In Which I Gain a New Secret Admirer

Trolls are a fact of life on the internet. And while trolls can be annoying, I can respect a good troll, the same way I can respect a good villain in a movie. In fact, there’s one troll — Joe “Big Cock” Johnson, who bedeviled this website for several years — who I respected so much that I ended up interviewing him and eventually even created a separate website for him.

Joe Johnson admittedly set a pretty high bar — you don’t come across a troll like that every day. (The Jeff doesn’t count — he’s a contrarian, not a troll.) Still, I’d like to think we can do better than the copy/paste hack who showed up here on the site yesterday morning. He fired his first salvo at 8:50am (for all of these, you can click to enlarge):

It went on like that for about another two screens’ worth. Pretty tedious, eh? Obviously, I deleted the comment and blocked the guy who posted it, but not before he added this:

That one scrolled on for another few screens’ worth. Now, it’s possible for juvenile name-calling to be effective, or even entertaining (“The Ballad of Jerry Curlan” comes to mind). But “Paul is gay,” times a thousand? Seriously? Come on, man — I’d like to think Uni Watch readers are more creative than that.

Based on his IP address, this little shit is apparently a student at UMass. Son, I hope you’re better at your classwork (or beer pong, or getting laid, or any of the other things college students are supposed to be doing) than you are at trolling, because you’re never gonna make it in this game with that lazy-ass approach.

I wouldn’t have bothered to mention any of this except that another Uni Watch troll emerged yesterday, and on a new platform to boot! Check it out:

That’s a screen shot from the home page of a new Twitter feed called Uni Watch Watch, which apparently launched yesterday afternoon. For now it’s mostly just retweets of my tweets, with a short put-down appended to each one — okay, so that’s kinda meh, but I still feel it has potential! Frankly, I wouldn’t have even known about it except that Phil and reader BSmile both spotted it yesterday and brought it to my attention. (Unfortunately, Phil also “reported” it to the Twitter authorities, so it’s possible that this troll account will be deleted by the time you read this, but I’ll try to deal with that as we go along. Here, see if this link to the troll account still works. If it doesn’t, blame Phil!)

Let’s take a closer look at Uni Watch Watch:

The “Uni Watch Watch” handle: I like it! The double-“Watch” effect works nicely, and the troll gets bonus points for knowing that “Uni Watch” is two words, both capped, with a space in between (which is more than I can say for, ahem, lots of you non-trolls out there). On the standard Uni Watch spectrum of Good to Stupid, I’d say this handle is very, very, Good.

The troll’s name: “Luke Paulass”? Dude, you just undid all the good work you’d done with the handle. “Paul is gay” looks like literature compared to this. Should’ve just stuck with “Uni Watch Watch.” Very, very Stupid. Hey, he just changed it from “Luke Paulass” (awful) to “Watchy McWatcherson” (not great but definitely less cringe-inducing)! I like this — a troll who takes advice. Still pretty Stupid, but he’s getting there.

The avatar: Looks like he just used a stock illustration for the little guy with the magnifying glass (it’s clearly watermarked). Still, the idea of his avatar looking at my avatar is pretty clever — a good visual representation of “Uni Watch Watch.” I like! Good.

The little statement of purpose: This wasn’t originally part of the guy’s page, but then he added it a few hours after creating the account. It’s a pretty straightforward manifesto: “The only thing worse than watching minor changes to sports uniforms is watching the tweets from the guy who watches the changes to sports uniforms.” I like that — you get in, you say your piece, you get out. Good.

The header design: The baseball diamond and basketball net feel pretty random, but whatever. The real issue is that he used green, my favorite color. Come on, dude — if you want to fuck with my head, you know which color to use! Seriously, hello!! Stupid.

The tweets: Normally, I’d embed a few of the tweets here for you to see. But again, it’s possible that the troll account may have been taken down by the time you read this, so I’ve taken screen shots of the first five tweets and gathered them into a Flickr set (if you can’t see the slideshow below, click here):


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As you can see, the best tweet was the first one. After that, he just came up with weak put-downs (“Don’t care” and “So what?!”) and tacked them onto my tweets — pretty uninspired. Also, most of my tweets include photos, but those photos are missing from his retweets of those tweets, which kinda ruins the effect. Like, if you’re gonna critique what I’m doing, at least show the full thing I’m doing and then critique it. I feel like this account has some decent troll potential, but he’s gonna have to try harder. Hey, it’s still early days, but for now it’s pretty Stupid.

All in all, I’d say Big Cock Johnson’s place in the Uni Watch pantheon remains secure. But a fella can dream, can’t he? If the Uni Watch Watch account hasn’t been taken down yet, I urge everyone to follow it, if only to give the troll some incentive to work on his craft. Meanwhile, you can track the account here:


A final thought: I’m sure some of you are thinking, “This is exactly why I don’t bother with Twitter.” And you’re right! That’s actually one of my favorite things about Uni Watch Watch — I feel like it’s trolling Twitter as much as it’s trolling me, and that’s a good thing.

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Uni-centric movie review: Frequent Uni Watch commenter BvK1126 checked in with the following in yesterday’s comments:

Last night I went to a screening of the documentary Red Army, which is about the Soviet Union’s domination of the sport of ice hockey for the better part of four decades. It’s an engrossing film, especially for anyone who remembers those seemingly unstoppable Soviet Red Army and national teams from the ’70s and ’80s.

It’s also a feast for a Uni Watcher’s eyes, with lots of footage and photos of various versions of what may be the most feared uniform in sports history. One of the most intriguing to me was this jersey, which features two very distinct shades of red. (The brighter shade looks almost highlighter pink in the film footage.)

A guy in the front row of the screening came decked out for the occasion in a jersey that looked like this, except that the lettering on the back was in Cyrillic and the letters and numbers were screened on in white instead of black. Unfortunately, I wasn’t quite close enough to get a decent shot of him in the dim lighting.

Sounds good, right? If you live in New York, Red Army is currently playing at the AMC Empire 25 in Times Square; it’s due to open in other cities in late January. Here’s the trailer:

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Roll your own: Reader Scott Novosel spent a good chunk of yesterday obsessing over (and peppering me with emails about) an admirably esoteric uniform detail: college hoops players who roll up their shorts’ waistbands in order to make the shorts a bit shorter. He spotted players from three different teams doing this yesterday — South Carolina, Manhattan, and Utah (click to enlarge):

The interesting thing about this, as Scott noted several times during the course of the day, is that those are all Under Armour schools, which led Scott to speculate, “I wonder if UA is making the shorts too lengthy.”

Speaking of college hoops: I have a new ESPN column today — a follow-up to last week’s season preview.

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Baseball News: The Angels have been wearing black belts and black shoes with their road grays, but Matt Shoemaker, pitching in Japan as part of the MLB tour, wore a red belt and red shoes with his road grays the other day. A team insider tells me that’s a change that’s being made for 2015. … “It seems the Giants and A’s donate their old uniforms to the San Quentin prison team, which are worn when San Quentin plays other prison teams, as well as minor league and semi-pro teams,” says Don Gray. “Of particular interest is this nifty sleeve patch.” … The Mets have once again moved in their rightfield fence. There’s a photo gallery here. … Oooh, look at this awesome piece of championship jewelry that the 1912 Red Sox got (from BSmile and Jonathan Daniel. … The Giants have a new championship logo, which is stylistically similar to the logos they used to mark their championships in 2010 and 2012. In case you’re wondering, they didn’t wear those logos as sleeve patches in the years following their titles; instead they wore this much more generic patch design in 2011 and then this very similar generic patch design in 2013. Remains to be seen what they’ll do next season, but the pattern appears to have been set.

NFL News: Reprinted from yesterday’s comments: Titans CEO Tommy Smith said on a radio show that we’ve probably seen the last of the light-blue jerseys. I asked a team spokesman if this means they’re redesignating the navys as their primary jersey or if they’ve getting an overhaul — no response. I’ll keep poking around to see what I can find out. … Stan Capp was watching Monday Night Football at a hotel in Mexico, which had several of these handmade-looking NFL logo banners on display. … “The Giants still get their duffles from Gerry Cosby in New York, which has been supplying the team for well over 50 years,” says Mark Gonillo. “They no longer have NFL logo rights, hence the generic ‘Football Giants’ stencil. It’s refreshing a team staying loyal to a longtime supplier.”

College Football News: Here’s a gallery of Lafayette football unis through the years (thanks, Phil). … When UNC and Duke play each other tomorrow night, they’ll both be wearing black helmets — even though black isn’t actually a school color for either team. … Nicholls State has been granted permission to wear white at home for tomorrow’s game against Southeastern Louisiana (from Chris Mycoskie). … UGA coach Mark Richt says the team might wear black at some point this season (thanks, Phil). … USC and UCLA will once again go color-vs.-color when they face off at the Rose Bowl (thanks, Phil). … “I was downloading the Mountain West Network app on my phone and noticed they have Derek Carr on their cover with a WAC patch instead of a MW patch,” says Ramon M. … Here’s Maryland’s latest costume.

Hockey News: The Hockey News has been sold from one media conglomerate to another. … “While looking through the Google newspaper archives, I found this 1945 article about some of the innovations made by the original Maple Leaf Gardens superintendent, Doug Morris,” says Will Scheibler. “One innovation was the penalty clocks, so I looked and found this 1940s photo tat shows the clocks, and this 1965 close-up. In that last photo, Eddie Shack of the Leafs — No. 23 — is serving a penalty.” … The anthem singer at last night’s Ducks/Flames game wore a jersey with a musical note instead of a TV number on the sleeve — not bad! Is this a standard thing for the Flames’ anthem singers? (Thanks, Phil.) … Previously unnoted change for this season: The Bruins’ helmet numbers have changed from black to gold (thanks, Phil).

Basketball News: Ogie Menor, who plays for a team in the Philippines called the Blackwater Elite, has arguably the greatest haircut of any athlete ever. But what animal is that supposed to be — a lizard? Something else? In any case, my compliments to the chef. … Here’s an absolutely spectacular interactive site that chronicles more than a century’s worth of Iowa basketball history. Don’t miss (big thanks to Brad Eenhuis). … Love this old photo of Senate and House pages dressed up in basketball togs (thanks, Phil).

Grab Bag: This interview with Under Armour founder Kevin Plank includes an explanation for why he spelled “Armour” with a “u”: “I was skeptical at the time about whether this whole Internet thing would stick. So I thought the phone number 888-4ARMOUR was much more compelling than 888-44ARMOR. I wish there was a little more science or an entire marketing study behind it, but it was that simple” (from Yusuke Toyoda). … Here’s a look at the evolution of the Virgin logo (thanks, Brinke). … Last Sunday’s New York Times Magazine had a long list of innovations and technologies that either failed or fell out of favor. Of interest to us here is the entry on decorative German military helmets. … Fox Footy is asking fans to vote on which AFL team has the best clash jumper. “Only problem I see on the list is that Collingwood’s main jumper is featured, rather than their clash.” … A “bobblehead hall of fame” is hoping to open in Milwaukee in 2016, and look, there’s Brinke ordering his plane ticket already! … If you’re going to go color-vs.-color, you may as well use the greatest colors available! Those are members of the Australian and South African cricket teams, which are currently playing a one-day international series in Australia (from Graham Clayton).

A Visit to the Pro Football Hall of Fame

[Editor’s Note: Today we have a guest entry from Tom Speed, who made some great uni-related observations during a recent visit to the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He emailed his entry to me as a PDF, with all the photos already laid out, so I’m simply going to run it as he presented it. You can click on each “page” to enlarge. — PL]

By Tom Speed


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Paul here. Big thanks to Tom for his keen eye, and for formatting everything in way that made things very easy me.

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Click to enlarge

Collector’s Corner

By Brinke Guthrie

This 1960s NFL bedspread from JC Penny is very similar to a cool item I once had. It was a lightweight NFL hooded rain poncho with reflective aluminum on the inside to keep you warm, and it had these exact logos on it. Sure wish I could see one of those again — this is probably as close as I get.

Here are the rest of this week’s picks:

• From reader Jeff Flynn, a rather curious-looking 1960s WABC-NY Jets bottle opener that looks like an old helmet bank.

This 1960s NHL Pee-Wee Hockey game looks to be in pretty decent shape, with all Canadiens and Maple Leafs figures included.

• I love the bicentennial look to this 1976 Yankees media guide.

Baseball toy figures from the 1960s! They cost exactly 15 cents back in the day, still marked with their original price.

• We’ve seen this All-Pro Helmet Kit before — you get 16 helmets, but the box alone is worth it.

• Pay one price, get two 1970s pro league stickers — NFL and MLB — from Gatorade.

• Here’s a nice 1970s San Francisco 49ers single-bar helmet plaque.

• The news that Adidas is now back in the NFL as an official shoe/glove sponsor reminded me that arch-rival Puma also held an NFL license. I think they got in via an existing Logo Athletic license or something — remember how they just covered up the Logo Athletic mark with the Puma logo? All of which is a roundabout way of bringing up this very nice Cleveland Browns varsity jacket, made by Puma.

•Any Raiders fans left out there? If so, you might want this 1970s vintage poster, featuring a quarterback who’s wearing No. 12 but who definitely isn’t Kenny Stabler.

• And we wrap up this week with a 1960s New York Giants charm bracelet from Coca Cola.

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FAST Corp. reminder: In case you missed it yesterday, I recently paid a visit to FAST Corp. (the acronym is short of “Fiberglass Animals, Shapes, and Trademarks”), the company that makes giant fiberglass cows, ice cream cones, ears of corn, Bob’s Big Boy statues, and so on. My article about that visit is up now on the design website re:Form, and I don’t mind saying I think it turned out pretty well. Check it out here.

PermaRec update: A girl whose student record described her as “insolent,” “impudent,” and “a ringleader” is the subject of the latest entry on Permanent Record.

• • • • •

Uni Watch News Ticker

By Garrett McGrath

NFL News: Titan Quentin Groves raised his jersey after a sack during last night’s game against the Steelers, exposing his love for his hometown of Greenville, Mississippi (from Phil). … Another Titan, Jurrell Casey, was exposing his piggy bank slot on the game’s final play (screen shot by Joseph Gerard). … Meanwhile, Le’Veon Bell of the Steelers suffered a torn jersey (screen shot by Matt Barnett). … A Washington Football Team fan set fire to his team merchandise after latest loss (from Tommy Turner). … “Marques Colston of the Saints has been wearing Nike Tiempo soccer cleats,” says Wesley Eustis. … “My boss brought in his Cleveland Browns toaster – it is suppose to say Browns on the bagel afterwards,” says Jason Johnson.

College and High School Football News: On Thursday Duke will be wearing all black against UNC. … Eastern Washington will be wearing all white on Friday. They want fans to give this white uni its own name, and Phil had a good suggestion. … FSU will be wearing their “unconquered” uniform this weekend. … The Times-Picayune has another installment of its best helmet in Louisiana poll, this one for “pro-style” helmet designs. It features two Rams knockoffs (from Joel Manuel). … Did you know Toledo is known as the “Glass City”? You will after seeing Toledo’s new uniforms for tomorrow’s game against Bowling Green.

NBA News: If the Bucks get a new arena, it might look like this. “I don’t know why the windows and ‘natural light’ are such a big thing when 95 percent of Bucks home games will be at night,” says Mike Chamernik.

Soccer News: From yesterday’s ticker: Mike Aronson noticed that MLS had dropped the American/Canadian flags from the designs. “The league has decided to place the league logo on both sleeves of the jersey like all the other major professional soccer leagues,” says Justin Garton. … To celebrate their 101st anniversary this past weekend, Colombian side Independiente Medellin unfurled a giant banner at the Estadio Atanasio Girardot (from Yusuke Toyoda). … Newcastle will not advertise their payday loan sponsor, Wonga, on children’s replica jerseys starting in 2016 (from Yusuke Toyoda). … This is pretty good: home and away kits for each state and Washington, D.C. (thanks, Phil).

Grab Bag: Adding magnets to football helmets could reduce the risk of concussions, new research suggests (from Drew Mastin). … Nutrition bar maker Clif Bar has dropped its sponsorship of a number of “extreme” athletes due to concerns over what it views as unreasonably dangerous pursuits (from Patrick O’Neill). … An TV news anchorman from Australia has worn the same suit on TV for almost a year (thanks, Paul). … The dismantling of Candlestick Park in San Francisco has begun (thanks, Brinke). … “Aussie Rules football club Melbourne Demons released their 2015 alternate jumpers, including a new white clash and special red away guernsey, both featuring the club monogram,” reports Leo Strawn Jr. … Students at BYU want the school to lift its longstanding ban on beards.

Monday Morning Uni Watch

Fun game yesterday at Lambeau, as the Packers wore their Acme Packers throwbacks against the Eagles. I know some of you folks don’t like this design, and some other folks liked it better with the brown helmet instead of the yellow helmet, but I think it’s a great look. They even used old-timey graphics for the roster card at Lambeau. Looks like they didn’t have throwback sideline capes, however. And they had at least three different colors of hand-warmers out there — green, blue, and white.

Meanwhile, here’s an overlooked uni-notable development from that game: Everyone’s been worked up over the color-matching snafu regarding the Eagles green jerseys, but their green pants have also been MIA all season long — until yesterday. Hey, it only took until Week 12 — good work, Nike!

In other developments from around the league yesterday:

• The Cardinals went full-bloodclot.

• The Giants once again wore their white alternate pants.

• Very good-looking game in Kansas City, as the Chiefs wore their regular home uni and the Seahawks went white over blue. That’s Seattle’s best look by far — even the neon-green accents can’t ruin it. Pair it up with KC’s home look and you have a game that’s very easy on the eyes.

• Speaking of the Seahawks, offensive lineman Russell Okung’s nameplate was coming loose.

• The latest player to wear G.I. Joevember hosiery: Chargers wideout Keenan Allen.

• Here’s something that I think used to be more common but you don’t see it as much these days: 49ers running back Frank Gore had a loop of tape around his waist.

• I don’t know why back judge Scott Helverson keeps wearing a jersey with the old type font, but it has become a consistent thing with him. Do officials have lucky jerseys?

• I don’t know why this never occurred to me before, but Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton’s red hair meshes perfectly with the team’s color scheme. There should be a rule — not just in the NFL but across all sports — that carrot-tops can only play for orange-clad teams.

• For the second consecutive week, not a single home team wore white.

• Finally, there’s this: An Austrian TV station called Puls4 has been broadcasting NFL games in Austria. And if you think G.I. Joevember is big over here, look what the Puls4 broadcasters were wearing yesterday. “They explained that they wear the suits as a salute to Austrian armed forces as well as firefighters, the Red Cross, mountain rescue teams, and so on,” says reader Stefan Schubert.

(My thanks to call contributors, including Alex Goldman, Mark Heggen, Rob Holecko, Don Schauf, and of course Phil.)

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IMPORTANT — membership update: Last week I announced that I might pull the plug on the Uni Watch membership program if the pace of enrollments doesn’t pick up. That spurred a bunch of you into action, as we got a big spurt of new orders (thank you!). It remains to be seen whether this was a last gasp or a renewal of momentum for the project, but for now the membership program is off of life support, although it’s still in the ICU.

One thing I hadn’t anticipated is that bunch of you responded to my announcement by saying, “I’d happily sign up right now, but the design I want includes purple and you only allow purple orders Purple Amnesty Day, which is in May. Will you bend a little on that rule, so I can sign up before you kill the whole membership program?”

I initially responded to all of these requests by saying, “No. Purple Amnesty Day is just that — one day, and that day is May 17, the end.” But after thinking a bit more about it, I’ve concluded that it was unfair to yell, “Last call!” to everyone else without including purple partisans. So I’ve decided that we’ll have a Purple Amnesty Bonus Day, which will take place exactly six months after the usual date.

Which happens to be today.

So if you want a purple-inclusive design, today is the day to order it. I’ll accept such orders until midnight Pacific Time tonight. (And of course non-purple orders are also welcome.)

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What about non-Uni Watch membership cards? I’ve been thinking a bit lately about membership cards as a cultural phenomenon. Once upon a time, the term “card-carrying member of [whatever]” was a common phrase (it even became an issue in the 1988 presidential election), but what do physical membership cards mean in an increasingly digital world?

It’s no accident that I gave Uni Watch its own membership card program, because I love membership cards and have quite a few of them (including the one shown above, which you can click to enlarge). For whatever reason, it had never occurred to me until a few days ago to seek out vintage membership cards, but I see there are quite a few of them available on eBay and Etsy. (Note to self: Those vintage cards would be good Permanent Record fodder.)

I’m thinking I may want to write about this, so I’m curious about what sorts of membership cards people currently have. I’m not talking about insurance cards or Social Security cards here (and despite American Express’s “Membership has its privileges” campaign, I’d say credit cards don’t qualify either) — I’m talking about membership cards, cards that identify your status within an exclusive club. If you have any that you’re willing to share, please send scans or photos my way. Thanks.

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Pinktober bleeds into November: My doctor’s office is right around the corner from the place where I donate blood every two months. So last Friday I decided to go for a daily double: blood donation followed by a flu shot. Or to put it another way, one needle to take some stuff out of me and then another needle to put some stuff into me. (And yes, it’s fine to do both of those on the same day, in either order — I checked.)

Anyway: After they take my blood, they always put a gauze pad over the needle site and secure it in place with some of that rubberized bandage wrap. The wrap comes in several colors, and I always ask for green. This time, however, I was told that only one design was available:

Sigh. So I had no choice but to become part of the pinkwashing phenomenon. Then I walked around the corner to my doctor’s office, where I was assigned to a nurse who was going to give me the flu shot. She told me to roll up my sleeve, and I braced myself for what I knew was about to happen. “Oh,” she said when she saw the bandage, “pink ribbons! Good for you!!” Double-sigh.

After giving me the flu shot, she put a zebra-patterned Band-Aid over the injection spot. Phew.

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When I was in Wisconsin last month, I paid a visit to FAST Corp. (the acronym is short of “Fiberglass Animals, Shapes, and Trademarks”), the company that makes giant fiberglass cows, ice cream cones, ears of corn, Bob’s Big Boy statues, and so on. My article about that visit is up now on the design website re:Form — I really like how it turned out, and I think you will too. Check it out here.

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Baseball News: Here’s one observer’s fairly detailed take on the new Twins home uniform (from Michael Haas).

College and High School Football News: New helmet for Lehigh. … Check this out: a fighter pilot from the Vietnam War with the Texas A&M logo on his helmet (from Matt Steinmetz). … Blackout unis tomorrow night for Ohio. Here’s a video. … A Virginia county has decided not to use impact sensors in its football team’s helmets, despite repeated requests from parents (from Tommy Turner). … It was cold in Knoxville on Saturday, so Tennessee’s Smokey mascot bundled up (from Adam Spangler).

Hockey News: Several players on the Penguins are opposed to the use of advertising patches on jerseys (from Jerry Wolper). … Blackhawks C Andrew Shaw suffered a torn jersey during a fight yesterday (from Jen Hayden and Ben Michael). . Mike Slavonic notes that Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin of the Penguins have altered the scoop-hem on their third jerseys — their hems are straight. … Holy moly, check out this shot of former Canadiens great Guy LaPointe playing on the Habs softball team!

NBA News: GQ really likes the new Xmas jerseys (from Andrew Cosentino). … Cross-dressing alert! Check out this mid-1990s shot of Junior Griffey in a SuperSonics T-shirt (from Seth Shaw).

College Hoops News: For reasons that aren’t clear, at least to me, the “W” on Mercer G Jordan Strawberry’s NOB is smaller than all the other letters (from Phil and Rob Montoya).

Soccer News: This is pretty cool: a soccer-themed office, complete with Astroturf (big thanks to my longtime pal Rob Walker). … “There have been two jersey unveilings so far for the 2015 MLS kits, and it seems that the American/Canadian flags have been dropped from the designs, which I find very disappointing,” says Mike Aronson. “Do you know why this has been done?” Nope. Anyone else..? … The Jaguars logo from last weekend’s NFL game was still visible on the Wembley pitch during Saturday’s England/Slovenia Euro 2016 qualifying match (from Yusuke Toyoda). … Also from Yusuke: Wales debuted its yellow away kit and Northern Ireland did likewise with its green and white home kit.

Grab Bag: “Important new regulations regarding approved roller derby jersey numeral styles are summarized in this handy graphic,” reports the Rev. Nørb.. … Great article, with really cool graphics, on an old college sports logo designer (big thanks to Susan Freeman). … A professional video game player (yes, that’s a thing) named Matt Haag is being sponsored by Red Bull. … News flash: Nike and Adidas have a bit of a rivalry (from Brinke). … “Sports Logos” was the Final Jeopardy category on Nov. 7. This was the answer. Who knows the question? (Screen shot by Chris Flinn.) … The Canberra Captials — that’s an Australian women’s basketball team — normally dress like this, but they wore camouflage for Remembrance Day. Interesting to see that their jerseys are untucked (from Joel Berry).

Sunday Morning Uni Watch

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By Phil Hecken

There were a few costumes and special helmets yesterday, but for the most part Week 12 of the College Football season featured somewhat of a return to normalcy for most teams. Of course, the new Oregon of the football world, Texas Tech, was the outlier, breaking out yet another new uniform superhero costume clown suit for its game against (normally clad) Oklahoma yesterday.

By my count, this was at least the team’s eighth different combo this year (and several of them have been, or should be, “one-offs”). We’ll get to those in a bit. But the uniform they broke out yesterday was for “Senior Day.” For a team named the “Red Raiders” (but who haven’t worn a red top since 2012), they kinda-sorta broke out red tops. Well, they were half-red anyway (click on any images to enlarge):

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As you can see — the top half of the jerseys were red, with a very quick (but still noticeable) fade to black. The helmets were new, and they were red shoes.

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As mentioned, TT has worn a bunch of combos already this year, but never a red top — even though they’ve donned uniforms in black, gray, white, black and white, throwbacks, something called “Hombre,” and another incarnation of “Lone Star Pride.” IMHO, the throwbacks were the only really good uni they’ve worn all year.

If yesterday’s uniform looks “familiar,” — it’s because they’ve worn the “hombre” version of it earlier this year. And that one didn’t look too bad — but yesterday’s red/black getup was probably the worst uniform they’ve put on this year.

Sometimes uniforms don’t look as bad on the field as they do in the “hype” photos:

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Unfortunately, these did not.

But at least it was in school colors — in the college game this year, that’s still saying something. And I’m sure it was a hit with the recruitable 17-year-olds who are really the target audience for this sort of costume.

OK, here’s Terry Duroncelet, Jr., my right hand man on Sundays, with your…

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Sunday Morning Uni Watch
By Terry Duroncelet

Yeah, don’t let me find you, NYT.

From Thursday:

• I don’t think we’ve seen East Carolina wear all-white before. Cincinnati played along by wearing all-black, of course.

From Saturday:

• My “wordy” writeups for individual games are normally reserved for the evening games, but there are a number of notable bits from the Minnesota/tOSU game. First off, Minnesota wore gold helmets and jerseys (yeah, yeah, snow game and jokes, get ‘em out of your system now) with white pants against Ohio State. I actually thought it was kinda nice, but I would reserve that look for games against teams that are guaranteed to wear dark-colored pants, because as far as matchups go, this was kinda bothersome. Also, at least one Gopher had a reason to show his pearly whites. B1G coaches don’t get more B1G than this. One more thing of mention was that the entire team wore epilepsy awareness neck bumpers.

• But regardless of what you thought about the contrast in that game, at least this didn’t happen. That’s Florida for ya.

• Illinois wore S&S decals for Military Appreciation Day against Iowa.

• Arkansas State got in on the act as well.

• Have I ever mentioned to you guys that (apart from the apparent lack of light blue in the home unis) I LOVE Tulane’s colors? Well, they wore a really spiffy chrome green facemask yesterday for Homecoming. I welcome this change for next year! I don’t know why, but white helmets with white facemasks have always looked… what’s the word I’m looking for? Cakey? Chalky? Like, you know that feeling when the icing on a cake is too thick, or if something is too chalky? Or just the whole white-washed thing? That’s what I get from super-white helmets, so the green facemask is a refreshing sight.

• I don’t talk about Charlotte enough, which is a shame because I actually like their number font (those pits are brutal, though). Well anyway, they wore all-black for the first time yesterday.

• You think this will take the attention off of Kim’s cover shot for the time being?

• Oh come on, just buy a pair of these and be done with it already.

• Marshall wore ’75’ on their helmets to commemorate the 75 lives lost in the plane crash form 1970.

• If only TCU were playing against a school called “California Atheist University”…

• From Coleman Mullins: “Rice has their play-calling backups wear gold pennies for easy spotting…” Interesting, because you would think the gold (especially with a white uni) wouldn’t stand out as red would.

• BYU played in their (seemingly) annual blackout game last night.

• Louisiana-Monroe wore these helmets last night.

• Someone on the Michigan State sideline wore some old gear from the 100th Rose Bowl last night.

• Miami wore orange/grey/grey… or rather, juice/smoke/smoke. One thing comes to mind

• Whenever Texas makes a change to their uniforms, be it full-time, or a one-off, it’s always subtle. That was the case last night against Oklahoma State when they wore metallic decals, which I really dig, in one part because I have a thing for metallic decals done right, and in another because these decals actually look burnt orange, instead of a somewhat-light brown as per usual. Credit to Chris Perrenot for those pics.

. . .

Thanks, TJ!

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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 UW5and1@gmail.com.

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

. . .

5. Notre Dame vs. Northwestern: Classic unis from Notre Dame mixed with a good looking set from Northwestern. Wildcats get the upset in South Bend.

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4. Nebraska vs. Wisconsin: This looked like a scrimmage but wow, was it gorgeous.

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3. Texas vs. Oklahoma State: Oklahoma State went nontraditional this week but I thought this match-up was fantastic.

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2. Iowa vs. Illinois: Everyone knows by now that I have a weak spot for colored pants on the road. You’ll see that is a trend

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1. Virginia Tech vs. Duke: I thought this was the best looking match-up of the week. I love VT in the colored pants on the road.

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+1 CMU vs. Miami Ohio: I picked a photo that showed just how bad this game looked on TV.

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Thanks, Catherine! Not quite sure I’d agree with a BFBS Duke team at the “best” spot, but it’s hard to argue with the “bad” one.

OK readers, how’d she do?

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UWFFL banner

MIN_DET_poster_16Nov

Premier League Games
By Rob Holecko

It’s time for a classic rivalry in the UWFFL’s Premier League this week…

The top two teams in the Central Division go head-to-head today as the defending champion Minnesota Mustangs show off their new all-white duds as they face their bitter rivals, the Detroit Demons. (I guess since the Mustang on the Demons’ Gameday Program cover is wearing the number “1/4″ that must make him a quarter-horse, huh? Haha ha, uh… hmmm.)

Anyway, this week the Demons are wearing throwbacks that harken back to their inaugural 1932 campaign when they competed as the Kalamazoo Malefic in the All-American Indoor Football Association. In 1938 the Malefic moved to Detroit and converted to outdoor football and became the Demons and, along with two other AAIFA franchises joined with five teams from the Indiana Valley Football League and two independent teams (from Dubuque, Iowa and Milwaukee, Wisconsin) and founded the American Midwest Continental Football League, which later expanded to have as many as 22 teams across the country and shortened it’s name to simply the Continental Football League. The bitter Minnesota-Detroit rivalry began in 1963 when the expansion Minnesota Mustangs joined the Continental League and lasted until that league’s demise in 1979, which saw the Demons become an independent team, while the assets of the Mustangs were sold to a group in the Susquehanna River Valley of Eastern Pennsylvania, where they competed (off and on) in the Eastern Pennsylvania Football League (a regional minor league) against such stalwarts as the Hershey Kit Kats, the Reading Railroads, the Kutztown State Bears and the Susquehanna Sidewinders.

In 1997, the Demons became one of the founding members of the TBFFL, and in 1999, the Mustangs merged with the Sidewinders and moved to Jacksonville, Florida, where they too joined the TBFFL and competed as the Jacksonville Mustangs. After two seasons of low attendance in Jacksonville they relocated back to Minnesota, and this great rivalry came full circle. With last year’s relegation of the Chicago Cyclones, Minnesota’s other great rival, to the Division II Central League, the Demons and the Mustangs truly standalone as the UWFFL version of the Green Bay Packers and the Chicago Bears, as far as depth of historic rivalry goes.

Whether you prefer the relatively unchanged classic look of the Mustangs in their traditional red and blue, or the intimidating and bold stylings of the Demons in the black, red and white, that has seen many different iterations through the years, this is definitely a matchup of contrasts. They are meeting for the 49th time, and both teams have identical 23-23-2 head-to-head marks, so this one is for bragging rights.

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Matchup MIN-DET for Sunday

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pollcode.com free polls

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Come to our website and vote on the rest of the UWFFL action today in the Premier League as well as exciting La Lega International action, at www.uwfantasyfootballleague.com. If you’d like to try your hand at creating a team to compete in the UWFFL next year, check out our Google+ community for prospective expansion teams. Thanks a bunch and we’ll see you next week.

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Uni Watch News Ticker:

Baseball News: “Is the guy on the left wearing some kind of giant jersey blanket because he’s icing his arm?” asks Brady Phelps. “I’m confused.” … Great 1910 shot of the Boston Red Sox, and check out the sweater on the trainer! (via Bruce Menard). … “I would toast Uni Watch with every one of these” says Douglas Ford.

NFL News: In case you missed it, adidas and the NFL reached a deal that would allow players who endorse the brand to freely wear cleats and gloves using the logo (thanks to TommyTheCPA). … “A&F getting down with the NFL,” writes Douglas Ford. “That ’53 colts looks good. I can barely see that yellow font for the Steelers, however.” Also from Douglas: “This Eagles sweatshirt from ’88 is gorgeous. Maybe all the green got used up in the late 80’s that’s why there is a shortage now? This “RockEy Blier” jacket has some issues…unless you like bonus Es!” And finally, Doug asks “I wonder if Atlanta Fans will get an awesome gimme cap when they sign on for their PSL?” … Whoh — check out this crazy helmet/facemask worn 64 years ago, yesterday (from Bruce Menard). … “As Katy perry might sing,” intones Douglas Ford, “THIS HELMET’S ON FIRE!!!” Here’s an ultra rare authentic WFL Chicago Fire Football Helmet. … Still more from Douglas: Great pic of KING rocking the 9. … Even though the auction is over, these St. Louis NFL “Hickock” glasses are still beauts (Douglas again). … “This Dartmouth statue makes the Redskins seem ‘PC’,” (more from Douglas). … Saturday Night Live did a “concussion sketch” last night, and the helmets they came up with were pretty funny.

College & High School Football News: Interesting story on rivalry trophies (thanks, Paul). … Reader Christopher LaHaye saw one of his freshman fobtball players wearing Sperry cleats on the sidelines during Marksville (LA) High’s playoff game. He adds, “Needless to say he didn’t get into the game.”

NBA News: The Golden State Warriors will be wearing their black slate sleeved jerseys every night. … “Seeing 76ers spelled out as SEVENTY-SIXERS is a new one on me,” writes Douglas Ford about this 1971 Sports Illustrated Classic poster.

Hockey News: Some good Harold Ballard stuff from Will Scheibler: Picture of Harold Ballard wearing a jacket that is half Toronto Maple Leafs and half Hamilton Tiger-Cats (at time of photo he was former owner of Tiger-Cats). King Clancy (in photo above with Ballard) of Leafs fame wearing a Ti-Cats jersey on ice, and Harold Ballard March 29, 1984, on the ice suited up in hockey gear. … Chris Mizzoni has posted some more great wartime hockey artwork from John Collins if the Montreal Gazette. … Here’s a closeup look at those crazy Cincy Cyclones R2D2 unis worn last night (thanks to Griffin Ward and Jeff Tasca respectively). … “Never mind the Yankees, Mets or other teams with double layered letter logos, here’s one that is more than a bit cluttered with four letters. The YMCA hockey team of Stratford, Ontario; 1907 City League champions and winners of the Makins Cup (from Library and Archives Canada),” says Will Scheibler). … Penguins wore camo jerseys for warmups last night.

Soccer News: According to Todd Gaines, this urinal is located at Toyota Field, in San Antonio. According to the guy who took the pic, “One of best things about Toyota are the urinal targets.”

College Hoops News: Not a monumental change, but Missouri State University switched from Nike to Adidas this season, who changed the Bears’ jerseys from a curvy/rounded font to a block-letter styling (thanks to Nolan Epstein). … Whoops: bit of a spelling problem for the St. Louis UniversTIy banner which was raised last night (h/t Loren Lirely).

Grab Bag: Do you want to buy a pair of “MADBUM” underwear for yourself or your significant other? Now you can (from Brinke, with the qualifier that “A portion of all sales will go to the BRYAN STOW FUND.”). … “As a kid growing up as a KISS fan, I used to love how they would have a new costume for each tour,” writes Blue Burke. “My favorite was the Destroyer (1976) era. Real life super heroes.” … Remember when Reebok was a hot brand? This story, “How Reebok Lost Its Game: A Three-Sport Story” details how that all went wrong (from TommyTheCPA). Also from Tommy, there’s a new breed of high-performance wool clothing out there. Hmmm. Wonder if it is good for curling. … “I went to a Buffalo Wild Wings in Englewood Ohio & I found an ad for a jersey store that sold an interesting Bengals Jersey & old FSU uniforms,” says Ryan Robey. “Check the picture out. Weird stuff.” … Scotland rugby wore a very odd red alternate yesteday against New Zealand (from Padday Flemming). … “The latest case of corporate d-baggery aka sponsorship, apparently Fox Sports wants to be absolutely clear that they use Dell tablets,” writes Stu Taylor. “They treat it like it’s a major headline there.”

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And that’s going to do it for this fine Sunday. Hope everyone enjoys the NFL (and NBA, NCAA hoops, NHL, etc.) today. Thanks to TJ, Catherine and Rob, plus all the submitters/twitterers for their contributions as well. You guys and gals have a great week and I’ll catch you next Saturday.

Follow me on Twitter @PhilHecken.

Peace.

.. … ..

“In football, plays are what happens between celebrations.”

— DW

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