Names of a Different Color

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The photo that I used at the top of yesterday’s entry isn’t a particularly remarkable shot, but there’s something about it that I find extremely pleasing: Darian Stewart’s NOB lettering is a different color than his uni number. It’s a small thing that goes a long way toward adding more visual interest to the back of the jersey.

It’s fairly rare for the lettering and numbering on the back of a jersey to be executed in different colors, at least in the NFL. Leaving aside the Rams’ throwbacks, there are only a few current examples: the Steelers (both jerseys), Rams (blue jersey only), and Texans (white jersey only). We could also include the Bengals’ and Cardinals’ white jerseys, but those are a different type of situation, because the contrasting shoulder yokes almost necessitate a different NOB color.

What about other sports? Let’s take a look (for the purposes of this exercise, if a team’s uni numbers are, say, navy outlined in orange but the NOBs are just navy without the orange outlining, I counted that as being the same color):

MLB: There are seven teams with numbers and NOBs in non-matching colors: the Diamondbacks (all jerseys), Braves (all jerseys), Cubs (road only),
Marlins (black only), Twins (all jerseys, except for the throwback alternate, which is NNOB), Rays (navy and powder blue alts), and Padres (G.I. Joe only).

NHL: Eight teams: the Flames (home only), Hurricanes (black alt only), Oilers (home only), Wild (road only), Rangers (alternate only), Senators (road only), and Blues (home only). We can also add the Flyers to the mix (both jerseys), but that’s sort of a different animal, because they use contrast-colored nameplates.

NBA: A whopping 15 teams — half the league! — go with non-matching rear-jersey typography, although in some cases the color variations are somewhat subtle. The teams on board are the Bobcats (home only), Pistons (both jerseys), Rockets (alt only), Lakers (home and road), Clippers (all jerseys), Heat (home only), Knicks (both jerseys), Wizards (both jerseys), Nuggets (alt only), Hornets (home and gold alt), Raptors (home only), Sixers (home only), Jazz (all jerseys), Kings (all jerseys), and Mavs (road and alt).

Personally, I think most of these number/NOB pairings look really good. Not all of them, but the vast majority of them. I’m not saying every team with matching number/NOB colors should necessarily switch to non-matching colors, mind you, but most of the teams that have gone this route have made it work for them. Or at least that’s my take. What do you think — do you like this style as much as I do? Does anyone specifically dislike it?

Also: If anyone can come up with a snappier name for this phenomenon than “non-matching number and NOB colors,” I’m all ears. I think the term I’d like to use for this is contrasting name and number, which could be abbreviated in any of the following ways: CNN, CN&N, or CN#. Thoughts?

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Collector’s Corner

By Brinke Guthrie

Ever see something on eBay, and you just know you’ll never own it or anything like it? Behold, My Giants Holy Grail: the Duane Kuiper/Mike Krukow bobble. These were from summer ’03. Now, if I recall correctly, these weren’t stadium giveaways, but I think they were a limited-edition item sold in the newspaper. But I had just been laid off from my job at CNET and didn’t want to spend the money. Big mistake — they rarely surface on eBay, and if they do, you need a bank loan for them. They’ve done subsequent announcer bobbles for Jon Miller and stadium voice Renel Brooks-Moon, but Kruk ’n’ Kuip is in a whole ’nother league.

In non-Holy Grail discoveries:

• Here are two Dave Boss posters I’ve never seen before — one for the Chiefs and one for the Bills.

• Here’s one from way back: an NFL/Sears boys winter cap that the ad calls 1970s, but the Redskins spear tells me it’s from a bit earlier than that.

• From the same era, a football game I’ve not seen before, called the “NFL Quarterback Transogram Football Game.”

• The Packers are devine. Says so right here! Wait, did I say Packers? Here’s a vintage Bart Starr promo poster.

• Do NFL teams send out Christmas cards to season ticket holders anymore? Got one from way back when from the Bengals. this one is from the 1970s San Diego Chargers, and that blue and gold looks terrific, eh? It pairs nicely with this 1974 Chargers poster!

• The Mets sent out Christmas cards in the 1960s, as evidenced by this one with Gil Hodges’s name on it.

Nice collection 1960s-1970s MLB decals right here.

• Pat Patriot always looked good on the Pats’ helmets, and he also looks sharp on these Mobil glasses.

• Reds fans will want this 1990 World Series champions coffee mug.

• And from reader Richard Stover, here’s a 1964 Boston Bruins calendar.

Seen something on eBay or Etsy that you think would make good Collector’s Corner fodder? Send your submissions here, and you can follow Brinke on Twitter and Facebook.

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PermaRec update: A gorgeous 1930s military jacket that washed up on the beach after hurricane Sandy has been reunited with its original owner’s 98-year-old widow. Get the full scoop here.

Also: Remember, I’ll be doing a live lecture/slideshow presentation on the PermaRec report cards tomorrow night, 7pm, at the Housing Works Bookstore Café. One of the other presentations on the bill is described as “[an examination of] the secret depth and weirdness hidden in the seemingly benign text on the back of sports trading cards,” so that could be up your alley as well. Details here.

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Uni Watch News Ticker: Coupla follow-ups from yesterday: First, I had mentioned that Jamaal Charles and Derrick Johnson of the Chiefs wore black armbands on Sunday. But Tim E. O’Brien says those weren’t armbands — they were the straps from shoulder harnesses. Jamaal Charles also wore it the previous week. So my bad on that one. … Secondly, I asked about the four numbers and the question mark on Barry Larkin’s jersey, which prompted Joseph Owen to post the following comment: “Larkin removed his captain’s patch in 1998 following the trade of close friend Lenny Harris. In place of the captain’s C, he wrote the uniform numbers of traded/released teammates David Weathers (49), Jeff Shaw (41), Dave Burba (34), and Harris (28). … The question mark is meant to be a ‘Who’s next?’ commentary, perhaps indicating Larkin himself, as he demanded a trade shortly after Harris was dealt.” … Saint Louis basketball added a black memorial strip for Rick Majerus on Sunday. The other schools for which Majerus coached — Marquette, Ball State, and Utah — haven’t yet played since his death on Saturday, so it remains to be seen if any of them will add uniform memorials. … Here’s a superb article about how Giants kicker Lawrence Tynes modifies his shoes. Highly recommended. … A Tennessee-based freight company’s logo looks a lot like the SEC logo (from Cody Dannen). … LaSalle basketball will wear 1968-69 throwbacks tomorrow night against Penn State. (The “Gola 15″ T-shirt is a fan giveaway for that game.) … Some Starbucks employees in Brooklyn are being required to wear caps with Nets logos. Or maybe they’re not required to wear them — depends on who you ask (thanks, Kirsten). … When Yanks GM Brian Cashman announced A-Rod’s surgery yesterday, he was wearing a polo shirt from the new rebranded Scranton Wilkes-Barre RailRiders, who of course are the Yanks’ triple-A farm team (good spot by David Greenwald). … Rangers backstop Mike Napoli began wearing black catcher’s gear last season because he thought it looked cool. Wonder if he’ll keep wearing it now that he’s signed with the Red Sox. … New uniforms for the Peoria Chiefs (from Joe Ringham). … Remember all the Gatorade nonsense from the MLB playoffs? UGA coach apparently doesn’t suffer that kind of crap gladly, at least judging by the start of this video (from Brent Hardman). … The Redskins use clear facemask clips. But the clips positioned just in front of Robert Griffin III’s earholes are yellow (good spot by Andrew Domingo). … Here’s more about that Greek soccer team being sponsored by a brothel.

 

133 comments to Names of a Different Color

  • Arr Scott | December 4, 2012 at 7:16 am |

    That’s a SWB RailRiders shirt. Before the rebrand, they were the SWB Yankees. But your accidental use of Red Barons, which isn’t and won’t be the team name, and which pretty much every baseball fan in America thinks when you say “Scranton Wilkes-Barre,” goes to show what the team should have done.

    • Paul Lukas | December 4, 2012 at 7:28 am |

      D’oh! Can you tell who was compiling the Ticker very late last night?

      Now fixed.

  • DonS | December 4, 2012 at 7:21 am |

    I have no issue with the different colors between the numbers and the NOB. It’s when the teams use the number font (Rangers, Rreds, etc) as the NOB that really annoys me. There is no design element, in any uni, that is as shitty of a look.

  • Arr Scott | December 4, 2012 at 7:22 am |

    I’m less universally a fan of contrasting NOB in baseball than in other sports. To my eye, it works best on a jersey whose base color is a team color. The Steelers pic is a perfect example. Also, because the white and gold have roughly equal contrast and visual impact on black. But on a neutral-color jersey, for me it works when it works, but if I were emperor I wouldn’t order it to be the default style. The context matters, too: While the Dodgers red front number is probably my single favorite uni design element in sports, a red number or name on the back would destroy the effect of the red number on front.

    • walter | December 4, 2012 at 4:23 pm |

      True, you kinda have to see it for yourself and then judge. I’m a fan of the way it looks on the Steelers’ uniform, so I’m willing to forgive the complexity of the extra outline on the player’s names with the white jerseys. This is a situation that reverses itself if the team’s colors contrast poorly; in other words, the execution looks more natural on the white uniform. There are very few teams whose uniform color and secondary color contrast perfectly with the white and each other… at least as far as this colorblind fan is concerned.

  • Gregg G. | December 4, 2012 at 7:22 am |

    DCNOB
    Different color name on back.

    BTW, great subject.

    • Dane | December 4, 2012 at 2:10 pm |

      Presented without comment (as seen on SI):

      https://twitter.com/...

      • Dane | December 4, 2012 at 2:36 pm |

        Sorry, that was meant to be a new thread, not a reply. My apologies.

  • Arr Scott | December 4, 2012 at 7:25 am |

    A variation that I can’t recall ever seeing: A team rendering the NOB in the same color as the base jersey, so that it’s present but invisible. I could actually see a team like the Yankees or some college football coaches doing that if forced by league rules to add NOB to road unis – provided the rule does not specifically require contrasting color for the NOB.

    • Paul Lukas | December 4, 2012 at 7:31 am |

      This is what the Maple Leafs initially did to “comply” with the NHL rule requiring NOBs back in the mid-1970s.

      We’re also seen Oregon football and basketball do it. And Notre Dame basketball did it just a few days ago:
      http://www.und.com/v...

      • DJ | December 4, 2012 at 9:01 am |

        Weren’t Notre Dame’s NOBs navy on the black background?

    • The Jeff | December 4, 2012 at 7:32 am |

      The Nikegon Ducks have done that on at least a couple of their jerseys in recent years.

    • John in DC | December 4, 2012 at 7:32 am |

      Toronto Maple Leafs, Feb 27-28 1978. Covered, conveniently, by Teebz…

      http://hockey-blog-i...

      Harold Ballard, master troll.

      • Teebz | December 4, 2012 at 11:17 am |

        Just arrived to UW after a pacticularly busy morning here at the old bunker, and I just re-read that piece on the color-on-color. I’m actually quite proud of that piece after having read it again.

        Thanks for linking it, John. Nearly 2000 articles have been added to HBIC, and sometimes a few great ones get lost in the shuffle. Sorry for the shameless self-promo, but I do also have something to add.

        The WHA was big in CN&N (not to try to steal another trademarked acronym). Almost every road jersey had contrasting name and number, and there were even some contrasting nameplates seen!

        • Rydell | December 4, 2012 at 10:16 pm |

          University of Western?

    • BurghFan | December 4, 2012 at 7:33 am |

      Of course you can’t recall seeing it – it’s designed to be difficult to see.

      Seriously, beyond the classic Harold Ballard decision to put jersey-colored letters on the Maple Leafs, haven’t there been a few college programs that have gone with the unreadable names? Oregon basketball comes to mind, and probably their football team, too. I think some other candied-up jerseys have had it as well.

      • BurghFan | December 4, 2012 at 7:36 am |

        At least I was right, if a minute or so late.

    • Arr Scott | December 4, 2012 at 7:39 am |

      Of course. The Leafs. Only one of the most famous design moments in sports uni history. D’oh! But I don’t count most of the recent college candy uniforms, since in almost all cases the NOB has an outline. I’m talking Leafs-like zero contrast here, where you can’t tell the name is there unless you have the jersey in your hands.

      • andyharry | December 4, 2012 at 9:24 am |

        Oregon was the only other that I could think of.

  • daveclt | December 4, 2012 at 7:31 am |

    I also like DCNOB.

    The unique thing about the Steelers is that home/away jerseys both use gold letters. I’m pretty sure they are the only team that does that (in any of the 4 major sports).

    • daveclt | December 4, 2012 at 7:32 am |

      By “does that”, I mean that they use the same NOB color for both jerseys.

    • The Jeff | December 4, 2012 at 7:47 am |

      Actually, thanks to their shoulders, the Bengals have the same color (white) NOBs on all 3 of their jerseys too.

    • NickV | December 4, 2012 at 10:06 am |

      Back when the Saints wore acceptable uniforms – amongst the many sets superior to their now dreadful sets – they wore Old Gold numerals on both the White and Black jerseys (1967-1969 – with NNOBs), and from 1995-1996 they wore lighter Gold numerals AND Gold name lettering on both the White and Dark jerseys.

      Oh, to turn back the hands of time ….

  • J.R. Clark | December 4, 2012 at 7:47 am |

    UGA coach Mark Richt has a promotional deal with Coca-Cola. Watch the video. Richt pushes the Gatorade bottles off the interview table, then puts a Coke on the table in front of him and carefully turns it so the Coke label faces the cameras.

    • Paul Lukas | December 4, 2012 at 8:10 am |

      Ah, jeez. So it’s basically just a douchebag face-off. Disappointing.

      • Designer Jacket | December 4, 2012 at 8:46 am |

        I also assumed his removal of the bottles and replacement with a Coke can was the Coca Cola thing. They promote/fund UGA and Georgia Tech (and everything else within 100 miles of Atlanta.) But then I also thought it might also be a bit of extra PR maneuvering since Gatorade has its origins within the Florida Gators football program (Dwagznation might not like that, as a general rule.)

        • teenchy | December 4, 2012 at 6:07 pm |

          I saw a comment on another blog that, as he removed the Gatorade, Richt was told by the SEC rep that they “were for Saban” or some such.

          It would be interesting to get more of the story.

      • NickV | December 4, 2012 at 10:16 am |

        Can’t stand that douchebaggery foolishness.

        However, the biggest, I mean BIGGEST Douchebaggery that I ever saw was 10-15 years ago. Monday Night Football. Tough game Cowboys vs. Eagles. Huge emotional game for Eagles. Playoff implications, and the huge emotional game with Eagles trying to break through to a higher echelon.

        Eagles trailing, agles moving, they have momentum, looking good, when QB Ty Detmer throws game-losing interception just as it appeared the Eagles were poised for a breakthrough victory. Total depression on Eagles sideline and for all pulling for Eagles. Camera follows Ty Detmer immediately following the game-changing, year-changing, career-changing interception.

        What was Ty Detmer’s emotion. He calmly ran to the bench, took off his helmet, and quickly put on his NFL-licensed hat, primped it to look “just right” so that the camera could catch it before going to commercial.

        I like Ty Detmer, I like the Eagles, and I like QBs. But that was the single biggest display of Whoring for Douchebaggery that I have ever seen, at the very worst point in any athletic event where it could be displayed.

        After seeing that display, they can all go screw themselves. The joke is on us.

    • quiet seattle | December 4, 2012 at 10:12 am |

      It was so thrilling to watch that UGA coach silently and efficiently remove those gatorade bottles/advertisements from that table.

      But then this coca-cola information…ugh. I guess there really is no Santa Claus.

      But…for a fleeting moment….

  • Simply Moono | December 4, 2012 at 8:07 am |

    “Lakers (home only)”

    The Lakers also do the player name thingy for their road uniforms.

    • Paul Lukas | December 4, 2012 at 8:09 am |

      Thanks — my bad. Will fix.

  • Matt E | December 4, 2012 at 8:12 am |

    I love that Andrew Domingo spotted that facemask clip color difference with RGIII. #SoGeek

  • Frank | December 4, 2012 at 8:19 am |

    So the Dave Boss illustration for the Bills’ poster is that of the quarterback getting sacked. Seems appropriate.

  • Chris M | December 4, 2012 at 8:21 am |

    Finally a Collector’s Corner with a Bills item!

    … and they are gettting sacked …

  • Rob S | December 4, 2012 at 8:24 am |

    Brinke, it looks to me like that hat was probably produced during the 1970 offseason. The absence of the Steelers, Browns, and Colts matches the seller’s description that this was an NFC hat, and chances are the manufacturer simply didn’t get updated on Lombardi’s new lid for the Redskins before the hat got made.

  • Johnny | December 4, 2012 at 8:28 am |

    What Bills fan wouldn’t want a poster of their quarterback getting sacked?

  • Dumb Guy | December 4, 2012 at 8:49 am |

    Nice internally-and invisibly-mounted facemask on #53 in the Chiefs poster.

  • JimWa | December 4, 2012 at 8:56 am |

    I have always been bothered by a lack of easily found jersey back documentation on this here internet. Sure, you can find jersey fronts anywhere you look, but why doesn’t anyone document jersey backs?

    The reason I ask is, since changing back to road greys in 1990, they’ve had four different road greys, and I believe ALL of them followed the same red number blue letter format. In fact, I’m pretty sure that aside from seeing shoulder patches, I don’t think you’d know which post 1989 road grey you’d be looking at if just viewed from the back. Of course, without way too much research, I can’t verify that for sure.

    That said, I’m not a fan of the look on the Cubs. I don’t know why, I just don’t like it.

    • Paul Lukas | December 4, 2012 at 9:06 am |

      Back jersey documentation is available if you know where to look.

      For the NHL: http://nhluniforms.c...

      For the NFL: http://www.uniformda...

      For the NBA: Every team’s current uniform, and many teams’ past uniforms, at least for the past 20 years or so, can be found at http://sportslogos.n...

      For MLB: Buy Bill Henderson’s jersey guide: http://mlbstyleguide...

    • Mark in Shiga | December 4, 2012 at 9:25 am |

      JimWa, the Cubs have actually had a few variations with the numbers on the backs of their post-1989 gray jerseys.

      In 1990 they had blue-on-white numbers, meaning that players wearing numbers 4, 7, 44, and 47 (digits that, in the Cubs’ number font, look just like plain varsity block) were indistinguishable from Dodgers players, from the back. The “CHICAGO” on the front was in a font called Lubalin Graph, and the Cubs used it a lot then, but don’t seem to now. In ’91 they made the CHICAGO bigger, and then in ’94 (I think) they used the script Cuba look.

      Then from ’91 to ’96 they had three layers: red on blue on white, with the NOBs in blue on white. They had to shorten and fatten the numbers somewhat to make this work, but it looked OK.

      In ’97 they switched to 2-layer red-on-white for the road backs, and that’s what the grey jerseys have looked like ever since. (I think the width of the letters in the front CHICAGO has varied, though.)

      Being a fan of blue road jerseys for the Cubs, I’m happy to see the walking-bear blue shirt get as much attention as possible on the road. They should dump that at home but wear it every game on the road.

      I hate NOBs, but if you’re going to have them, using a different color isn’t so bad with the Cubs. Their primary color is blue, but, as with the red number on the fronts of the Dodgers’ jerseys, a bit of red adds a lot. I suspect that their next road revision will be to return to the late-60s, pre-blue-road-jersey era and have blue-on-red everything: CHICAGO on the front and the numbers on the back. (They’ll probably add NOBs; hopefuly not.)

      • JimWa | December 4, 2012 at 9:33 am |

        I love you, Man!

  • Paul Lukas | December 4, 2012 at 9:08 am |

    For numbers and NOBs in different colors, I think the term I’d like to use is contrasting name and number, which could be abbreviated in any of the following ways:

    CNN
    CN&N
    CN#

    Thoughts?

    • Arr Scott | December 4, 2012 at 9:27 am |

      CNN risks confusion, CN&N is actually kind of hard to type given key locations and the whole shift thing, and CN# doesn’t scan for me like it should in theory (though of the three, it’s my favorite).

      How a bout CoNaNu or CoNN? Which I suggest because CoNNtrast is even worse.

    • JTH | December 4, 2012 at 9:46 am |

      CNOB (contrasting NOB) is available, right ?

      It seems like something like that would be consistent with the other “*NOB” glossary entries.

      • Paul Lukas | December 4, 2012 at 11:23 am |

        But it isnt just about the NOB — it’s about the number *and* the NOB. That’s why I’m resisting that format.

        • JimWa | December 4, 2012 at 11:36 am |

          What would the name be contrasting if not the number?

        • JTH | December 4, 2012 at 11:37 am |

          Well, do whatever you like. You’re probably the only one who’s ever going to use the abbreviation with any sort of regularity.

          But think about this: doesn’t “contrasting name on back” imply that the name is contrasting with the number? I mean, the overwhelming majority of the time, the NOB will contrast with the jersey. It’s the exception to the rule when the NOB and jersey color match (Maple Leafs, Ducks, etc.).

        • Mainspark | December 4, 2012 at 1:48 pm |

          Paul, great post today. I think CNN is the best acronym. It’s the easiest to type and I don’t think there is going to be much confusion. As a separate matter, have you ever considered placing a glossary of commonly used terms/acronyms on Uni Watch somewhere on the homepage? It might make it easier on newcomers to decipher what the hell everyone is talking about and help grow the site. Just a thought.

        • Mainspark | December 4, 2012 at 5:20 pm |

          Nevermind. Just found the glossary under the Research Projects!

    • Piping Mike | December 4, 2012 at 11:22 am |

      How about Contrasting Uniform Number Type? It makes for an interesting acronym…

    • C Ward | December 4, 2012 at 11:47 am |

      Hetero-chromatic Text On Back?

    • John in DC | December 4, 2012 at 12:17 pm |

      CNAN

      • Rex | December 4, 2012 at 12:42 pm |

        Second

        • tosaman | December 4, 2012 at 12:47 pm |

          aye

      • Dane | December 4, 2012 at 2:39 pm |

        As long as we never have a cyan CNAN, I’m OK with that.

    • Chris | December 4, 2012 at 4:42 pm |

      How about Contrasting Color Name and Number, or C2N2?

    • Adam | December 4, 2012 at 7:44 pm |

      I think C#NOB or CNOB# or #/NOB or NOB/# could work. Since we are dealing with an NOB it should be included in the abbreviation.

  • Stephen Peters | December 4, 2012 at 9:14 am |

    In the case of the different NOB/number colors, the Dallas Mavericks have navy for the name and royal blue for the number. So all three of their jerseys have mix-matching colors.

    http://cdn.bleacherr...

  • Mark in Shiga | December 4, 2012 at 9:17 am |

    I think there’s a difference between NOBs that use one or more of the colors in the number, but not all of them, and teams that use a totally contrasting color, like the Steelers do.

    When you have a number that’s in three or four layers, trying to make the NOB with the same color scheme can get really unwieldy. So I like when teams with elaborate multi-layer numbers simplify things with fewer layers in the NOB. It makes even more sense when the number is in some kind of exotic font, which we see a lot of in basketball and hockey. If you’re going to have a NOB, go with a nice clean single layer to contrast with your number. That means that one or more colors will be eliminated, but it just looks better.

  • Shane | December 4, 2012 at 9:26 am |

    I seem to remember reading (might have been on NHL Uniforms) that the Flames tried black/white lettering when they started using mainly black numbers, but fans complained that it was too hard to read.

    • DJ | December 4, 2012 at 2:17 pm |

      Correct; it was on NHLUniforms.com

  • mh | December 4, 2012 at 9:26 am |

    Paul: Your “1930s military jacket” descriptor is correct, so far as it goes. Even more precise would be: “1930s West Point cadet dress A jacket.”

  • Mike V. | December 4, 2012 at 9:30 am |

    Looking at all those NOBs, I realized I am not a big fan of outlined NOBs. I guess it’s the heaviness of them perhaps, or the busyness maybe, not sure. I am just not a fan.

    • Arr Scott | December 4, 2012 at 10:58 am |

      Agreed. In almost all cases, an outline (or two or three) makes the NOB letters harder to read. Which is, objectively speaking, Bad Design.

      There are exceptions, of course. Personally, I think that the Brewers’ use of a white outline with gold drop shadow slightly improves legibility. But usually, the outline tends to obscure the basic letter forms, which reduces legibility, and legibility is the whole point of putting a NOB on a jersey. There’s a reason that highway signs, for example, don’t have outlines around their lettering.

  • scottrj | December 4, 2012 at 9:33 am |

    Not sure if the entry about the misspelling on the Packers bumper sticker was meant to be facetious, but the “Devine” in it is a play on words referring to their head coach Dan Devine.

  • Lose Rem | December 4, 2012 at 9:33 am |

    What was up with Cedric Griffin of the Washington team last night? I haven’t seen a football player wearing a “belly shirt” since what, the 80′s?

  • teenchy | December 4, 2012 at 9:34 am |

    Going down the rabbit hole of ebay MLB stickers: Everyone is familiar with the Swinging Friar, but how about the Fielding Friar?

    • Paul Lukas | December 4, 2012 at 9:48 am |

      Wow – that’s a new one on me!

      • Connie DC | December 4, 2012 at 3:58 pm |

        Wow is right. That hat is apt (historically): Father Serra and the other Original Padres sported that wide-brim model for a long time. Related to the cool hats you can still see being worn by the picadors at bullfights.

        Rob H is right, I think, about the friar wearing a “goofy grin,” but he sure ain’t no Chief Wahoo. I’m particularly drawn to the “you’d all” of “you’d all be calling it racist…” Lord knows we’re “all” members of a group-think urban hyper-sensitive ultra-liberal claque monopolizing discourse and censoring commonsensical observation. It’s on the back of your membership card.

        • Rob H | December 5, 2012 at 1:15 am |

          …group-think urban hyper-sensitive ultra-liberal claque monopolizing discourse and censoring common-sensical observation

          If we get real creative, I’m sure we can re-arrange and replace a few words and come up with a real neat-o acronym for that.

          I shouldn’t have said “you’d all” instead I should have went with, “there are those of you who’d say…”

    • Rob H. | December 4, 2012 at 2:52 pm |

      That Fielding Friar is nice, but I can’t help but think because of the goofy grin on his face if that cartoonish character had been black or Asian, you’d all be calling it racist. Since he’s Caucasian, it’s okay?

      • Phil Hecken | December 4, 2012 at 4:00 pm |

        oh ffs

        • teenchy | December 4, 2012 at 6:14 pm |

          For Friar’s sake? ;-)

          The goofy grin reminds me of the grin on the “Phil Face,” supposedly of lead character designer Phil Rynda, in the Cartoon Network series Adventure Time.

      • hugh.c.mcbride | December 4, 2012 at 4:01 pm |

        I disagree.

        If a cartoon or other visual depiction is designed w/ exaggerated features based upon racial stereotypes or designed to mock a particular racial group then it’s rightly seen as racist.

        I don’t think anyone who is honestly assessing a drawing or photo would identify a goofy grin alone as racist, regardless of who was being depicted. For example, this political cartoon is critical of President Obama, & portrays him with what could be described as a “goofy grin,” yet avoids resorting to racist characterizations.

  • JimWa | December 4, 2012 at 9:38 am |

    In regards to Rick Majerus, there’s a sports radio guy in St. Louis, Bernie Miklasz (Post-Dispatch writer) who credits Majerus directly for his losing 100 pounds. The two built a relationship in Majerus’ time in St. Louis, and Bernie spoke in depth yesterday that Majerus repeatedly urged him (paraphrasing), “It’s too late for me to do anything about my body, but you have a young wife, you need to get yourself in shape to take care of her”. And he has. Pretty cool stuff.

  • JTH | December 4, 2012 at 9:42 am |

    In general, I can’t say I care one way or the other about the contrasting name and number, but I really don’t care for the way it looks on the Steelers’ white jerseys. And I fucking LOATHE it on the Cubs’ gray jerseys.

    But I actually preferred the Bulls’ jerseys when they had the plain white NOBs on the road jerseys (and the plain red ones on the home jerseys as well, but those don’t count as contrasting).

  • Chase | December 4, 2012 at 9:43 am |

    According to this article, the Utes are not only wearing armbands for Majerus, they’re also hanging his sweater from the rafters.

    http://www.deseretne...

  • andyharry | December 4, 2012 at 9:46 am |

    For me, here’s what works:

    1. One-color numbers and names in the same color, like the Browns or Colts. No brainer.

    2. Two-color numerals and names in the same treatment. The Bears do this (white or blue numbers and names with orange trim) and it looks great. The NY Rangers do this, too.

    I generally don’t like the Lakers’ approach of flipping the colors on the two-color numbers/names, but it’s not that bad in their case because they do the same thing on the front of the jersey.

    3. One-color numbers and names in different colors, like the Steelers’ black jerseys or the 76ers’ white jerseys.

    4. Two-color numbers and one-color names only work for me if the name is the same color as the outline. Many of the examples noted above follow this; the Braves, Pistons, Clippers, Heat home, Rams home, Texans road, NY Rangers alt, etc.

    The outline is generally pretty thin, coincidentally about the same weight as the nameplate lettering. That size relationship makes the nameplate lettering look right when it’s the same color as the outline. Conversely, when it’s done like the Redskins do it, for example (white numbers with yellow trim, but plain white names), the names just look unfinished to me, like they just didn’t feel like adding the yellow trim that the numbers have. The Redskins would look miles better with yellow names, in my opinion.

    5. The Steelers’ technique on their white jerseys is rare. A two-color name and a one-color number, but I like it provided the number is the same color as the outline of the name (to avoid looking unfinished, as previously described).

    I don’t condone three-color numbers ever, but I suppose I could be convinced if given a compelling example.

    • Graf Zeppelin | December 4, 2012 at 4:32 pm |

      The original Jaguars’ unis had some nice three-color numbers.

      • Branduil | December 4, 2012 at 5:35 pm |

        I miss the Jaguars’ old unis.

  • Keith | December 4, 2012 at 9:58 am |

    Celtics alt jersey does the CNN thing too

    their St. Patty’s day uniforms as well.

  • Josh | December 4, 2012 at 9:59 am |

    To add to the NBA list, the Celtics alternate (white NOB, black on white numbers) and St. Patty’s day special (white NOB, gold on white numbers) qualify.

  • Simply Moono | December 4, 2012 at 10:00 am |
  • EddieAtari | December 4, 2012 at 10:08 am |

    A contrasting NOB is a good use of color-blocking (IMO).

    The Football Giants had NOBs in a non-matching color from 2000 to 2006. I like the current all-white-and-red jerseys better, but I just wish they kept the NOB blue. This was not a design element on the original 1956 white jerseys that the current ones replicate,so I think it would work. It would look like the practice jerseys of the Collins/Barber era.

  • EddieAtari | December 4, 2012 at 10:09 am |

    A contrasting NOB is a good use of color-blocking (IMO).
    The Football Giants had NOBs in a non-matching color from 2000 to 2006. I like the current all-white-and-red jerseys better, but I just wish they kept the NOB blue. This was not a design element on the original 1956 white jerseys that the current ones replicate,so I think it would work. It would look like the practice jerseys of the Collins/Barber era.

  • EddieAtari | December 4, 2012 at 10:10 am |

    A contrasting NOB is a good use of color-blocking (IMO).
    The Football Giants had NOBs in a non-matching color from 2000 to 2006. I like the current all-white-and-red jerseys better, but I just wish they kept the NOB blue. This was not a design element on the original 1956 white jerseys that the current ones replicate,so I think it would work. It would look like the practice jerseys of the Collins/Barber era.

  • Rob | December 4, 2012 at 10:42 am |

    Thanks for the trip down memory lane with those Mobil Patriots glasses. Many a glass of milk were drank out of those in my youth.

  • Dave | December 4, 2012 at 11:32 am |

    Another similar phenomenon is hockey socks not matching NHL home jerseys. Unfortunately, the Boston Bruins are the only team that does it (yellow socks with black jerseys), so I guess it’s kind of a boring subject.

    • Wally1912 | December 4, 2012 at 1:41 pm |

      The Anaheim Ducks wear primarily orange socks with their black alternate jerseys.

      !http://ducks.ocregis...!

  • Kevin Z. | December 4, 2012 at 11:45 am |

    Virginia used to have CNN on their jerseys and I think it looked pretty good.
    http://wvir.images.w...

  • mike 2 | December 4, 2012 at 12:03 pm |

    http://www3.pictures...

    When Calgary redesigned in 2003, the names matched the numbers (three layers of black – white – orange). The names were completely unreadable (both on TV and in the arena) and after a couple of games they redesigned to the current style.

    For anyone who’d bought a replica jersey with the old style, the team shop updated the jerseys to the redesigned style for free.

  • duker | December 4, 2012 at 12:30 pm |

    The Ravens send out Holiday cards every year. I’m not even a PSL owner yet, I’m just on the wait list.

    • Rob H. | December 4, 2012 at 2:54 pm |

      Maybe they only send them to the waiting list members. Once they get your money, see how much they care!

      • Frank from Bmore | December 4, 2012 at 9:46 pm |

        PSL owners get them as well. I look forward to ours every year.

  • bill | December 4, 2012 at 12:30 pm |

    A good friend of mine had a Transogram football game in the early 1970′s. For each down, opponents selected a play if on offense, or a specific defense if defending, then a button was pressed that illuminated the result somewhere on the field.

    • timdub70 | December 4, 2012 at 5:36 pm |

      The Transogram football game resembles that of Aurora’s Monday Night Football game that was made a few years later. My brother got one for Christmas in ’71.

  • JJD | December 4, 2012 at 12:31 pm |

    Love the DCNOB as well. My daughter has been playing youth sports for a while and they’ve always had the same colors for names and numbers EXCEPT for the first year she played hoops, when we got the dark blue shirts pre-numbered in light blue, and we took them to the local printers and added names in white. This has always been my favorite jersey/uniform she has worn. https://twitter.com/...

  • name dedacted | December 4, 2012 at 12:32 pm |

    In case it wasnt mentioned monday, theres a store in ontario selling Luongo Maple Leafs sweaters.

  • Jon | December 4, 2012 at 12:46 pm |

    Maybe I am missing the criteria for inclusion, but the Seahawks have numbers and names on the back that are different colors.

    • The Jeff | December 4, 2012 at 1:07 pm |

      Yeah, but not really. They have gray NOBs and textured gray numbers. I’d call that close enough to be considered the same.

      • Paul Lukas | December 4, 2012 at 1:26 pm |

        Yes, that was my thinking when I considered them.

        • Jon | December 4, 2012 at 2:25 pm |

          I was thinking the names were white.

  • Oliver | December 4, 2012 at 12:48 pm |

    The new Portland Trail Blazers alternates feature a contrasting NOB to nice effect.

    http://www.ballersta...

    So much to love about these new jerseys (new stripe, contrasting NOB, great colors), so much to dislike (boring font, bad arm trim, rip city on the ass? really?).

  • Snowdan | December 4, 2012 at 1:05 pm |

    I know the term “politically correct” is not a preferred term here, but I still found it funny that the Peoria Chiefs have a hat that says “PC” and they changed their logo to a firefighting dog!

    • scott | December 4, 2012 at 10:09 pm |

      That firefighting dog is not a new logo.

  • Sam D. | December 4, 2012 at 1:42 pm |

    Speaking of sports logos at coffee shops, there’s a place here in Boston called the South End Buttery, where baristas wear brown Red Sox hats as part of their uniforms.

  • Jack Lint | December 4, 2012 at 2:00 pm |

    The Minnesota Daily ran a photo essay today on the goalie masks of the Gophers from both the men’s and women’s teams. Some good shots.

    http://www.mndaily.c...

  • Graf Zeppelin | December 4, 2012 at 2:33 pm |

    The best example of CN&#OB, I think, was the old Rams jerseys (blues only), that had the solid yellow numerals and white NOB.

    For most of the examples cited in the article, the NOB color is the same as the numeral trim/outline color. Not so with these, or the Steelers’ blacks, but I like these better.

  • Chance Michaels | December 4, 2012 at 2:55 pm |

    Re: “The Pack is Devine”

    That was, of course, a reference to then-new head coach Dan Devine. We were all so optimistic back then.

    Packer fans have a long history of clever bumperstickers to welcome head coaches, like this one:

    “The Pack Has a Guiding Starr” (Bart)

    There was also an “Out of the Woods with Forrest” (Gregg), but that doesn’t seem to be on ebay at the moment.

    As I said, always optimistic. But for a long time, it was easier to root for the coach than the team.

  • Mike Engle | December 4, 2012 at 4:07 pm |

    Funny story of the day:
    I showed up for my law school exam today (Contracts I, if you must know), and it somehow looked like a Uni Watch convention! No pictures, but my friend Jimmy wore a rookie Sean Taylor replica jersey (maroon, #36) and my other friend Wayne wore a throwback Villanova jersey with Brian Westbrook’s #20. As for me, I wore my red Maxim Lapierre Habs jersey, from the 2008-09 season, complete with the two shoulder patches.

  • Paul Lukas | December 4, 2012 at 5:25 pm |

    Ridiculously long interview with me just went up on Gothamist:
    http://gothamist.com...

    • KT | December 4, 2012 at 6:00 pm |

      Nice. Dug it.

      Your fave bowling place looks like a cool spot.

      The Tampa Smokers weren’t – to my knowledge – a Negro League team, though. They were (most frequently) a minor league team in various leagues, including the Florida State League.

      /nitpick

  • Rad | December 4, 2012 at 6:40 pm |

    I love the contrasting NOB. I strongly dislike 2-colour NOB’s, or 3-colour NOB’s. Jersey technology is consistently geared towards lighter uniforms, so to me, having multiple layers of tackle twill doesn’t make sense.

    Nike’s 2-layer football numbers are a step in the right direction, but that thin layer of outline they are sewing doesn’t look to be very durable. Not that it matters since single-use jerseys are becoming the norm.

    I’m also a fan of contrasting tv numbers, like the new Seahawks jersey, or the original Pat Patriot jersey (never understood why they got rid of that one so soon). Not very common, but a nice touch IMO. A similar type of contrast to that would be the Eagles late 70′s jersey, with tackle twill front/back numbers, and screen printed t.v. numbers & name.

  • Scott W | December 4, 2012 at 6:53 pm |

    Napoli will reportedly be primarily a first basemen this year. I guess the Red Sox are helping him ditch the black.

  • Dante | December 4, 2012 at 7:33 pm |

    Finally (almost) official. Looks like the Hornets will become the Pelicans.

    http://espn.go.com/n...

    • DJ | December 4, 2012 at 8:35 pm |

      The other possibilities were reportedly “Krewe” and “Brass.” I like the Krewe name; very Nawlins.

    • Graf Zeppelin | December 4, 2012 at 8:50 pm |

      Pelicans? Meh. Krewe would have been better, although no one who’s never been to Mardi Gras probably wouldn’t get it.

      • Tim E. O'B | December 4, 2012 at 9:34 pm |

        “although no one who’s never been to Mardi Gras probably wouldn’t get it.”

        Triple negative = you just said, “although anyone who’s been to Mardi Gras probably wouldn’t get it.” = opposite of true

        • Phil Hecken | December 4, 2012 at 10:08 pm |

          d-bag

          but true (meaning you’re correct)

          krewe would have been awesome, but no one who has not been to new orleans would get it

        • Tim E. O'B | December 5, 2012 at 1:24 am |

          English, mother fucker, do you speak it?

    • Wheels | December 4, 2012 at 8:53 pm |

      Too many syllables.

      • Dave B | December 4, 2012 at 9:29 pm |

        They could shorten it to P-cans. Still very N’awlins!

        • Tim E. O'B | December 4, 2012 at 9:37 pm |

          The Pecans?

      • Kevin W. | December 4, 2012 at 10:36 pm |

        It’s three syllables. That’s hardly “too many.”

        • Wheels | December 4, 2012 at 10:41 pm |

          It’s too many when you combine it with New Orleans. That’s six, it doesn’t flow well. The “s” in Orleans messes it all up too. It needs to be short, that’s why ‘New Orleans Jazz’ sounds good.

      • Phil Hecken | December 4, 2012 at 11:03 pm |

        “Too many syllables.”

        the seattle supersonics would like a word with you

        …wait

    • Douglas King | December 4, 2012 at 10:32 pm |

      So how long until the Bobcats become the Hornets?

      • Rob H. | December 4, 2012 at 11:03 pm |

        As soon as they sell all of the Bobcats merchandise.

        • Phil Hecken | December 4, 2012 at 11:15 pm |

          so…

          never?

  • Rydell | December 4, 2012 at 10:03 pm |

    Bengals & Cards should be exempt regarding diff color from number and name as they have rainbow color uni’s (in their uniform colors). But vey interesting as I never realized Steelers etc. endorsed this fashion..

  • Reed | December 5, 2012 at 12:20 am |

    Today’s topic got me thinking of a similar uni-quirk — when the numerals on the front and back of a football uniform are a different color than the TV numbers on the shoulders. The only example I can think of is Virginia Tech’s home and away jerseys when Michael Vick was QB. The shoulder numbers were orange on both jerseys, while the large numbers forward and aft were the inverse of the main uniform color.

    http://www.dailypres...

    I think it’s a cool look, but I can’t think of any other teams off the top of my head that do this.

  • Nick G | December 5, 2012 at 2:44 pm |

    I dislike it, unless it’s a team like the cubs where Chicago is in blue with a red number underneath, so the back correlates. Unless there’s some continuity win the front and back like that, I dislike the random different colored name, unless it’s like Oregon, hiding the name