Yet Another Quirk Involving the Mets Logo

It’s been an interesting year for the Mets’ skyline logo. Back in January, uniform designer/historian Todd Radom discovered that the logo had originally been rendered in pink and black. Six months later he figured out why it had been pink and black. And then last month we had that kerfuffle about one of the buildings in the skyline being replaced by the Citicorp Center.

But now reader Steve Dodell (who was the first to alert me to the Citicorp skyline issue, so he’s a bit of Mets logo savant) has pointed out another storyline regarding the logo — one that I really should have noticed myself years ago.

Let’s start with the original logo rendering by cartoonist Ray Gotto, who submitted the winning entry in the team’s logo design contest more than 50 years ago. It was unveiled on Nov. 16, 1961. Here’s how it looked in The New York Times the following day:

As you can see, the “Mets” script looks a bit thin in that version. Someone — maybe Gotto, maybe a graphic artist employed by the team — added a white keyline to it when rendering it in color, beefing it up to the more familiar proportions we’re used to seeing today:

The thing is, that version of the logo — the one based on Gotto’s original design — is not the one that’s been used for most of the team’s history. Let’s compare the version I just showed you (we’ll call that Version 1) to the one on this 1962 pocket schedule (we’ll call that Version 2; click image below to enlarge):

Leaving aside the color differences (we can write those off to printing variations, scanning/photo variations, fading, etc.), we can see that several tweaks were made as the logo transitioned from the first version to the second one:

1. The blue skyline silhouette was raised a bit.

2. The suspension bridge was made slightly smaller.

3. The script lettering was made slightly smaller. (The registration of the orange within the white keyline also shifted a bit, but that’s something that has never been consistent throughout the team’s history, so I’m not going to count that as a design change here.)

4. The arc of the baseball stitches was changed, and the stitch count was increased. The stitches themselves were also made a bit thicker.

5. The cross of the “t” was altered, making it shorter on the left side than on the right. This is probably the most significant change, because it carried over to the team’s jerseys.

Now, you may be saying to yourself, “So they made an initial version of the logo based on Gotto’s original rendering, and then they made some adjustments to it in time for the start of their inaugural season. They scrapped Version 1 and kept Version 2 — big deal.”

But here’s the thing: They didn’t scrap Version 1 — at least not entirely. When Shea Stadium opened in 1964 (the team’s third season), the scoreboard featured a display area that was supposed to provide photos and video replay (further info here). Unfortunately, it never really worked, so they just slapped the team’s logo in there. And they used Version 1 of the logo — the one with the longer cross on the “t” and all the rest of Gotto’s original details — as you can see in this photo from May 31, 1964 (click to enlarge):

The Version 1 logo was still there on the scoreboard more than five years later, when the Mets defeated the Orioles to win the 1969 World Series (click to enlarge):

And it was still there nearly seven years after that, on Sept. 4, 1976, when this photo was taken (click to enlarge):

The scoreboard was overhauled in 1982, so the logo was definitely removed by then, but I’m not sure if it was ever updated in between 1976 and ’82. I’ve done a fair amount of photo research and have also consulted a bunch of Mets experts, but so far no dice. My hunch, though, is that the Version 1 logo, with the longer cross on the “t,” stayed in place through the end of 1981.

Meanwhile, did the Mets ever use Version 1 in any other capacity? I haven’t been able to turn up any other instances of it, but I bet they’re out there. After all, these are the Mets we’re talking about.

Speaking of which: In a characteristically clueless move, the Mets have been misspelling Ray Gotto’s surname as “Gatto” in their media guides and on their website since 1985. It’s not Gatto; it’s Gotto. And as Casey liked to say, you can look it up. So for nearly 30 years, the Mets have been misspelling the name of the guy who created the basis for their entire visual program. Idiots.

(Special thanks to Steve Dodell for bringing the scoreboard logo issue to my attention, and to Faith and Fear in Flushing blogger Greg Prince for the 1976 scoreboard photo.)

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Two of my favorite things: My presence here on the site is going to be limited over the next two days and non-existent next week, but I think you’ll cut me some slack when you hear what I’ll be up to.

First, I’ll be spending parts of tomorrow and Friday in Manhattan, where I’ll be attending the taping of the latest edition of the Puppy Bowl. As usual, there will be other animals involved besides puppies, including kittens and something else that I’m not allowed to talk about yet. The whole thing is embargoed until late January, so I won’t be able to talk about it or post any photos until then, but I expect to have a full-on cutegasm all the same. And I promise to share everything with you folks as soon as I’m allowed to do so. Big thanks to my friends at Animal Planet for once again inviting me to the taping.

Then on Saturday I’m flying off for a week-long vacation in Wisconsin, my favorite place, where I’ll be enjoying the Badger State’s considerable autumnal charms. In addition to visiting friends, checking out cultural landmarks, and partaking of the Badger State’s matchless roster of taverns, I’m also going to be mixing a bit of business with my pleasure by visiting at least one and possibly two places that I plan to write about. First, I’ll be stopping in at the awesome FAST Corp., whose acronym stands for fiberglass animals, shapes, and trademarks. (Among other things, they make the Big Boy statues.) I was there once before, but that was way back in ’96, so I want to see what they’re up to these days. I’ll get a tour of the grounds, interview the staff, and take some pics, all of which I’ll cobble together into an article that should run next month on re:Form, the excellent design website to which I’ve recently been contributing.

I’m also hoping to arrange a stop at Ripon Athletic, which, oddly enough, I’ve never visited on any of my previous Wisconsin trips. Should make for a good entry here on Uni Watch. Haven’t worked out all the details on this one yet, but I think we’ll be able to work something out.

The site will still be open for business while I’m away, so things here should continue pretty much as usual. Also, my annual NBA season preview will run on ESPN at some point next week (probably on Weds. or Thurs., although that hasn’t yet been finalized), and of course Phil will provide you with the link for that once it’s ben posted.

The bad part is that I won’t be able to write about the first few games of the World Series; the good part is that I’ll be able to watch those games with my keister parked on various Wisconsin barstools, something I’ve enjoyed doing before (but not recently). Looking forward to that.

• • • • •

BuyMyStuff, BuyMyStuff, BuyMyStuff: It’s been, what, nine whole days since the last time I bugged you to order a Uni Watch 15th-anniversary patch, sticker, or T-shirt. Also, this T-shirt has been popular-ish lately. And hey, didn’t you make a New Year’s resolution back in January — or maybe two Januarys ago — to join the Uni Watch Membership Program?

Of course you did.

• • • • •

PermaRec update: It’s turning out to be a very good week for time capsules. Details over on Permanent Record.

• • • • •

Baseball News: Some Royals fans get points for honesty. Others get pointsfor weirdness. … George Brett wore a powder blue jersey while throwing the first pitch prior to last night’s O’s/Royals playoff game in KC. Interesting that they had him wear that instead of a home white jersey. … A Giants/Orioles World Series isn’t looking too likely, but I’m still hoping for that match-up, if only because I really want to see an Adam Jones vs. Sergio Romo orange-striped hosiery hoedown in the Fall Classic. … “I was flipping channels (I swear) and noticed a guy wearing a 1989 Cubs/Giants NLCS T-shirt on some show called Marry Me,” says Chris Flinn. … Longtime Ticker contributor Richard Paloma thinks the A’s should have a “Swingin’ A’s” throwback as a permanent alternate uni. … Want some first-class entertainment? Here’s a disputed call during a 1984 Reds/Cubs game that leads to a humdinger of an argument and, eventually, a brawl. A doozy! … Tom Konecny was watching Game 5 of the 1984 World Series and noticed that Padres 3B Graig Nettles’s NOB was straight instead of vertically arched. Ditto for Ron Roenicke. Odd, especially for the Series.

Pro Football News: Someone at last Sunday’s Bengals game was wearing a funny Pacman Jones jersey (thanks, Phil). … 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick once again wore Beats headphones for his postgame press conference on Monday night, but this time he covered up the logos. … put together a slideshow with over 50 photos showing throwback uniforms going back to 1994. “There are some great photos I have never seen before,” says the Hungry Hungry Hipster, “including the Bears trying to block a field goal in their vertically striped 1920s jerseys and the Browns wearing TV numbers on their helmets in 2007, which I never knew even happened.” … Although it wasn’t shown on TV, Monday night’s Niners/Rams game featured some Ferguson protestors who unfurled various banners in the stadium. … Oooh, check out this cool 1950s footage of the Racine Raiders, a semi-pro team that was founded in the 1920s and still exists today. “I think semi-pro football is a treasure trove of uni-centric information, and could be a goldmine if tapped into,” says Shawn Nissen. … Stephen A. Smith said he’d wear a Tony Romo jersey if the Cowboys beat the Seahawks, and he made good on that promise — but with an old Reebok jersey (screen shot by Sean Kneringer). … An online poll has determined that the best high school football helmet in the state of Michigan is basically a rip-off of the Jags’ first helmet. The best part of the article is when the team’s former coach says, referring to the logo, “It kind of gave us our own identity.” Uh-huh (from John Korinek). … The Gridiron Uniform Database shows the 1983 Bears wearing two similar but distinct George Halas memorial patch designs. And sure enough, photos confirm that the patch worn with the white jersey had oddly pointy tips, while the one worn with the dark jersey did not. Nice how that last version had outlining on the “H,” so it looked like a goalpost. Still, very odd that the two versions didn’t match (thanks to Phil for reminding me about these patches, which I’ve always liked).

College Football News: Baylor wants its fans to do the stripe-out thing for two games in November (thanks, Phil). … Ditto for Missouri. … BeeYOOteeful throwbacks this weekend for Oregon. … New “U! S! A!” costumes for Eastern Washington — except they’re not really new. Yup, nothing says, “Patriotism” like ordering an old design out of a catalog. … Seriously ugly Pinktober helmet for Air Force. … Illinois will wear gray alternates on Oct. 25. Here are some additional photos and the matching helmet. … This is pretty cool: an interactive timeline showing the evolution of TCU’s uniforms (nice find, Phil). … “My pal Whitney Cox is photographing up at Cornell U,” says our own Scott M.X. Turner. “He forwarded me a pic of this mural showing the school’s football team in the 1890s. Stripey goodness.” Indeed.

Hockey News: The AHL’s Adirondak Flames have apologized after a controversial skit involving their mascot (from Cort McMurray). … Kudos to the crew at The Hockey News, who used Panthers goalie Roberto Luongo to create an infinite regression on the cover of their current issue (and kudos to Mike Engle for pointing it out to me).

NBA News: The Nets and Celtics will play a 44-minute preseason game, instead of the usual 48 minutes. Insert the obvious “That gives them four more minutes of commercials to run” commentary here. … We don’t yet know what the Heat’s and Celtics’ “Pride” Hubris uniforms will look like, but the shorts sure don’t look promising. … Mike Miller of the Cavs must’ve been pretty sure he wouldn’t be playing in last night’s preseason game, because he was wearing a ring (good spot by Andy Henderson).

College and High School Hoops News: New uniforms for UT-Arlington (from Casey Wieder). … Here’s Baylor’s complete sweatback set for next year (thanks, Phil). … “At our first meeting of the year for the Rhode Island board of International Association of Approved Basketball Officials, I picked up a copy of the 2014-2015 rulebook,” says Joel Mathwig. “The following note appeared within the ‘Major Editorial Changes’ section, which set forth by the National Federation of State High School Associations: ‘1-12-1a: The ball … its solid color shall be Pantone Matching System (PMS) Orange 151, Red-Orange 173 or Brown 1535, effective 2019-20.” In other words, starting in five years, the ball can be any of three different colors. And what’s the current rule? “The rule just states that the ball’s ‘solid color shall be the approved orange shade or natural color,'” says Joel.

Soccer News: The Portland Portland Timbers’ new USL Pro minor league club, Timbers FC 2, will let certain season ticket-holders choose the club’s game-day kits. “Also, the team’s logo is full of historic references: Chevrons from ’75, axe from MLS-era, and the ‘2’ is rendered in the font used on the original 1975 NASL-era jerseys,” says Erik Siemers). … Man U wanted to have an additional sponsor for the back of the jersey but faced opposition from other Premier League teams. Adam Silver and Mark Cuban could not reached for comment (from Yusuke Toyoda). … Also from Yusuke: Some British MPs want to ban Newcastle United’s payday lender sponsor on kids’ replica jerseys, just as liquor and gambling sponsors are currently banned.

Grab Bag: Converse is filing trademark-infringement litigation against 31 copycat sneaker makers (thanks, Phil). … F1 driver Michael Schumacher’s head injuries may have been caused by the GoPro camera mount on his helmet. … Here’s one guy’s list of 10 teams that need to bring back their 1990s uniforms. “Some of these are not terrible suggestions,” says Garrett. … Here’s a good assortment of sports-related maps and infographics (from Joey Breeland). … The Color Mafia, or at least one corner of it, has declared that the Color of 2015 is a very nice pale green. Don’t think I’ve ever seen that tone on a uniform, but I wouldn’t mind seeing it. … Possibly NSFW, if you’re in an uptight office: Why is there a swoosh painted on this woman’s nippe? Answer here (thanks, Phil). … Last week I linked to Norway’s cool new currency designs. Also cool: some of the designs that were rejected (from Yusuke Toyoda). … Good story on how the T-shirt was invented.

NBA Uni Ads Still ‘Inevitable’ for Third Consecutive Year (so at least they get points for consistency)

So everyone went apeshit yesterday when Deadspin reported that the NBA’s new TV deal (which, in case you missed it, you can learn about here) includes a provision that could facilitate the advent of corporate ad patches on NBA jerseys. The gist is that if a team wears a patch from an advertiser that would normally have bought a TV commercial during an ESPN- or TNT-televised game, that uni advertiser will also commit to running commercials during that game.

The Deadspin report begins with the statement “Advertisements on NBA uniforms are inevitable” and concludes with “[If you're opposed to uni ads], the NBA is not the hill to die upon. Retreat to another sport, so you may fight again another day.” In other words, Deadspin thinks it’s a done deal.

I beg to differ. Here’s why:

1. The Deadspin report (and all the subsequent reports from other media outlets that trickled out yesterday afternoon) is based on this report from Sports Business Journal. In other words, Sports Biz Journal is the outlet that broke the story — everyone else just rehashed it. And how did the people who broke the story begin their article? Let’s take a look:

If the NBA sells corporate advertising on game jerseys, which many believe is inevitable, network partners Turner and ESPN will get certain spending guarantees related to those contracts — a development that was negotiated as part of the league’s massive nine-year, $24 billion media deals.

But that’s where the clarity ends, because the details of what the networks will receive — and from whom — remain as undefined as the league’s future policy on selling jersey advertising.

Doesn’t sound nearly as clear-cut as Deadspin indicated, does it?

In short: Yes, the league and its broadcast partners have created a mechanism that accounts for the possibility of uniform ads. But they haven’t yet sorted out the details of that mechanism, much less activated it. Or to put it another way, the league is preparing for the possibility of uniform advertising. Thanks for the news flash, but we already knew that.

2. Several people I spoke to last week indicated to me that the league’s new TV deal actually makes uniform ads less likely, because the NBA’s TV partners wouldn’t want their commercials to be competing with uniform ads. This newly reported provision is clearly an attempt to account for that, because the uni advertiser would also have to become a TV advertiser, so that should mollify the networks. But think about it from an advertiser’s perspective: If you’re already a uni advertiser, do you want to be forced to run TV commercials as well? Maybe you do — it would create a multi-faceted branding blitz, after all. Then again, maybe you don’t want to be locked into a “Buy one, you must buy two” system. Faced with that requirement, maybe you just skip the uniform ads altogether.

Granted, we’re talking about complex, high-stakes business maneuvering here, and there are clearly aspects of this storyline that don’t play directly to my skill set. But I’ve done my share of business writing over the years, and it sure seems to me like Deadspin made an alarmist leap from the Sports Biz Journal story. Also, we’ve been hearing that NBA uni ads are “inevitable” for years now (and they’ve been discussed for nearly a decade), which means they’re demonstrably not inevitable.

Will Adam Silver and his merry men eventually get their shit together on this? Maybe. But remember, this plan was already scuttled once before because the owners were too greedy to figure out how to divvy up the loot. Personally, I have faith in their ability to keep messing this up. #NoUniAds

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Click to make stomach even larger

The Eagle has finally landed: As you can see, the geniuses at Nike have finally figured out how to mix yellow and blue to create green, and thank the lordy for that — wouldn’t have wanted to miss a great photo like the one shown above.

But don’t get too excited just yet, because the Eagles have a bye this Sunday. Then they play on the road against the Cardinals (who’ll presumably be wearing red) and Texans (who’ll definitely be wearing red). So the Iggles won’t have a chance to wear their new green jerseys until Nov. 10 — almost another whole month from now! — assuming the green dye doesn’t bleed in the wash or something like that before then.

Meanwhile, reader Ernad Selimagic points out that Philly isn’t the only team whose primary colored jersey has been scarce lately. Six weeks into the season, the Titans have worn white for every single game. Could there be a problem with their jerseys too? Hmmmmm.

• • • • •

Collector’s Corner

By Brinke Guthrie

With the Giants/Cards series moving to AT&T Park today, how about a 1980s DeLong Giants pullover and this 1970s-1980s Cardinals T-shirt with striped sleeves (shown above)? And speaking of the MLB playoffs, couple of KC Royals items here, too: a 1970s Royals glass (which looks an awful lot like non-Royal Reggie Jackson, even down to the Puma stripe on his left shoe) and a 1970s Topps plastic cap and ball mini-plaque. And if you’re an O’s fan, buy a batch of Esskay hot dogs and get this “Orioles Magic” seat cushion.

But hey, there’s more to life than the MLB playoffs, so here are the rest of this week’s eBay picks:

• Oh. My. God. No further words needed — just click here.

• Wow, a big haul of those large 1970s NFL helmet plaques. You often see these sold individually, but as a set? Wow!

• Never seen a Technigraph plaque for the Lions before. Hurry, this one ends tonight. Helmet itself looks perfect but the frame has some wear. Same seller also has a Bills plaque that has more wear and tear. Also found a Cowboys version, and it looks to be in perfect condition!

• This WHA Hartford Whalers tie is in perfect condition. One of the greatest logos ever IMO. [If you like that tie, you need to check out this Uni Watch entry from two years ago. — PL]

• Check the retro logo on this 1960s Steelers glass. Pair it with this glass ice bucket.

• Great box cover artwork on this 1968 Ideal NHL game with the Blackhawks and Rangers.

• This looks like a Sears item to me — a 1960s Broncos scarf complete with the old bucking horse logo.

• Bucco Bruce lives on, emblazoned on this 1995 7-11 travel mug.

• Here is a pair of 1970s KC Chiefs mittens, just the thing for those cold December games at Arrowhead.

• Here’s an entire 1970s NFL gumball helmet set complete with display board. And from the same period, here’s a Raaaaaaay-duhz helmet buggy with a questionable stripe down the middle. Also found this Bengals gumball helmet- the picture’s crappy, but you can see how they originally rendered the font- not even close.

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PermaRec update: A new Toyota Camry commercial (which I saw while watching an NFL game, so you’ve probably seen it too) has a surprising, if somewhat implausible, PermaRec-ish message. Get the full scoop over on Permanent Record.

• • • • •

Uni Watch News Ticker

By Garrett McGrath

Baseball News: The Diamondbacks already have a uniform and cap waiting for their new manager, Chip Hale. … At Friday night’s ALCS game, the Orioles sold World Cup Budweiser beer that was past its freshness date, although it’s hard to know how anyone could tell the difference (from Tommy Turner). … “I got married on Sept. 27 and gave my groomsmen classic Red Sox stirrups,” says Andy C. “They were a huge hit. Big thanks to Robert Marshall for the hook-up!”

Pro Football News: Not only did the Rams wear 1999 “Greatest Show on Turf” throwbacks last night, but their field also took part in the throwback party (thanks, Phil). … Rams WR Austin Pettis is from Anaheim, which presumably explains why he has a Mighty Ducks tattoo (from Mikey Brethauer). … Yesterday Paul mentioned that the Eagles didn’t wear any Pinktober accessories on Sunday night. Not only that, but the pink-trimmed wordmark on the field, which had been visible during the Temple/Tulsa game the day before, was gone by Sunday night (from Andrew Hoenig. … The CFL’s Montreal Als honored Anthony Calvillo yesterday by retiring his No. 13 and marking Percival Molson Stadium’s 13-yard lines (from Leo Strawn, Jr.). … This 49ers fan is not number one (thanks for nothing, Phil). … “The Pegula family, who own the Sabres, are now the owners of the Buffalo Bills, and as such they’ve been presented jerseys on a few occasions now,” says an anonymous Bills fan. “The thing is, they are the old neck roll versions, not the current version.” … Here’s a video of Fox commentator Howie Long questioning why a player who delivers a dirty hit is fined less than a player who wears Beats headphones (from Jen Hayden). … Coming this Sunday: the Chargers in powder blue and the Broncos in mono-navy (from Phil and Ron Ruelle, respectively).

College Football News: Oregon will wear 1994 throwbacks this weekend (from Chris Acquino). … “Purdue is a Nike school, but Purdue defensive coordinator Greg Hudson had a Majestic hat on in the first half of the game against Michigan State on Saturday,” says Nicklas Lane. “After halftime, he was wearing a similar hat but obviously now a Nike hat. Do you think someone at Nike spotted the Majestic hat and notified Purdue?” … No pictures, but the Kansas University team is going against the norm in the college football uniform world. “You won’t see any more funky uniforms. You’re going to see blue and gray at home, white (tops) and white (pants) on the road,” says KU defensive lineman Keon Stowers (from Derek Noll). … Reader Jared Buccola asked Fresno State if the team was going to wear anything special for their “Salute the Services” game on Nov. 1. They replied that the stars and stripes bulldog logo will be worn on a white helmet. … Rumor has it that Florida State is going BFBS against Notre Dame this weekend (thanks, Phil). … A Cincinnati jersey was missing its chest wordmark last weekend (thanks, Phil). … Hmmm, did a new Texas Tech helmet just leak?

Soccer News: MLS announced that season ticket holders can get their faces in MLS jersey numbers next season. The kits will be worn in August by all MLS clubs (from Leo Strawn, Jr.). … The University of Nebraska at Kerney Women’s Soccer club went Pinktober during their last game (from Jason Johnson). … “During the Bosnia-Herzegovina vs. Belgium match. B-H striker Vedad Ibisevic was wearing something weird on his head,” says Andy Bryson. “Turns out he took a header to the temple and he got cracked pretty good, so his other ear got taped up and apparently that headwrap was put on to keep everything in place. The injury happened 15 minutes in and he stayed in for the rest of the game after being patched up.”

Pro and College Basketball News: The Hornets’ home court design has a trippy honeycomb design (thanks, Phil). … The Illinois media guide cover features an interesting “Illini” wordmark. “The ‘LL’ in is rotationally symmetric with the ‘N,'” notes Greg Trandel (who clearly just wanted an excuse to say “rotationally symmetric,” and who can blame him). … Baylor’s hoops program has switched from Adidas to Nike and has a new set of black alts.

Grab Bag: With the Pegula family owning both the Buffalo Bills and Buffalo Sabres, they have introduced the “One Buffalo” campaign, which features the words “One Buffalo” rendered in Bills and Sabres colors. … In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death sports and taxes. So here’s an interesting infographic on the taxes generated by sports salaries.

Monday Morning Uni Watch

Notice anything different about the Bucs yesterday? Before you say, “Nah — they looked like shit and played even worse, as usual,” take another look at their socks. First time they’ve worn orange hose with the new unis! They had previously paired the white pants with the dark-pewter socks. In fact, the orange socks weren’t even shown during the unveiling back in March (although it was mentioned that they’d be part of the wardrobe). And keep in mind that there’s also a set of red socks that they wore two weeks ago. Anyway: Lots of additional photos from yesterday’s orange-socked game are available here.

In other news from around the NFL yesterday:

• Speaking of orange, the Bengals wore their orange alternates for the first time this season.

• The Eagles, still waiting for those geniuses at Nike to figure out how to manufacture a fucking green jersey already, made good on their threat to go black over black for the first time in team history. But let the record show it could’ve been worse: Not a Pinktober accessory in sight. Lots of additional photos here.

• In a related item, the Eagles did manage to wear green jerseys for their Sunday Night Football intro shots. Retail replicas, presumably.

• What’s worse that Pinktober or G.I. Joe? Pinktober and G.I. Joe, as exemplified yesterday by Packers cornerback Tramon Williams.

• From that same game: Dolphins linebacker Koa Misi apparently had a helmet-to-helmet hit and ended up with some Packers helmet paint on his own helmet.

• One more from that game: Dolphins free safety Louis Delmas was wearing Nike Magista soccer shoes.

• Looks like Bills running back Fred Jackson’s captaincy patch was coming loose.

• At one point the Cowboys sideline featured a cluster of players wearing three different sideline caps.

• This trend of the Bears’ players modifying their socks so that the stripes end up down at their ankles needs to stop. Like, yesterday. Interestingly, when I tweeted that photo yesterday, a surprising number of people immediately said they liked it. Morons, I tells ya. (Fortunately, some players still wear the stripes at the proper calf level.)

• Speaking of the Bears’ socks, check out how many hosiery layers Martellus Bennett was wearing yesterday.

• Several players were wearing non-Bose headphones during pregame warm-ups. But according to this article, that’s okay. Key quote: “Sources say the league will allow any player to wear headphones during media interviews if the logo of that brand is covered up. The league also will allow players to wear headphones with competing logos off the bus, into the stadium, and on the field for warm-ups before they get into uniform.”

• Speaking of pregame, I’ve never seen a uni-numbered pullover like the one Russell Wilson was wearing yesterday. Maybe they’re common and I just never noticed..?

• Looks like Giants quarterback Eli Manning’s helmet was painted over his neck bumper.

• When Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz was carted off with a leg injury, the trainers examining him cut open his sock.

• Teams wearing white at home (besides the aforementioned Bucs): the Titans and Dolphins.

• And while this isn’t uni-related, it nonetheless feels appropriate to mention that Raiders fans egged the Chargers’ team bus:

(My thanks to all contributors, including Blain Fowler, Stephen Hayes, Craig Justice, Greg Kantor, Matt Larsen, Jeff Moulden, Chris Perrenot, Tommy Turner, and of course Phil.)

• • • • •

ESPN reminder: In case you missed it on Friday afternoon, my annual NHL goalie roundup is now available on ESPN.

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rafflet ticket by ben thoma.jpg

Raffle winners: Garrett here. Thank you to everyone who the Nolan Ryan cookbook and bobblehead raffle. Here are our winners, all of whom will be getting a bobblehead, plus the first two people on the list will also be getting a signed cookbook:

Nick Jurista
Robert Erdtmann
Jason Allen
Wilson Moore
Tim Reyes
Chad Cate
Andrew D. Kacvinsky
Jeff Mendenhall
Brian Frasier
Rocky Bonanno

We’ll be mailing out everything soon, so watch your mailboxes.

• • • • •

PermaRec update: Time capsules (like the 100-year-old one shown at right, which was recently unsealed here in NYC) are a very PermaRec-ish topic that I’ve never addressed — until now.

Also: When I launched the PermaRec blog in 2011, I figured it would be mostly — or even completely — about the Manhattan Trade School report cards that inspired the PermaRec project in the first place. So I never created tags or categories for the individual blog posts, because I thought the blog would have a very narrow focus. (Tagging every post as “Report Cards” didn’t seem worthwhile.)

As those of you who follow PermaRec are aware, that’s not how it worked out. The blog now covers storylines emerging from all sorts of found objects. With the site’s archive now totaling nearly 200 entries, I’ve often found myself wanting to refer back to an earlier post and realizing it would be much easier to do that if I had tagged each post by category. I assume some of you readers have thought the same thing.

So a few days ago I sat down and added tags to every entry. You can see the breakdown in the site’s right-hand sidebar. I hope this will make the site easier and more enjoyable to explore.

• • • • •

Baseball News: Check out this Dutch artist who carves baseball bats into super-cool spiral shapes (from my pal Friederike Paetzold). … The Giants normally wear this cap and this jersey for Sunday road games, but they didn’t go with either of those uni elements last night (as noted by Richard Paloma). … Meanwhile, Fox Sports analyst Harold Reynolds mentioned that the Cardinals’ uniforms looked unusually bright and white, especially compared to the previous night. Someone else in the booth — can’t recall who — explained that they had worn the off-white alternates that night. … Randal Grichuk of the Cardinals was using teammate Matt Adams’s glove last night (thanks, Phil). … After Kolten Wong’s walk-off home run last night, his teammates tore his jersey off him and ripped it in two, revealing a base-layer shirt that no doubt caused a bit of agita up at Nike HQ (from Seth Moorman).

NFL News: The Rams will be wearing their “Greatest Show on Turf” alternates tonight against the 49ers. … Funny to see Brett Favre wearing a logo-less Packers uni in this MicroTouch commercial (from Steve Schutt). … Here’s a helmet logo that’s sort of a Jets/Eagles mash-up (from Jeff Flynn).

College Football News: Not uni-related, but this investigative report on how the Tallahassee police have routinely looked the other way regarding criminal acts conducted by Florida State football players — and not just Jameis Winston — is essential reading. … Good piece on how the Maryland state flag has become a symbol of Terrapins football. … Mississippi State is outfitted by Adidas, but DB Justin Cox was wearing Under Armour compression shorts the other day (good spot by Connor Ginos). … Following up on a prior item: That guy on the UNC sideline wearing NFL jerseys is the team’s self-proclaimed morale officer. “He wears the jerseys of current NFL players who played at UNC,” explains Akshay Bhavsar. … Whoa, check out what Slippery Rock will be wearing for the Big Game at the Big House. Interestingly, at least one guy there is wearing Nike cleats. Additional info here (from Kevin Olivett).

Hockey News: “Looks like the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins are wearing their regular gold/black pant shells with their new late-’60s-inspired baby blue throwback jerseys,” says Rob Ullman. “I don’t know if they’re waiting on new shells or just hoping no one will notice, but it looks like hot garbage and ruins one of the best looks in hockey history.” … “Sunday’s Ticker mentions that Union College wore their garnet sweaters for Friday’s home opener,” writes Benjamin Engle. “They probably wore the garnet in celebration of raising the 2014 NCAA Hockey D1 championship banner. That was the jersey they wore in Philadelphia in May to win the championship. Incidentally, the history of Union wearing garnet is very interesting and dates back to the early 1800s.” … Remember how Chris Kreider of the Rangers was wearing a jersey with an outdated Reebok logo last Thursday? Same thing happened last night for another Ranger, Lee Stempniak (from Justin Foley). … From that same game: No photo, but Dan LaRose says Rangers goalie Cam Talbot was wearing last year’s Stadium Series mask.

Soccer News: Here’s one designer’s concept for Miami’s upcoming MLS team. “You have to admire the attention to detail he put into this,” says Cort McMurray. “I think the design needs some orange, but it’s still pretty impressive.” … Opposing teams don’t want to swap jerseys with Sierra Leone’s national team because of Ebola fears.

Grab Bag: Someone one there has documented and categorized every tattoo in the NBA (from Ben Fortney). … Pinktober jack-o-lanterns? Jeez (from Keith Goggin). … The cycling helmet manufacturer Louis Garneau is recalling 2000 helmets after they failed cold-weather impact tests.

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FYI: I’m heading out to Long Island today to visit my mom. I’ll be checking in on the site, but only sporadically. Everyone play nice while I’m off the grid, okay? Okay.

Sunday Morning Uni Watch

SMUW Splash 10-12

By Phil Hecken

There were a few new looks and a couple of surprises during week seven of the NCAA football season, including the neon glow of Purdue’s Boilermakers, who wore special uniforms and helmets for some sort of cancer awareness thingy. I guess we should be grateful it wasn’t pink, right? Although there was one game (Friday) where UNLV wore pink ribbons incorporated into their gray helmets, and those actually looked pretty good (all things considered).

Something like four teams wore chrome helmets yesterday, which just might be a record, if those sorts of records were kept.

As always a few teams broke out special looks, or wore uniforms (or combos) they’d never worn before, but all in all it was not that crazy of a week for the NCAA. And that’s always a good thing. But to catch you up to speed on all the new stuff, and stuff you may have missed, here’s my able assistant, Terry Duroncelet, Jr., with your…

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Sunday Morning Uni Watch
By Terry Duroncelet

I would like to dub this weekend “Sharp Cheddar Saturday”, because there was a fair deal of yellow/gold on the gridiron for week 7 of the 2014 college football season, including Missouri, who I’ll throw in there just because. Also, I was having trouble finding images to use for today, so this may seem a bit thinner on content than normal. I promise I will do better next week. Without further ado…

From Friday:

• Way to go, Stanford Black. Way. To. Go.

• New Mexico wore dark grey jerseys which sorta clashed with their silver helmets. And those pants need work, as well. I think in another world, these would’ve worked. Also, you think the Lobos could’ve waited another three weeks before dressing up for Halloween? Gotta love that field graphic/uniform interaction.

• UNLV not only wore all-grey, but they also wore pink ribbon helmets.

From Saturday:

• Minnesota wore their new gold helmets with maroon tops and gold pants on Saturday. The verdict? They wore those against Northwestern, who wore all-white. My nominee for the top 5 in the 5&1.

• Illinois wore their blue helmets for the first time against Wisconsin.

• Georgia Tech wore their throwback uniforms for the second time this season against the Duke Black Devils.

• Cincinnati wore white/white/red with red decals. I like.

• There’s something monumentally ironic about the wording of this tweet that I can’t quite place my finger on.

• Marshall hasn’t looked good at all at home, but the improved numbers are a step in the right direction.

Good going, Texas Tech. Although, he did score his first two career TDs in this game, so he may want to keep that jersey.

• Anyone know the story behind this? Anyone?

• I haven’t eaten at McDonald’s since March 1st, 2012. Iowa State’s uniforms from Saturday have only made me happier with my decision. Okay, they weren’t that bad. In fact, the game itself looked pretty decent. That being said…

• …They didn’t take advantage of the possible contrast frenzy, like Central Michigan did when they played NIU. On second thought, this wasn’t one of the better color-vs.-color matchups. I’m sorry, but I can take dark monochrome with white helmets seriously.

• Memphis wore these helmets against Houston. It sort of reminds me of the old Jacksonville Jaguars logo.

• NC State’s helmets over the weekend featured Tuffy. Me likey.

• Purdue wore this at home against Michigan State, for their Hammer Down Cancer campaign. I’m torn on this. On the one hand, I personally don’t feel you have to pull a “look-at-me” stunt every single time to garner attention and awareness for your cause. On the other hand, it is refreshing to see something other than the usual Pepto Bismol drunkening that we’ve come to associate with October and sports in recent years. Plus, I give Purdue props for pairing the new gear with their white uniform, which — if you remove the logo on the collar and pants — is entirely black and white. A simple canvas to make almost any extra color work.

• Arkansas wore throwback uniforms against Alabama in honor of the 1964 National Champions (a title shared by — oddly enough — Alabama). I liked just about everything about these unis, right down to the way the back numbers were positioned on the jerseys, due to no player names (best shot I could find). I even dug the font used for the T.V. numbers on the back of the helmets. Although, I will say that had it not been for the different shades of dark red and the lack of a helmet stripe, I might’ve mistaken this as an intra-squad game. Also, look at the “64” logo here. It reminds me of the logo for drummer Eric Moore.

• Georgia Southern wore grey uniforms against Idaho. That helmet is definitely a keeper.

• Currently, I’m having a difficult time finding pictures as I type this (for multiple games. Maybe Google hates my guts), but four teams wore chrome helmets on Saturday, including Baylor, Tulsa, Miami (OH) and Akron.

Michigan, Michigan, Michigan. You were already having a not-so-good season (save for last night’s win against Penn State), but the desecration of the home uniform from your game against Penn State personifies how this season has gone so far. If you look closely, you can see shiny stripes that are the same color as the jersey, which brings to mind past one-offs that Michigan has worn, to much better effect, obviously. I don’t even have an issue with the jerseys, but the pants couldn’t be more wrong if you called them red pants. For shame.

That’s it for this week. Tune in next week as… um… *whispers to self* crap, I’m not good at coming up with outros. Er, Johnny, play me out, see you all next week!

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Thanks, TJ. Good for you on the Mickey D’s thing. I, myself, have not eaten McDonalds since October 10, 2014, so I’m right there with ya. — catch you next Sunday.


Catherine 5 & 1 (animated) Catherine Ryan’s 5 & 1

Every Sunday, Catherine will give us the rundown of her best five and one worst uniform matchups from the College Football games played this week. Since it’s practically impossible to watch every game, you guys can help by sending your thoughts on “good” and “bad” matchups (and hopefully with photos from that game) by e-mailing her at

OK, here’s Catherine with this week’s 5 & 1.

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5. Texas vs. Oklahoma: I love watching these teams play as Texas is the only team I enjoy in all-white “road” unis.


4. Northwestern vs. Minnesota: Unlike Texas, Northwestern’s all-whites do nothing for me. However, Minny’s unis are enough to get them on this countdown.


3. Middle Tennessee vs. Marshall: Beautiful contrast in this game and I’m a huge fan of Marshall’s green unis.


2. Oklahoma State vs. Kansas: I think Oklahoma State looked gorgeous here. It took a little while for me to decide whether or not I liked Kansas’ here but ultimately I decided they looked pretty sharp.


1. Fresno State vs. UNLV: I’m a big fan of these Fresno State unis. UNLV went with the all-gray unis this week and they had a nice contrast on the field.


+1 Central Michigan vs. NIU: Received a couple of tips about this one and I have to agree: Wow, what an ugly game.


Thanks, Catherine! OK readers, how’d she do?


Duck Tracker

Each week, as we have done on Uni Watch for the past five seasons, we’ll be tracking the uniform combinations of the Oregon Ducks. Back for his third season is Tim E. O’Brien, who’ll show you what the Ducks wore in their last game, and add a few words of wisdom.

Young Tim actually had a wedding yesterday, and try hard he did to get the Ducks combo before the wedding, he wasn’t able to.

Since I’m not the graphic artist that Tim is, here’s what I’ll give you for today’s Duck Tracker (click to enlarge):

Ducks 10-11

Stormtrooper! White over white over white. Which I happen to love (much to the chagrin of many Uni Watch readers and CorCers). If you look at the graphic, it almost appears the numbers can look green or yellow, depending upon the light.

As the game played, however, it seemed as though the numbers and shoulder wings appeared only to be green. Still, it looked clean. And at least one of those colors is actually a school color, so bonus points for that.

The Ducks also wore their “Mach Speed” templates again — remember they have those in white and black only (or at least so far — the Nike engineers are far too busy trying to create a midnight green for the Eagles to devote any time to giving the Duckies a yellow, green, gray, pink or purple version of the Mach Speed Template).

It was a also a nice win for the Ducks (coming off their pinktober embarrassment against Arizona a week ago Thursday), and the contrast with UCLA was good too.

When he recovers from his hangover and creates the graphic, you can follow Tim over at the Duck Tracker and on twitter (@DuckTracker). And if you like pain, you can also follow his Northwestern (@NUniTracker) and Indiana (@Hoosier_Tracker) trackers if you so choose.


UWFFL Premier League logo
U.W.F.F.L. News

Premier League Games
By Rob Holecko

Hello again it’s time for Week 2 action in the UWFFL Premier League. Of the six games this weekend, only one features two 1-0 squads as the San Francisco Reign Fire and the Vancouver Seawolves face off in a key West Division tilt. These two teams met in August in San Francisco in what was supposed to be the ‘kickoff game’ of the Fall Season, but someone in the league office (ahem) screwed up and the results of that game were thrown out. That matchup has been rescheduled for Thanksgiving, however this week they face each other in their regularly schedule match on Vancouver’s home turf. (and this time we even have the teams in the proper uniforms!)

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UWFFL 10-12

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Head on over to to vote on all of today’s action, plus check out yesterday’s games, AAIFA action and a whole lot more! We will see you next week!


Uni Watch News Ticker:

Baseball News: It’s just like when Congress insisted on calling french fries “freedom fries” at the beginning of the Iraq War, only different: the KC Royals changed name of Baltimore Avenue to Royals Avenue for the ALCS (from TommyTheCPA). … “Thought this was interesting,” writes Jason Christie. “Eric Hosmer has a sort of fluorescent yellow tape wrap on his bat. Problem is, it’s awfully close to the ‘green screen’ color in the background and makes for some interesting bat shades.” … Here is the logo for the 2014 Nippon Series (thanks to Pacific Rim Correspondent Jeremy Brahm). … On last night’s Giants/Cardinals telecast, the pink background had the odd effect of changing the Cardinals’ bat pink (great grab by Erik Spoonmore). … Reader Marc Hammill was at an antique store near Toronto and saw this patch. “Not very Canadian” he notes. … It’s not quite Alex Rocklein’s Playoff Tracker (and no, not sure what happened to him), but the Diamond Uniform Database does have the uniforms worn this MLB postseason covered.

NFL News: Interesting New York Times article entitled What I Saw as an N.F.L. Ball Boy which describes how ball boys were playing their part to keep injured players on the field…and more (thanks to TommyTheCPA). … This was tweeted at me by @DJMFF9 from the Dickerson A Football Life piece: Possible memorial sticker for Elmendorf? Anyone know? … There was once a time when football trading cards had the logos airbrushed off the helmets, but I don’t think that is the case here (nice spot by Ryan Perkins).

College, CFL & High School Football News: John Hardin HS in Kentucky had a pink stripe on its helmets for Friday’s game (from Josh Claywell). … The South Christian Sailors honored their teacher, coach Rod VanDyke with decorated helmets. Submitter Joe Hollomon describes it is “unusual duct tape.”. An interesting unfortunate typo in the UK Football tweet is actually pretty funny (great spot by Casey Hart). Come to think of it, maybe that’s not a typo. … Check out these T-shirts from defunct CFL teams. Submitter Kenzie Horn says, “These are cool.”

Hockey News: Union College has a minor sweater change compared to last year. Sender Brian Klejsmyt notes “The yolks (sic) have a slightly different look (Thinner white line that goes completely around the black of the yolk for 2014/15 compared to 2013/2014).” This was also reported by Bobby Pinkham, who writes “Ever so slight change for Union College, who for some reason wore their garnet sweaters at home (Friday) night: Last Year vs. This Year.” … I’m not sure if hockey is just a “club” sport at Maryland, but no matter, these goalie pads may be the best in all college (or pros, for that matter) — sent in by Tommy Richardson. Crabcakes and Goalie Pads: That’s what Maryland Does. … The Flyers took their new “Classic” jerseys out for a spin last night. Here’s a small-ish writeup w/photo (via Mike Engle). … While at the antique store (mentioned in the Baseball ticker) Marc Hammill came across these table hockey pieces. He asks, “Can you tell me what team wore the uniform on the table hockey player?” I’m pretty sure that’s the California Seals — anyone know for sure?

Grab Bag: Boca Juniors sponsored a car in the 2005 Argentinian Top Gear V6 stock car series, with the car being painted in the club’s colors of blue and yellow (thanks to Graham Clayton).



Paul is running a Nolan Ryan raffle (for one of two autographed copies of The Nolan Ryan Beef & Barbecue Cookbook and a bunch of Nolan Ryan bobbleheads). Details are in the bolded link above.

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And that’s going to do it for this fine Sunday. Everyone enjoy the NFL games today (including that Eagles game tonight, where they’re in “Midnight Black” from shoulder to knee. Thanks Nike!

Big thanks to Catherine, Terry, Time and Rob. Back atcha next Saturday. You guys have a great week!

Follow me on Twitter @PhilHecken.


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“Moonshiners is fun, but also a little corny. There was a huge backlash when the Arkansas Travelers unveiled their redneck possum logo, and I wonder if Morgantowners might be similarly embarrassed by the ‘Shiners.”