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All That Glitters

S0blYER

By Phil Hecken

Monday yielded yet another plethora of uniform unveilings in college football, and perhaps none was bigger than those unveiled by the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame, who, as they have in the past, will sport another special uniform for the “Shamrock Series.” These particular costumes will be worn October 5 against Arizona State, in a neutral site game in Arlington (at JerryWorld). We’ll get to those in just a moment.

But it wasn’t just Notre Dame that unveiled yesterday — there were others.

So, let’s get today’s seemingly endless rundown started. Click on any photos to enlarge.

. . .

Notre Dame Fighting Irish (“Shamrock Series” one game special):

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We didn’t get a lot of looks at the special “Shamrock Series” uniforms (although there was, not surprisingly, a brief video, which is below), but this is what adidas has put out. Obviously the first thing you’ll notice (intentionally, of course) and what stands out, is the metallic helmet, shoulder shamrock, and numerals. Whether or not this is designed to appeal to impressionable 17-year-olds, it’s bright. The font seems to be something adidas has created (though those more familiar with fonts can probably attach a name to it). There are special green/yellow socks and the baselayer is a kelly green featuring the interlocking ‘ND’ on the guns.

The uniform is surprisingly clean, in a bright white with the only markings the shamrock (in metallic gold outlined in kelly green) and numbers (same treatment). A “ND” logo is located on the back of the jersey where a nameplate would otherwise go. The pants are plain white, without any kind of piping or striping. Special gloves form the “ND” when placed together. The helmet facemask is a metallic kelly green:

nd2013gloves shamrock11

But what really stands out, of course, is the metallic gold helmet. It’s designed by HGI (who are really making quite a splash in NCAA helmet design, as well as some of the NFL teams). The helmet looks similar to their current plain shiny dome, but with the added outlined shamrock (which has a different texture than the helmet):

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And, finally, you can take a look at the video reveal here (it’s thankfully not “Radioactive” but almost as annoying):

You might think I’d hate these, but I actually like them, despite the rather glittery appearance. They are quite clean, and if there is any team that can get away with a golden shiny dome, it’s Notre Dame (though I prefer the plain gold helmet and gray facemask). I love the fact that while they have glittered up the jersey with the shamrock on shoulder and numbers, that’s it for the glimmer. It’s out there (for sure) but not in a completely-over-the-top-in-your-face kind of way (is that damning with faint praise?). And, when one considers the stuff they’ve worn for previous Shamrock Series’ games, this one is quite nice.

I’m glad it’s a one-off, but it’s a nifty one I will look forward to seeing.

[Special thanks to all who tipped me wise, or sent me links to any of the photos used today, including Paulie Sumner, Kyle Snoke, Joshua Duplechain, Leo Strawn, Brayden Ruthart, and Warren Junium]

. . .

Iowa State Cyclones (throwbacks):

Iowa State Throwbacks

The Iowa State football team will wear throwback uniforms from the 1920s when it hosts Iowa on Sept. 14, 2013, in Ames. These unis harken back to the Jack Trice-era (and had been rumored for a while). For those not familiar, the Cyclones website explains, “The uniforms feature vertical stripes on the front of the jerseys, similar to those worn by Jack Trice, the first African-American player in Cyclone history. Trice, of course, played in two games at Iowa State and died from injuries suffered in a game at Minnesota during the 1923 season. Iowa State’s football stadium is named in his honor and that facility will host the game between the Cyclones and Hawkeyes.”

The throwback uniforms (in “1920’s style” — since the original uniforms had the friction strips these unis are meant to mimic) will have white numbers on the front and gold numerals on the back (I’ve yet to see a picture of the full back of the uniform, but you can catch glimpses in the video which is below). The helmets will be cardinal colored and, rather than the normal logo, will include the player’s uniform number in gold. ISU will wear gold-colored pants and cardinal-and-gold striped socks.

Iowa-State-Throwback-Uniforms-5isuthrowback2

They don’t quite get the uniforms correct as far as ‘authenticity’ goes (for example, the friction strips are actually much further apart than the pseudo-strips on the throwbacks), but it’s pretty good. And, best of all, it’s a really good looking uniform. I know many of you don’t like it when teams throw “this far” back (due to having to use modern helmet and uniform cuts) but I believe this was done in a spirit that will really capture those old unis.

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I’ll need to see them in action (and I hope I’ll be able to get the game) but for now, I’m a big fan.

Of course, there is a video accompanying the unveiling:

. . .

Tulsa Golden Hurricane (helmet):

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Tulsa will be adding a metallic gold helmet to their repertoire. This was tweeted out yesterday, one day ahead of their media day (which is today), so it’s unclear if this will be a full-time helmet, a one-game addition, or part of a mix-and-match set. It’s also unclear whether they will be adding any new uniforms. (h/t to Chris Mahr).

. . .

North Carolina State Wolfpack:

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The Wolfpack of North Carolina State also introduced new uniforms (or at least a new red jersey and two sets of pants, plus two helmets) yesterday. Although they tweeted a photo containing two sets of pants (below), there was just the red jersey and of course, a fancy pair of gloves. It’s a pretty muted set, — the red helmet has a two thin black stripes surrounding a wider white stripe, while the white helmet reverses the red and white. There were several photos of the players in their new uniforms, floating about the interwebs today (you can see them in the small set I put together here) with two representative photos below:

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As far as I could see, there was no video associated with this unveil. It’s a nice, simple set (I’m assuming the white jersey will be basically the inverse of the red), although I have no idea if there will be an alternate or any additional uniforms. I like it, although this is much more of a tweak than a wholesale revision. The helmet stripe is different on both helmets, and the previously stripeless pants now look more refined, and where the previous uniforms tried to shoehorn the “N” and “C” inside the “STATE” wordmark (as it is on the helmets), these all say NC STATE across the chest. The adidas mountain appears a bit bigger, and the “ACC” is now directly sewn on the jersey instead of on a patch. And of course, the new jerseys have the (barely visible) trademark treadmarks on the shoulders.

. . .

And that, friends, will end the look at the new uniform reveals for Monday, August 5. Will there be more tomorrow (and the day after that and after that)? Probably. But that’s about it for now.

What do you think?

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DickButkus_lgCollector’s Corner
By Brinke Guthrie

I have never forgotten this SI cover. I was 10 at the time- and from September of 1970, we have Dick Butkus who is clearly not in a great mood. What I noticed was the NFL patch- I clearly remember sitting in the back of our Ford LTD station wagon reading this one day.

That patch leads me to our first find. Interesting pair of Pocket Pro mini-helmets here. This one is for the NFL 50th anniversary– always loved the simplicity of that logo.

And here’s the matching helmet for the AFL. If you want to buy the patch, worn in the 1969 season, here it is.

——

• Cool looking 1970s Minnesota North Stars “Star Wars” promo T.

• “Stancraft” is the maker of some terrific NFL posters from back in the day. I do remember seeing these on some related items like puzzles, too. The artist was one George Bartell, and you can learn more about his terrific work here. Found designs for the Cowboys, Ray-duhz, Jets, Bills, Browns, Cards, Oilers, Falcons, and the Lions.

• Nothing says 1970s NFL quite like this design of Bucco Bruce cap. While the ad says this maker is New Era, meaning it’s a reissue–I believe the original designer of this pattern was AJD.

• Got a tiny Packers fan in your house? Then this vintage varsity jacket from Sears will do the trick nicely.

• Nice 1970s Angels thermal cup here, sponsored by Avco Financial Services.

• Yes Virginia, there was a time when Jerrah did not own the Cowboys. You’d have to go back to the 1960s to see this logo in use, on this Cowboys megaphone. Looks like a Texas Stadium giveaway, though. I’d love to see this logo brought back, but of course it’s not nearly sexy enough for AT&T Stadium.

• Here’s an ad for Roger Staubach’s “Roger Dodger” Brooks cleats…and a youth sized pair. You may not recall, but in the late 1970s, Brooks signed a TON of players in the MLB- it seemed everyone wore ’em all at once. Adidas and Puma were the leaders at the time, and Nike was coming on but not yet on top. I think Staubach was the only NFL player to wear them.

• This 1970s NBA mini gumball kit is in terrific condition—but it’s gonna cost ya.

• Always try to put up a 1970s Chiquita NFL sticker set whenever I come across one. There was a framed one a few years back–shoulda gone for it but didn’t. Sigh.

——

Seen something on eBay or Etsy that you think would make good Collector’s Corner fodder? Send your submissions here.

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ticker 2Uni Watch News Ticker: The Dodgers are giving away a Rick Monday bobblehead from when he saved the burning flag, while he was on the Cubs. So, a Cubs bobblehead at Dodger Stadium (thanks to Allen Yelent) … Good NYT article entitled “As lawsuits against manufacturers of football helmets mount, those companies are strengthening the cautions on their products” (from TommytheCPA). … Oops. Wisconsin football player Melvin Gordon’s name was spelled wrong on his jersey during media day. It was spelled “Gordan” (nice spot by Nate Neumann). … Here are some pictures of Jim Verble’s son’s football helmet with their Guardian concussion prevention accessory that his school is using during practice. These are supposed to decrease the chance of concussions by 30%. Just an interesting look. … The Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) is tweaking the rating icons for its six video game rating categories — for the first time in more than a decade (good spot by Joseph Nguyen). … Good one from Markus Kamp who writes, “I’m sure you heard that, in one of the most shocking soccer transfers in US history, the Sounders signed USMNT captain Clint Dempsey over the weekend. At Saturday’s match, the excitement was palpable, especially as manifested in SEVERAL variations on this hand-numbered/-lettered jersey. Electrical tape!” … For the preseason games all teams will wear Heads Up decals on the back of the helmets. At least one of the players didn’t have the decal during the HOF Game (great work by Mako Mameli). … Did you know the “World Dwarf Games” is a thing? I know “midget” is extremely frowned upon, but I thought the preferred term was “little people.” … “Deadspin has some TERRIBLE photoshop skills,” says Tom Adjemian. “Looks like a creepy version of the Cubs uni number typeface.” … The SPHL announced their schedule today along with their 10th Anniversary Logo. “Seems just like every other logo for every other leagues 10th year,” says submitter Ryan Bohannon. … “Duck Dynasty” has a themed car design for Clint Bowyer (thanks to Paulie Sumner). … Check out this photo of the 1952 Bellefonte softball league (and talk about softball pants!) from Jaybuls (@jaybuls). … The Memphis Chicks did throwback jerseys, “but they didnt do the caps” (h/t to Biogenesis @AZJoshM). … Pretty funny t-shirt from Glen Perkins, the guy who pitched with his fly open (thanks, Brinke). … The University of Arizona Is Forcing Woodrow Wilson to Abandon Decades-Old Wildcat Logo, which Christopher Bisbee calls a “Bullshit move by Arizona.” … “You can’t escape the swoosh,” says Daniel Fontenot. “This is was in my local paper this morning. This is from an ad for the annual football preview edition. It knows no boundaries.” … Good spot by Joe Bozek who noticed that if you go to the Bills’ team store, you will find that Stevie Johnson’s jersey is missing the Buffalo logo. … LSU has trademarked a new Tigers logo for fan apparel (from Chris LaHaye). … Will Panthers be back in black? Yes, according to this article, they’ll wear black 6 times this year. … The Oklahoma Women’s BB team has revealed their jerseys for the 2013-14 season. … Because we’ve all been waiting, here’s a game-by-game breakdown of what the Cincinnati Bengals will wear this season (thanks to Leo Strawn). … Nice article on Michigan helmet reconditioning (from Larry Bodnovich). … Red? That US team claims to be red. Huh? (thanks to Joel Mathwig). … “So, I went to MLB Shop and tried to customize a Yankees t-shirt/jersey so it had the name ‘ROIDRIGUEZ’ on it and number 13 (A-Rod’s number),” says Gregory Koch. Shockingly, he hit “preview” and the following message popped up: “Your current entry cannot be processed. Language deemed inappropriate, derogatory, or profane will not be accepted. Please create a new entry.” In addition to “ROIDRIGUEZ”, apparently “A ROID”, “AROID”, “A FRAUD”, “AFRAUD” and “FRAUD” are banned on custom jerseys, as is anything with a hyphen such as “A-ROID” although that appears to be a general guideline. However, “FRAUDRIGUEZ” is allowed, for now. “Better hurry,” says Gregory. … Toledo Baseball History weekend continued as the MudHens wore 1921 Throwbacks (h/t Sully @pal3327).

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And that’s a wrap for this fine Tuesday. Big thanks to everyone who sent in links or pics or tweeted me on the NCAAFB news (it’s GREATLY appreciated). Also yesterday, a number of you e-mailed me with the same links/stories — so if you didn’t see your name associated with a ticker item, it simply means someone beat you to the punch — gotta be quick on UW! You guys have a great day and I’ll catch you tomorrow (and I think we may have a special *guest* appearance from Paul, so be sure to check back then).

Follow me on Twitter @PhilHecken

Peace.

.. … ..

“Silly, lions don’t kill people. People who capture lions, bring them to zoos, and didn’t properly design the enclosures kill people.”
–‘terriblehuman’

 

97 comments to All That Glitters

  • Gregory Koch | August 6, 2013 at 7:27 am |

    There is a difference between dwarves and midgets. A midget is an unusually short person. A dwarf is someone with dwarfism, meaning their limbs are disproportionately short, among other things, but they might or might not be of unusually small height.

    And a midget might or might not be a dwarf.

  • John | August 6, 2013 at 7:34 am |

    Remember when ND didn’t have to resort to gimmicks to attract recruits?

    • ScottyM | August 6, 2013 at 9:24 am |

      The apocalypse is certainly upon us. The whole scene has become trite: the pump-up methods, the prancing, the shiny helmets, the stupid gloves, the music.

      Seriously, the music? Knute & Co would shudder to think that this is what college football has become.

      Meanwhile, Iowa State is actually onto something.

      • Phil Hecken | August 6, 2013 at 12:57 pm |

        “The apocalypse is certainly upon us.”

        ~~~

        I’m breaking in, shaping up, then checking out on the prison bus. This is it, the apocalypse

      • StLMarty | August 6, 2013 at 10:15 pm |

        Shudder to Think would have been a better choice of music.

    • terriblehuman | August 6, 2013 at 9:28 am |

      When Knute Rockne paid his players?

    • Will S | August 6, 2013 at 12:14 pm |

      I think the 1st pic is in the wrong spot. Should be in collector’s corner – looks like someone plastered a vintage shiny puffy sticker on a jersey; wonder if they have a C3P0 sticker left over.

  • Scott | August 6, 2013 at 7:37 am |

    That Rick Monday bobblehead is awesome.

    • Dumb Guy | August 6, 2013 at 9:04 am |

      If I wasn’t told he was “saving” the flag I would think he was desecrating it!!

  • The Jeff | August 6, 2013 at 7:50 am |

    I like ND’s helmet & jersey, but the fact that they aren’t wearing gold pants is just wrong.

    • DJ | August 6, 2013 at 9:21 am |

      These Shamrock Series uniforms are about being different from the regular Notre Dame uniform.

      You could imagine the creative process: they’re playing in Dallas, so they want to wear something evocative of the Cowboys. Which means iconic symbol on the helmets and white jerseys. No star, but a shamrock. Ah, but they’ve done a green shamrock on the gold helmet before, and gold pants with the white shirt is too much like the regular uniform. So HydroGraphics says they can do a gold chrome shamrock on the regular gold helmet and a green chrome facemask. This leads to the gold numbers on the jersey and white pants. They finish it off with the green undershirt to match the shoes and socks.

    • Marc-Louis Paprzyca | August 6, 2013 at 9:49 am |

      Don’t you feel as if ND’s pants aren’t even gold anyway? I feel they look like khaki. They should get back to the “Vegas Gold” of the Champion era.

      • teenchy | August 6, 2013 at 11:28 am |

        I am very much not a ND fan but the “khaki” pants are the one design element of their standard uniforms that I like. Gives the uni a throwback feel that lets them combine tradition with a forward look (very shiny domes).

    • Adam N. | August 6, 2013 at 10:19 am |

      If they would have left the shamrock off the helmet (or make it green), they’d have nailed it. The change in texture looks odd.

      • Connie DC | August 6, 2013 at 11:50 am |

        Look, I’m too old, and I know it. Can’t shake an attachment to the whole, well, aesthetic of old-timey football unis. Get off my graphic lawn!

        But Notre Dame hurts. My father rode the bench for Knute Rockne, and I’ll never not be a fan. But a significant fraction of my attachment has been the football team’s general fidelity to visual traditionalism. [I say “general” because I’m aware of some grievous post-Ara eyesores, and don’t me get started on some of the ND non-football unis.] Metallic shamrocks, glittery gold jersey numbers? Like I say, just can’t go there.

    • inkracer | August 6, 2013 at 12:37 pm |

      I just wish the strips on the back of the socks went all the way around..

  • AKT | August 6, 2013 at 8:00 am |

    Ok, because I really want to know whether or not they will actually make it and send it, I ordered a “Fraudriguez” Any bets on whether it will actually make it out of production?

    • BurghFan | August 6, 2013 at 8:09 am |

      If I had to bet, it’d be no, but please let us know what ends up happening.

    • Chance Michaels | August 6, 2013 at 10:21 am |

      Pretty sure that one’s going to be cancelled as soon as a human looks at it.

      • Brendan the Aspie | August 6, 2013 at 11:05 am |

        Why would you order a Yankee jersey with a NOB in the first place?

        • Lee | August 6, 2013 at 11:46 am |

          He wants to be “funny”…?

          Lee

        • AKT | August 6, 2013 at 2:04 pm |

          “because I really want to know whether or not they will actually make it and send it”

        • AKT | August 8, 2013 at 12:12 pm |

          Order cancelled by MLB without explanation as to why…

    • Chris | August 6, 2013 at 12:24 pm |

      What if, hypothetically speaking, JJ Putz were to get traded to the Yankees and wear #13? Would they make that jersey?

  • boxcarvibe | August 6, 2013 at 8:08 am |

    GREAT ARTICLE on the Michigan helmet reconditioning, but ol’ Russ Hawkins is missing the all-important respirator when spraying any kind of paint. Kids, don’t do it that way or your lungs and sinuses will be shades of blue as well.

    • Dumb Guy | August 6, 2013 at 9:16 am |

      A respirator would just get in the way his cigarette!

      (old school baby!)

    • Tim H | August 6, 2013 at 1:06 pm |

      Says in the article he always wears a respirator when painting. Did not do it this one time so he could be heard by the interviewer. R.I.F.

  • Bernard | August 6, 2013 at 8:34 am |

    These ND helmets, and numbers, and shoulder shamrocks, are a total crock of shit. They would more appropriately accessorize an old woman’s wind suit.

    • Connie DC | August 6, 2013 at 11:51 am |

      I love you, Bernard.

  • Mike | August 6, 2013 at 9:13 am |

    Because my email is currently dysfunctional, I’ll post this here – organizers are asking people to vote for their favorite logo for the 2014 Bike Week in Daytona Beach. Voting is open at officialbikeweek.com

  • Newt | August 6, 2013 at 9:53 am |

    ISU should go with the number helmets from here on out. 100% better than the cyclone logo and that I State logo.

    • Trav | August 6, 2013 at 12:05 pm |

      I actually think the I-State logo is a huge improvement over their previous “bird-in-a-blender” logo…and I’m saying that as a Hawkeye fan

  • traxel | August 6, 2013 at 9:56 am |

    Re: that Notre Dame video, I thought it can’t be that bad, Phil. Well, my god, it was worse. Go ahead and watch it. Like, this reeks – here, smell it. Blech. Come on Adidas. Give 17 year olds a tiny bit of credit. They do like their shiny garb but they are human beings. They can think for themselves just a smidge. They do know that church school has a bit of a track record. You might want to hit on a piece of that when prepping your next recruitment vid instead of making it all a pathetic one man dance party. Have some dignity. Geez.

  • andyharry | August 6, 2013 at 9:57 am |

    Man, while that “thing” attached to the helmet might prevent concussions, it sure looks like a neck injury waiting to happen, especially for kids, whose undeveloped necks have trouble holding up helmets to begin with.

    • Tom Stevens | August 6, 2013 at 12:18 pm |

      Colorado highs school association has banned them. for some of those reasons

    • timdub70 | August 6, 2013 at 2:34 pm |

      Just what I thought when I saw it. That anti-concussion device reminded me of The Thing from the Fantastic Four.

  • arrScott | August 6, 2013 at 10:12 am |

    It feels like 2013 is the year when the college football uniform announcement season becomes longer than the actual college football season. If so, it’s a clear sign that we’ve reached both peak uniform and peak football. It’s all downhill from here.

    Also, that Notre Dame uni makes me ashamed to be an Irish-American. Jay-sus, Mary, and Joseph!

    • Connie DC | August 6, 2013 at 11:52 am |

      And I love you, too, Scott.

  • arrScott | August 6, 2013 at 10:16 am |

    Can anyone confirm whether the Arizona Wildcats logo predates 1990 or 1991? Did Arizona have any kind of wildcat mascot logo prior to that?

    I’m curious, because it seems as though the CaD letter to Woodrow Wilson High is implicitly admitting that Arizona based its wildcat logo on commercially available clip-art.

    • Chance Michaels | August 6, 2013 at 10:26 am |

      Where are you getting that from the letter?

      Chris Creamer lists the logo as being introduced in 1990, but that isn’t necessarily determinative.

      • Brendan the Aspie | August 6, 2013 at 11:06 am |

        If it’s 1990, then Arizona had the logo first. So it’s fair game to tell WWHS to stop using it.

        • arrScott | August 6, 2013 at 11:49 am |

          No, the article states that Wilson was using the logo as early as circa 1981, ten years before Creamer dates the current Arizona logo. And Wilson’s logo looks a lot like basically identical wildcat logos I saw in use by high schools in the mid and late 1980s, which suggests that they, and Wilson, were using widely available commercial clip-art. It’s possible that the commercial clip-art the high schools used was based on Arizona’s logo, but for that to be true we’d have to be able to establish Arizona using a similar logo prior to 1980. Which is entirely possible! But if that can’t be established, then it would be more likely that Arizona started with the same clip-art as every Wildcat high school in America and tweaked the image only slightly.

        • arrScott | August 6, 2013 at 11:52 am |

          Chance’s point that Creamer is not determinative is important. That’s why I ask the question. Available evidence points to Arizona’s logo being a ripoff of the original commercial clip-art Wilson High is using. But the available evidence isn’t very good, which is why I ask whether anyone can offer more or better evidence.

        • Chance Michaels | August 6, 2013 at 11:58 am |

          Actually, the article *doesn’t* say that. It says that the mosaic logo was “based on a design that had been used around the school for a decade”. How closely based, we don’t know. Given how little most people care for the finer points, that could just mean it was a cat’s head.

          There’s a lot that we don’t know. Too many vague references, like this one:

          That wasn’t quite good enough for the university, which passed along a couple of wildcat images to which it owns the copyright. One is clearly identical, or nearly so, to Woodrow’s.

          Which logos? How “nearly identical”?

    • Lee | August 6, 2013 at 11:49 am |

      Arizona has used the logo since at least 1983:
      http://www.ebay.com/...

      Scroll down to see the program pages, 8th pic shows the logo.

      Lee

      • arrScott | August 6, 2013 at 11:53 am |

        Awesome – thanks!

        Also, all those early 1980s ads in the program made my day.

  • Phil Hecken | August 6, 2013 at 10:22 am |

    “It feels like 2013 is the year when the college football uniform announcement season becomes longer than the actual college football season.”

    ~~~

    ^This^

    But it’s getting to the point where the unveils are an “event” in and of themselves, with some schools getting new sets almost every year. That, and with the advent of techmology (seems like every school has a student video department who cuts new reveals over Radioactive) and the interwebs, it’s certainly more pervasive.

    It also seems, though I would argue this is not (yet) fact, that the uniform season is becoming more important than the *regular* season for a good number of teams. And once the NCAA makes the bowls irrelevant with an 8- or 16- game “playoff” (it’s coming, you know it is) in a decade or so, the regular season will become less important than uniform season. Just get a set of shiny new duds in August, win a few big games to reach the post-season tourney, and play well in late-November-to-January, and win a national title as a 6-seed!

    Everyone is happy, right?

    • Tom V. | August 6, 2013 at 10:57 am |

      I like the format of NCAAF because usually you’re getting the two best teams at the end of the season. (Or 1st best and 3rd best, 2nd best and 3rd best, however you look at it, etc.) Look at NCAAB, (I’ll use 2011 tourney for effect,) you had a 3 seed playing an 8 seed for the final. Since there are 4 of each seed you’re watching a team ranked nationally from 9 to 12 playing a team ranked 29 to 32. Just imagine the excitement at the end of NCAAF last year if we got to watch (11) Clemson play (32) UCF for the championship. Not saying a tournament isn’t good for NCAAF, but like you said Phil, a 6 team winning the NCAAF championship would be frowned upon, but we have no problem watching a lot worse in NCAAB.

      • Chris Holder | August 6, 2013 at 11:36 am |

        Tom, sadly I think folks like you and I are few and far between. I have long thought that the BCS actually does a pretty good job each year of matching teams. I don’t want an 8-team playoff, mostly for the reasons you mentioned. Most years give you three or four top teams that are arguing to be in the title game, so a 4-team playoff is not so bad.

        God forbid we get to the point some day where teams are resting guys on the final (rivalry) weekend of the season because they’ve “clinched” a playoff spot.

    • arrScott | August 6, 2013 at 12:18 pm |

      I suspect we’re closer to a college football Premiership model, in which every year or two, a couple of schools get booted and a couple get invited in, to a “super conference” whose schedule is a hybrid of round-robin and playoff and whose champion is considered the national title holder. A truly national 8- or more-game playoff is probably too unworkable, and if anything the conference system is collapsing faster than the playoff system is growing.

      Heck, maybe we’ll end up with two “super conferences,” and one can call itself American, and the other, National, and then their champions can meet in a single game. Like a bowl game, but super-sized. Just have to figure out what to call it.

    • hugh.c.mcbride | August 6, 2013 at 1:45 pm |

      I’m just hoping that the increasing popularity of uniform season will help boost interest in my uniform fantasy league. I drafted chrome, matte, & extraneous sparkly shit this year, so I’m hoping for big things …

  • CortM | August 6, 2013 at 10:45 am |

    I think the Notre Dame players should be covered in gold body glitter — the bits of dull human flesh on view ruin the overall look of what could be the sparkliest ensemble this side of a My Little Pony convention.

    Notre Dame: Where Real Men are Sparkly.

    • inkracer | August 6, 2013 at 3:33 pm |

      Leave the sparkly men to twilight.

  • Brinke | August 6, 2013 at 10:47 am |

    I’m tellin ya—we are so close to home and road and special event NFL helmets. Don’t think NFLP doesn’t see all this college hoo-ha, which has really gotten outta control.

    PS

    http://farm3.staticf...

    That is such an interesting link- what is the source? I notice the 49ers blessed final season @ The Dump patch is missing.

    • JimWa | August 6, 2013 at 5:09 pm |

      When did the Metrodome become the I’m Still Calling It The Metrodome?!?!?!?

  • Bryan | August 6, 2013 at 10:56 am |

    I wonder if all of the shiny helmets are distracting to other players on the field? Any talk about banning them? There are some that I’ve seen with a distinct glare and it can’t be good to have 11 running around the field.

    As a ND fan, I don’t mind the new unis as long as they are worn only a time or two. ND has one of the best-looking unis in all of sports and it is timeless. You don’t mess with a good thing just for the sake of appearing “fresh.”

    • Tom V. | August 6, 2013 at 11:00 am |

      I’d say if there’s three or four of these helmets directly in front of you on a very sunny day it might cause a minor distraction. Otherwise, I think it’s a piece of equipment on a field where you’re focusing on the game.

  • CortM | August 6, 2013 at 11:03 am |

    There should be a protocol for throwbacks.

    In order to justify wearing a throwback, a team must show that the throwback uniform has special historical or aesthetic significance; that proper research has been done, to ensure historical accuracy; and should be worn in conjunction with a specific event (celebrating the team’s anniversary, say, or recognizing the contribution of a player, coach or manager of note). I got no beef with them Mud Hens, but trotting out a grey flannel jersey that says “Toledo” on it, just because it’s from The Olden Days, aggravates me.

    Also, there should be a different standard for things like Iowa State is doing, which is incorporating classic design elements into a contemporary format (really, only baseball, soccer and basketball should be allowed to wear true throwbacks; in football and hockey, the changes in gear make true throwbacks impossible).

    What Iowa State has done, is very nice, indeed. It’s a good look, a fitting tribute to a hero, and something that’s both practical and pleasing to the eye.

    • Mike 2 | August 6, 2013 at 4:54 pm |

      Rule 1 should still be “is it fun”? By your rules, we’d never get the Tampa Bay Rays awesome fauxbacks.

      Teams should try to be as accurate as possible, but the standard shouldn’t be perfection.

      • Cort | August 6, 2013 at 9:02 pm |

        You make a good point.

        It’s another step in my encroaching old manhood: “Fun? In my day, the uniforms were made out of burlap. Burlap, I tell ya. And when you wore them, they’d make you bleed! And everything was grey and navy blue. Red hadn’t been invented yet…except in RUSSIA!”

  • Joseph Gerard | August 6, 2013 at 11:22 am |

    OK, I like Iowa State’s throwbacks, but…is UniWatch starting to become hypocrites as far as ads on this site are concerned? What’s with the sudden increase in ads?

    • arrScott | August 6, 2013 at 12:06 pm |

      Why would you say “hypocrites”? Paul has never objected to advertising as such; the UW position has been to oppose ads on sports uniforms. UW is a publication, little different from a magazine or a newspaper. And publications have relied on revenue from advertisements for like 600 years. Whereas in the 150 or so year history of professional sports in America, pro sports uniforms have mainly been ad-free. Paul’s position is consistently applied, which makes it the opposite of hypocrisy – though, like any ethic that is not either stupid or evil, it produces different results when applied to different circumstances.

      Personally, I’m a bit of a fees-based dichotomist on ads. If you charge me more than a couple of dollars for a good or service, then don’t you dare also sell advertising space or time to third parties. If I’m getting something for close to free (UW, a 50 cent newspaper, a $5 magazine, a basic cable channel that’s part of my $1/day package), then I’m OK with you selling ads to subsidize the low price. But if you’re charging me anything close to a market price for the thing (pay cable channels like HBO, $20 movie tickets, $50 stadium seats game), then ads are burdensome and exploitative. Heck, I can even live with ads in stadiums, but if you put ads on your players’ uniforms, then your ticket prices had damn well better be closer to the price of the local newspaper than the price of an opera ticket.

      • Joseph Gerard | August 6, 2013 at 12:43 pm |

        True, but the last couple of days I keep getting embedded pop-up ads for The Laughing Cow. The ads on the sides of the pages don’t bother me. But the pop-up ads are a little much.

        As far as paying for a service? Well, a lot of us do pay one-time fees for UniWatch memberships. Maybe if they were more like annual recurring payments for a membership card and no ads on the site, then that might make more long-term sense. Obviously, it couldn’t be $25/year (the current one-time price for a UniWatch membership card), but I could see maybe $100/year or something like that. Or whatever Paul feels like charging.

        • Skycat | August 6, 2013 at 12:57 pm |

          Since no one complained, I thought I was the only one getting “The Laughing Cow” popup, but thought it was a glitch (or maybe browser-related), especially when it repeated numerous times.

        • JimWa | August 6, 2013 at 1:18 pm |

          I, too, have seen the laughing cow.

        • not-laughing human | August 6, 2013 at 2:24 pm |

          Banner ads are like stadium ads. No problem with those, for the most part. Popup ads are like jersey ads, or on-field ads. Could they be any more in-your-face? Don’t answer that, because you’ll probably find an even more annoying way to make cows laugh at me.

        • DenverGregg | August 6, 2013 at 4:12 pm |

          The archaic version of IE at work gives a business-card sized immobile patch of “access denied” in mid screen of late, so I was curious who the new sponsor was. No problems with Firefox, Chrome or Silk on various other devices.

      • Tom V. | August 6, 2013 at 12:56 pm |

        It would be enlightening if say a movie company came out and said, ticket prices are $15, but with the advertising to make up some of that cost, you pay $10.

        I wouldn’t expect a ticket to a football game to be the same as the cost of going to the movies, but it would be nice if they said that advertising on the practice jerseys have allowed us to drop ticket prices x%. (Like that would happen? No. They’d say the ads on practice jerseys have allowed us to keep ticket prices the same, or better yet, because we’ve allowed advertising on the practice jerseys, tickets will only be increasing by x% instead of y%.)

        • Joseph Gerard | August 6, 2013 at 2:42 pm |

          The Steelers had Comcast’s Xfinity service the last couple of years as their practice jersey sponsor but they now have Legendary Pictures. Did I add that Legendary Pictures CEO Thomas Tull is a minority owner of the team?

  • LarryB | August 6, 2013 at 11:57 am |

    I really like those Iowa State throwbacks. As said they may not be completely accurate I imagine the pants would be khaki, but kudos to Iowa State for doing what they did and using an actual uniform of the past.

    It does look sharp too.

  • quiet seattle | August 6, 2013 at 12:10 pm |

    Great stuff on Collector’s Corner today, Brinke.

    That SI cover featuring Dick Butkus is truly memorable. Look at that jersey. It is perfect in every regard.

    Watch some video of Dick Butkus in action and see if those glorious sleeves inhibited his performance…….

    • The Jeff | August 6, 2013 at 12:37 pm |

      Watch some video of Dick Butkus in action and see if those glorious sleeves inhibited his performance…….

      Nah, don’t do that. You’ll just get depressed when you realize that about half of the things he did on the field are against the rules today.

    • Cort | August 6, 2013 at 12:37 pm |

      But wouldn’t it be better if the helmet were shiny?

    • Chris Holder | August 6, 2013 at 1:37 pm |

      Speaking of sleeves, look at the pictures of the new NC State unis to see just how bad today’s sleeve cut looks on those flabby-armed offensive linemen. If anybody needs to wear sleeves, it’s those guys.

  • Hank-SJ | August 6, 2013 at 1:07 pm |

    Check out the ‘safety’ padding on Temple RB Jamie Gilmore’s helmet. http://www.philly.co...

  • JimWa | August 6, 2013 at 1:15 pm |

    Finally … an actual legitimatish baseball/Star Wars tie in:

    Tomorrow night the St. Louis Cardinals will host Star Wars night, which will include a ceremonial first pitch thrown out by Ashley Eckstein, voice of Ahsoka Tano on Star Wars: The Clone Wars, but also wife to the Cardinals’ own 2006 World Series MVP David Eckstein!

  • wayne | August 6, 2013 at 1:20 pm |

    https://twitter.com/...

    this is dissapointing :(

    • wayne | August 6, 2013 at 1:24 pm |

      so is my spelling :(

    • arrScott | August 6, 2013 at 2:57 pm |

      Disappointing? First, the home unis are very close to the 5 best and most classic-looking home unis in baseball. And, in a surprising validation of the American public’s taste, the Yankees’ revered-but-actually-mediocre-if-you-think-about-it uni doesn’t crack the top 5. America, fuck yeah!

      And the “road” thing simply reveals that most people don’t want to plunk down $100 or $300 for a plain gray jersey. Alt jerseys are how baseball fans wear team colors – just as nobody would think twice about hockey fans preferring team-color jerseys to white, neither should we be bothered by baseball fans preferring solid-color alts to road grays. The surprise is that we love blue so much and red not at all. (The Pirates probably just represent pent-up demand, with a bunch of long-alienated fans finally replacing 20-year-old jerseys.)

      • terriblehuman | August 6, 2013 at 3:05 pm |

        The graphic isn’t about popularity – it’s about the teams’ records wearing the uniforms.

        • Phil Hecken | August 6, 2013 at 3:09 pm |

          Yeah, it’s disappointing because if anyone actually puts credence in the theory that a team plays better because of a certain uniform (and if you don’t believe that, just remember the Rockies in their black vests in 2007), then we’ll be seeing those softball tops a LOT more.

          I am surprised there weren’t better records for at least one team in gray. I knew the thing with the Blue Jays (who have a terrible record in gray tops), but had no idea the top 5 best road records, as a % when wearing the colored top, are better than any record in gray.

          But daaaaaaammmmmmmnnnn…I do loves me some uni tracking.

      • TA | August 6, 2013 at 3:17 pm |

        This has nothing to do with popularity–they’re the teams’ records in those uniforms.

        • arrScott | August 6, 2013 at 5:31 pm |

          Thanks! Then alas, stupid softball tops are stupid.

          Anyway, given how small the dataset of “record while wearing road grays” has become, I’m not sure we can tell anything useful from any tracking of team records in uniforms.

    • JimWa | August 6, 2013 at 4:31 pm |

      While I would much prefer that all home teams wear white/cream, and all road teams wear grey, there IS a silver lining here. While I wouldn’t care to see every away team in a softball top, I WOULD be please if teams paid attention to the home part of the graph and made all home unis white/cream.

      One exception that I’d accept – The Astros wearing white at home AND on the road, circa 1987:

      http://vesphoto.phot...

      • JTH | August 6, 2013 at 4:47 pm |

        It’s very light in color, but the uniform Nolan Ryan was wearing in that picture was not white. The home version of that uniform was white, though.

        The Astros did wear the same uniforms at home and on the road in the late 70s.

      • walter | August 6, 2013 at 5:56 pm |

        Gotta confess I’m getting weary of the off-white home uniform. But you know I’m not a traditionalist. Part of the problem is not being able to distinguish between a good design and one that merely presses all my good buttons. That second kind of uniform tends to wear out its welcome and be replaced, which means I’m then remembering it through rose-tinted glasses, further clouding the issue.

  • name redacted | August 6, 2013 at 3:17 pm |

    I “I suspect we’re closer to a college football Premiership model”

    I thought you were going to say whre they change the kits every year. :)

    • arrScott | August 6, 2013 at 5:29 pm |

      That ship has already sailed. Or sunk. Or been torpedoed by UU-boats, or something. Heck, with the different uniforms for each and every game, I’d be thrilled if college football only changed kits every year!

  • wolflocke | August 6, 2013 at 4:15 pm |

    As far as those Notre Dame uniforms go, I feel they turned out very well and are by far the best ones that have come out since the beginning of the “Shamrock Series”. I’m a huge fan of Notre Dame tradition and have been very upset by some of the bastardizations of the uniform seen in the past; that being said I believe that these uniforms are attractive to recruits without being overbearingly gaudy.

    Anyone on here who says that they are “glittery” hasn’t had a good look at what there standard uniforms are. There is more “gold” in the standard Notre Dame home uniform than in this one; the gold in this uniform pops more because it is against white.

    Additionally, about the practice as a whole, these uniforms are never worn at home (great thing) and they are always at big events, be it the opening night game at the Big House, or at Old Yankee Stadium, or at the Alamodome. These games are intentionally created for recruits and thus altering the uniforms for one game won’t make rockne roll over in his grave beneath Notre Dame Stadium.

    I will however get upset when they add turf, midfield logos, and jumbotrons.

  • Mainspark | August 6, 2013 at 4:58 pm |

    I thought the ND “Shamrock Series” uniforms were fine for the ND/Navy game in Dublin last year but now the whole thing looks stupid. Part of the reason some people love ND is that they do things they’re own way. Whether its the refusal to change its academic standards for football, having a boring end zone, its own network, no advertising at the stadium, etc. it’s part of who Notre Dame is and people either really love it or really hate it. Now simply looking at the lede today, if you didn’t know better you would think ND = Iowa State.

    • walter | August 6, 2013 at 5:59 pm |

      Notre Dame is more or less sui generis. I appreciate they don’t feel enslaved by traditions; they would rather be master of them.

  • cab647 | August 6, 2013 at 5:03 pm |

    I was telling someone about Paul’s piece on Big Cock Johnson and trolling today. Went to get the link to send the friend, and the article is gone! Even went through the archives, and 4/19/13 is clearly deleted. It goes straight from 4/18 to 4/20. Any idea what gives?

    • Paul Lukas | August 6, 2013 at 5:41 pm |

      For reasons not worth explaining, I had to take it down temporarily. Hope to be restore it soon.

  • traxel | August 6, 2013 at 5:59 pm |

    Re: Roger Staubach Brooks Cleats “You may not recall, but in the late 1970s, Brooks signed a TON of players in the MLB- it seemed everyone wore ‘em all at once. Adidas and Puma were the leaders at the time, and Nike was coming on but not yet on top.”

    I remember seeing tons of players wearing Mizuno with the big M like these http://www.ebay.com/.... I made my mom go all over town trying to find some of those but never did. Settled for some of these Tony Dorsetts http://www.theconver... I used for playing third base.

    • Brinke | August 6, 2013 at 8:17 pm |

      I remember those—Pete Rose wore those in burgundy red with the phils if I’m right. Then later when he returned to the Reds he wore black Mizuno’s with the then-new and still current running bird logo.

      But Brooks was EVERYwhere. Instantly. Dominique Wilkins wore them too for hoops.

  • Josh | August 6, 2013 at 6:33 pm |

    Just to clear up the Memphis Chicks unis…
    The Redbirds are the current team in Memphis (Cardinals AAA affiliate).
    The throwbacks are from the old AA team named the Chicks that used to play in Memphis. The Chicks at different times were affiliated with the Expos, Royals, Padres, and Mariners.
    That team moved to Jackson, TN and became the Diamond Jaxx when Memphis got a AAA expansion team in 1998. Now they are called the Jackson Generals.

  • Zack | August 7, 2013 at 1:33 am |

    As to the link about the new OU Womens Bkball jerseys, unless the aerographic back is new this season, it is the same style, just showcasing two of the new players. They aren’t brand new, but I had hoped they’d remove the grey stripe and make it crimson, like the crimson road jersey has only white stripes.