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The European Championships: A Uni-Centric History, Part 1

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[Editor’s Note: Several readers have been asking for more soccer coverage. Since I’m too soccer-clueless to handle the task, reader Bernd Wilms has stepped up with an outstanding guest-written entry on the uni history of the Euro tournament. It will be presented in two parts, beginning today. Enjoy. — PL]

By Bernd Wilms

Across Europe, UEFA Euro 2012 has been the most hotly anticipated sports event of the summer. From a European soccer fan’s point of view, the tournament is the other big event on the international calendar, scheduled neatly in between World Cups.

Because of this timing, soccer uni design today moves in two-year cycles. Kit makers have come to use major national team tournaments as a showcase for the templates and designs they’ll be outfitting clubs with for the next two years. A brief look back at Euro history, however, shows that the standardization of these product presentation methods and life cycles is a fairly recent development.

1960 (host: France; winner: Soviet Union): This clip from the third-place game of the first “European Nations Cup” gives a nice visual impression of the red star/Czech lion logo on the Czechoslovak kit, as well as the very traditional general aesthetic. Yugoslavia and France may have played blue/white on blue/white — it’s hard to tell from the footage available. The Final was won by the Soviets, who ran out with mismatched CCCP lettering on iconic red jerseys. Note the equally iconic, non-lettered all-black long-sleeve kit preferred by goalkeeper Lev Yashin.

1964 (host/winner: Spain): A weak draw saw Denmark advance to amass two losses of which no visual evidence apparently exists. Hungary wore an unusually frisky horizontal double stripe, while Spain bested the Soviet Union in a red-on-red final.

1968 (host/winner: Italy): The presence of the blue-clad Italians forced both the Soviets and Yugoslavs into all-white change kits for the first time. The Italians also employed a goalkeeper kit design that would last all the way until 1982, and that Gigi Buffon’s jersey for 2012 harkens back to somewhat.

1972 (host: Belgium; winner: West Germany): Kit-wise, the outstanding moment of this tournament occurred in the quarterfinals, technically the final qualifying round. West Germany traveled to Wembley and beat arch-rivals England, 3-1 in what’s generally considered the greatest game ever played by a German side. The fact that they did it in their green change shirts made that design instantly legendary and is the basis for Adidas inscribing “1972 – the beginning of a success story – 2012” inside the collar of this year’s change shirt, the first green Germany shirt since 2002.

Incidentally, the English beat Germany in the 1966 World Cup Final wearing their red change shirts. Years later, this would lead to several instances of one-upmanship. England wore change shirts at home against Germany at Euro 1996 and in 2000. The Germans tried the same move in 2001, but a 1-5 home loss ended these shenanigans, at least for the foreseeable future.

Note branded Adidas and Umbro track suits making their first appearances, foreshadowing future developments.

1976 (host: Yugoslavia; winner: Czechoslovakia): Antonin Panenka won it for the Czechoslovaks on the sexiest penalty ever taken, but the Adidas stripes apparent on his team’s shorts and socks were conspicuous already. Hosts Yugoslavia and Holland joined the Adidas-branded crowd completely, albeit with the van de Kerkhof brothers, as the photo shows, still under Puma contracts and still up to their usual stripe-dropping tricks. West Germany, however, were still being outfitted by a small firm named Erima. This was the year Adidas elegantly solved that problem by simply buying the company. Their shirts were of the same design as in the 1974 World Cup and were the first widely distributed as merchandise replicas, a trend that would greatly influence kit design in years to come.

1980 (host: Italy; winner: West Germany): West Germany prevailed again this year, playing in Adidas-branded jerseys produced by Erima. Yellow or white squares of tape on jerseys indicated a new issue: UEFA was still banning the display of makers’ marks on jerseys in all its competitions. Hence, German replica jerseys from that year included the Adidas logo, while the team’s actual shirts did not. Shirts from this era were also the first to include rayon in addition to the previously standard 100% cotton material. Furthermore, Germany’s uniform numbers represented an Adidas template used throughout the 1980s at the club level, foreshadowing increasing standardization in this regard.

The West Germans further complicated matters by sporting their 1978 World Cup jersey — again sans (Erima) logo — in their group matches. Spain set an example of a trend that persisted in club soccer into the ’90s by having their goalkeeper sport differently branded gear. And England debuted perhaps their most beloved shirt, made by Admiral.

1984 (host/winner: France): With current UEFA president Michel Platini at the height of his playing powers, France debuted the beautiful signature look that would become the basis for French shirts at the 1998 World Cup, Euro 2000, Euro 2004, Euro 2008, and the 2010 World Cup. Numbers on this kit were slightly more rounded than the Adidas standard and were also used by Belgium, among others. Speaking of Belgium, they debuted a beautiful argyle-based shirt that brings to mind similar Adidas designs used in tennis by Ivan Lendl. Meanwhile, Spain used a le coq sportif design with snazzy socks, Romania inexplicably wore black numbers on red kits, Portugal used a rare diagonally striped Adidas template, and Denmark wore Hummel’s herringbone shoulder stripe. Adidas furthermore introduced a diagonally striped goalkeeper template that became a staple of club play shortly thereafter. A wildly aesthetically pleasing tournament, in my opinion.

———

That’s enough for today. We’ll have the second and final installment tomorrow.

+ + + + +

Screen shot 2012-06-10 at 7.48.01 AM.png

Tee-ing off: Paul here. With T-shirt season now in full swing, remember that I’ve designed some very cool shirts based on old clothing label designs. They’re available at the Uni Watch shop on Zazzle.

Also, if you were interested in a certain pair of theoretical shirt designs that might hypothetically be available, conceptually speaking, you’d know what to do, right? Of course you would.

+ + + + +

Uni Watch News Ticker: New basketball court design for Cincinnati (from Neil Parsley). … New football field design for Wisconsin. “They’ve added logos, and they replaced the old ‘Badgers’ with ‘Wisconsin,'” says Nate Neumann). … Dennis Couvillion notes that the uni numbers on the Saints’ practice jerseys appear to be flaking off (there are many photos that show this, so it’s not an isolated thing). “Makes me wonder if Nike already has a problem,” says Dennis. … Rocky Lum found a Flickr account full of photos of soccer match balls, vintage Adidas soccer ads and soccer ball making. … Several readers noted that Sokratis Papastathopoulos, a Greek defender, wears FiNOB, presumably because “Papastathopoulos” won’t fit (screen shot by Hayden Charles). … Also, several readers noted that Greece was wearing a match-specific kit for that game against Poland. … Just what the world needs: a pink tennis court (from Tom Van de Kieft). … Here’s something that isn’t exactly gonna help people take the WNBA more seriously: Rookie Samantha Prahalis of the Phoenix Mercury wore No. 7 for preseason games and is listed under that number in the team’s media guide, but she switched to No. 99 when the regular season started. Why? “Apparently someone in the Phoenix front office forgot that they retired No. 7 for Michele Timms back in 2002,” says Kevin Brown. “They changed Prahalis’s number after many fan complaints.” … Not a great photo, but it’s still pretty cool to see the Steelers and Eagles playing basketball in 1947 (from Jerry Wolper). … Big Ben was wearing No. 78 in practice the other day, as a shout-out to Max Starks, who’s no longer with the team (from Brad Susany and Craig Boley). … Never seen this one before: Starlin Castro of the Cubs, who gunks up his helmet with pine tar, had sunflower seeds stuck on his helmet on Friday (great spot by Ron Roza). … Domenico Delgado spotted Yoenis Cespedes of the A’s was wearing a Nike Elite shooter’s sleeve the other day. … Even if you’re not into tattoos, you’ve gotta like all the old MLB logos this guy has on his arm (big thanks to John Okray). … The Diamondbacks are using a flag-desecration logo to promote their July 4th game, which is odd, since this year’s pandering caps are G.I. Joe, not flag-desecration (as noted by Sam Lam). … Speaking of which, the Yankees wore G.I. Joe pandering caps on Saturday, for “Military Appreciation Night.” … Orange stirrups! That’s Steve Cishek of the Marlins (from Ben Foster). … Also from Ben: “On Wednesday night the Oklahoma Sooners softball team went to their ‘throwback’ shorts in their loss to Alabama in the final game of the WCWS. I didn’t realize until Wednesday that shorts are required in international softball but have largely disappeared from the college game. OU pitcher Keilani Ricketts went seven innings sporting stirrups.” … FedEx was the sponsor of the St. Jude Classic golf tourney in Memphis, which explains why the tee boxes were marked with little FedEx trucks (from Dustin Semore). … It’s standard for championship teams to give a jersey to the President, but I’ve never seen them formatted like this before. John Muir saw that in a hotel in San Francisco. … Latest team to go gray: WVU football. Oh, and a gray helmet, too (from Evan Snyder and Jason Bernard). … Good observation by Brian Skokowski, who writes: “Jason Grilli, who has worn No. 39 since the Pirates signed him last year, has ‘Grilli #49’ embroidered on his glove. Now, he wore 49 in Detroit, Colorado, and Texas but has always been 39 with the Bucs. Also, his glove doesn’t appear to be 3+ years old, which was the last time he wore 49 in the bigs. 49 is neither retired nor currently being used by a Pirates player, so if he has such a strong connection to the number, why doesn’t he wear it?? Strange.” … Here’s this year’s World Series logo/patch. I don’t care for it — the last few versions had autumnal colors, which seemed appropriate for the Fall Classic. This one, with red and blue, feels generic. … Check out this artist who’s made large collages from hockey sticks and pieces of leather baseball gloves (from Rob Walker). … Daniel Murphy, who wears No. 28, was apparently using someone else’s bat on Saturday. Murphy’s been stuck in a slump, so that makes sense. What doesn’t make sense is that he’s apparently using a bat that belongs to reliever Tim Byrdak. … Here are the Japanese Olympic badminton uniforms (from Jeremy Brahm). … Also from Jeremy: Interesting throwback uniforms on tap for the Seibu Lions, who’ll wear Nishitetsu Lions uniforms on July 1. As you can see in that photo, all the uniforms have No. 24. That’s for former Lions player Kazuhisa Inao, who’s number was recently retired. The game is being played on his 75th birthday, and there’s also a special logo for the occasion. … Leo Strawn has created an Aussie rules football uni-database site. Good stuff, although it’s still in its embryonic stages. … Also from Leo: New Era will soon start selling a line of Aussie rules football caps. … A high school softball player in Vermont has been catching and throwing with the same hand, à la Pete Gray, after suffering a thumb injury (from Tris Wykes). … Jaime Galindo notes that Cristiano Ronaldo changed from long sleeves to short sleeves during halftime of Saturday’s Euro 2012 match. … I’ve seen lots of sports-themed wristwatches before, but never one shaped like a helmet (from Teamo Bigg). … The NCAA has a rule that corporate signage is supposed to be covered up during postseason baseball play, but apparently the folks at Oregon didn’t get the memo. “That is just ridiculous,” says Kevin Wos. … Oregon golf coach Casey Martin helps pick the Ducks’ football uniforms each week. So in a nice bit of turnaround, football coach Chip Kelly is picking Martin’s wardrobe for the U.S. Open (Jeremy Brahm again). … There’s some chatter about the Panthers possibly adding a black set of pants. Don’t know if it’s legit, but I can tell you that there are no black britches shown for the Panthers in the NFL Style Guide. … Kudos to Jake Kessler, who wears all manner of stirrups while competing in softball tournaments. “I get some compliments, I get some teasing,” he says. “I’ve earned the nickname ‘Throwback.’ If someone asks why I do it, I say it’s because I’ve always done it, and it’s the proper way to dress for the sport. If someone says, ‘I stopped wearing stirrups when I was 8,’ I inform them that was around the same time I stopped wearing my PJs out of the house.” … Dig the crazy sock match-up from the Ireland/Croatia match yesterday — checks vs. micro-stripes! (Big thanks to Jim Howicz.) … Current rules require a full face shield for college hockey players, but now the NCAA is looking into three-quarter shields (Tris Wykes again). … It’s tough to see, but it appears that Notre Dame football is wearing 125th-anniversary patches this season (from Jake Watterson). … FSU outfielder Josh Delph is a single-glover and Stony Brook first baseman Kevin Courtney is a bare-hander. I feel like those phenomena are even rarer in the world of aluminum bats than in the bigs (from Kyle Speicher and Matthew Dowell). … In a related item, Red pitcher Homer Bailey batted bare-handed last night. Not sure if that’s a new thing for him or not (screen shot by Brooks Baker). … I feel better about today’s youth after seeing this. The catcher is the son of reader Chris Fernandez. Nicely done! … Here are some “behind the scenes” photos of some of Nike’s players at the French Open. … New football uniforms for Middle Tennessee State? Apparently, based on this photo. “A friend of mine is at camp there, and his father posted that photo to Facebook,” says Clint Richardson. … Kent State baseball wore some very cool throwbacks for their game against Oregon (from Adam Wagner). … John Kimmerlein is spending some time in Alaska, where he’s discovering that the ballpark fare includes at least one menu offering not often seen in the lower 48. Also: one hell of a view. … In last week’s ESPN column, I mentioned that Tim Lincecum has worn at least three different shoe brands this season. But Michael Ludwig took a closer look at those photos and noticed that Lincecum also appears to be wearing three different glove designs (although all from Rawlings) in the three pics. … There’s a city bus in Hull City that’s decked out as a tribute to the local soccer team, the Tigers (from Les Motherby).

 

121 comments to The European Championships: A Uni-Centric History, Part 1

  • Ben | June 11, 2012 at 7:44 am |

    Should there be a link to Ivan Lendl?

    • Paul Lukas | June 11, 2012 at 7:53 am |

      Thanks — now fixed.

  • The Jeff | June 11, 2012 at 7:48 am |

    There’s some chatter about the Panthers possibly adding a black set of pants. Don’t know if it’s legit, but I can tell you that there are no black britches shown for the Panthers in the NFL Style Guide.

    Damn, I hope that uniform stays in Madden, even if it doesn’t see the field.

    Also… semi-serious question: were the Tennessee Titans light blue pants in the style guide in 2006 before they first brought those out in mid-season? Same question for the Seahawks and the neon green jerseys and navy pants in 2009. Just seeing if there’s any real precedent for new uniform elements without prior warning.

    • Paul Lukas | June 11, 2012 at 7:54 am |

      I didn’t have NFL Style Guide access those years, but I *think* the answer is no. I believe those were done on the fly. Ditto for the Redskins’ yellow pants a few years ago.

    • StLMarty | June 11, 2012 at 8:12 am |

      That’s pretty much the outfit they first displayed in 1995.

      • The Jeff | June 11, 2012 at 10:32 am |

        Yeah, it’s close. http://farm3.static....

        All the more reason it should be in Madden, if just for the sake of having it.

        • Ricko | June 11, 2012 at 12:03 pm |

          Making the point, once again, that reality is not the lynchpin of Madden.

          And conversely, Madden is not a measure of reality.

    • NickV | June 11, 2012 at 2:31 pm |

      I kind of hope that the Panthers DO go with Black pants – as it may eliminate at least two games where the Saints would be tempted to wear their Black Letoard Thug-Wannabee-Ten Years too Late-Not NFL Worthy-“Back That Ass Up/Master P”-Black Pants.

      Good Riddance if we can get it ….

      • Rob H | June 11, 2012 at 10:59 pm |

        Just because a team wears black pants, it doesn’t enusre the other won’t go black-mono-retarded

        http://www.gridironu...

        • Phil Hecken | June 11, 2012 at 11:19 pm |

          oh, c’mon rob…

          that was a great look

          everyone loves spandex black pants with no stripes and black socks/tights…

        • NickV | June 12, 2012 at 1:35 am |

          Regrettable, True. Stiil, one hopes that with the Panthers sporting such a look, the Saints would turn awat fro it. Here’s hoping …

          For me, there are few upbeat, leisurely pursuits that can turn immediately to disgust than when you walk into the Superdome for a Saints game, look into the portal and see the team warming up, and they are wearing those disgusting, assinine Black Leotards …

          Truly a barometer of society turning into a turdfest …

          In New Orleans, my feelings are that those that truly dig the Black pants are the same people that ride in the pickup truck behind the dance teams in parades, you know, the pickup truck with the 9 foot speakers blarring out too-loud hip hop for the dance team that has both his wife and daughter in it, the same guy that plays “Back That Ass Up” for his 11 yr old daughter to dance to in a family-oriented Mardi Gras parade, and then wants to get out of the pickup truck and fistfight every single guy watcching the exhibition that even looks at his 45 yr old wife also dancing – in a too-tight dance uniform and gyrating ten beats too fast for the song being played – while she marches with the 11 yr old’s dance team …

  • George F. | June 11, 2012 at 8:00 am |

    Regarding the ticker photo from Alaska. I currently live in Little Rock. The local AA team, the Arkansas Travelers offers a deer sausage. Not too bad.

    • Jim Vilk | June 11, 2012 at 9:59 pm |

      The local AA team, the Arkansas Travelers offers a deer sausage.

      but no beer, I presume…

      • Phil Hecken | June 11, 2012 at 11:52 pm |

        HAH!

        the mothervilker with a good one!

  • IowaAnt | June 11, 2012 at 8:37 am |

    I can not access youtube at work, any stills available for the soccer pictures?

  • Connie | June 11, 2012 at 8:42 am |

    Wow. One of the major Great Mondays here. As one of the complainers about the non-coverage-in-depth of Euro 2012, I owe big thanks to Bernd and Paul for today’s awesomely authoritative review of soccer uni history in the postwar era. Witty as well.

    My own idiosyncratic favorite is the Hungarian kit from the early 1960s, all white except for the barrel stripes of red and green on the shirt. Totally Magyarorszag.

    Great work, Brend. Btw, do you think the Irish lost that meaningless opener to Croatia to lull the Spanish into complacency? Just where we want ’em, right?

    • Tim E. O'B | June 11, 2012 at 9:26 am |

      Euro 2012 has been awesome. Ireland disappointed yesterday, but my other team (Netherlands) also failed me. I even wore my homemade van Persie jersey I made for the 2010 World Cup:
      http://img.photobuck...
      http://img.photobuck...
      I even included the little nike sleeve thingies, but no logo creep:
      http://img.photobuck...
      Yes, that is sharpie on an orange t-shirt, as you can see by the smudging from the one time I tried to wash it:
      http://img.photobuck...
      And you can tell I didn’t trace anything, if you compare my logo:
      http://img.photobuck...
      To the real one (it’s subtle, but it’s there – or, rather, isn’t):
      http://www.sportslog...

      • Nick | June 11, 2012 at 11:07 am |

        Nicely done!

        • Connie | June 11, 2012 at 12:03 pm |

          Dementedly excellent, Timbo.

    • Attila Szendrodi | June 11, 2012 at 11:56 pm |

      Gotta love those Magyars….

  • Oakville Endive | June 11, 2012 at 8:43 am |

    Wow, I’m susprised that Japan’s new Olympic Badminton uni’s isn’t a bigger story:)

  • Paul Q. | June 11, 2012 at 8:51 am |

    “Daniel Murphy, who wears No. 28, was apparently using someone else’s bat on Saturday. Murphy’s been stuck in a slump, so that makes sense. What doesn’t make sense is that he’s apparently using a bat that belongs to reliever Tim Byrdak.”
    It makes perfect sense; the bat doesn’t get used very often so it still has plenty of hits left in it.

  • Chris Holder | June 11, 2012 at 8:52 am |

    I think it’s stupid for teams to do gray unis (or any trendy color) “just because”, but for some reason I think WVU pulls it off. Maybe it’s the connection to coal? Of course, if that’s what they were going for, I suppose it should have been a darker gray. At least saying it was “honoring the coal miners” or some nonsense woud have at least been a semi-decent excuse for what is otherwise just typical Nike pandering.

    • Bernard | June 11, 2012 at 9:23 am |

      WVU’s Pro Combat unis from 2010 were coal-inspired, as evidenced by the dark smudgy gray on the helmets, sleeves, numbers, etc. As far as I know this year’s grays are just trend-following. I’ll need to see them in game action before I pass judgement. I’m interested to see how well (or if) they’ll mix-and-match.

      • Ry Co 40 | June 11, 2012 at 9:39 am |

        i think they pulled it off pretty well. except for the helmets though. add a yellow/gold outline around the “WV” and it’s a total winner

        • Bernard | June 11, 2012 at 10:16 am |

          I actually kinda prefer it without an outline. A little cleaner, imo.

    • The Jeff | June 11, 2012 at 12:41 pm |

      The random gray thing is getting really annoying. The Ohio State Buckeyes are hypothetically allowed to wear a gray uniform because they’re the “scarlet and gray”, West Virginia wearing gray is just FUCKING STUPID.

      At least black has the clichè tough guy/bad ass/evil factor to it. Gray is just dull.

      • Coleman | June 11, 2012 at 2:05 pm |

        I generally stay quiet on the gray uniform nonsense but now that it has infiltrated my beloved Mounties I must say it’s ridiculous. Many of us fans flipped out when WVU went mono-gold, and hopefully they never wear that atrocity again. This gray uniform though is even worse. I don’t care how well they “pull it off”. It should never see the field. Especially that helmet. Don Nehlen will be pissed.

  • Roger | June 11, 2012 at 8:56 am |

    Are those orange stirrups worn backwards?

    • Paul Lukas | June 11, 2012 at 9:01 am |

      Looks like it, although it’s hard to be certain from that angle.

      • Ricko | June 11, 2012 at 9:15 am |

        I’d say yes.

        But with the way stirrup socks often are made these days–both stirrups very close to the same height–it’s an easy mistake for a player to make.

        • Phil Hecken | June 11, 2012 at 7:54 pm |

          “it’s an easy mistake for a player to make”

          ~~~

          not for someone who grew up wearing stirrups, but for guys who never wore them?

          sadly, yes

  • Scott Fendley | June 11, 2012 at 9:18 am |

    I bet Grilli wears that number on his glove as a tribute to his dad, Steve Grilli, who wore #49 for the Tigers in the mid-70’s. Ross Ohlendorf wore #49 for the Pirates earlier in 2011 and was in the minors so I bet Pittsburgh held the number for him and Grilli didn’t complain.

  • Graham | June 11, 2012 at 9:31 am |

    Didn’t get a screen grab, but it looked like the Yankees were wearing their G.I. Joe hats on Saturday night versus the Mets. I flipped it on and thought it was just Wade, but Soriano had it on in the 9th as well. The Mets didn’t seem to have them on.

    • George F. | June 11, 2012 at 9:45 am |

      See ticker above. Yankees hosting military appreciation night.

      • Graham | June 11, 2012 at 9:56 am |

        Thanks.

        Somehow I skipped right over that one.

    • Chance Michaels | June 11, 2012 at 9:57 am |

      There’s a link to photos in the ticker. ;)

      So the Mets wore their traditional, black-free uniforms and the Yankees wore drag. Never thought I’d see this day, and it almost makes me miss Steinbrenner.

      • Chance Michaels | June 11, 2012 at 10:14 am |

        New football field design for Wisconsin. “They’ve added logos, and they replaced the old ‘Badgers’ with ‘Wisconsin,’” says Nate Neumann).

        Hard to trust those photos, but it looks like they’re using a deeper red on the new Camp Randall endzones, and no black outlines. That would be a win all around.

        • Chance Michaels | June 11, 2012 at 10:15 am |

          Sorry, that should have been a general reply. Nothing to do with the Yankees, Mets, or drag.

  • DJ | June 11, 2012 at 9:48 am |

    Notre Dame may be wearing 125th Anniversary patches this season, but for clarity’s sake, it should be noted that the linked photo is one taken from the Notre Dame fantasy football camp held this past weekend.

  • Stirrup Jake | June 11, 2012 at 10:25 am |

    Made a video for The Rockies Stirrup Project.

    http://www.youtube.c...!

    – Jake

  • Ray Barrington | June 11, 2012 at 10:25 am |

    Bret Bielema said on Twitter that when they installed the new Field Turf at Wisconsin this month, he wanted the end zones to have ON WISCONSIN but that he couldn’t get the people in charge (Alvarez?) to do it.

    Also, LSU had its behind-the-plate signs out during Sunday night’s game against Stony Brook.

  • Gusto44 | June 11, 2012 at 10:36 am |

    Heard the Tampa Bay Rays will be doing a Turn Back the Clock promotion for 1979 when they play Detroit. Very strange, given the Rays(or any other MLB team in that area) didn’t even exist. Apparently, the uniforms will be styled more for 1979, maybe they will be solid powder blue. Also heard the Tigers won’t be participating.

    I can understand the fun aspect of this, and the desperation to sell tickets in the Tampa Bay area, but it seems weird on another level. Almost as if the Rays are claiming something which doesn’t exist. We’ve seen this with other teams when claiming accomplishments earned in other cities. At least when the Rays did the Tampa Tarpons throwback, that minor league team had a history and recognition.

    • The Jeff | June 11, 2012 at 10:43 am |

      And there we have it, the absolute pinnacle of Retro for Retro Sake. A team “throwing back” to an era in which they didn’t even exist. Bravo Tampa Bay, bravo. You truly are as lame as you could possibly be.

    • Ricko | June 11, 2012 at 10:47 am |

      I guess maybe they’re run out of teams?
      Have done the Tampa Tarpons and Smokers, and the St. Petersburg Pelicans and Saints…right?

      Could do the fictional Tampico Stogies from LONG GONE, I suppose…
      http://www.imdb.com/...
      …a really great and overlooked baseball movie, btw.

      But there we’d go with the whole “smoking” thing.

      Plus, fictional teams aren’t usually in the mix.

      Gotta admit would be fun to see the Mets dressed as the New York Knights. Or the Cardinals as “St. Louis” from IT HAPPENS EVERY SPRING. Or someone as “Bingo Long’s Traveling All-Stars and Motor Kings.” Maybe the Dodgers as “Chico’s Bail Bonds”.

      Probably copyright issues on such things, though.
      Too bad.

      • Ricko | June 11, 2012 at 11:06 am |

        Phil (and other Mets fans), you need to start a movement, and start it NOW.

        In 2014 the Mets have a throwback game dressed as the New York Knights to celebrate the 30th anniversary of THE NATURAL. Preferably against the Pirates (in 1939 throwbacks, of course).

        Have Robert Redford throw out the first pitch.
        Maybe to Joe Don Baker.

        And, in a perfect world, Ike Davis would win it with a walkoff homer deep to right center (him being a lefthanded hitter n’all).

        • The Jeff | June 11, 2012 at 11:11 am |

          Eh, considering how long it took for that whole “ditch the black” movement, you’re better off trying for the 40th anniversary.

        • Ricko | June 11, 2012 at 11:19 am |

          Yes, there is that.

          Okay, then, how ’bout Dodgers as “Chico’s Bail Bonds” in 2016 for 40th of BAD NEWS BEARS?

        • Gusto44 | June 11, 2012 at 12:24 pm |

          I don’t believe the Bucs have ever worn a 1940-41 throwback, which was a very colorful design, including the hat. Logo on the chest only, very unusual look in franchise history. Unfortunately, the Bucs reverted back to a more bland design using red and blue until the switch to the current color scheme later in the 1940s.

        • ChrisH | June 11, 2012 at 2:06 pm |

          “And, in a perfect world, Ike Davis would win it with a walkoff homer deep to right center (him being a lefthanded hitter n’all).”

          Too bad it would not be to clinch the pennant?

    • Mike Engle | June 11, 2012 at 11:23 am |

      Retro for retro’s sake? I actually think that that’s been done before! I used to have this Darren Oliver trading card:
      http://2.bp.blogspot...
      and here’s another one of him in the same uniform (probably the same game)
      http://www.halloffam...
      I remember the card said something to the effect of “an old-time baseball uniform that the Rangers never wore, just to create a vintage feel.” If I had a Bill Henderson guide, I’d look it up.
      But I have to agree with The Jeff here. It’s one thing to make a uniform today that could have looked right in step fifty years ago; it’s completely ridiculous to extrapolate pre-history just to make a stupid jersey.

      • quiet seattle | June 11, 2012 at 1:16 pm |

        Maybe so. But on the other hand…..man, that’s a pretty sweet looking uniform. Sparkles compared to what the Rangers wear these days.

      • concealed78 | June 11, 2012 at 4:46 pm |

        http://imageshack.us...

        Pretty sweet uniform. If the Rangers ditch blue again, they should go to this uni set.

        • concealed78 | June 11, 2012 at 5:03 pm |

          Found the site where I originally found the jersey:

          http://community.web...

          Somebody with a Jose Canseco fetish.

      • Josh | June 11, 2012 at 5:44 pm |

        Maybe it’s an actual minor league pic…I’m pretty sure Darren Oliver played when flannels were still being worn!

    • ChrisH | June 11, 2012 at 1:31 pm |

      July 12 1979 (courtesy of Wikipedia):

      “A Disco Demolition Night publicity stunt goes awry at Comiskey Park, forcing the Chicago White Sox (who were even then planning to pull up stakes and head to St. Pete?) forfeit their game against the Detroit Tigers.”

      Is Tampa Bay planning a sequel? That’ll pack the Trop!

      Who among us would begrudge the Rays if they threw it back a decade and wore these beauties (a truly under-rated set IMO):

      http://cdn.bleacherr...

      Have we not had enough of made up/revised history?

      • DJ | June 11, 2012 at 4:29 pm |

        Bill Veeck owned the Sox in 1979; he wasn’t planning on moving. He tried to sell the team to the DeBartolo family in 1980. The DeBartolos were planning on staying on the South Side, and were talking about spending money comparable to the Yankees. The sale was rejected, ostensibly because of the DeBartolo race track holdings (notwithstanding that the Pirates’ John Galbreath was a famous racehorse owner), and “absentee ownership” (notwithstanding Cleveland’s George Steinbrenner owned the Yankees). Ultimately, it seemed that Bowie Kuhn simply did not want an Italian-American owning a baseball team.

    • pushbutton | June 11, 2012 at 4:09 pm |

      Maybe I missed something….why 1979?

      • DJ | June 11, 2012 at 4:31 pm |

        For a while (not sure if it’s still going on), Mike Veeck, the co-creator of Disco Demolition Night, was a consultant for the Rays. Maybe he’d like a do-over after all these years.

    • SoCalDrew | June 11, 2012 at 5:15 pm |

      Hey, if they’re gonna “throw back” to 1979, why not as the ’79 Buccaneers?! Has this been done yet – cross-sport throwbacks? Just think of the possibilities! Houston Astros as the Oilers. The Angels could wear 1980’s Rams colors. Orioles fans rocking Colts jerseys (complete with shoulder stripes, sure thing). Etc etc.

      • Patrick_in_MI | June 11, 2012 at 6:41 pm |

        Heh cool idea. Redo the Rays in creamsicle colors, they’d be just the team to do it too. Can anyone mock that one up?

  • Nick | June 11, 2012 at 11:05 am |

    Also, several readers noted that Greece was wearing a match-specific kit for that game against Poland.

    Many of the countries wear match-specific kits for each game; Italy is a notable that comes to mind that does not do match-specific kits. The common practice of trading jerseys after the match helps this along. basically, the different football associations commemorate each match with the match-specific kits .

    • Nick | June 11, 2012 at 11:14 am |

      Oops, forgot to add this: look below the badges on each jersey — the flags of the Netherlands and Denmark (the two teams in that match) are below the crests on both teams.

    • DJ | June 11, 2012 at 12:13 pm |

      It’s a bit difficult to tell, but France is wearing match-specific jerseys; tiny lettering just above the FFF patch (“Angleterre 11.6.12”, perhaps?) I would imagine England is as well, with embroidery underneath the Three Lions badge.

      • DM Andy | June 11, 2012 at 12:29 pm |

        Yep, England’s has a little v under the shield of the English FA, then name of opposition in the scrollwork and the year underneath that.

  • Mike Miller | June 11, 2012 at 11:19 am |

    “The NCAA has a rule that corporate signage is supposed to be covered up during postseason baseball play, but apparently the folks at Oregon didn’t get the memo. “That is just ridiculous,”

    While this is technically true, it is rarely enforced at non-predetermined preliminary-round sites because of the short turnaround time between finding out that you are hosting and the actual games. So the NCAA focuses on just taking care of logos of vice sponsors like alcohol/gambling or sponsors that are in direct competition of a corporate partner (like a Pepsi ad). So giant freaking swooshes get a pass.

    • Douglas King | June 11, 2012 at 5:18 pm |

      I’m watching the Oklahoma @ South Carolina Super Regional right now, and in the outfield bullpen you can see the Under Armor logo. Its in the bullpen but its completely viewable whenever a ball is hit to the left half of the outfield.

      Is there an exception for uniform suppliers?

      I’ve been to quite several regionals, and a few super regionals held at Georgia Tech. The only differences I ever noticed was that the stadium couldn’t play the teams walk-up music (the frat house across the street would take over those duties). I don’t remember the sponsors logos being covered up at any of them (even if I am remembering wrong and they have covered up a few times, they have definitely left them uncovered at other times). If that is a rule they don’t enforce it, and Oregon should not be the only school being scolded (though I think the reason this story made the ticker has more to do with which company’s logo was showing rather than the fact that a corporate sponsor’s logo was showing).

    • Josh | June 11, 2012 at 5:42 pm |

      But Oregon was awarded a national seed, so they had enough turn around time to know that they would host a super regional if they got out of their regional.
      That’s a copout that Oregon can use because they didn’t want to forfiet some of Uncle Phil’s money.

      • Douglas King | June 11, 2012 at 6:43 pm |

        I’m pretty sure the NCAA can force them to remove them, or threaten them with some sort of penalty. Which means anything left up has been allowed, its not like Oregon said “We only found out on Monday, so we can’t have it down by Friday”, then upon winning the Regional and being awarded a Super Regional “Look we only found out Monday that we were getting a Super Regional” the NCAA is just going to say don’t let it happen again they would demand they cover the logo up.

        And Oregon isn’t alone in this, As I mentioned South Carolina has an easy to spot UA logo in right out field, Baylor has a “We must protect this house” (yeah that’s right their uniforms are supplied by 3 different companies depending on the sport) banner down the right field line (right before the dugout), and a McDonald’s logo in the outfield right next to the foul pole. I’m sure if I did some more research I’d find that all the other hosting schools also have corporate sponsors logos around their stadiums as well.

        So stop hounding on Oregon, and lay off Nike as well because they are just doing what everyone else is, and the NCAA doesn’t seem to care. Their policy has obviously changed, maybe not on the books but certainly in terms of what they enforce. And I would not be surprised if uniform suppliers are exempt from the rule to begin with.

  • Mark | June 11, 2012 at 11:26 am |

    Just curious… I’ve sent in my Astros design concept (deadline is noon Eastern today) but have not received any confirmation that my submission was received. I was just wondering, has that happened with anyone else who has sent in their design? I’m worried that if I don’t have a confirmation e-mail, that maybe redesigntheastros@gmail.com never received my submission. Please let me know… thanks!

    • Tim E. O'B | June 11, 2012 at 11:33 am |

      You could always send it to Uni Watch’s email address just to be sure: http://www.uni-watch...

      • Mark | June 11, 2012 at 11:54 am |

        Actually, I went overboard, and sent it to redesigntheastros, uniwatching, and plukas64. Just *had* to make sure.

    • Paul Lukas | June 11, 2012 at 11:36 am |

      I typically get over 100 entries for these contests, so I don’t send confirmation emails — it gets to be a bit much.

      But I did receive yours, Mark.

      • Mark | June 11, 2012 at 11:41 am |

        Sweet. Thanks, Paul!

  • Kub | June 11, 2012 at 11:46 am |

    dont look too much into those Madden unis. I know they were right about the Bills last year but last years madden game also had a Yellow Packers Jersey, Orange Browns Jersey, and Gold Jerseys for the Saints and 49ers

    • The Jeff | June 11, 2012 at 1:20 pm |

      Also silver Raiders, gold Rams & black Bucs, if I recall correctly.

      Nonetheless, I think Madden needs to have as many uniform options as possible, so I absolutely will not complain about fashion jerseys and unused alternates making it into the game.

      • Phil Hecken | June 11, 2012 at 8:00 pm |

        “I think Madden needs to have as many uniform options as possible”

        ~~~

        of course you do

    • Tony C. | June 11, 2012 at 4:47 pm |

      Madden 12 even had the Browns brown pants as well

    • Douglas King | June 11, 2012 at 5:30 pm |

      The Browns’ Orange Jersey and Brown pants have been worn before (that’s why they are in the game), the Saints also have worn a gold jersey before.

      They will add in fashion jerseys on the off chance they get worn, but there aren’t any fashion pants so that does seem to suggest these could be legit. That said they did have the blue pants we never saw the Bills wear last year and in fact were never shown off in anyway by the team in the game. This may be a cover all bases move, Carolina may be mulling over the idea so Madden has added them in. They can easily be hidden if Carolina says no to them.

  • muddlehead | June 11, 2012 at 11:48 am |

    eeeee. l.a. kings fans dot com or something has an ad above comments on this site for stanley cup champion shirts…

    • SoCalDrew | June 11, 2012 at 5:07 pm |

      Hopefully THOSE don’t end up going overseas with the “Beat the Celtics” shirts referenced by Jeff below!.

      • SoCalDrew | June 11, 2012 at 11:35 pm |

        It’s over! I’ve achieved the fan Gland Slam (Lakers, Angels, Saints and now the Kings)! WTG lads!

        • SoCalDrew | June 11, 2012 at 11:37 pm |

          LOL “Grand” not Gland!

  • Luke needs more soccer | June 11, 2012 at 12:06 pm |

    Thank you!

  • Brinke | June 11, 2012 at 12:25 pm |

    ah mid 70s adidas soccer stuff, i recall it well. my dad brought me back some stuff from europe, made all the other guys jealous. and nearby, two old german fellas ran a car parts import place, and sold adidas and german soccer boots (let’s call ’em what they are) in there, too. Other guys would ask, ‘wow, black with yellow stripes?” Yup- mine were the “Gerd Muller Goal,” I believe.

  • superfly | June 11, 2012 at 12:30 pm |

    Spain wore all blue against the Soviets’ red in the 64 final.

    http://en.wikipedia....

    http://football-en.f...

    • Bernd Wilms | June 11, 2012 at 6:15 pm |

      Wow, well played. I spent more time looking for Denmark’s kit and never thought to look Spain up further given that the b/w footage seemed to indicate extremely similar colors. Today I found this:

      http://www.elmundo.e...

      Con él, la selección española conquistó su primera Eurocopa en el Bernabéu en 1964, frente a la Unión Soviética, que también vestía de rojo. Tampoco aquí hubo política por medio: como la final se jugó en Madrid y los soviéticos no habían traído una equipación de reserva, los españoles cedieron su uniforme oficial.

      So yeah, basically, the Soviets just decided not to bring a change shirt.

      There’s also this:

      http://www.superdepo...

      El dorado de la pasada Eurocopa quedará para la historia y se recupera el azul oscuro clásico, que ya lució el combinado español en la Eurocopa de 1964.

      So yeah, sorry, could have and should have caught that. I just never thought to look for an alternative to Spain wearing red!

      • superfly | June 11, 2012 at 7:29 pm |

        Well, I wasn’t a hundred percent sure myself, considering the sources were Wikipedia and an image that appears colorized. I know they were a bit more lax back in the day regarding kit clashes, but had a hard time believing they would play red on red.

        Blue and red can definitely look indistinguishable in B/W images.

  • name redacted | June 11, 2012 at 12:37 pm |

    Love Joe Hart’s goalie kit today for the England/France match.

  • JDrive | June 11, 2012 at 1:08 pm |

    This shirt was on the NBA store BEFORE the Celtics/Heat game 7 on Friday.

    http://boston.cbsloc...

    • The Jeff | June 11, 2012 at 1:15 pm |

      So the real question… is there now a “Beat the Celtics” shirt headed off to a 3rd-World country, or has the NBA become nearly as scripted as the WWE?

  • DJ | June 11, 2012 at 1:19 pm |

    And England debuted perhaps their most beloved shirt, made by Admiral.

    Unique, yes. Beloved? No. If it were, surely England would have worn a version in the 30 years since it debuted.

  • PhillyDude | June 11, 2012 at 2:35 pm |

    What’s so unique about ballparks serving Frito Pie in Alaska?

    • ChrisH | June 11, 2012 at 3:05 pm |

      And what is the reason for the pricing structure as it pertains to the addition of cheese to standard menu options (cheese on a burger is +$.50, cheese on/with a pretzel is +$1.25 and chips with cheese is an additional $2.50?)?

      • Kyle Yarbrough | June 11, 2012 at 5:02 pm |

        Those prices are in Alaskan Dollars…if you convert them to American money it makes more sense. :) Also, the Alaska on the back of those hats is sweet, and so are the leggings on the home team…what teams are these?

        • John K | June 11, 2012 at 6:12 pm |

          Finally checking in here–The teams were the Anchorage Bucs and the Anchorage Glacier Pilots. Both share the same ballpark. It was an opening-day double header and the Bucs were “home” for the first game, although both teams appeared to be wearing home unis. (I’m not from here so don’t know if they have away sets or not.) The Bucs wore nice old-school Pirates stirrups with yellow sanis. Almost the entire team was high-cuffed. Yellow Boston-styled “B” on the front of their hats. About half of the Glacier Pilots were high-cuffed, with solid blue stirrups (high 70’s era cut) or solid socks. The GP jerseys reminded me of the Dodgers, but with “pilots” on front and a blue shadow on the red front numbers. The hats were more like a 70’s era Braves, with a red lower case “a” on a white front panel.

          John K

  • Ben | June 11, 2012 at 3:21 pm |

    I wish I could have gotten the submission system to work for me to be able to tell Paul this info but hopefully this gets passed to him/you. Last Saturday night, the Tampa Yankees had special jerseys based on green chalkboards. When I went looking for pics, I didn’t find any of that but did find pics of their Breast Cancer Awareness game- “http://www.milb.com/gen/clubs/t587/photogallery/standard/year_2012/month_05/day_24/cf32161194.html” Ugly, just ugly, Why did they not do the pants, too?

  • Desmond Jones | June 11, 2012 at 4:03 pm |

    I’m confused… Is MTSU getting new uniforms because they were using their old jerseys for practice? Or were the uniforms shown in the pictures supposed to be the new ones? If it’s the latter, I believe they have been wearing those uniforms for a few years now, even the BFBS ones. Last year, they played a color on color game against Western Kentucky, and wore the BFBS jerseys.

    • Kyle Yarbrough | June 11, 2012 at 5:05 pm |

      You’re correct…about the BFBS…

    • Douglas King | June 11, 2012 at 6:48 pm |

      All of those are old too (they did the BFBS back before it exploded (again) a few years back), they aren’t even a new material… Now if those were their practice uniforms that would seem to suggest that they are getting new ones (you don’t tend to practice in your game jerseys), but those just seem to be on display.

  • Ryan | June 11, 2012 at 5:20 pm |

    I wonder why it is that soccer seems to be more lenient with regards to NOB protocol, as compared to other sports, at least in the US. I don’t know how MLS compares to the top-flight leagues in Europe or South America, but it’s very common that Brazilians use their first names (my favorite team, Man Utd, has three: Anderson, Fabio, and Rafael). I wonder if it’s a Portuguese thing, in fact, because a couple of United’s Portuguese players (Bebe & Nani) also go by their first names.

    Javier Hernandez also uses his nickname, Chicharito (“little pea,” because his father, also Javier Hernandez, was nicknamed Chicharo, or “pea”).

    • DJ | June 11, 2012 at 5:33 pm |

      It’s a custom. You’ll see players of Brazilian, Portuguese, and Spanish ancestry going with nicknames. Of late, South Korean players go with their given names, as opposed to their family names.

      Javier Hernández has been going with “Chicharito” in international matches very recently; he’ll also go with the Mexican convention and wear “J. Hernandez.”

      When you go to the official tournament rosters, you’ll see all the players listed by shirt number, given name, and “shirt name.”

  • Ryan | June 11, 2012 at 5:24 pm |

    With regards to MLB’s World Series logo, it almost feels like they’re trying to “NFL-ize” it. That is to say, standardize logos and, in this case, colors across the board. Granted, they don’t have as many offshoots as the NFL did when they rebranded theirs (NFL Network, NFL Equipment, etc.), but it feels as sterile nonetheless.

    • scott | June 11, 2012 at 6:02 pm |

      Really? I think MLB is a long way off from standardizing logos for its special events. The All-Star Game logos remain truly unique and even the World Series logos look and feel different each year, certainly as compared to what was going on with the logos in the ’80s.

  • Geoff | June 11, 2012 at 6:25 pm |

    pretty sure every soccer team has for years worn ‘match specific’ uniforms in big tournaments. Hell, they might do it for every international game period, but I only watch the big tournaments…anyways, it’s very normal to see the “[country] vs [country] [date] [location]” on soccer jerseys.

    • Bernd Wilms | June 11, 2012 at 7:44 pm |

      You used to see Holland doing this a bit earlier than other teams. I first remember them having the two-flags design below the crest at Euro 2000:

      http://www.youtube.c...

      It was England who started this though, way back in the 1950s:

      http://www.englandfo...

      England also re-started the practice earlier than others, in 2001. They then upped the stakes by re-introducing the beautiful 1950s below-the-crest design:

      http://mudsweatbadge...

      I’m under the impression that the adidas teams are making a coordinated effort this year with a standardized design, but I’ll double-check on that.

  • concealed78 | June 11, 2012 at 6:39 pm |

    Catch of the Day is quite nifty.

  • Wheels | June 11, 2012 at 7:22 pm |

    John Buck of the Marlins sure wears a funky looking chest protector. Blue shoulder pads?

  • Dan R | June 11, 2012 at 8:12 pm |

    Better than a purple tennis court… just saying.

    • concealed78 | June 12, 2012 at 1:10 pm |

      No.

  • Andrew Seagraves | June 11, 2012 at 8:57 pm |

    THOSE SOCKS! The socks the Croatians wore – They’re AWESOME! I wish I could find a place to buy them here in the States.

    • Jim Vilk | June 11, 2012 at 10:08 pm |

      Ireland/Croatia may be the best looking match of the whole tournament. WOW.

    • Luther Mahoney | June 12, 2012 at 9:29 am |

      Those Swedish jerseys look like the Winnipeg Goldeyes’ crossing guard unis from last season.

  • Jim Vilk | June 11, 2012 at 10:13 pm |

    Also: one hell of a view.

    Man, I wish I was back in Alaska. Got to go in ’96 and I absolutely loved it. If you ever get a chance to go, do it.

    • traxel | June 11, 2012 at 10:25 pm |

      Always wanted to go. June through September, anyway.

  • Phil Hecken | June 11, 2012 at 10:29 pm |

    20 bucks?

    wait a minute…

  • Jim Vilk | June 11, 2012 at 11:46 pm |

    Speaking of Belgium, they debuted a beautiful argyle-based shirt

    Oh my stars, does that bring to mind my favorite uni!

  • quiet seattle | June 11, 2012 at 11:55 pm |

    45 years later…

    http://www.gameworna...

  • Matt | June 12, 2012 at 6:16 am |

    “England wore change shirts at home against Germany at Euro 1996”

    Wasn’t Germany the designated home team for that game?

  • Domenico Delgado | June 12, 2012 at 1:48 pm |

    “Jason Grilli, who has worn No. 39 since the Pirates signed him last year, has ‘Grilli #49′ embroidered on his glove. Now, he wore 49 in Detroit, Colorado, and Texas but has always been 39 with the Bucs. Also, his glove doesn’t appear to be 3+ years old, which was the last time he wore 49 in the bigs. 49 is neither retired nor currently being used by a Pirates player, so if he has such a strong connection to the number, why doesn’t he wear it?? Strange.” I think that its his glove from detroit due to the orange embroidery