Time for another blast from the football past, courtesy of photo archivist extraordinaire Robert Harvell. Dig:
• Why would you have your uni number on your helmet twice?
• We’ve all seen pics of Hank Stram wearing a blazer with a Chiefs patch. Until now, though, I’d never seen a player wearing one.
• And speaking of team blazers, it’s a little hard to see, but that’s a Steelers crest (“P S”).
• Interesting to see the Packers’ old primary color (navy) and their new one (green) together in the same shot.
• Philly fans, this one’s for you.
• Here’s a rare find: Bears and Rams letterhead.
• I don’t much care about the CFL, but I’ll always make room for this uni.
• Here’s a puzzler: The 1939 World’s Fair was in NYC, so why would the trylon and perisphere be shown on a Bears jacket?
• Proof that Y.A. Tittle once had hair. He’s the “I.”
• Yikes — fix that facemask.
• Always amusing to see athletes doing the isometric thing in those harnesses.
• Love the “M” logo socks.
• Wichita State briefly wore this really odd uniform — ram’s horn jerseys with tribal-stripe pants.
• We’ve all seen Dymo labels on players’ helmets, but how about on the coach’s sunglasses?
• I’m not sure what to make of this one. The defensive player’s socks and uni numbers are pure Broncos, but what’s with the pants stripe?
• Oh baby, check out this awesome promo shot of Mercury Morris earning his nickname!
• Interesting jaw pads on Don Maynard’s helmet. “That helmet recently sold at auction for $6500,” says Robert.
The worst-kept secret in the uniform world: As various NBA-related photos have trickled out over the past few months (from the rookie photo shoots, leaked photos, etc.), many fans have noticed some changes in the jersey fabrics, especially on the uni numbers. This is a league-wide change, and I’ve known about it for the past year or so. But I haven’t been allowed to talk about it until today, when the NBA will finally present all the details at a media event at the NBA Store in Manhattan (which I believe is being live-streamed on NBA.com at 11am eastern). I’ll be attending the shindig and will have several installments of ESPN coverage: a Page 2 blog entry this morning at 10am, another P2 blog item later this afternoon, and a column tomorrow.
Today’s unveiling is actually the NBA’s second media event for the new fabrics. The first one, which I also attended, was held two months ago (mainly so magazines with long lead times, like Slam, could be up to speed on things) and was very hush-hush. Anyway, Josh Smith of the Hawks was on hand to discuss the new fabrics, and I got to interview him after all the boring corporate people made their boring corporate speeches. As he and I talked about various uni-related issues, he told me something pretty funny, which I can finally share with you now:
Josh Smith: Mike Bibby, he needs a new pair of socks every game. Even for every practice.
Uni Watch: Because he can feel the springiness in a new pair of socks..?
JS: Naw, he’s like a semi-germophobe. Semi [chuckles] — I’m gonna say “semi,” cuz it’s not all the way, know what I’m sayin’? But he has, uh…
JS [laughing hard now]: Exactly. He has some issues. He has to have, like, new everything. Everything has to be, like, up to date.
Smith, incidentally, struck me as fairly thoughtful, serious guy. Count me as a fan.
Recommended Reading: Webmaster John Ekdahl has recently been putting together a site for another client. It’s about the visual presentation of politics (“Sort of Uni Watch for politics,” says John) and it’s called Polioptics, which is a pretty ingenious term. It’s an interesting site — definitely worth checking out.
Uni Watch News Ticker: Yesterday’s entry about Rick Friedel’s experience as an Orioles batboy prompted Patrick Haugh to send in this photo of himself as a Chisox batboy-for-a-day in 1985. … Good article about the brisk turnover of EPL kits (with thanks to Joseph Lichterman). … The Milwaukee Wave — that’s an MISL team — will not have a standard home jersey this season. Instead, they’ll wear different jerseys tied to local charities for each game (with thanks to Matt Krantz). … What’s the best thing about Oktoberfest? Super-textured uniforms, natch (big thanks to Charlie Shields). … Who says Habs and Leafs fans can’t get along? (Gorgeous old ad found by Bruce Menard.) … Very interesting article about how much it costs to outfit the Indiana football team (with thanks to Stephen DaFoe). … Walt Keys has created a series of retro-themed Ohio State posters — one for each game on this year’s OSU schedule. He’s also selling hand-screened versions of them on Etsy. “Only the Miami print is available for now, but I’m planning on printing more as the games approach, and i will make them available the week leading up to the match-ups,” he says. … Exhausted after a workout? Good news! You can now spend hundreds of dollars on specially designed recovery gear (thanks, Ek). … New hoops uni for Maryland? Maybe (with thanks to Ned Belliveau). … On Friday the Angels will unveil their 50th-anniversary logo, which will be worn as a patch next season. I’ve seen it, and it’s pretty nice. In addition, they’ll display their 2011 uniforms, which are pretty much the same as this year’s except for (1) the anniversary patch and (2) the halo on the “A” on the caps and jerseys will be changing from silver to gold. Details here. … Reprinted from yesterday’s comments: Great analysis of the Cardinals’ uni numbers. … Lovie Smith has been wearing this groovy throwback shirt for his post-game press conferences. Plus he’s been spotted in this T-shirt, this throwback polo, and so on. Lovie loves the throwbacks! (All this courtesy of Ben Isaacs.) … The Broncos will memorialize Kenny McKinley with white helmet decals with a navy “11.” … What’s worse than a wedgie? A wedgie on the gridiron (blame Jeremy Henderson). … Nice throwback thirds for the Rochester Amerks. … Had the rare occasion to get dressed up last night. The folks flanking me in that shot are Baroness Karen McBurnie and Juke Joint Jon Hammer, co-editors of the fine new publication Grade “A” Fancy, whose launch party at the Rum House was the occasion of last night’s merriment. As I was getting ready to leave, who should I bump into but Uni Watch editor emeritus Miles Seligman, who nurtured Uni Watch to viability way back in its formative Village Voice days. Hadn’t seen him in years. Man, sometimes I really, really love New York.