The Fish That Saved Pittsburgh...kinda

Pittsburgh Hoops

By Phil Hecken

With the NBA tipping off a short while ago, and the college basketball season kicking off last evening, (and if you missed Paul’s ESPN College Hoops Preview, click here), it’s time to devote at least one column this fall to hoops. And of course, when I think of the NBA, the first thing I think of is “Pittsburgh.”

OK, no it’s not, because there is no NBA team in Pittsburgh — but that doesn’t mean there was never professional basketball played there. I’m very pleased today to bring you a thoroughly researched column on professional hoops played in the ‘burgh, and one of Uni Watch’s top Yinzer researchers, Jerry Wolper (the man who is responsible for the AMAZING Buc-Tracker Project [writeup] and [project]) is here today to tell you all about the NBA’s admittedly thin, but quite interesting, history in Pittsburgh. Here’s Jerry…

. . .

The NBA in Pittsburgh
By Jerry Wolper

Leagues don’t enter the sporting landscape fully formed. Teams move, fold, and enter as conditions warrant. In some cases, games are played at neutral sites. Sometimes an arena owner (especially when it’s privately owned) will have a date to fill. Sometimes a promoter feels that he can make money by buying the right to sell tickets in the neutral city. And sometimes a team wants to expand its geographic footprint. Often, these are all true. We still see it with NBA and NHL exhibitions, and even NFL games in London and Toronto. And leagues can look at attendance to help gauge fan interest in putting a team in a new city.

From the 1950s to the ’70s, Pittsburgh was one site for NBA games:

Ironmen

When the Basketball Association of America, which became the NBA, started in 1946-47, the Pittsburgh Ironmen were one of the teams. Their colors were red and white, and they apparently wore red for their first few home games. By December, they had white uniforms with a “P” on the shorts. Their best player early was Brooms Abramovic, Coalby Gunther was their leading scorer, and the Ironman who went on to be most famous was Press Maravich, whose son had a better career. The newspapers noted as the season came to a close that the Ironmen started with a loss and never climbed out of last place. They folded after one season.

Neutral site game – Duquesne Gardens

On March 11, 1953, the Philadelphia Warriors defeated the Milwaukee Hawks 72-69 in overtime in front of a sold out crowd. The sellout was because of the second game of the doubleheader, where the Globetrotters once again beat the Generals, and here’s how the next day’s Pittsburgh Press covered the event. This game was rescheduled because the first time it was played, the Hawks had too many players foul out and when they were down to four players, the officials let the wrong fouled-out player play, and the Warriors’ protest was upheld. Oddly, the first game was played in front of a sellout crowd in Chicago Stadium, and the sellout was again for the Globetrotter game that followed.

The ABL

When the Civic Arena was about to open in 1961, John Harris, who owned the AHL Hornets, talked seriously to the NBA about an expansion franchise. He met with the league at the All-Star game and decided not to invest the $200,000. (A group from Chicago did acquire a franchise. After two years, the Packers/Zephyrs moved to Baltimore, and today we know them as the Washington Wizards.)

When the NBA franchise fell through, another group started a team in the new rival ABL. The Renaissance (better known as the Rens) were able to sign Connie Hawkins, and they lasted the entire year and a half that the league did.

Neutral site games – Civic Arena

After the ABL folded, the NBA started playing some games at the Civic Arena. On February 18, 1964, the Celtics beat the 76ers in front of 7,902 fans. December 15, 1964, Wilt Chamberlain scored 40 while playing with a mask over his broken nose, but that wasn’t enough to overcome the 76ers, who won 119-112 before 5,242. (Note that the ad mentions that it’s “a regular scheduled game – not an exhibition”.) On January 11, 1965, Jerry West’s 41 points weren’t quite enough, as the Pistons edged the Lakers 128-127. On February 15, 1966, the 76ers played the St. Louis Hawks the night after Wilt passed Bob Pettit for the NBA’s career scoring league. A sellout crowd of 11,601 (with another couple thousand supposedly turned away) watched Philadelphia beat the Hawks 121-109.

76ers six-game series

In 1966-67, with expansion talk heating up again, the 76ers played six games in Pittsburgh, even if a newspaper cartoon had the previous year’s uni:

11/3/66 St. Louis 120-108 6,924
1/5/67 New York 104-112 9,025
1/19/67 Chicago 127-102 7,543
2/7/67 San Francisco 126-123 8,676
2/24/67 Baltimore 149-118 8,642
3/6/67 Los Angeles 119-117 8,156

Wilt scored 42 against the Bullets, including 18 for 18 from the field. The Sixers went on to win the championship that year, and were popular enough to average 8140 fans. There was even local radio coverage of the Pittsburgh games.

The ABA

In 1967, the ABA started, and Pittsburgh had a franchise. Connie Hawkins led the Pipers to the first ABA championship in front of a large crowd at the Arena. Unfortunately, large crowds were a rarity, and the team moved to Minnesota for the 1968-89 season (replacing the Muskies, who had become the Miami Floridians.) It didn’t work out in Minnesota, and the Pipers moved back to Pittsburgh for the 1969-70 season. The NBA signed Hawkins, though, and the team wasn’t very good. A conglomerate called Haven Industries bought the team in 1970, and held a “Rename the Team” contest. The winner was “Pioneers”, but Point Park College already called its teams the Pioneers, and they threatened to sue. So the team became the Condors, and they played poorly for two more years in front of very few fans before they mercifully folded in 1972.

An NHL franchise also took the Civic Arena ice in 1967. (And, no, that jersey’s nothing more than part of an early illustration.)

Another 76ers six-game series

With the Arena available, six 76er games were once again booked for 1972-73. Wilt was long gone, the Doctor was still in the ABA, and the team was less successful both on the court and in the stands:

12/7/72 Phoenix 102-117 3,878
12/27/72 Atlanta 120-121 7,408
1/12/73 Cleveland 109-113 (2OT) 4,682
2/25/73 Portland 115-111 2,483
3/11/73 Golden State 93-97 3,426
3/25/73 Detroit 85-96 1,987

The loss to the Pistons was the team’s 73rd, a record that still stands. (My brother is proud that the only NBA game he ever attended, against Cleveland, included the losingest team in league history.) The Hawks featured Pete Maravich’s return to town, and people responded. Connie Hawkins’ return with the Suns was less successful, and the average attendance of 3,977 was enough to discourage more games.

There have been exhibitions since, but no more regular season games.

(All images are from the Pittsburgh Press and Pittsburgh Post-Gazette in the Google archive.)

. . .

Thanks, Jerry!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

50 Years Ago This Week50 Years Ago…This Weekend

Last year, Rick Pearson took us “back in time” to bring us his look at the featured television college football match-up from 50 years ago. (If you’re not familiar with it, this was the inaugural post of “50 Years Ago” from last year — after that, it became a recurring feature on UW for the remainder of the season). Last year, Rick looked at the 1961 season, and fortunately for us, he “uni tracked” the games from 1962 as well, documenting the game via his “kid cards”. Each week this fall, he’ll do the same, again.

~~~

62 Wk 9 Card
Nov. 10, 1962…Purdue 17, Michigan State 9 at Michigan State on CBS

Ah, a look at Purdue. … Helmet TV numbers positioned up higher than typical … Braided trim at neck and sleeve ends … Northwestern-striped stirrups under crews with a wide old gold top … Boilermakers were one of the few teams still using back shoelaces (here’s the uni, largely unchanged, on Bob Griese in ‘65). … Earlier we’d seen Spartans in their warm-weather jerseys with half sleeves and no stripes. … This time they wore ¾ sleeves with Northwestern stripes. … Also wore white stirrups with three equal kelly stripes in the November weather. … Donald Brooks didn’t play pro football. … Wingback Lonnie Sanders spent seven seasons as a DB in the NFL (five with the Redskins, two with the Cardinals).

. . .

62 Wk 9a
Nov. 10, 1962…Minnesota 10, Iowa 0 at Minnesota on Special Network

If you lived in Minnesota or Iowa you got a SECOND game on TV this Saturday. … Because Gophers and Hawkeyes were battling for #1 in the nation, interest was so high that the NCAA allowed a special network telecast. … The game aired on the educational channels (later known as PBS) in both states, which meant no commercials. … Gophers wore single-striped crew socks. … Iowa in those great jerseys that DIDN’T have the Northwestern stripes of their homes. … Gophers’ Myron “Mo” Rognlie became a Minneapolis cop. … Hawkeyes’ Cloyd Webb was one of the early cleat “spatters” and, like most players at the time, played both offense and defense. … Drafted by the Bears and Bills as a TE, he signed with Buffalo but didn’t make the club, and spent a couple seasons in the CFL, first with Winnipeg, then Hamilton.

. . .

Thanks Rick! Great job with that as always, and a double dose to boot!

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marshall rupsRobert’s Rules of Rups

Want to win a free pair of ‘rups?

Of course you do.

Comrade Marshall, our patron saint of hose (well, after Nap Lajoie, that is)…has a very special segment today, and make sure you read it all, because there is a free set of stirrups each week just there for the taking. All you have to do is show some creativity — I’ll let Robert explain it all…here’s Comrade:

. . .

Hola comrades,

Phil has been a champ showing Stirrup-Friday pixtures, which I personally love, but I wanted to add a little incentive in the way of free UW stirrups to sort of up the anti. What does that mean? I will be sending out the stirrup at the UW header to those who really do something special in polaroids sent to Phil. They can be “in action“, at the office, or about town (yes, if it is a pixture you sent to me in the past few years, you can send it to Phil). I would like to say there will be a weekly winner, and I hope there is in these cold dreary months.

Let’s next turn to “new” offerings. I know Phil has always wanted this at the dead centre of the imaaa…er, stirrup in the bottom right. So let’s go with that since the Irish are looking for an olde school alt-green miracle. This also happens to be the inverse of the classic duck look, which was unchanged for 40+ years more or less before their shenanigans. Now I could be wrong, but speaking of UW ‘rups, let me go out on a limb and say I would bet dimes to doughnuts that this kelly green and gold model would be the UW stirrup if a certain New York far right leaning hooligan could go back in time. Silly 7ist scum, with his flashy 7″ stirrups, he betrays the true believer’s 5″.

Okay, enough funning around, let’s get to serious with the world’s champeeen Giants. I am out of these, so it only seems right proper to re-up, and give people who root root root for them the discount. And since Christmas is right around the corner, let’s bring back the Oaks.

From each according their stirrvp, to each according his strype.
~comrade marshall

. . .

Thank you Comrade. And now, for today’s offering of…

Stirrup FridayStirrup Fridays…

Because we love the stirrup here at Uni Watch, this section is devoted to those of us who sport the beautiful hose on Fridays — a trend popularized many years ago by Robert P. Marshall, III. For many of us, it’s become a bit of an obsession, but a harmless one — a reflection of our times. Where we once had Friday ties, which has been replaced by Casual Friday — we now have Stirrup Fridays. It’s an endearingly simple concept — no matter where you work (or even if you don’t) — break out a fresh pair of rups to compliment (or clash with) your Friday attire.

So, in the order in which they were received (and we’ve got two weeks worth here) … here we go (click on each thumbnail for a glorious, full size image):

. . . . .

Roberto Santiago - Ref_Rups

Roberto Santiago:

Hi Phil,

I haven’t been active on Uni Watch the last few years but I checked in and saw the Stirrup Friday post. I loved getting the ‘rups a few years ago through the bulk orders. I didn’t do a ‘rup Friday but I did want to send this pic along as I think I may be the only rugby ref in America, perhaps anywhere, to rock the ‘rups while reffing. Once I ended up with the jersey (we got it for reffing the 2008 Can-Am tournament) I knew I had to pair it with the 70′s A’s stirrups from the order a few years back.

Thanks as always for the great blog posts.

-Berto

. . .

James Poisso - Duh

James Poisso:

Phil,

I hope all is well.

Today’s stirrups were a part of my Halloween costume – 1980s Astros.

James Poisso

. . .

John Kimmerlein

John K.:

Phil,

Today I’m wearing the black and orange to congratulate the Giants on their World Series victory, and Romo, their closer, on his great baseball fashion sense.

How long till pitchers and catchers report?

John K

. . .

James Huening - Pads

James T. Huening:

Phil,

Happy harvest

It would make sense if you could see my shirt.

So, what’s wrong with this picture?

JTH

. . .

James Poisso

James Poisso:

Phil,

Happy Stirrup Friday!

Glad the surgery went well, Paul.

James P.

. . .

John Kimmerlein

John K:

Phil,

Wearing old-school Senators’ stirrups in honor of election day (I forget what year RPM lists them as). It may come across as a cliche, but I have spent enough time all around the world that I try not to take our elections for granted, warts and all.

My stirrup Friday routine ended with the World Series in previous years, but I plan on at least running once through the collection this time before formally going into the offseason. That does not quite get me to pitchers and catchers.

Heal quick Paul, and continued support to family, friends, and all still being impacted by Sandy.

John K

. . .

Uni Watch Gathering 11-3-12

Jessie & Marty Buccafusco, Phil Hecken, Ross Bergman:

Just your semi-average Uni Watch gathering at the Sheep Station in Brooklyn. I’ve identified the four stirrup-wearers in the front — there may have been other similarly hosed folks in the back, but they weren’t showing leg. So there ya go. Here’s a photo id chart for easier reference.

Phil

. . .

And that ends today’s look at Stirrup Friday — all of you who participate, send me your pics and a brief (~50 words) description of their relevance, and I’ll run ‘em here on Saturday (and sometimes Sunday too!).

If you’re not a member of Stirrup Nation and want to join, just visit Comrade Marshall’s house of hose (and you can see the available selections here) or if you have any questions about the availability of stirrups, drop him a line at rpmarshallart@gmail.com. Here’s what’s NEW this week:

Screen Shot 2012-11-10 at 12.24.57 AM

So, comrades — why don’t you pick up a pair or three and show us your rups!

OK? OK!

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Screen Shot 2012-06-24 at 10.32.36 PM

“Benchies” first appeared at U-W in 2008, and has been a Saturday & Sunday feature here for the past two years.

. . . . .

Cue the Singers: “You Gotta Be A Football Hero…”

11-10-12 d-Five straight

Click to enlarge

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72120957Sat. AM Uni Watch

Since I was on sabbatical last weekend, with an injured Paul ably handling the duties, one of the fall Sunday favorites was on hiatus as well — Sunday Morning Uni Watch. But that doesn’t mean Terry Duroncelet was taking the weekend off too — nay, he was busy compiling a SMUW for us that was so good, I’m going to run it anyway…even if it’s for the games played last weekend. So, as a special Saturday treat, here’s TJ:

Hey guys. I thought I’d give you guys a (slightly shorter) rundown of the games from week 10 (we’re in week 11 now). Let’s get right into it:

• Ohio and Eastern Michigan played each other on Thursday (Nov. 1st), and… omai. So much green. Not sure if this is a good thing or a bad thing. I mean, green is one of my favorite colors, but… damn. I kinda like it, but… I don’t know.

• Miami wore mono-orange against Virginia Tech. Unless I’m wrong on this, the last time that they wore mono-orange was against Florida in their 1985 season opener. They lost and — except for their 2010 Nike Pro Combat uniforms (which were coincidentally worn against VT) — haven’t worn that look since until Thursday night (Nov. 1st). Big thanks to LI Matt for finding that 1985 pic and posting it in the comments on Thursday (Nov. 1st).

• Middle Tennessee State and Western Kentucky went color vs. color on Thursday (Nov. 1st). Now, I hate screenprint graphics on uniforms, and I dislike that tapered thing on MTSU’s pants, but it’s rare that they’re the better-dressed team, because without red helmets, WKU in mono-red is a bad look for them.

• Moving on to Saturday (Nov. 3rd), we knew about Mississippi State’s Snow Bowl uniforms, but what we didn’t know was that aTm was going to wear all-black uniforms. The helmet was a predominately black shell, with some kind of maroon sparkle fade going to the bottom. Want more detailed pics? You know where to go. Ehh, I don’t really know how to feel about the lid. That kind of finish really belongs on a drumset, not a football helmet. At least you can tell the two teams apart, so they avoided a “Texas A&M Bulldogs vs. Miss. St. Aggies” joke… this time.

UCLA wore this against Arizona. It’s like the football program and Violet Beauregarde had a baby together. And I’ll be honest: I actually kinda like this. Now just ditch the TechFit mess, and we’ll be good.

• That wasn’t the only thing happening in LA on Saturday (Nov. 3rd). Oregon and USC had a game together, which of course, will include a big hype machine driven by Volt-colored motor oil. Yes, Oregon went full… well, see for yourself. The shirt’s slogan speaks for itself. Not a bad-looking game, IMO.

• Maryland wore v2.0 of their pride uniforms last weekend. I’m sure most of you know me as a pretty calm guy, and — while I have no problem with saying it in the comments — I pretty much never use the F-word in my write-ups, I’m gonna have to lift the language filter here, so if profanity bothers you, then I kindly ask that you skip over this next paragraph: Maryland, what the fuck?! You had AN ENTIRE YEAR to fix the glaring error of the flag patterns matching! This is one of the most exuberant flags in the United States, if not the most exuberant. Your professional teams give two shits about the flag enough to incorporate it in their uniforms in some facet, even though that almost none of the flag colors match up with the team colors! You make such a big deal about the flag, saying “the flag is our symbol’, “the flag is our heart and soul”, and yet you not only fuck up last year’s uniforms (I gave you the benefit of the doubt then), but you have 14 months of downtime between when they were first unveiled (worn twice in 2011, the first time in early September against Miami), and the version that you wore on Saturday, FOURTEEN FUCKING MONTHS to realize “Oh! We should fix the panels so that it looks more like the flag”, and yet you STILL MANAGE TO FUCK THIS UP? It’s kind of like in the game Ghosts N’ Goblins (I’m mainly talking about the NES version, and know nothing about the arcade version), how it’s O.K. if you’re completely new to the game, and you don’t realize that the knife is the only good weapon, and that’s fine, you don’t know any better, but if you’ve been playing the game for a few days, read and watched the reviews, and you have the levels figured out by now, you should know damn well by now to GET THE KNIFE. It’s like Maryland burned their hand on the stove not knowing that it hurts, but they intentionally burn their hand on the same damn stove over one year later! (except that the stove has since been painted black for one reason or another) Maryland, you’ve had time to correct this glaring mistake, but if you’re not going to take the time to see that the quadrants are supposed to stagger, if you’re going to talk a big game about your State’s flag and how you’re practically willing to die for it, yet you don’t meet the bare minimum requirement of making sure that the uniform looks like this, then I have one bit of advice for you: never wear this uniform or any variation of it. Ever again. Hopefully, I never have to go in on a program like that ever again.

• Last, but not least, West Virginia did their best Oregon impression by wearing greigh/yeller/greigh against TCU. Not bad.

And that will end this make up of week 10′s findings. Hopefully, I haven’t scared any of you away from my rant on Maryland, and I’ll see you tomorrow.

. . .

Thanks, TJ. I think you really need to come out of your shell more with your feelings about some of these uniforms. I’m getting the impression you’re just going through the motions ;)

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That’s it for today, folks. Yes, I know there was college hoop action yesterday, and yes, I’m well aware camo was worn. I’m not going to say anything about the why it was worn (and yes, tomorrow is Veterans’ Day, and it’s a day we should stop and thank a veteran for all the freedoms we enjoy today, at least the Americans reading this), but I will say they all looked like shit. If anyone wants to do up a *review* of those unis, drop me a line and we’ll talk. I’m all camo’ed out, folks.

And one last thing — I was going to do a write up on how I and my friends and family fared through Sandy and the nor’easter, but frankly, I’m too exhausted to do that for today. Maybe tomorrow. Lets just say I’m one of the lucky ones — by lucky, I only lost power for six days, and my mom and aunt both only suffered major tree damage (and they were without power for nine days). There are still hundreds of thousands still without power, thousands without HOMES, and hundreds who lost their lives. Sandy was very, very bad folks, and the recovery and suffering will be prolonged. My heart goes out to anyone affected by this and to any Uni Watchers (and their family and friends) who are still suffering. Peace.

. . .

My brother and I got a ton of those things for Christmas in 1980…Steelers and Browns as gifts, then Chargers, Giants, Oilers, Falcons, Raiders and Eagles with money from grandma thru the Sears catalog. The numbers didn’t stick for long, and the feet tended to break off, but man were they fun to play with. No wonder I’m obsessed with uniforms.
–Rob Ullman

 

74 comments to The Fish That Saved Pittsburgh…kinda

  • Rob S | November 10, 2012 at 8:50 am |

    Reading Terry’s rant about Maryland, I could only imagine him making this face.

    • Simply Moono | November 10, 2012 at 9:14 am |

      ^^I love everything about this, especially with S3 starting today.

    • Kris M. | November 10, 2012 at 7:41 pm |

      Someone’s been watching AVGN lately.

  • Herb The Wh0re Crusher | November 10, 2012 at 8:51 am |

    The NBA in Pittsburgh? Who. Gives. A FVCK?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?

    Please stop writing about absurd topics and get back to uniwatch headquarters to help Paul beat off.

    BC

    • Coleman | November 10, 2012 at 8:53 am |

      U mad bro?

    • DJ | November 10, 2012 at 8:57 am |

      What’s wrong, Johnson? Did your mommy catch you spanking your tiny monkey again ?

      • Gusto4044 | November 10, 2012 at 10:09 am |

        As a fan of Pittsburgh sports teams, I’m actually happy the NBA isn’t in the Steel City. Hoops fans can get their fix with Pitt basketball, which has been very successful overall the past decade. Pittsburgh just doesn’t have the huge population to support 41 dates a year, while also having the NFL, MLB, and NHL.

        • James A | November 10, 2012 at 1:21 pm |

          One thing I’ve noticed from friends I have from Western PA is a general lack of interest in basketball. And not even a “I hate the way the NBA is today” kind of disdain. As good a sports town as I think Pittsburgh is, I can see where putting an NBA team in Pittsburgh right now (or the last coule decades) probably wouldn’t work.

          Having said that, I loved the lede today. I enjoy obscure stuff like that. Nuts to Herb!

      • StLMarty | November 10, 2012 at 6:44 pm |

        Gettin change.

    • Terry Proctor | November 10, 2012 at 11:30 am |

      Hey Herbie, some of us would rather read articles about city/team history than the constant updates of what the Ducks wore last week. And could you please be just a little more obnoxious with your rants? Jeez Louise.

      • Tim E. O'B | November 10, 2012 at 1:43 pm |

        Hey! Come on now, why ya gotta take a shot at *my* contribution?

        ;)

        • Terry Proctor | November 10, 2012 at 3:22 pm |

          Tim, bad choice on my part in using the Duck Tracker in my analogy. Just trying to show Herbie that some of us actually like these historical pieces. Mia Culpa. Wait, wasn’t she a foreign actress? LOL

        • Tim E. O'B | November 10, 2012 at 3:36 pm |

          No problem, just givin’ you grief – not the amount that IU and NU football gives me, but that could kill a lesser man.

  • Simply Moono | November 10, 2012 at 9:15 am |

    “Thanks, TJ. I think you really need to come out of your shell more with your feelings about some of these uniforms.”

    I see what you did there ;)

    • Phil Hecken | November 10, 2012 at 10:53 am |

      oh…”shell” ~ “terrapins”

      yeah, that was actually completely unintentional, but hey…blind squirrel/nut and all that

  • David Murphy | November 10, 2012 at 10:11 am |

    Ricko, the early shoe-spatters really stood out, and looked great. I was fortunate enough to be able to tape my black shoes in the mid 70s. Schools were starting to wear white shoes, but my team stuck with the old school black. When we finally went white for my senior year, I was the only one to stick with black shoes. I was a straight-on kicker, with a black kicking shoe.

  • Jeff | November 10, 2012 at 10:45 am |

    The quote from Rob Ullman at the end, is he talking about Action Team Mates? I had some as a kid and loved them too.

    • Rob Ullman | November 11, 2012 at 12:51 pm |

      Indeed I was!

  • LarryB | November 10, 2012 at 10:53 am |

    Good stuff Jerry. I was a kid back then and just vaguely remember the Pittsburgh Rens. I must say I never had an idea that Rens was short for Renaissance.

    I remember the Pipers a little better. I enjoyed the history lesson today.

    • quiet seattle | November 10, 2012 at 12:29 pm |

      Loved today’s lede. Thank you, Jerry.

      It’s a crime that Connie Hawkins wasn’t allowed to showcase his enormous talents in the NBA during his prime, but he sure left his mark on Pittsburgh, didn’t he? First as the MVP and leading scorer in the ABL, then as the MVP, leading scorer and league champion with the Pipers.

      • BurghFan | November 10, 2012 at 4:43 pm |

        Thanks, guys. I enjoyed putting it together.

  • Bernard | November 10, 2012 at 11:11 am |

    Excellent job on this look at professional basketball in Pittsburgh, JWOL! I almost always (see: always) hate singular team names, but being a homer, I have to say I love the Pittsburgh Renaissance. “Rens” is a great nickname, too.

    Comrade, you will be hearing from me shortly.

  • Terry Proctor | November 10, 2012 at 11:20 am |

    A couple of questions for Mr. Wolper. Did John H. Harris own the Ironmen? If they played at the Duquesne Gardens I’ll assume that he did. I base my assumption on the fact that their colors were Red & White and the jerseys had no lettering, just numbers. And the shorts featured a “P” on the left leg. In total the uniforms were basically a clone of the A.H.L. Pittsburgh Hornets who were also owned by Mr. Harris.

    And do you know what colors the Rens or any other A.B.L. teams used? The only team I know were George Steinbrenner’s Cleveland Pipers who were Red, White and Blue.

    • Ricko | November 10, 2012 at 11:31 am |

      Sidebar…

      Pretty sure that the late R.C. “Alley Oop” Owens of the 49ers played briefly for the ABL’s San Francisco Saints.

      Speaking of the 49ers, just found this fun photo while looking for anything on Owens and the Saints…
      http://prod.static.4...
      (l to r) Hugh McElhenny, Joe “The Jet” Perry, Y.A. Tittle, John Henry Johnson.

      • Ricko | November 10, 2012 at 11:34 am |

        Well, crap, we’ll do it the hard way…
        http://www.flickr.co...

      • Terry Proctor | November 10, 2012 at 3:38 pm |

        R.C. Owens played 23 minutes over four games with the ’61-’62 S.F. Saints averaging 1.0 PPG. He had nine boards and did all of his scoring from the free throw line where he was 4-out of-8. He chipped in one assist.

        • Terry Proctor | November 10, 2012 at 6:44 pm |

          Almost forgot. You can find complete stats and player numbers of both the A.B.L., A.B.A. and N.B.A. by going to http://www.apbr.org
          It’s the Association for Pro Basketball Research. No pictures but lots of good stats, trivia and links. Check it out if you’re an oldtime hoops junkie like me.

    • quiet seattle | November 10, 2012 at 12:33 pm |

      Found this Rens road jersey, Terry…

      http://dickscourtroo...

      • LarryB | November 10, 2012 at 3:25 pm |

        good find

    • BurghFan | November 10, 2012 at 4:41 pm |

      I think they were owned by Harris, and what you say about their uniforms looking like the Hornets makes a lot of sense. (I know the colors from articles referring to “the Red and White”.)

      I didn’t see a reference to the Rens’ colors anywhere, but the jersey our friend in Seattle found gives us a good idea. With the NOB on the home jerseys, it’s a little odd that there’s none on the road.

  • Bernard | November 10, 2012 at 11:49 am |

    James – should be gold sanis?

    • JTH | November 10, 2012 at 12:34 pm |
      • Ricko | November 10, 2012 at 1:09 pm |

        Perhaps sartorially speaking.
        But Padres never wore gold sanis with striped stirrups, only with solid brown.

        • JTH | November 10, 2012 at 1:40 pm |

          Pretty sure they never wore brown shoes, either.

          Or jeans.

          Really, the problem is that the patio chair (which you can barely see off to the left) wasn’t pushed in. How embarrassing. You all must think we live like savages.

        • Ricko | November 10, 2012 at 1:53 pm |

          That’s why I said “sartorially speaking,” to separate any suggestions of impropriety based on the Padres’ uni history.

          Because in the latter sense the white sanis are correct. ;)

        • Ricko | November 10, 2012 at 1:55 pm |

          Plus, everyone already knows we Midwesterners are hicks, hayseeds and, in some cases, hoosiers.

  • Kevin Hastings | November 10, 2012 at 12:14 pm |

    Nice Saturday uni match-up… Harvard at Penn (NBC Sports Network). I’ve always liked both schools colors.

  • Patrick_in_MI | November 10, 2012 at 12:48 pm |

    Nice write-up on ‘burgh hoops. I have zero interest in basketball but I liked the history you presented. Plus, I never knew the Rens were short for Renaissance. Would that have been the first non-pluralized team (Heat, Magic, etc)? I’m kinda surprised PGH doesn’t have an NBA team, seems like a good sports town.

  • James A | November 10, 2012 at 1:25 pm |

    “So, what’s wrong with this picture?” – JTH

    That Sinatra said never to wear brown shoes after 6:00 P.M.?

  • Andrew Seagraves | November 10, 2012 at 1:44 pm |

    Here’s some secondary logo creep from adidas in the CIS Football ranks –
    McGill (I do love the number font! and it seems to be and old jersey from 2010)
    http://publications....

    I like those jerseys more than their current set seen here: http://www.flickrive...

    And Adidas using the 3 stripes in a good way on the St. Mary’s Huskies (CIS) pants (can’t say the same for the jerseys) http://metronews.ca/...

  • concealed78 | November 10, 2012 at 1:56 pm |

    Nothing but rainbows coming out of Terry Duroncelet’s ass. I almost got diabetes from reading that sickeningly sugary review. Why do college teams insist on looking like shit?

    You know, when I was that age, I wanted to wear a classic uni, not some clown suit that will end up on all-time worst lists.

    • Rob S | November 10, 2012 at 3:26 pm |

      Nothing but rainbows coming out of Terry Duroncelet’s ass.

      You mean like this?

    • Simply Moono | November 10, 2012 at 4:10 pm |

      I need prosthetic sides now, because you just destroyed mine XD

  • Andrew Seagraves | November 10, 2012 at 2:17 pm |

    Northwestern and Michigan are looking good in their uni matchup. I agree Nortwestern needs a dark pant with their road whites. Heck, the other B1G game right now, Wisconsin/Indiana is a looker too.

    • Tim E. O'B | November 10, 2012 at 2:29 pm |

      “Heck, the other B1G game right now, Wisconsin/Indiana is a looker too.”

      Only visually…

      smh

      • Name Redacted | November 10, 2012 at 3:48 pm |

        Its almost basketball season.

        (Although it worries me to see IU as preseason #1)

        • Tim E. O'B | November 10, 2012 at 7:37 pm |

          It is basketball season as of yesterday and hot damn is our team great (though a bit thin for the first 9 games [bullshit suspensions. Two players got suspended because their parental guardian spent $180 on IU car stickers before either of them were born]).

      • Rob S | November 10, 2012 at 3:51 pm |

        PSU-Nebraska’s a pretty aesthetically pleasing game…

  • Andrew Seagraves | November 10, 2012 at 3:30 pm |

    Maybe this has been talked about already on the site – does Virginia, Clemson and UGA (maybe Wake Forest) all have the same uni-number font?

    • Andrew Seagraves | November 11, 2012 at 2:33 am |

      add in Washington on this

  • Tim E. O'B | November 10, 2012 at 3:33 pm |

    It’s these types of Saturdays that make me drink…

    • Phil Hecken | November 10, 2012 at 8:17 pm |

      i pretty much thought it was daylight

      • Tim E. O'B | November 10, 2012 at 10:29 pm |

        true.

  • RMB | November 10, 2012 at 3:44 pm |

    Russell Athletic should never be allowed to design another football uniform again. That is all.

    • Andrew Seagraves | November 10, 2012 at 4:18 pm |

      Now, I don’t know about that as an absolute statement – they’re doing a good job with Colorado State, Norfolk State and Savannah State and ULL just needs a few tweaks and it would be better. With Georgia Tech and Albany State they need to rethink things. Especially Albany State.

    • Terry Proctor | November 10, 2012 at 4:46 pm |

      Hey man, I sold Russell uniforms for 22 years. If you’ve got a problem with anyone it should be the Swooshies who started all of this whacked-out uniform crap. I don’t like it either but Russell is just trying to keep up with Nike, Reebok and UA. Sad too. Russell was making top-of-the-line football uniforms long before any of these new wunderkind companies were even a gleam in someone’s eye.

      • Andrew Seagraves | November 10, 2012 at 6:53 pm |

        Heck, the two main uniform makers I remember growing up were Wilson and Russell. You could probably throw in Rawlings in that mix as well.

  • Ricko | November 10, 2012 at 7:16 pm |

    Like throwbacks?

    Well, for only three grand…
    http://www.ebay.com/...

  • Simply Moono | November 10, 2012 at 7:28 pm |

    Does anybody have pics of the Wyoming/New Mexico game? If you do, then please link them. I’ll be sure to credit you. Please and thank you in advance.

    • Andrew Seagraves | November 10, 2012 at 8:42 pm |

      http://www.golobos.c... This is from the lobos website, i’m still searching

    • Andrew Seagraves | November 10, 2012 at 8:43 pm |

      http://www.golobos.c... From golobos.com

    • Andrew Seagraves | November 10, 2012 at 8:44 pm |

      Cowboy on one side and a W on the other for the Wyopokes

  • Tim E. O'B | November 10, 2012 at 7:34 pm |

    Thank you aTm, for doing God’s work.

  • James Craven | November 10, 2012 at 7:35 pm |

    The Raptors going “Fuck yeah, Canada” with their camo unis vs. the Sixers.

    • James A | November 10, 2012 at 9:28 pm |

      Along those lines, the NBA issue stars and stripes wristbands and headbands, but told Spencer Hawes of the 76ers that he couldn’t wear them in tonight’s game in Toronto.

      http://www.the700lev...

  • SammyC | November 10, 2012 at 8:24 pm |

    http://www.ebay.com/...

    Love me the 1967-68 socks with the 1968-69 Penguins sweater. Weirdly wonderful.

  • LI Matt | November 10, 2012 at 8:55 pm |

    Boston College is wearing two-in-ones.

  • Patrick_in_MI | November 10, 2012 at 9:50 pm |

    Vintage hockey on CBC tonight (and apparently every Saturday night until this shit gets resolved), Vancouver Darth Vaders at Chicago from 1982 Campbell Conf finals. These Vancouver unis were why I started watching hockey and I still love them today. You can also vote for next weeks matchup at http://www.cbc.ca/sp...

  • Attila Szendrodi | November 10, 2012 at 11:34 pm |

    God damn those Oregon unis are garbage tonight.

  • Andrew Seagraves | November 10, 2012 at 11:48 pm |

    UCLA has some nice sideline Jackets! too bad I can’t get a screen grab on them.

  • Douglas King | November 11, 2012 at 1:36 am |

    I could be wrong but I believe Georgia Tech wore gold pants on the road for the first time in the Paul Johnson era (2008-Present).

    The only times we have worn gold pants away from Bobby Dodd Stadium have come in neutral site games (08 Peachbowl (navy jerseys with gold pants), 2011 Sun Bowl (home whites)), and even then most of the time we have opted for the away look despite being the away team only int he fact that we choose heads or tales on the coin flip (09 ACC CG, 2010 Orange Bowl, 2010 Independence Bowl).

  • Andrew Seagraves | November 11, 2012 at 3:26 am |

    Is SMU using the Joey Harrington era number font now? or is it a Morgan Poster Avec used by Northwestern or is it a mix or something else?

    • Andrew Seagraves | November 11, 2012 at 3:29 am |

      or maybe the same font as Arizona?