WFL Contest Entries Part I - Let the Voting Begin

WFL Contest Hed 9-27-14

By Phil Hecken

And now the moment (some of you) have been waiting for: the first round of WFL design-a-uniform contest entries. For those of you unfamiliar with the origin of the contest, the idea was for readers and designers to come up with a uniform for any WFL team had that team remained in existence today (you can read more here and here).

We received MANY entries, with nine teams receiving redesigns from at least four different concepters. Four of those, the Charlotte Hornets, (Honolulu) Hawaiians, Portland Thunder/Storm (or variants) and the Southern California Sun (or variant) had five or more submissions. We’ll take a look at those, and you can vote for your favorite in each group, today.

We’ll start with the Hornets. With each set, you can click on any image to enlarge. I’ll also provide a link to a description of the uniform.

If you read last weekend’s column, we showed three artists who created “progressions” — for today’s voting, we’ll include only the “final” (2014) version of the uniform. In the case of one submitter, HHH, he did a very minor progression, so those will be included here today. Because the writeups were in many cases fairly long and intricate, in the interest of space, I will link to the uniform descriptions, but post only the design(s) below.

Let’s get it started.

. . . . .

Charlotte Hornets

Jeff Provo:

Charlotte Hornets - Jeff Provo

Description

__________

Jordan Reagan:

Charlotte Hornets - Jordan Reagan

Description

__________

Hungry Hungry Hipster (HHH)

Charlotte Hornets 1 - HHH
Charlotte Hornets 2 - HHH

Description

__________

Mark Rabinowitz:

Charlotte Hornets 1 - Mark Rabinowitz
Charlotte Hornets 2 - Mark Rabinowitz

Description

__________

Steve B. Creations:

Charlotte Hornets 7 - Steve B. Creations
Charlotte Hornets 8 - Steve B. Creations

Description

__________

CHARLOTTE HORNETS VOTING
(Vote for One):


Charlotte Hornets – Best 2014 Redesign (vote for one)

 
pollcode.com free polls

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Hawaiians

Gene Sanny:

Honolulu Hawaiians - Gene Sanny

(No Description Provided)

__________

Lenda:

Honolulu Hawaiians - Lenda

Description

__________

Andrew Seagraves:

Honolulu Hawaiians 3 - Andrew Seagraves Honolulu Hawaiians 4 - Andrew Seagraves
Honolulu Hawaiians 5 - Andrew Seagraves
Honolulu Hawaiians 1 - Andrew Seagraves Honolulu Hawaiians 2 - Andrew Seagraves

Description

__________

Curtis Peddle:

Honolulu Hawaiians 2 - Curtis Peddle
Honolulu Hawaiians 1 - Curtis Peddle

Description

__________

Robert Kramer:

Honolulu Hawaiians 1 - Robert Kramer
Honolulu Hawaiians 2 - Robert Kramer

(No Description Given)

__________

HAWAIIANS VOTING
(Vote for One):


Hawaiians – Best 2014 Redesign (vote for one)

 
pollcode.com free polls

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Portland Thunder/Storm/Thunderstorm

Andrew Schmidt:

Portland Overcast-Drizzle 1 - Andrew SchmidtPortland Overcast-Drizzle 2 - Andrew Schmidt
Portland Overcast-Drizzle 3 - Andrew SchmidtPortland Overcast-Drizzle 4 - Andrew Schmidt

Description

Gene Sanny:

Portland Storm - Gene Sanny

(No Description Given)

__________

Curtis Peddle:

Portland Storm 1 - Curtis Peddle
Portland Storm 2 - Curtis Peddle

Description

__________

Jeff Provo:

Portland Thunder - Jeff Provo

Description

__________

Andrew Seagraves:

Portland Thunder 2 - Andrew SeagravesPortland Thunder 3 - Andrew Seagraves
Portland Thunder 4 - Andrew Seagraves
Portland Thunder 1 - Andrew Seagraves

Description

__________

HHH

Portland Thunderstorm - HHH

Description

__________

PORTLAND VOTING
(Vote for One):


Portland – Best 2014 Redesign (vote for one)

 
pollcode.com free polls

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Southern California Sun

Brian Ross:

Southern California Sun - Bryan Ross

(No Description Given)

__________

Curtis Peddle:

Southern California Sun - Curtis Peddle
Southern California Sun 2 - Curtis Peddle

Description

__________

Gene Sanny:

Southern California Sun - Gene Sanny

(No Description Given)

__________

HHH:

Southern California Sun - HHH

Description

__________

Jeff Provo:

Southern California Sun - Jeff Provo

Description

__________

Jordan Reagan:

Southern California Sun - Jordan Reagan

Description

__________

Andrew Seagraves:

Southern California Sun 2 - Andrew SeagravesSouthern California Sun 3 - Andrew Seagraves
Southern California Sun 4 - Andrew SeagravesSouthern California Sun 6 - Andrew Seagraves
Southern California Sun 1 - Andrew SeagravesSouthern California Sun 5 - Andrew Seagraves

Description

__________

Brian Phillips:

Southern California Sun 10 - Brian PhillipsSouthern California Sun 11 - Brian Phillips
Southern California Sun 13 - Brian PhillipsSouthern California Sun 14 - Brian Phillips
Southern California Sun 12 - Brian PhillipsSouthern California Sun 15 - Brian Phillips

Description

__________

Robert Kramer

Southern California Sun 1 - Robert Kramer
Southern California Sun 2 - Robert Kramer

Description

__________

Andrew Schmidt:

Southern California Sunset 1 - Andrew SchmidtSouthern California Sunset 3 - Andrew Schmidt
Southern California Sunset 2 - Andrew SchmidtSouthern California Sunset 4 - Andrew Schmidt

Description

__________

SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA SUN VOTING
(Vote for One):


Southern California Sun – Vote For 1

 
pollcode.com free polls

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And that’s all for today folks. Make sure you vote for each design, and let all the concepters know how much you liked their designs!

Back with more next time.

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classic scoreboards splashClassic Ballpark Scoreboards

I’m pleased to continue with a new weekend feature here at Uni Watch, “Classic Ballpark Scoreboards,” which are created by Gary Chanko. You probably know Gary best for his wonderful colorizations, but he has been a solid contributor for many years, and this is his new project. This segment will appear every Saturday on Uni Watch.

Here’s Gary (click on images to enlarge):

. . . . . . . . . .

Classic Ballpark Scoreboards – Fourth in a Series
by Gary Chanko

Forbes Field and Wrigley Field share uncommon histories and celebrated scoreboards and are the subjects of this week’s look at classic ballpark scoreboards.

Forbes Field

Forbes Field Scoreboard

Home of: Pittsburgh Pirates
Last baseball game:June 28, 1970; Demolished:1971

On October 13, 1960 I had just arrived home after school. Game seven of the World Series had already started at 1 p.m., but I was in time to watch the last few innings (in glorious black & white TV) as the Pirates and Yankees exchanged the lead. The score was tied as the Pirates came to bat in the bottom of the ninth.

The Longines clock above the scoreboard read 3:36 p.m. when Bill Mazeroski’s series winning home run headed over Yogi’s head. If you look closely at the illustration, you may find the ball on its path over the left field wall.

A Few Things to Know

• The original “huge electric” scoreboard was installed in 1911 as reported in this Pittsburgh Post Gazette article.

• In 1947 a utility fence was erected 30 feet just in front of the scoreboard. The smaller distance was intend to boost Pirates slugger Hank Greenberg’s home run production. Called “Greenberg’s Gardens” it later became known as “Kiner’s Korner” after the next Pittsburgh slugger, Ralph Kiner. Then in 1954, the fence was moved back to the original 365 feet.

• The Longines clock, towering 14 feet high atop the 25 feet high scoreboard, was not in play. Balls hitting the clock were a home run. Contrast that ground rule with Ebbets Field where the clock was in play!

• During the 1943 season a 32 feet high plywood U.S.Marine stood just to the right of the scoreboard and was in play.

. . .

Wrigley Field

Wrigley Field Scoreboard

Home of: Chicago Cubs
Home of the Cubs since 1916; May exist forever!

Now serving fans in its 77th season, Wrigley Field’s scoreboard was built in 1937, along with the center field bleacher seating, under the direction of the legendary Bill Veeck, Jr. Veeck, as you may know, would later bring the exploding scoreboard to the old Comiskey Park.

Most of the original Wrigley Field scoreboard still stands today and remains manually operated, but the batter’s number, balls, strikes, and outs are displayed electronically in the center portion of the board.

The version shown in the illustration depicts the scoreboard during the early fifties.

A Few Things to Know

• No baseball player ever hit the scoreboard (Roberto Clemente’s drive sailed just left of it). But in 1951 golfer Sam Snead cleared it with a 2-iron from home plate.

• There are 318 openings on the 89 feet long scoreboard, including four openings for umpire numbers.

• The tradition of flying a win or loss flag on the scoreboard flag masthead began in 1940 and still continues.

• The 10-foot diameter art deco clock was added to the scoreboard in 1941 and reportedly has never lost time since installation. What!

• The scoreboard was originally painted a red brown color that became a distraction to hitters during the late afternoon. In 1944 it was repainted green to reduce the afternoon glare.

• Although the iconic scoreboard will remain unchanged, the Cubs are planning major renovations to Wrigley Field as depicted in this latest illustration. Plans include a 6,000 square foot Jumbotron scoreboard in left field.

Next time the series will feature celebrated scoreboards from two notable ballparks: Shea Stadium and Crosley Field.

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If anyone is interested in purchasing a digital copy of these posters, Gary is working on an online purchase option. In the interim you can contact him directly at Classicscoreboards@gmail.com.

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Fall2014_logo
U.W.F.F.L. News

From UWFFL news reports:
By Rob Holecko

> The UWFFL has announced its end to its work stoppage. It has announced three changes in the personnel structure of the league office. Paul Newton has been named the new Commissioner by the league’s Board of Governors, and as his first order of business he has named Andrew Seagraves “Director of Competition” and former commissioner Rob Holecko will take the title “Commissioner Emeritus”.

> At his introductory press conference, Newton said that the UWFFL schedule will resume on Saturday, October 4, and he apologized for the three weeks of inactivity. “We didn’t get this right. We will do better.”

> He also endorsed the AAIFA (“or AAFIA or AFAAIA or whatever it’s called”) and said he loves everything Roger Kramer (“err, I mean Robert”) is doing with that league, although we “still don’t understand the whole deal with the cards”. And he expressed an interest in the AAIFA becoming an officially sanctioned UWFFL-affiliated league, although he allowed he didn’t really know if that would really make any difference at all because he “just became commissioner three hours ago and didn’t even know where his parking space was yet.”

New UWFFL Commissioner Paul Newton appeared on Friday’s Dick Schaefer Show on 970 KDSF in San Francisco:

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Uni Watch News Ticker:

Baseball News: Great old shot from Bruce Menard: The Babe & The Bird (1921) “Pigeons Carry Score To Yankee Fans On NY’s East Side.” … If you’re into “2”s, well, then, even this might be too many 2s for you (thanks to Duncan Wilson) — unfortunately (or fortunately), it appears the whole thing was photoshopped. … Speaking of Jeets, he wore two uniforms Thursday night (I’m surprised he didn’t wear a new one every inning, so Steiner could squeeze a bit more cash out of the public). … “I saw this photo on AJC,” for the Woodland High School in S.C. writes Chris Wheeler. “Looks like they use the Wu-Tang logo and maybe the Nationals W.” … Derek Jeter’s $20,000 sneakers are up for auction (thanks, Brinke). … Our friend Chris Creamer confirms this Washington Nationals 10th Anniversary logo will be worn as a uniform patch next year. … Chris also brings us news that the Brewers will retire #1 in honor of Bud Selig, in honor of his tenure as MLB Commissioner, former Crew owner, and “hero” of Milwaukee baseball.

NFL News: Fansided has been doing this for a couple weeks now (they must read the 5 & 1): each week they pick their top 5 uni matchups for the NFL. Only they do it before the games are played, leading to this proviso: “Please keep in mind that some teams make last-minute changes to their uniform combinations, so unless we have some type of official confirmation from the team, the best we can do is give our best guess as to what the teams will be wearing each week.” … Buried (no pun intended) in this article on Rod Bironas’ funeral is this uni-related tid-bit: “Several other female friends also wore Nikes. Bironas had an endorsement deal, and he wanted those around him wearing Nikes. On this day, they gladly obliged. Bironas’ buddies wore Chuck Taylor sneakers with their suits, another look Bironas was known for, whether it was for a casual event or a black-tie affair.” … The Bills will be wearing all white Sunday vs. the Texans. … Here’s an article listing the 10 best retro NFL unis of all time, that should be made permanent. I’d agree with about seven of those. Maybe six. … “One of my Facebook friends who lives in the Seattle area wore this (Russell Wilson tie) for ‘crazy tie day’ at work,” writes Matt Larsen. … Here’s something I never noticed before — the Steelers sleeve stripes actually are “full” stripes — I never noticed they continue under the armpit. I thought only Big Ben (and maybe a kicker) had the full treatment, but the way the jerseys are cut, it always looked like the stripes are truncated. … Wow — severe screwup on this Pinktober jersey (h/t D.C.).

College Football News: Perhaps misunderstanding the definition of the word, the Washington Huskies will be wearing their “Stealth” uniforms (black/black/black) versus Stanford today (h/t Kieo’s Stepdad). … The Missouri Tigers will be going chrome/white/white versus South Carolina (via Trevor Hartshorn). … Here’s a look at the “Red Rising” helmets Nebraska will be wearing tonight (as part of their “Red Rising” costume against Illinois. … The Illini will be countering with orange/white/orange. Sounds like we have a solid contender for the “and 1″ (h/t JP Young). Interestingly, this article asks why the Illini have only worn white helmets so far — “According to rumors swirling on Illini message boards, Illinois’ blue and orange helmets aren’t available. Supposedly, the blues haven’t come in yet,” (thanks to Adam Anderson). … Indiana will be wearing the candy-striped chrome helmets vs. Maryland today (via Andrew Lentz). … The Tennessee Volunteers will be wearing white/white/white versus Georgia (h/t Chad Fields). … Today’s Purdue game will feature the Motion P selfie shots from season ticket holders and students. Purdue is also honoring the 1989 team (first to wear black helmet), who went 3-8 (h/t Rob). … Southern Miss will be wearing this jersey vs Rice tonight (via Southern Miss Equipment). … Here’s a look at the sweet throwbacks Virginia will wear today against Kent State (h/t UVa Equipment). … Looks like Texas A&M will be wearing this black/maroon fade helmet today against the Arkansas Razorbacks (via Travis Paro). … Southern Illinois will be wearing black jerseys with cancer victim and survivor NOBs this weekend against Western Illinois. … Vanderbilt will be wearing gold/white/gold versus Kentucky today (from Trés Lawless). … Ole Miss has painted their end zones and 38-yard-lines to honor Chucky Mullins — they’ll also be wearing “38” on their helmets. … The U will be wearing white/”smoke”/”smoke” today vs. Duke (via Jeff C.). … Here’s one we all missed: For the second year in a row, Fordham wore patriotic jerseys (those are from last year) for their game against Columbia this past weekend, which is for the Liberty Cup — this Cup was established in 2002, a year after Sept 11 (both schools were scheduled to play the weekend after 9/11 but game was postponed). More pics here (Thanks to Chris Lewis). … The Baylor Bears are going white/white/green tonight against Iowa State (h/t BaylorPride). … Last night, the New Mexico Lobos went silver/white/white with new numbers and turquoise accents against Fresno State (from Tyler Brooks). … The Akron Zips will be attracted to shiny things today, as they’re busting out their metallic gold hat (thanks to Coleman Mullins). Here’s another look. … Syracuse will be wearing orange helmets today; here’s what one looks like before the blue “S” is applied. Anyone besides me think they should leave it blank? … And speaking of Syracuse, will they be breaking out the gray jerseys against Notre Dame today? The answer is yes.

Hockey News: Interesting spot from Mike Engle, who writes, “Ever notice that the Avalanche sleeve numbers aren’t “hollowed out?” Check out the 8, 9, and 0 digits on the home and away jerseys. You would think you would see through the “holes” of the digits and see the base layer of jersey fabric. But nope, it’s solid. And it’s tacky as shit, IMO.” See here, here and here. He adds, “Though to be fair, it looks like the numbers *are* hollowed out on the thirds.” … The Tampa Bay Lightning introduced a fake third sweater. Hilarity ensued (thanks to Matt Larsen). If you watch that thru till the end, the Lightning will be unveiling their real third sweater today.

Soccer News: OK — this one is kinda bizarre. It being “National Lumberjack Day,” the Stephen F. Austin Lady Jack soccer team gave away foam axes at yesterday night’s game against the Lamar Cardinals (via Matt Bellner). … Female soccer players are suing FIFA for staging the next Women’s World Cup on artificial turf instead of grass, which they say is gender discrimination (thanks, Paul).

Grab Bag: LeBron James and Anderson Varejaon were wearing different colored headbands at Cavs media day (thanks to Brandon Bush). … This video indicates that Georgetown has new navy uniforms as well, in the same template as the grey ones featured yesterday (from Caleb Weaver). … Here’s a pretty cool article on what goes into designing the U.S. Ryder Cup uniforms (from Brian Graham). … Looks like the Sacramento Kings are wearing their 30th anniversary patch (h/t Felix Fernandez). … The NBA’s new fitness program, “Everybody Up,” so of course there is a logo for that (from Conrad Burry). … Looks like Montana has new gray uniforms for hoops (h/t Cubby Wendt).

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And that will do it for today. Big thanks to all the concepters for their WFL submissions (Don’t Forget To VOTE!), as well as Gary for those classic scoreboards, and Rob for the UWFFL update. Back with SMUW tomorrow. Looks like we’ll have some good 5 & 1 candidates today!

Speaking of the 5 & 1 — the lovely Catherine Ryan will return to the 5 & 1 duties tomorrow, so everyone please be on the lookout for good (and bad) games. Send in your suggestions to her at UW5and1@gmail.com. OK? OK!

Follow me on Twitter @PhilHecken.

Peace.

.. … ..

“With all these smokescreens clouding the issue, it’s getting hard to tell the difference between who the actual douchebags are and who are the grandstanding assholes that are trying to cajole teams into changing their team nicknames by not using them.”

— Jim Y.

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Does Your Favorite NFL Team’s Coach Lean Right or Left?

Just when you thought you’d analyzed every conceivable visual aspect of the NFL, along comes reader Omar Jalife, who’s identified a fascinating detail that’s more interesting than you might initially assume.

Here’s what Omar’s noticed: Of the 32 NFL head coaches, only 11 of them — about one-third — wear their headset microphones on the right side. Those coaches are John Harbaugh (Ravens), Ken Wisenhunt (Titans), Marvin Lewis (Bengals), Mike Smith (Falcons), Jim Caldwell (Lions), Ron Rivera (Panthers), Lovie Smith (Bucs), Bill O’Brien (Texans), Mike McCarthy (Packers), Andy Reid (Chiefs), and Chip Kelly (Eagles).

The other 21 coaches wear their mics on the left side: Jason Garrett (Cowboys), Gus Bradley (Jags), Jay Gruden (Washington), Doug Marrone (Bills), Joe Philbin (Dolphins), Mike Tomlin (Steelers), Bruce Arians (Cards), Tom Coughlin (Giants), Bill Belichick (Pats), Mike Zimmer (Vikes), Sean Payton (Saints), Mike Pettine (Browns), Jeff Fisher (Rams), Mike McCoy (Chargers), Pete Carroll (Seahawks), Dennis Allen (Raiders), Rex Ryan (Jets), John Fox (Broncos), Jim Harbaugh (49ers), Marc Trestman (Bears), and Chuck Pagano (Colts).

This got me thinking. I’ve never worn a headset with a microphone (I know some people use one for phone conversations, but I never have), so I asked myself which side I would use if I had to wear one. And I’m pretty sure I’d put the mic on the left side, because that’s also the side on which I hold a telephone.

And why do I hold a telephone that way? Well, when I was growing up, the land-line phone in our house was set located/positioned in a way that made it much easier to hold the receiver on the left.

And why did my parents locate and position that phone in that way? Probably because the cord connecting the receiver to that phone was on the left side. In fact, the cord connecting the receiver to any land-line phone is almost always on the left side. If the cords on payphones have typically been anchored on the left side.

And why have phones historically been designed like that? Presumably because most people are right-handed, so the phone manufacturers figured it made sense to design a phone that made it easy to hold the receiver with your left hand so you can dial with your right hand.

Now, I happen to be left-handed. But, like most people, I hold the receiver in my left hand and dial with my right, because that’s what I learned to do with that phone in my parents’ house when I was growing up. Even when using my iPhone, I hold the phone with left hand and tap with my right. And I don’t mind any of that one bit — feels natural to me (although I usually prefer to do most things with my left hand).

Granted, I’ve now gotten a bit off the track from our original look at NFL coaches’ headsets. But I truly believe there’s a connection between telephone design and the 2:1 ratio of coaches wearing their microphones on the left side. Thoughts?

Finally, you may have noted in those photos that three coaches — Tom Coughlin, Bruce Arians, and Lovie Smith — wear headsets with two speakers, not just one. Hmmmmm.

(Big thanks to Omar Jalife for coming up with this topic.)

• • • • •

Charting a uni designer’s progression: Got a note yesterday from reader Joey Artigue, as follows:

I grew up in an artistic basketball family and thus have been designing uniforms since the early age of four. My dad worked for the Phoenix Suns and Arizona Diamondbacks for 16 years and I really loved to draw, so those teams were featured in a lot of my early designs. I rebranded my high school at 16 and interned with Sun Devil athletics through school, helping with the design of the pitchfork/Sparky rebrand.

Here’s a fun video I put together showing the evolution of my work over the years. The pictures toward the end are the intramural jerseys I did for my fraternity. Oh, and the picture is not a leak (I wish it were) — it’s a concept court I created to help me get my new job with the NBA’s creative services department.

As many of you know, I love childhood uniform artwork, so I was excited to see Joey’s early drawings. We may feature a full entry on his designs at some point down the road, but for now enjoy his video — it’s fun:

• • • • •

PermaRec update: The postcard shown at right was mailed and postmarked in 1948 but wasn’t delivered until a few weeks ago. The woman who now lives at the address where it was delivered then set off in search of the original intended recipient. Learn more on Permanent Record.

Car light reminder: In case you missed it yesterday, I’ve written a piece about some odd details of car headlight and taillight design. Want to know which inconspicuous car lighting detail I’ve become obsessed with? Want to know which car’s taillight reminds me so much of a Jolly Rancher that I want to lick it? Find out here. (And my thanks to everyone who gave nice feedback on this article yesterday.)

Anniversary merch reminder: Get yer Uni Watch 15th-anniversary stickers, patches, and T-shirts right here.

• • • • •

’Skins Watch: Powerful and entertaining ’Skins segment, featuring pro-’Skins fans and anti-’Skins Native Americans, on last night’s segment of The Daily Show. Highly recommended viewing. … Two Native Americans are suing the city of San Francisco for being ejected from a ballgame earlier this year. The pair was apparently displeased with another fan who was wearing a headdress on American Heritage Night (from Patrick O’Neill). … The Washington City Council is considering a ban on Native American high school team names (thanks, Phil). … A DC law professor who helped get cigarette commercials banned from TV and radio back in 1970 now wants the FCC to restrict broadcast use of the ’Skins name because it violates FCC standards against indecency, profanity, and hate speech. Before you yell, “Censorship!,” keep in mind that courts have consistently ruled that the electromagnetic broadcast spectrum is a finite public resource that can be regulated. That’s why you can say “shit” and “fuck” on cable but not on broadcast, why you need a license to have a radio station but not for a podcast, why cigarette commercials aren’t allowed on TV or radio, etc. Also, even if the FCC did ban the team’s name from the public airwaves (which seems unlikely), the team could still keep the name. Broadcasters would just have to call them “Washington,” which is what an increasing number of media outlets are already doing anyway. … I was out and about last night, so I didn’t see the Giants/’Skins game, but Phil Simms was reportedly going to avoid saying the ’Skins name (thanks, Phil). … A ’Skins fan has created a site for fans to submit and vote on new team names/logos (from Yusuke Toyoda). … Excellent article on Navajo Nation activist Amanda Blackhorse, who’s been leading the legal challenge to the ’Skins trademark status (thanks, Phil).

Baseball News: Several readers noticed that Derek Jeter’s cap last night had a white sweatband. … Here’s a Jeter collectible of a different sort: a baseball that Jeter signed when he was an eight-year-old Little Leaguer (from Jonathan Daniel). … With Jeter’s No. 2 about to go out of circulation, here’s a good article on retired numbers. … The single-A South Bend Silver Hawks are now the South Bend Cubs. … Here’s a 1923 ad for the brand-new Yankee Stadium (from Jonathan Daniel). … Great article + photos on Nats clubhouse/travel kingpin Rob McDonald (from Yusuke Toyoda). … There’s a new college summer team called the Holly Springs Salamanders (from Rodney Walker). … New York-o-rama: A Mets player wore a Knicks cap to a Yankees game. … While Jeter merchandises and sells everything in sight, let’s hear it for Twins pitcher Phil Hughes, who’s leaving an easy 500 grand on the table because, in his words, he “didn’t think it was right.” Bravo.

NFL News: A Pittsburgh-area cow born with a “7”-like stripe on its head has been named Baby Ben (from Eric Wright). … The Saints will wear solid black this Sunday (thanks Phil). … Some fun old NFL TV graphics here (from Duncan Wilson).

College Football News: Big uni surprise last night in Stillwater, as Texas Tech wore a new white costume with a new helmet and Oklahoma State wore new metallic orange helmets — at least one of which, unfortunately, suffered badly chipped exterior finishes. None of this had been promoted beforehand — good for the schools for keeping a secret under wraps. … Tennessee coach Butch Jones says any rumors about the Vols having an alternate helmet are false (thanks, Phil). … Also from Phil: Old Dominion wanted to wear white at home as part of a white-out promotion, but their opponent, Middle Tennessee State, said no. … A Nebraska teacher wants the Cornhuskers to stop the longstanding ritual of releasing thousands of red balloons after the Cornhuskers’ first touchdown because it amounts to mass littering. He’s right. … Houston will mark the 25th anniversary of Andre Ware’s Heisman trophy season by wearing 1989 throwbacks on Nov. 8 (thanks, Phil). … Cincinnati is adding an Ohio-shaped helmet decal for this weekend’s game against Ohio State. … Here’s the navy uni and chrome helmet that Fresno State will be wearing on Oct. 3 against San Diego State. … Throwbacks tomorrow for Virginia. … Tennessee fans will try to checkerboard the stadium for the Oct. 4 game against Florida (from Chris Flinn). … Purdue players have been wearing Iowa helmet logos this week during practice. Explanation here (from Jack Coyler). … Speaking of Purdue, here’s what they’ll be wearing tomorrow. … 1984 throwbacks this weekend for Montana State (Phil, of course).

NBA News: German soccer star Mesut Özil was visiting the Denver Nuggets, so they gave him a jersey, complete with the umlauts on his NOB (from Graham Bakay).

College Hoops News: Boston College is bringing back NOBs. … Louisville’s new unis have a very odd color-blocking on the shorts. Is this going to be a new thing for Adidas teams? … Retro unis on tap for Kansas.

Soccer News: Bolton Wanderers launched a “military green” kit to mark the 100th anniversary of WWI and to raise money for wounded veterans. “The shirt has the words ‘Lest we forget’ embroidered on it and Laurence Binyon’s poem ‘For the Fallen’ printed on the inside label,” says Yusuke Toyoda.

Grab Bag: The big problem with the new iPhone: pocket bulge. … New logo for the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Foundation. … “Australian Rules football’s version of the Super Bowl, known as the AFL Grand Final, is this weekend,” says Leo Strawn Jr. “The halftime show for 2014 will feature Sir Tom Jones and Ed Sheeran, each shown here holding the other’s Grand Final gift. Jones got a half-Swans/half-Hawks jumper with the year and his name sublimated on the back, while Sheeran was given a ‘Sherrin’ footy with the spelling changed to reflect his name.” … Faaaaascinating article on how to tell if a letter is handwritten or robot-written. Strongly recommended (from The New Girl). … The Qatari women’s basketball team, having forfeited one game due to FIBA’s ban on hijabs, has now pulled out of the Asian Games altogether (thanks, Phil). … Adidas has poached three designers from Nike for a new studio in Brooklyn (from Tommy Turner).

• • • • •

What Paul did last night: Even at the advanced age of 50, I’m still very much a fanboy. So I was excited last night to go see the latest installment of the live storytelling/interview series Ask Roulette, because the special guest this time around was David Rees, the guy behind such endeavors as the totally genius comic strip Get Your War On, the brilliant is-he-serious-or-is-it-an-act Artisianal Pencil Sharpening project, and the National Geographic TV show Going Deep With David Rees. Basically, he’s a super-smart guy who makes cool shit happen. I was looking forward to seeing him up close and hoped I’d get a chance to tell him how much I like and respect what he’s accomplished.

During the intermission, I went up to Rees and said, in true fanboy fashion, “My name’s Paul, and I’m a big fan of your work.” He thanked me, shook my hand, and that was going to be the end of it — I would have just gone back to my seat — but Ask Roulette host Jody Avirgan, who’s a friend of mine, was standing nearby and said, “Oh, you two guys don’t know each other? David, this is Paul Lukas — he does Uni Watch.”

I was sort of mortified by this, and I started to say, “Jody, there’s no reason David would be familiar with Uni Watch…” But before I could finish the sentence, Rees looked at me and said, “Wait — you’re the guy who did Beer Frame?”

Beer Frame was my zine back in the 1990s. Turns out Rees was reading my stuff back then, plus he was reading Uni Watch way back in the Village Voice days. He appeared to be kinda geeked out to meet me. In short: He’s a fanboy.

I don’t mind admitting that this encounter left me with a big smile on my face for the rest of the night.

A Uni Watch Guide to Last Night’s South Park Episode

South Park’s season premiere was last night, and the topic at hand was the Washington football team. The plot was pretty brilliant, but you can read about that elsewhere, and you can watch some highlights here. (If anyone knows how to embed that clip, I’m all ears. Doesn’t seem to have an embed option.) For now, we’ll just stick to the uni-notable aspects, of which there were quite a few:

1. The teaser clip for the episode, which aired back on Sunday, showed Dan Snyder flanked by a coach (presumably Jay Gruden) and a player who was obviously supposed to be Robert Griffin III. But with Griffin now on the shelf with an injury, they swapped him out for Kirk Cousins and even got their respective sleeve styles right — impressive! But while Griffin’s jersey had the correct number font (well, more or less), Cousins’s jersey did not. Also, Griffin had a gold belt (which is accurate), while Cousins had a burgundy belt (which is wrong). Also-also, Snyder’s necktie changed from striped to ‘Skins logo-patterned:

2. ’Skins players throughout the episode were shown wearing white shoes, which is wrong — the team wears black:

3. Another glitch — blank nose bumpers (plus, as you can see, again with the incorrect number font):

4. On the plus side, they did a nice job of capturing the Cowboys’ multiple shades of silver (but once again, blank nose bumpers and the wrong number font, plus the colored belt is wrong):

5. All the players were NNOB. I understand why they didn’t want to use real players’ names, but couldn’t they just have used “Smith” and “Jones,” or even just used illegible characters? The absense of NOBs made the jerseys look wrong, especially because they didn’t make the numerals bigger or shift them upward to compensate for the missing nameplates (click to enlarge):

6. They came up with a cheapo version of the NFL logo, which was sometimes presented in chrome and sometimes in color:

7. Finally, they took a few liberties with the ’Skins logo. Here’s the tamer version:

If there were other uni-related issues I missed, feel free to speak up.

The most surprising thing about the episode, at least to me, is that it was relentlessly anti-’Skins, anti-Snyder, and anti-NFL (and, oddly, anti-Kickstarter) but didn’t take any potshots at the groups protesting the team’s name. I had expected them to be skewered along with everyone else.

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NFL Superhero Project

By Thomas Correia

It was great to see all the guesses and comments last Thursday as to which comic book superheroes would represent tonight’s Thursday Night Football match-up between the Giants and Washington. You might be surprised by the choices I made [click to enlarge]:

NFLHeroWeek4

Yes, I am aware that Superman does not have the Giant-Man ability to grow as tall as Godzilla, but he is considered a “giant” among all-time comic book characters. The blue and red colors and use of the 1950 New York Football Giants logo were meant to evoke the Man of Steel among the converted Metropolis skyline. You may easily notice the Daily Planet building, and it was my six-year-old son suggested that I add LexCorp Tower as well (second building from the right).

As for Washington: Many people last week suggested assorted American Indian heroes that I could use, some of which I considered using (Warpath and Apache Chief, e.g.). The suggestion to use the Vision, due to his actual red skin, was almost on point. But I instead chose to avoid any association to American Indians and leaned toward the skin of a different color. Sure, you could call the Hulk “Greenskin,” but he might have a problem with that name, and we certainly don’t want to agitate him. I realize the colors don’t match the team, but that connection isn’t always easy to make in this project. I had also thought about using Red Hulk but decided to stick with the original character. The feathers were replaced by a piece of ripped purple cloth and I was even able to sneak in the radioactive logo behind Hulk’s head.

Next week: Vikings vs. Packers. Which characters do you think will be used for these teams?

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Chasing Tail: What you see above are six passenger-side taillights from cars parked on my block. Look at the variety — the different shapes, the different heights, the different ratios of red to white to amber. And yet all of these meet the federal rules and requirements for taillight design. I’m blown away by all the different ways of solving this design problem while staying within the regulatory guidelines.

I’ve been thinking a lot about this lately — not just in terms of taillights but also headlights and other aspects of car lighting design — so I’ve written an article about it for the design website Re:Form. I own a car, but I’ve never been a “car guy,” so I didn’t approach this from the usual car journalist’s perspective of equating lights with branding. Instead, I just talked about how car lights signify to me, and along the way I interviewed some people in the auto industry, including Ford’s design director. Want to know which inconspicuous aspect of car lighting I’ve recently become obsessed with? Want to find out which car’s taillight reminds me so much of a Jolly Rancher that I actually want to lick it? Check out the article here. Thanks.

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Anniversary patch update: The Uni Watch 15th-anniversary patch, which had been temporarily sold out, is now back in stock. So if you had been thinking about ordering one, there’s no time like the present.

And while we’re at it: The 15th-anniversary logo is also available as a high-quality vinyl sticker. Full details here.

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Mike’s Question of the Week

By Mike Chamernik

Are there any sports that you’re not particularly interested in but you still like the aesthetics? I’ve never been a NASCAR guy but I’ve always liked the paint schemes and sponsor logos and numbers on the cars. I can name a fair number of racers just by what their car looks like, not by how they actually perform on the track.

As always, post your responses in today’s comments.

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Uni Watch News Ticker

By Mike Chamernik

Baseball News: After Washington’s win Tuesday, the scoreboard at Nationals Park said the Mets were from Atlanta (from Tommy Turner). … Bryce Harper wore a Derek Jeter wristband the other night. … Speaking of Harper, he thinks that his hair gel is to blame for his helmet always flying off. … The logo for the if-needed tiebreaker game is in the same style as this year’s other postseason logos. It might seem needless, but logos for the tiebreaker have existed for a little while now (from C. Trent Rosecrans). … The Pirates clinched a playoff spot Tuesday night in Atlanta. They celebrated by spraying champagne and pouring Bud Light from Falcons-emblazoned cans (good spot by Alan Borock).

NFL News: The Ravens will wear their black alternate jerseys for Sunday’s game against Carolina. According to that story, they haven’t yet decided whether to go with white pants or black pants. Which would you folks prefer? (From Phil.)

College Football News: Dartmouth has an alternate helmet (from Phil). … Lost Lettermen compiled a list of the 10 worst Adidas uniforms (from Jordan Rabinowitz). … A Cincinnati professor threatened to fail students who wear Ohio State gear (from Brinke). … Ole Miss will wear helmets with No. 38 on them to honor Chucky Mullins, who was injured and left quadriplegic in a game 25 years ago (from Michael Martin). … If you like classic old college football pics, you’ll love yesterday’s Shorpy photo (from Charles Rogers). … New uniforms for RPI. “They looked worse at a distance than in that picture,” says Joe Makowiec. “The radio announcers commented on them. The numbers on the old home uniforms were much more readable.”

NBA News: According to Mark Cuban, Reunion Tower will be on the Mavs new alternates; the jersey shown yesterday was just a mock-up (from Phil). … Related, here’s an interview with Geoff Case, the designer of the new Mavs jerseys. Case even discussed some of the similarities with the Nuggets rainbow skyline jerseys (from Phil). … The Mavs have had an aesthetically-pleasing uniform history, for the most part (from Phil). … The Nets will wear the All-Star Game patch on their jerseys this year (from Phil). … The Thunder’s D-League team will be called the Blue, and boy does their new logo stink. … The Warriors say the proposed design for their new arena, widely described as looking like a toilet, will be “refined.”

College Hoops News: New unis for UConn? It looks to be the case (from Phil). … New blue unis for Kentucky. … Georgetown showed off its gray uniforms (from Phil). … UTEP will have orange uniforms. … Here’s an interview with Kansas’s equipment manager (from Coleman Mullins).

Grab Bag: A Vancouver newspaper apologized after identifying Canucks D Jordan Subban as “dark guy in the middle” in a photo caption. … Colorado has a new logo that says it is “The State of Craft Beer” (from Barry Brite). … Qatar forfeited an Asian Games women’s basketball matchup after they were not allowed to wear hijabs, or Islamic headscarves (from Phil). … Here’s a rundown of clothing worn in the Ryder Cup over the last decade (from Brian Graham). … Additionally, here’s a gallery of Ryder Cup uniforms from throughout the ages. … Here’s a cool hand-drawn map of San Francisco (from Brinke). … The Oregonian is seeking to find the best high school football helmets in the state. … Leo Strawn Jr. found a cool old CFL ticket stub.

Recapping a Busy Day for the Uni-Verse

Phew — that was one busy day for the uni-verse! Let’s go over what happened, in the order that it took place:

1. Okay, so this first item was actually mentioned in yesterday’s Ticker, but I’m going to include it here anyway. On Monday night, Hawks forward Al Horford Instagrammed an image from a team photo shoot, which showed that the team is changing its chest insignia and shorts logo (click to enlarge):

Pretty sure the team wasn’t planning on revealing this news just yet, but hey, that’s what happens sometimes with players and social media. Anyway: I didn’t learn about it until I woke up on Tuesday morning (thanks, Phil), at which point I tossed it into yesterday’s Ticker, but I didn’t really give it much thought until later in the day, so let’s count it as part of yesterday’s news.

My general take on this one is that there’s nothing wrong it, but it doesn’t solve the Hawks’ bigger problems. Further details in this ESPN piece, which I wrote yesterday afternoon.

2. I’ve known for the past week or so that the Pelicans were planning to release a red alternate jersey yesterday, but I wasn’t allowed to talk about it. But my gag order become moot shortly before noon, when the design leaked. A few hours later, the design was revealed for real (click to enlarge):

The Pelicans plan to wear this design on Opening Night. Further info here. Again, further details on my response to this design in yesterday’s ESPN piece.

The unveiling, incidentally, took place at a school where Uni Watch reader Richard Hill happens to work. He took a bunch of photos and filed the following report:

The unveiling was followed by a junior “training camp” for middle school students. The four players on hand (Eric Gordon, Jimmer Fredette, Austin Rivers, and Anthony Davis) stuck around for over an hour and interacted with the students as they went through shooting, passing, and agility drills.

The players were great with the students. They participated in every drill, playing and joking around the with the kids at every opportunity. It was impressive to see professional athletes really take an interest in the kids and be an active part of a thing like this. It definitely made a lasting impression on the students I spoke with.

3. A few minutes after I became aware of the Pelicans leak, the Capitals unveiled their Winter Classic uniform:

Here are some additional photos and details on the design process. One interesting tidbit: “The numerals on the backs of the sweaters and on the sleeves are somewhat larger than the norm for NHL sweaters. Larger numerals will be useful in a Winter Classic setting where the sightlines aren’t as intimate as they are inside an NHL arena.”

This is, obviously, a fauxback, so its retro elements feel a bit forced. And given my usual enthusiasm for striped deisgns, you’ll probably be surprised to hear me say I don’t much care for the shoulder stripes. I do like the chest insignia, though, and most of the other elements are okay. It’s not a great design and it doesn’t feel organic, but it’ll be pleasant enough to watch for one game.

Also: Cross-dressing alert! The unveiling took place at National Park (because that’s where the Classic will be played), so Alex Ovechkin donned a pair of Nats pants for the occasion:

4. The final unveiling of the day came from the Mavericks, who unveiled the winner of their fan uni-design contest:

That jersey will be worn as an alternate in 2015-16 (but not this coming season). There are also white and green-accented versions that won’t be worn next season, although they might be added to the mix in 2016-17 or beyond.

But there are some inconsistencies between the mock-up that the team released to the media yesterday and the prototype jersey that was shown at the unveiling:

As you can easily see, the color of the “Dallas” type doesn’t match, and neither does the color or positioning of the uni number. Also, the skylines don’t match — the mock-up shows Reunion Tower, while the actual jersey does not. I’ll ask the team to clarify these discrepancies later today.

Meanwhile, a lot of people are grumbling that this design is a rip-off of the Nuggets’ skyline jersey, but I’ve always viewed the Nuggets’ design as being rainbow-centric at least as much as it’s skyline-centric. And why should a skyline design be limited to only one team? I have no problem with it, and I generally like this design.

And there you have it — a somewhat uni-hectic day. My favorite thing about all this is that SportsLogos.net honcho Chris Creamer was covering the proceedings while juggling the demands of fatherhood:

One additional note: If you’re wondering what I think about the Penguins’ and Flyers’ recently released alternate jerseys, you can find out in this ESPN piece.

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Sticker reminder: High-quality vinyl stickers of the Uni Watch 15th-anniversary logo are now available. Details here.

• • • • •

Baseball News: “I saw this Pirates helmet in an antiques store in Toronto over the weekend,” says Roch Smith. “Turns out it’s a construction hard-hat made of fibreglass from the ’60s. Looks like someone got their craft on back in the day.” … The Padres’ front office had Tony Gwynn-themed cycling jerseys made for a bike race promoting cancer research (from Brady Phelps). … Anyone stupid enough to buy a really ugly Derek Jeter cap for $100 deserves to wear a really ugly Derek Jeter cap for $100. Good thing Jeter’s such a humble guy who does everything “the right way,” eh? (From Phil.) … Reprinted from yesterday’s comments: Scroll down a bit on this page to see an MLB logo I’ve never seen before. Anyone..? … Kolten Wong of the Cardinals has his home state of Hawaii on his bat knobs (thanks, Phil). … Dave Raglin attended last night’s Nats game and spotted next year’s 10th-anniversary logo in the program. Probably going to be a sleeve patch next year.

NFL News: Remember that pregame shot of 49ers RB Frank Gore that I ran on Monday? Royce Ector notes that Gore change his facemask, removed his visor, and changed his shoe color when the game started. … Mascot makeover for the Seahawks (from Kyle Hanks). … The Bills and Raiders are tied for having the most black players on their respective rosters; more players come from California than from any other state; running backs are, on average, the shortest players and offensive tackles are the tallest. Those trivia tidbits and a lot more are available in the latest edition of the always-fascinating NFL census. Highly recommended. … Love the decal on this Packers equipment trunk (from Chris Wautel). … Clark Hunt’s suite at Arrowhead Stadium is nicer than your house (from Jonathan Daniel). … Guaranteed argument-starter: a ranking of NFL teams, by team name. … The Eagles are promoting this Sunday’s game against the 49ers with an outdated Niners helmet (from Chris Long). … Remember Jonathan Bostic’s different-sized numerals in yesterday’s Tickers? Some of you said that the 5 looked shorted because it was wrinkled. But then Chris Wade showed me this Brandon Marshall T-shirt with similarly mismatched numeral sizes, which in turn got me looking at Brandon Marshall jerseys. My conclusion: The 5 in the Bears’ font is a little short.

College Football News: Yet another Virginia Tech helmet? Sure, why not (thanks, Phil). … Throwback helmets in the works for Virginia. … When Gettysburg College’s new uniforms were unveiled, the pants were solid navy. Now that the season has started, however, the pants have a stray orange stripe (from Eric Wright). … Purdue will be wearing those fan selfie helmets this weekend. “During Coach Darell Hazell’s Tuesday press conference, he stated that his picture is not on the helmet,” says Eric Johnston. … I really like New Mexico’s new white jerseys with turquoise trim (thanks, Phil). … Blackout uni with a flaming helmet for Arizona State this Thursday (thanks, Phil).

Hockey News: In an encouraging move, the Flyers have scrapped their Ice Girls. Somewhat less encouraging is that Flyers fans apparently don’t like that they can’t ogle some free tits and ass during the ice clean-up. Boo-fucking-hoo (from Yusuke Toyoda). … “I’m generally ‘meh’ about sports-themed weddings, but this Capitals/Flyers wedding is well thought out,” says Yusuke Toyoda. … Blackhawks goalie Scott Darling is wearing gear festooned with the team’s signature stripe pattern (from Pete Woychick).

Pro and College News: Drawings of the Warriors’ new arena look like a toilet. This comes right on the heels of the Cincinnati Cyclones’ new toilet-flush logo. One more of these will make a bona-fide trend. … Lots of uniform options this season for Duke, including three white jersey options (from Leo Strawn Jr.).

Soccer News: Reprinted from yesterday’s comments: The BBC is making a film about Stoke City’s kit man (from Ian Macphail). … Here’s an in-depth analysis of the new MLS logo (from Yusuke Toyoda). … Meanwhile, MLS fans have made their own team-specific versions of the new logo (from Benton Payne).

Grab Bag: Here’s a video clip of a tour of Brooklyn and Queens signage typography (from Britton Thomas). … Syracuse’s new logo — the city, not the school — is pretty embarrassing, even by tourism bureau standards. Wonder how much they paid some branding consultancy for that one. … Aussie rules football note from Graham Clayton: “Back in 1990, Hawthorn player Jason Dunstall had his skill fractured during a game. After recovering, he played the remainder of the season wearing a helmet to protect his head.” … Happy Rosh Hashanah to all who are observing tonight.

• • • • •

What Paul did last night: Yesterday evening I went to the launch party for Jack Carlson’s new book about rowing blazers. Try to imagine a jam-packed space crawling with refugees from an Abercrombie catalog shoot and/or an extras from an early Whit Stillman movie and you’ll get the idea — Ivy/prep/WASP-o-rama. It was so crowded that I never even got to see Jack (sorry, Jack!), although I did manage to take some photos of people wearing rowing blazers (if you can’t see the slideshow below, click here):

I also had a nice time chatting with Uni Watch reader Mathieu Santos, who recognized me and introduced himself. He scored major points by showing me his 1970s-style Bruins shoulder patch tattoo, but then he wussed out when I dared him to yell, “Bitcoin’s a fraud!” while one of the Winklevoss twins was making a speech. Let’s call it a push.

After the party I went downtown and saw a new movie called Art and Craft, which is a documentary about a guy who’s really good at creating forgeries of fine art paintings and this kinda narc-ish art registrar who’s obsessed with stopping him. The interesting thing is that the forger doesn’t sell his fakes — he gives them away to museums, casting himself in the role of a great philanthropist (which may be unethical but is not illegal). He’s very fragile-seeming, both physically and emotionally, and is clearly mentally ill, but he’s a gifted painter and, more importantly, raises excellent questions about how we assign value to things, what’s “real” vs. what’s “fake,” why so many people are so gullible, and so on. I really liked this film — highly recommended. If you live in NYC, it’s at the Angelika. Here’s the trailer: