The Kansas Relays were held a few weeks ago Lawrence, maintaining a track and field tradition that began in 1923. The program cover design that first year was nothing special, but things began looking a lot better the following year. That began a long string of outstanding covers, many of them absolute classics of two-color design. Here are some of my faves:
1926: I love the jayhawk lurking in the background of this design.
1929: This design’s a little busy, but I really like how the “crowd” is actually letters spelling out the names of the participating schools. I like the starter’s gun, too.
1930: You know, you can do a lot with a simple illo and lots of curves.
1931: I love the series of little colored panels that columinate in the price tag.
1932: Simple, basic beautiful.
1933: I don’t know if this medal-based design was actually used as the basis for a medal, but it should have been.
1939: Beautiful composition here, but the illo is surprisingly weak. Like, does that stubby guy look like a sprinter to you?
1941: You don’t often see American sports designs with a yin-yang graphic.
1942: This year marked the first full-color design. Not an improvement, methinks.
1948: Back to two-color, but with the typography reduced to little more than an afterthought. Nice illo, but overall design is disappointing.
1950: Bit of a misleading statement on this cover. The Relays’ true silver anniversary year would have been 1948, but the event was cancelled in 1943-45 due to World War II. So 1950 was the 25th installment of the Relays — noteworthy, but not a silver anniversary.
1960s: A weak decade. In 1961 they started using photography, mostly to underwhelming effect. C’mon, this looks like it’s promoting a high school track meet. Pretty much a lost decade, with one notable exception.
1970s: Even worse.
(Thanks to Steve Stern for bringing this one to my attention.)
By Brinke “Vote JFK” Guthrie
Our featured subject today is NFL helmet banks. Helmets make great banks because of their size and design. The slot always goes on the top in the helmet seam, and the plug in the base. Let’s take a look:
• This Saints bank comes complete with a klunky facemask.
• I had this! (Still have a Cowboys one from ’71.) This one, like mine, says “Hunter Savings” on it; as I recall, Hunter was a bank in suburban Kenwood. The auction listing says ’60s, but it feels like ’72 to me.
• Heck, let’s sneak in this NBA bank, just for the logos on the base.
• Moving on to non-bank items, I like this old San Diego Clippers logo. Rather abstract, and so much better than their LA look, which the worst in the NBA (it’s always reminded me of someone who just sketched it out on a notepad and said, “Here”).
• Always liked this Cavs logo. But did anyone besides me wonder why the name went on top and the city on the bottom?
• I thought I’d seen all the vintage Tudor NFL stuff. I ordered so many complete teams from them, I even remember their address — 176 Johnson Street in Brooklyn (maybe Paul knows where this is [about a mile from my house, but I’m fairly certain no Tudor activities are currently taking place — PL]). So I was surprised to come across this 1975 game I hadn’t seen before, Power Sweep.
• I wore these spiral-bound NFL Record Manuals out.
• Love thi slogan: Baseball: the NOW career. [I’ve never seen this before and am fascinated by it. Ricko and/or other graybeards, you know anything about this? — PL]
• I have this exact bobble, and mine has an inscription on the bottom: “12-21-75, CIN 47, SD 17.”
• Whoa, look at these NHL logo stickers. Way cool.
• Ladies and gentlemen, your Atlanta Flames. One of my favorite logos ever.
• Hmmm, Pat Patriot as a sleeve logo. Interesting.
And now back to Paul for today’s Ticker.
Uni Watch News Ticker: The Fukuoka Softbank Hawks have given their captain a “C” (with thanks to Jeremy Brahm). … Stephen Boyd reports that Chelsea had a new red-accented collar for the FA Cup Final. … The last Plaxico Burress fan on Earth showed up at Drake University’s commencement ceremony the other day (photos taken by Matt Strum). … Cool throwback ballgame the other day between Bowling Green and Kent State. Photo No. 3 is of particular interest (with thanks to Tom Konecny). … Several Titans players have been helping with the clean-up from the Nashville floods, including Kerry Collins, who appears to have been wearing NFL gloves for the task (good spot by Mat Orefice). … While looking for something else, I spotted a shot of Clayton Kershaw with some serious Pedro Porthole action. … The Cavs have supposedly been fined for wearing their alts in the postseason, which doesn’t make any sense to me, what with Los Suns and all. Anyone know more about this? … Wes Rickards was watching the movie Spy Game the other day and noticed a uni glitch: “There’s a scene that supposedly took place in 1985 Beirut. But in that scene, the Padres hat that Brad Pitt was wearing featured Padres colors from the 1990s, and thus would not have been available in 1985.” … I week or two ago I linked to a photo of Brewers-branded airplane. Now Dwayne White has come up with some time-lapse video of the paint being applied to the jet (annoying soundtrack, though, so you might wanna hit the mute button). … Marc Viquez reports that the Coastal Bend Kingfish of the Continental Baseball League have patterned their graphics after the Expos (here’s a closer look), but is that an actual Expos batting helmet? … “Some friends of mine went to Gonzaga University during spring break to visit a friend,” writes Kyle Leeman. “Their friend is a graduate student in the sports management department and gave them a tour of the men’s locker room. Notice what is written on the bottom of the board.” … Sam Forster notes that Big Papi was wearing a 2008 All-Star Game undershirt last night. … “Cleveland High School in Portland, Oregon, has switched from one interesting football helmet to another,” writes Sam Nichols, who attends that school. “Last season, our team wore a green helmet with a yellow middle stripe and a wishbone C for Cleveland. Now it looks like we’re switching to a yellow helmet with an eerily familiar O — excuse me, C — logo. Veeery similar to U of O’s Civil War helmets. Phil Knight is an alum, which probably explains it.” … RIP, Hank.