. Lots more photos here, and additional info here (with thanks to Matthew Robins). … Okay, so we all know the Lakers’ jerseys and shorts used to have different shades of purple, but this is ridiculous (with thanks to Michael Cooperman). … The U.S. Olympic bobsled uniforms will look like this (with thanks to Jeremy Brahm). … Also from Jeremy: Here’s the logo for the 2010 FIVB World Congress and this year’s Japanese basketball all-star uniforms. … Lots of really interesting info about Arizona’s equipment staff prepping for the Holiday Bowl here and here (very nice find by Eric Sing). … If you have an 8mm movie projector, you might be interested in these 1960s high school football home movies (as found by Tris Wykes). … Awesome analysis of the differences in the early-’70s A’s uniforms here (big thanks to Dave Grob). … The Tulsa Oilers will be wearing an Xmas-themed jersey this Friday (with thanks to Ryan Atkinson). … FNOB alert. That’s from the 1991 Cotton Bowl (screen shot by Doug McConnell). … Injury report from Doug Keklak, who writes: “Jordan Staal took a puck (or stick) off the nose. Came back later with a full face guard like you see in youth hockey.” … Great slideshow of some of Umbro’s more questionable jerseys (with thanks to Terence Kearns). … “I got a chance to hang out with a buddy who’s in the Army over the holidays,” says Jake Sorg. “He showed me the current generation of boots they are wearing. It appears that swooshification isn’t limited to athletic uniforms.” Wow — Nike Pro Combat, for real! … The Wizards are wearing that “Abe” patch for Abe Pollin, which looks really odd on DeShawn Stevenson, because he has an Abe Lincoln tattoo on his throat (as noted by Stephen Boyd). … More stuff from Jeremy: Japanese basketball refs have a whistle illustration on their jerseys, and the people at the scorer’s table have their own uniforms. … And still more from Jeremy: The Japanese World Cup jerseys have a crow’s feather pattern knit into the fabric. … Joshua Jedwab, disgusted by the Blues’ alternate jersey design (“Barely a practice jersey,” he sniffs), has come up with some concepts of his own. … Yesterday’s entry about Tommy Kelly losing his pants reminded Paddy Fleming of a 2006 incident in which rugby player Donncha O’Callaghan went without his shorts. … Uh, no. Just no.