Designing Minds, Volume II

Josh Weiland - Splash

By Phil Hecken

Every so often, as a lede, I will run a set of uniform concepts from a single designer that are either so good, so innovative, or so special that they deserve to be set apart from the normal “Concepts” section. Last weekend, I introduced this feature, and today brings us Volume II. I hadn’t intended to bring you two “Designing Minds” so close together, but (1) I received both reader submissions at almost the time, and (2) today’s topic puts a nice exclamation point on the MLB pre-season, or what we know and love as Spring Training.

So, what exactly is that jersey in today’s splash photo? Is it some minor league team, or perhaps an old-as-new company team from the 1940s? And what’s with the logo? You’ll find all that out and more, in just a moment. But first, I want to bring you a very brief interview with the designer of that (and much more), in our little Q&A segment with that concept’s creator, and today’s featured designer, Josh Weiland.

. . .

Uni Watch: Hi Josh, thanks for sharing a few minutes with Uni Watch. First off, where did you go to school and did you study design there?

Josh Weiland: I have a bachelor’s in philosophy from Grinnell College (home of the Pioneers, but more importantly the Grinelephant and Sticky Tongue ultimate teams) and a master’s in urban planning, with a specialization in urban design, from UNC Chapel Hill. While I didn’t study design, I do a lot of map making and graphic design in my day job.

UW: Yes, I noticed your website in your e-mail signature. A lot of people, it seems, who are attracted to Uni Watch are also into maps. How long have you been reading/following the blog?

JW: I have been reading and making occasional comments on UW for years, first finding it on ESPN. Being a map dork, I was interested in sports geography first, then logos – making maps of imaginary expansion teams and their logos as a kid.

UW: And what we’re about to see plays off that?

JW: You could think of this project as an extension of that – the theme is geography through uniforms.

UW: Cool — is this your first foray into uniforms and logo design?

JW: While I haven’t done other logo designs (other than my fantasy teams – this year the Ciriaco Hot Sauce), I have continued to realign leagues, adding and taking away teams.

UW: Fantasy teams, eh? Well, you know, we’re running a fantasy football design contest on here. You more into baseball?

JW: I am a firm believer in the ability of the Boston market to sustain an additional MLB team, for example, though Atlanta can keep the racist name. We were more interested in getting the Mystic River Marlins to come to town.

UW: OK, then. What’s your inspiration for your design? Are you more of a traditionalist, or modernist?

JW: I think of uniforms and logos as being a kind of heraldry, and my interest definitely extends there, as well as bringing me to vexillology websites and places like Wikipedia’s list of military aircraft insignia. I’d say I’m more of a traditionalist, preferring simple lines and logos. While cartoony logos have their place (ie MiLB, which I love), I like more staid images in the pros.

UW: Awesome. Tell me a little bit more about your website.

JW: My website, though not updated as often as I’d like, has some map stuff, some urban design stuff, and whatever other projects/interests I’m pursuing at the moment.

UW: Thanks for sharing, Josh! And let’s take a look at those designs I teased at in the splash…

. . .

MLB Spring Training Uniforms
By Josh Weiland

The MLB loves selling specialized jerseys and caps, for all sorts of special occasions. They have tried to sell a range of Spring Training paraphernalia, but unfortunately this Spring Training gear is almost always crap.

For several years, I’ve though that the solution is to truly adopt their Spring Training home cities/communities. Become the Dunedin Blue Jays and Kissimmee Astros and Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community Arizona Rockies for a few months.

This would allow the teams to market additional top quality gear (the uniforms should be of the same standards as during the regular season), honor their spring communities who support them year after year, and give fans who make it to Spring Training the opportunity to purchase something that shows their commitment. It would also lend special significance to intra-city games, such as Glendale Dodgers vs. Glendale White Sox.

So for Spring Training this year, I have redesigned (almost) all MLB uniforms. There are several home uniforms that don’t change, so I didn’t do those, as well as a few other exceptions. Not everything is perfect, but I got them as close as I could. I hope you enjoy looking at this fun project.

Technical notes

These were all done in Illustrator. Some technical tips for those who may be interested: Most clubs’ Wikipedia entries have main logos and cap logos in vector format (svg). More can often be found by searching Wikimedia Commons. Look for ‘“team name” “svg”’. Another great source was pdfs on mlb.com. Often, but not always, these had the teams’ fonts, secondary logos, etc. embedded as vectors. Google: “team name” filetype:pdf site:mlb.com . Finally, Chris Creamer’s Sportlogos.net was a huge help, not for vector art, but to know exactly what current uniforms looked like.

Peoria Mariners Away-01American League

Arizona Rangers (home, road): Meet your first team, the Arizona Rangers. Teams that have States in their names kept them in this exercise. You’ll notice I’ve recreated or made the relevant sleeve patch. Here, instead of the Texas flag, we have the Arizona flag. For those who are interested in the technical side, you’ll see that this is the first of many where offset path was used a lot.

Charlotte Harbor Rays: This isn’t changed much, except having a little fun with the name. The Rays’ spring home is in Charlotte, which is on Charlotte Harbor.

Dunedin Blue Jays

Florida Twins (Home, Road): The home uniform sleeve patch was a bunch of fun to make. Florida in the background, and instead of M and STP for Minneapolis and St Paul, we have CC and FTM for Cape Coral and Fort Myers. Also, Bermuda shorts (hat tip to Bunko). Wouldn’t this fly off the shelves in Fort Myers?

This is also the first of several in which I used Brannboll Fet font by Måns Grebäck of mawns.com. It’s very useful, because the numbers show up as underlining.

Fort Myers Red Sox

Glendale White Sox

Goodyear Indians

Kissimmee Astros

Lakeland Tigers (home, road): Of course, different “L”s for the cap and jersey.

Peoria Mariners: This is an example of a sleeve logo I found by searching pdfs on mlb.com. It would have been brutal to recreate all of that logo.

Phoenix Athletics

Phoenix Angels of Tempe: As far as I can tell, they haven’t any locational markers on their jerseys, and with their obfuscation of their home, this is understandable. They don’t get to escape this awesome name, though!

Sarasota Orioles: The Baltimore O’s have a version of Maryland’s flag in their sleeve patch, so I put the seal from Florida’s flag there.

Surprise Royals: Surprise! Actually, nothing too surprising here.

Tampa Yankees (home, road): Yes, I know the Tampa Yankees already exist. That applies to several of these teams in fact, as the organizations wisely make use of the stadiums for more than a few months a year. And I know they use a slightly different logo: a non-interlocking “TY”. I decided to go with the simply “T” because I wanted these uniforms to have the same style as the regular season. Therefore, if the Yankees have the initials of their city name on their cap, the same for the Spring Training cap.

. . .

Clearwater Clillies Home-01National League

Arizona Diamondbacks: No change here. Kind of lame, in my opinion, that they are so close to home. For better or worse, both teams who play in Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community use their states in their name. It would have been fun to try to make those caps, but their jerseys would have been messes.

Arizona Rockies: The Rockies actually had a Spring Training logo (which I used for their sleeve patch), though it doesn’t seem to have been used in some years. Good on them for representing Arizona!

Bradenton Pirates

Clearwater Clillies (home, road): Yes, I went there.

Glendale Dodgers (home, road)

Goodyear Reds (home, road): This is one of my favorites – Mr. Red is always fun, and slapping the loop and ear on the C, I think, turned out very well.

Jupiter Marlins (home, road)

Jupiter Cardinals

Lake Buena Vista Braves: Had to make some sacrifices to get the city name on here, and so not my favorite.

Mesa Cubs: Unclear whether the C on their jersey and cap are for “Chicago” or “Cubs”. I decided it’s more fun to say it’s for the city, so we get to do a redesign. For a lot of these, I spent a long time trying to get a reasonable font to use. For the cap M, it needed to be circular in a way that I couldn’t find, so I had to use lines and circles to get the desired effect.

Peoria Padres (home, road): Thankfully they aren’t using the giant D in their away jersey anymore, so I could use a simple font. The sleeve patch was a lot of fun. Their logo has Petco Park in the background, and that simply wouldn’t do for the Peoria Padres, so I traced photo of Peoria Stadium.

Phoenix Brewers (home, road): Another jersey where offsetting was heavily used. I never noticed before but the Brewers’ away jersey lettering is blue, outlined with white, which is drop shadowed with gold, and then all of that outlined with blue. For illustrator folks out there, that’s: Offset path or outline. Copy-paste and move the gold over. Copy and paste the white and the gold. Merge that. Then offset path again. Whew.

Port St. Lucie Mets: Making the cap logo was fun.

Scottsdale Giants

Viera Nationals: Figuring out how to make the Nats’ W into a V was fun.

. . .

Thanks, Josh! Pretty cool little (well, not so little) concept project there — and just in time for the clubs to head “north” for the games that matter! Readers, what do you think?

Green Line

Got Vilk Anim - 225 pxJim Got Game…

It’s been a while since we heard from Jim “Mr. 5 & 1″ Vilk, but unfortunately, you can’t keep him bottled up forever. Jim’s promised me a 5 & 1 for the NCAA Hoops Tourney, and we shall have one — but not today. Today is the day Jim gives out his first annual Got Vilk Awards UW NCAA Awards. No — they’re not for MVP or Best Sportsmanship or Most Improved or any of that nonsense — nope: these are, well…you’ll see. Here’s Jim:

. . .

UW’s NCAA Tournament Awards
By Jim Vilk

No, we haven’t seen every matchup yet, but these awards are about individual uniforms. Since we’ve seen every team in the tournament, now’s a good a time as any to hand out the honors…and the badges of infamy. If you want to take a look at all the photos I used to make my picks, click here and see how much we agree or disagree.

Look Good/Feel Good/Play Good Award: Florida Gulf Coast – I love that combo of blue and green!

Look Bad/Feel Bad/Play Bad: Akron – They should have put Zzzzz instead of Z on the front of my alma mater’s school-color-deficient uniforms.

One Is Not Enough Award for Favorite Template: Marquette and Albany – I’ll bet Clyde Frazier would approve. Runner-up to Creighton, Duke, Florida Gulf Coast, New Mexico, Ole Miss and Saint Louis.

One Is Too Many: Notre Dame, Cincinnati and Louisville – Although the Cardinals looked *slightly* better with the sleeves and shoulder stripes.

Halftime of our ceremony, and…wait…there’s a wardrobe malfunction! C’mon, Michigan, there are kids watching! Anyway, since I’m distracted now, while researching photos I realized one could field an All-Hair Team for the tournament. So I did:

GTyrone Garland, La Salle
GSabatino Chen, Colorado
FMike Bruesewitz, Wisconsin
FCody Ellis, Saint Louis
FKelly Olynyk, Gonzaga

Now let’s continue:

20/20 Award for Best Looking Numbers and Font: Temple – If the Owls had worn their school colors against Indiana, we’d be seeing that matchup in the Top Five list, too. Runner-up to Northwestern State.

Jerseys Made For Radio”Award” for Worst Looking Numbers and Font: LIU Brooklyn – Serious downgrade from last season’s tournament appearance.

And now, the one you’ve all been waiting for…but let’s do it backwards so we can end on a positive note:

The One Tarnished Moment “Award” for Worst Uniform: Cincinnati – At least I’d wear LIU Brooklyn’s shorts.

The “I’d Wear That” Award for Best Uniform: Albany – The Great Danes may have lost to Duke, but they’re top dogs here. Runner-up to Indiana, La Salle and New Mexico.

That’ll do it for now. See you after the tournament!

. . .

Thanks Jim. I love how a guy with *no* hair can dole out a set of *best* hair awards. Plus, how did you possibly leave out Will Yeguete? Ah, Jim … I think it’s safe to say, we missed ya.

Green Line

Provo, Jeff - Detroit DemonsFantasy Football Uni Design Contest update…

Just wanted to remind all readers that we’re accepting submissions for the Uni Watch Fantasy Football Design Contest (see link for details). Rob Holecko will have an update on that below, but I wanted to thank everyone who has submitted so far (and there are a number of you) and encourage all designers to give this contest a go. Of the submissions I’ve gotten so far, though, most of them are great but…(there’s always a but)…they are somewhat straying from the look and colors of the original helmets. That’s not a bad thing, but we’re hoping the next set will keep more in line with what Rob’s original teams had. That’s not your fault — we probably weren’t clear on that in the instructions. That “example” you see is an example of the type of submissions we’re getting — done up swell by THE Jeff. Great stuff — and those Demon colors are “probably black, red and silver” so pretty close to what Rob is looking for — but the helmet does differ from the “original” (and you can see all the helmets here).

Anyway, here’s Rob:

. . .

Phil has been sharing with me all the great entries we have received in the contest so far and while they have all been interesting and exciting new takes on the concepts I presented, I have to be honest, we were really looking for uniform concepts that worked with the existing helmet and followed the uniform guidelines. This is not to say that the entries haven’t been great, they’ve just been more along the lines of full redesigns that we were expecting. This was entirely my fault, I wasn’t as clear in the original outline of the contest as I could have been.

Just about all of the concepts that we’ve received so far have had a re-designed helmet, a new take on the uniform concepts, and some included an entirely different helmet and didn’t even follow the basic guidelines that were presented. You are certainly allowed to go a different direction, as the contest will be open to the voters to choose their favorite designs.

But for the purposes of awarding the franchises if we choose to go forward with the “fantasy” football uniform league, we would definitely be looking for concepts that build upon the existing helmets and work within the basic guidelines set out for each team. And then at some point down the road if, after it is your team, you wanted to entertain a full re-branding the league would certainly work with you on that. (And that was even alluded to in the text, as the guidelines for the Seattle Superbeasts stated: “The league has never been thrilled with the team name and current helmet and would probably not stand in the way of a rebranding/redesign in time for the 2014 season.”) I understand that these franchises have no resonance with you and they are brand new concepts, but let’s pretend that these helmet logos and franchise guidelines have a certain currency with the public and we’re not looking to just totally rebrand everything with total disregard for their existing look.

Just look at how many of the 32 NFL teams have changed their helmet and colors full scale over the past decades. Even if we go back 20 years, twice the time-frame of this fantasy league, less than half of the teams have undergone full-scale logo and scheme changes beyond minor tweaks. So it’s unrealistic to assume that all twelve of the franchises in this fantasy league would have entire re-designs in the last ten years.

So keep those entries coming, and going forward, for these second wave of entries, let’s shoot for more that build upon the existing helmet and stay within the basic guidelines that were presented. If the contest does evolve into the full-scale fantasy league that I hope for, and you are awarded a franchise, you’ll have opportunities down the road to undertake full scale redesigns of the franchise at that time.

We certainly don’t want to discourage any future submissions, but we do ask that they stay more within the guidelines as they are presented. Again all entries that we have received are greatly appreciated, and we in no way mean to imply they weren’t great, nor that they are not eligible for winning the contest.

Look here for the league writeup.

. . .

Thanks, Rob. OK readers — keep the submissions coming. They’re great so far and we know your best stuff is yet to come!

Green Line

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.

We’re almost to opening day, so I can pretty much guarantee this column will be bigger next weekend, as many of us will be breaking out our hose in support of our still undefeated teams on Monday…unless of course, one of those teams is the Texasas or the Rasros, one of whom will sport a losing record come Monday. One member of today’s revolutionaries send me his pic late last weekend, so it didn’t make the list last time. The rest are from yesterday Let’s go:

. . . . .

Stirrup Friday - Michael Morrone

Michael Morrone:

Good Evening Phil,

I had worn my Rays stirrups in honor of my alma mater, Villanova University’s March Madness tilt against UNC. Unfortunately, I have to wash the loss out of them now.

Sorry for the delayed submission, it turned into a long night after the loss.

Cheers!

Mike Morrone

. . .

James Poisso - Tampa Smokers

James Poisso:

Phil,

Today’s stirrups are 1951 Tampa Smokers and are game used when the Rays threwback a couple years ago.

James Poisso

. . .

Ben Traxel - "Shockers"

Ben Traxel:

Comrades,

Go Shockers!

Traxel

. . .

Jason Bernard - 54 WSox

Jason Bernard:

Phil & Robert,

Brand new 54 Sox in stealth mode, so my father-in-law doesn’t think (know) I’m a wacko.

Honestly, I didn’t know about these at first, but they are beautiful. Among my new favorites.

Bernard

. . .

1976 - Michael Clary 1982 - Michael Clary

Michael Clary:

Phil:

Growing up in Amsterdam we didn’t have Little League; instead, we had “Wee-Men” baseball. As we grew up, the stirrups and the mullets grew longer. We would stretch our stirrups until all the elastic and threads ripped, and they were on the verge of completely tearing.

The first photo is from 1976, when I was ten years old; the second is from 1982.

-Mike

. . .

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!). Be sure to visit Robert’s House of Hose for news on rups.

And now…here’s …

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

Stirrup HeaderComrade Marshall’s Rupdate:

Comrades!

Just now got back from a week of art museums and galleries in NYC, and I highly recommend that Inventing Abstraction show at the MOMA for anyone visiting before it comes down April 15th, but because of that there is nothing new this week. I did however want to wish everyone a happy Holy Week that concludes on a secular note with the holiest of secular holy days on Monday with Opening Day. I for one am excited to see spring and summer coming, and the first pitches that get that started, and i will try to have something special in response to that next weekend.

From each according his stirrvp, to each according his strype.

Green Line

That’s going to do it for today boys and girls. Big thanks to Josh & Jim (and Rob & Robert) for their contributions. And keep those Fantasy Football Design Entries coming!

First half of the Great Eight today (and is anyone’s bracket not completely F**KED? There isn’t a single team I have in any of today’s games making it to the Final Four…and only ONE of the remaining four teams in today’s games, THEosu, is an actual correct pick.) Enjoy those games everyone. For tomorrow…tomorrow is the Holiest of Holy Days…when the MLB season begins. Have a great Saturday.

Peace.

shocker-fans
One For The Road

.. … ..

“I like the low rise Fruit of the Loom Boxer Briefs…don’t utilize the hole…and to open another can of worms, I sprinkle corn starch powder down there to help with stickage. Once the briefs shrink a little bit, they feel custom made.”
–Steve Dodell

 

35 comments to Designing Minds, Volume II

  • Le Sigh | March 30, 2013 at 5:15 am |

    Like the ST uni idea, but a lot of them need creative work. The Cincy one is perfect, but a lot of them are just find-and-replace jobs. Disappointing.

  • Nate Stewart | March 30, 2013 at 5:23 am |

    Thanks again for the early post, Phil! And great job on the idea and execution of the spring training uni designs to Josh. I love the idea and want a “Surprise” jersey even though I’m not a Royals fan. Unfortunately, I bet the older teams with their long established brand identity (I’m lookin’ at you NYY) would be wound too tight to ever let something this fun and creative happen.

  • Josh W | March 30, 2013 at 7:02 am |

    Le Sigh, fair points. I have always been more of an ideas man than a designer. These could certainly use creative work to get to the high standards of so many unis people are designing these days. As for being find and replace, yes, they are: I wanted the teams to maintain their identities: that was always part of the plan.

    Nate, thanks. I think you are almost certainly correct. As I say in the introduction, however, I think it appeals to a confluence of teams’, and fans’, and hosting cities’ desires, so a little part of me thinks it might one day happen.

    • Arr Scott | March 30, 2013 at 8:00 am |

      City-name road uniforms is probably where my passionate fan-dom for baseball and my love of sports unis most overlap. Especially for minor-league teams, I sort of feel like teams have a civic obligation to represent their home communities on their road jerseys. So color me a huge fan of your project!

      • Phil Hecken | March 30, 2013 at 2:09 pm |

        “City-name road uniforms is probably where my passionate fan-dom for baseball and my love of sports unis most overlap. Especially for minor-league teams…”

        ~~~

        So, that Port St. Lucie Mets would be perfect, then.

    • Le Sigh | March 30, 2013 at 8:58 am |

      You can retain your identity in a ST jersey without a strict analogue. The Cincinnati one proves that. No one is going to look at that and go, “whoa, that lower-case g totally destroys the identity of the Reds!” or claim that they don’t nearly immediately recognize what team it is.

      Seriously do like they idea overall though, and it’s something I’d never heard or thought of before.

    • drewdez | March 30, 2013 at 11:23 am |

      Great work, Josh! I especially love the sleeve patches on the Peoria Padres (road) and Phoenix Brewers (home) unis. I’m also impressed with the ridiculous amount of work it must have taken for things like the Jupiter Marlins “J.”

      I definitely think you’re on to something here—even if the teams didn’t adopt local uniforms for all of spring training, I could certainly see a local appreciation day or two, where local uniforms are worn and auctioned off for charity (with replicas sold in the team store, of course). I think it would be a big hit!

  • The Jeff | March 30, 2013 at 8:42 am |

    So, uh, Rob, you wouldn’t happen to have any larger versions of those helmet logos, would you? Part of the reason all of my submissions so far have had new logos is that it was simply easier to do that than to try to enlarge yours.

    /and I think mine look better anyway ;)

    • Rob H. | March 30, 2013 at 10:20 am |

      No, unfortunately all I have is what you see there, and I agree they probably wouldn’t look blown up. Remember those were made back in 2000. Feel free to make better quality versions of the old logos.

      But yours are good too, just… different.

      • Coleman | March 30, 2013 at 11:03 am |

        Just wanna let you know, Rob, that ive been working on a Chicago Cyclones uniform all week. To say its quite detailed is an understatement. Uniforms are so fun to do when using a tablet that you can actually draw on with a stylus. Ill try to hurry up and finish it before you end up closing down the contest!

        • Phil Hecken | March 30, 2013 at 2:11 pm |

          Just want to let you know, Mr. Mullins, the contest will have been closed 3 minutes before you send in your entry.

          Whenever that is.

  • Steve B. | March 30, 2013 at 8:59 am |

    So who can stake claim to the “Shocker” hand gesture first, teenage boys or fans of Wichita State?

  • Joey Patts | March 30, 2013 at 9:50 am |

    I dunno but looking at his lady friend, I think that Shocker fan would need a bigger hand…

    • Dootie Bubble | March 30, 2013 at 10:31 am |

      It’s not the destination but the journey that matters. Even if he fails to accomplish the hand gesture’s purported task, I’m sure he’ll find something interesting.

    • Connie DC | March 30, 2013 at 3:29 pm |

      Gotta say it again: WSU has best nickname, best cute lil mascot. Thanks for the big spread, Phil. I mean the photo, not the fans.

  • Mike Engle on iPad | March 30, 2013 at 10:22 am |

    And with that Goodyear Reds jersey, restaurateur Graham Elliot has a new favorite team. Or a C&D letter on its way from him to the club.
    All kidding aside, fun project!

  • Gusto4044 | March 30, 2013 at 10:43 am |

    It’s not a good idea to use the Kissimmee Astros as a team nickname, this was suggested many years ago for Houston’s FSL club. Problem is, many people mispronounce the word Kissimmee, and when combined with the nickname Astros, it sounds weird. The FSL club went with Osceola(name of the county), and later used Kissimmee, but combined it with Cobras as the team nickname.

    • The Jeff | March 30, 2013 at 10:59 am |

      Problem is, many people mispronounce the word Kissimmee, and when combined with the nickname Astros, it sounds weird.

      …I think that’s probably the point.

      • T'Challa | March 30, 2013 at 11:11 am |

        Wait, who are all these people who mispronunce Kissimmee as Kiss-me? I’ve never heard anyone make that mistake

        • superfly | March 30, 2013 at 1:42 pm |

          Say “Kissimmee Astros” with a lame stereotypical Italian accent, I think that is the mispronunciation people are referring to.

          Is putting the accent on the second syllable (“ki-SIMM-mee”) the proper way to pronounce “Kissimmee?”

  • Josh W | March 30, 2013 at 11:14 am |

    LS – Perhaps. I agree that the Reds is one of my favorite.

    Never saw Elliot’s logo before. I doubt he’d have a claim- its just a “g”. Thanks, it was a lot of fun!

    As for the ‘Stros, they chose the city to be their home, they should own it, imo. So some 12 year olds would laugh, not the end of the world.

  • Oakville Endive | March 30, 2013 at 11:42 am |

    Jim Vilk is back – feels like a retro uni-watch day(plus having done the weekend groceries – it also feels like football weather out there- even though itis the other equinox season), all we need is the return of Ricko – and the uni-watch world will have returned to normal.

    • Jim Vilk | March 30, 2013 at 1:13 pm |

      First time on this site I’ve seen my name and “normal” in the same sentence…

      Thanks.

      • Phil Hecken | March 30, 2013 at 2:34 pm |

        Yeah, but that was a really long sentence, with lots of parenthetical thought. I’m sure it wasn’t intentional.

  • quiet seattle | March 30, 2013 at 12:18 pm |

    Contemporary basketball uniforms are hard for me to look at. But Jim Vilk got it right with Florida Gulf Coast University. That’s easily the best looking, most plasing design in the tournamnet. Here’s my runner-up:

    http://www.hometeams...

    • Jim Vilk | March 30, 2013 at 1:10 pm |

      Had they worn that during the tournament, I might be inclined to agree with you. That’s a lot nicer than the home whites they wore instead.

  • Brendan the Aspie | March 30, 2013 at 1:31 pm |

    O’s sleeve patch misspelled Sarasota as Sarisota.

  • Jim Vilk | March 30, 2013 at 1:32 pm |

    Thanks Jim. I love how a guy with *no* hair can dole out a set of *best* hair awards. Plus, how did you possibly leave out Will Yeguete?

    They say those who can’t play make good coaches. Those with no hair make good hair judges. I didn’t get to watch any Florida games, so I missed seeing Will Yeguete. He’ll be the Sixth Man winner for the team.

    • Connie DC | March 30, 2013 at 3:32 pm |

      Vilk! Couldn’t agree more about Florida Gulf Coast rockin’ that blue-green combo. And the Zips! Astonishingly awful. You carry your alumnus shame very nobly.

  • Matt C | March 30, 2013 at 4:45 pm |

    https://twitter.com/... Though it was interesting that the Mets used the Marlins old logo on their lineup card

  • HHH | March 30, 2013 at 4:58 pm |

    About the Fantasy Football League Design Contest:

    The original instructions from last week were EXTREMELY vague, so don’t be surprised that all of the submissions so far have been complete redesigns. I think Phil even said this was our chance to let our imaginations run wild. What did you expect would happen? I mean, on the write up page for the league there are uniform “considerations”. Considerations are to be *CONSIDERED*, they aren’t rules set in stone. Also Rob in your response in the comments to someone’s question about whether they could change the colors, you said for them to go ahead if they thought it was their best way to win the contest. And now you whine about people doing so? Come on man!

    So now we have a problem: those who submitted before today and those who submit after today. Honestly I think both sets of submissions should be judged separately after the submission deadline (whenever that is), because ALL my ideas and concepts had involved COMPLETELY new colors and logos for these teams, and also a new nickname for the unfortunately named “Superbeasts”.

    Which leads me to my next point: what is up with the team nicknames in this league??? Demons? Slaughter? Terror? And the oh-so obviously un-family friendly Superbeasts??? How old were the people in this fantasy league in 2000 when they came up with these names? 13? You say “let’s pretend that these helmet logos and franchise guidelines have a certain currency with the public”. Honestly, how could the name “Superbeasts” with a detailed drawing of Lucifer’s face seriously be popular with the public? That logo looks like it was borrowed from the liner notes of a Satanic metal band’s cd. Do you honestly think that makes a good sports team logo? Not to mention the nickname “Terror”. In this post 9-11 world we live in, with the “War on Terror” still being fought, do you seriously think that team name is a good idea? Do you think ANYONE would support a team named “Terror” nowadays?

    And the guy above who mentioned how small the existing helmet logos are, he makes an excellent point, but not only are they ridiculously small, they are poor designs. Sorry to be harsh but f I used any of those logos in my redesigns I wouldn’t have a snowball’s chance in hell of winning the contest (to stick with the Satanic theme in this league).

    So as of right now I feel like this contest is a big waste of time and I wouldn’t be surprised if you could count on one hand the number of designs that are submitted from today forward.

    • Rob H. | March 30, 2013 at 6:22 pm |

      Well there was no whining, just laying out the expectations. The fact is there was a lot of back-and-forth between Phil and myself before we launched the contest, so it’s understandable that there were changes from what was planned to what got laid out, I tried to make it as clear as possible, but frankly Phil tweaked my original plan to make it more friendly to the typical UW visitor, and I’m afraid I compromised the contest in ways that changed what we were going for.

      Considerations are to be *CONSIDERED* Well, sure, but if you’re applying for a job, or entering a contest or undertaking any attempt at competing in something that someone else has set the terms of engagement for, it’s generally it’s a good idea to follow “suggestions”.

      So now we have a problem: those who submitted before today and those who submit after today. Honestly I think both sets of submissions should be judged separately… Either way, the entries are going to be voted on by the UW readers. Whether the best entries stick with the original helmets as I hope, or go with an entirely different scheme, it will be up to the voters. I’m just trying to get more entries that stay true to the original concept, but they in no way will be “favored” over those that don’t. It’s all up to the voters.

      And yes those helmet logos are small. I’m not expecting people would cut and paste them – that would look like crap. I assume the graphical talents that people use to create these wonderful entries would also give them ability to recreate the logos from what they were given to work with.

      “So obviously family un-friendly Superbeasts” Considering the prominent mention of the Wichita State Shockers and their hand gesture in today’s column, plus the fact that the owner of this website in general has no qualms about using the word “fuck” with impunity, I think the family-friendly nature expectation boat has already sailed. That being said, I wasn’t aware of a specific R-rated connotation with the term “Superbeast” but then maybe you’re just more wordly than me. I even stated in those “guidelines” that the league was never happy with the team name logo and colors Superbeasts — so someone winning that franchise would be encouraged or at least permitted to fully re-brand in time for the 2014 season.

      I’m not saying you still can’t change them, I’m just trying to encourage more entries that don’t. If all of the entries feature changed colors and names then we might as well have a whole different league. I’m just trying to keep some continuity from the existing names and helmets and don’t have twelve all-new looking teams that bear no resemblance to the existing helmets.

      And as far as Demons, Slaughter, and Terror being stupid team names, well I guess I’ll leave that determination to someone with a Nom De Plume that is reminiscent of the board game ‘Hungry Hungry Hippo’ as to what constitutes a stupid name. At the time these league names were chosen, the participants were generally in their 20s or so. (However, some of the stupider names that didn’t make the cut for the final twelve for the purposes of this contest: The New York Garbologists, the Carolina Kronik, the Philadelphia Phockers were relegated to the minors and may be seen in a later phase of this project, if we get that far – were actually chosen by people that were even older.)

      And if in a particular entry a contestant wanted to change the Tampa Terror due to the 9-11 attacks, then by all means that would be certainly reasonable and could be included in a backstory and a much better reason to change one of the franchises name’s unlike just because I “didn’t like the helmet.” But then again a pretty big hurricane hit the greater Miami area in 1992, yet the college team there kept the “Hurricanes” nickname. So tragedy doesn’t necessarily require a name to be changed.

      I’m sorry that this contest has been a big waste of your time. Luckily both the number and quality of entries so far doesn’t seem to bear out that everyone feels the same as you. Maybe the next UW contest will be more to your liking.

    • StLMarty | March 31, 2013 at 1:26 am |

      Where is concealed78 when you need him?

  • Mark in Shiga | April 1, 2013 at 8:30 am |
  • Mike F. | April 1, 2013 at 9:32 am |

    I like the Spring Training uniform concepts, but I feel a big opportunity was missed with the Dunedin Blue Jays logo. Why not replace the Maple Leaf (a proud symbol of Canada) with either an Orange Blossom or Sabal Palmetto leaf (Florida’s official state flower and tree, respectively)?