Uniform Summit, Cream City Edition


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Who was that yesterday afternoon at the Miller Time Pub & Grill in Milwaukee? From left, that’s me, Uni Watch intern Mike Chamernik, and SportsLogos.net impresario Chris Creamer. We were all in town for the unveiling of the Bucks’ new logo set, which took place last night. You can read my assessment of the logos here, and I have an additional feature with exclusive behind-the-scenes details on how the team’s new design was developed. Enjoy.

The unveiling event was interesting. The Bucks were on the road in Philly last night, but the team had an open house, with fans invited to come to the Bradley Center to watch the game on the scoreboard. Everyone was allowed to wander onto the court if they wanted (or they could sit in the seats), and lots of former Bucks players were on hand to pose for photos with fans. There was free popcorn, face-painting, and so on — a nice fan-friendly vibe.

When the televised game got to halftime, three big easels were put on a stage at center-court. Then three artists came out and “speed-painted” the team’s three new logos, which was actually pretty cool to see. I videotaped the whole thing — do yourself a favor and mute the volume (there were these awful singers performing onstage while the painters did their thing), but the process is worth checking out. Below the video are some snaps of the finished paintings, which you can click to enlarge:





They did all of that freehand and from memory — no pencil tracings to follow, no templates. Afterward, I asked several Bucks execs how many practice rounds the painters had to do, but nobody seemed to know. I thought it was pretty impressive. I also thought it was pretty ballsy of the team to present its new logos in such an unpolished format. Of course, the official versions of the logos were also on display (and available for sale) throughout the arena, but the painted versions, with all their drips and minor imperfections, were definitely the showcase. I liked that.

Later on, while jibber-jabbering with a few people, I spotted something odd on the floor — a Bucks gong (click to enlarge):


Why the hell do the Bucks have a gong? I asked around and was told that whenever someone in the team’s sales office sells a full season ticket, he or she gets to bang the gong (and, I’m guessing, everyone else in the office quietly goes out of their fucking minds). The gong was on hand last night because they had been selling season tix to the open-house attendees earlier in the evening. Interesting backstory, but now they’re gonna have to get a new gong with the updated logo.

One final note about my time in Milwaukee: An interesting historical event took place on the site of my hotel, and another one took place one block away:

You know that time some crackpot shot Teddy Roosevelt and he kept on giving his speech with the bullet still lodged in…

Posted by Paul Lukas on Monday, April 13, 2015

Milwaukee: Full of history!

Posted by Paul Lukas on Monday, April 13, 2015

Thanks to Chris C. for letting me know about the Teddy Roosevelt plaque and to Mikey Powers for letting me know about the American League plaque. Thanks also to the several Uni Watch readers who recognized me at the arena and said hi, and doubleplusthanks to reader Brett Tomczak for buying me a beer. (Here’s a link to his graphic design operation, which seems like the least I can do in return.)

Okay, now I’m off to Cleveland to cover tonight’s Browns uniform unveiling. My colleague Jeremy Fowler, who’s ESPN.com’s Browns beat reporter, will have a news story in response to the unveiling, and I’ll have a reaction/assessment piece — both of those will go up tonight. And just so you know: I have not been given an advance peek at the Browns’ designs, and I have no idea if the leaks currently circulating are legitimate (although they seem fishy to me — I sense some deliberate misdirection at work here). We’ll find out for sure tonight.

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Maybe he should’ve stayed in the D-League Embarrassing situation last night in Los Angeles, where the Lakers signed guard Vander Blue from their D-League affiliate and assigned him uniform No. 12. But apparently they didn’t have a jersey with that number, so they had him wear a No. 2 jersey with a hastily added “1,” resulting in a number that was laughably off-center:

The situation was the same on the front of Blue’s jersey, although it didn’t look quite as bad because the front numerals are smaller and can sort of hide beneath the umbrella of the team’s wordmark:

Lakers beat reporter Mike Trudell confirmed that the number snafu was due to a last-minute scramble to provide Blue with a jersey. That’s an explanation, but it’s not a justification. Seriously, how is it possible that a top-level team would have to resort to such an amateur-hour move? Kinda sums up the Lakers’ season, eh?

(Thanks to Chris Chaussee for tipping me off to this one.)

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Collector’s Corner
By Brinke Guthrie

Leading off with the Brownies today, in honor of their impending uniform unveiling tonight. Ever seen that Angry Brownie look on this mini helmet (shown above)? He looks even rougher and tougher on this 1950s pennant. We’ve also got a 1970s window sticker, a 1970s table lamp without the white stripe (oops), a 1970s ceramic helmet bank, a 1960s/1970s helmet radio, a 1970s Brownie “Acrometal” plaque, a 1970s helmet desk set, and a mini-helmet with the ill-fated “CB” logo.

Phew, that’s a whole lotta Browns! But you say you’re not into the Browns? No worries — here are the rest of this week’s picks:

• Now is that a totally groovy cover on this 1970 Falcons Fact Book, or what.

• Speaking of groovy, how about this 1970 yearbook from the Eagles! I couldn’t figure out why there were depictions of the four seasons? Then I looked closely- football is the “Fifth Season.” Far out.

• Nice design on this 1975 MLB ASG program cover.

• I had of course heard of the “Terrible Towel” in Pittsburgh, but I didn’t know about being a “Steeler Stalwart,” as this Mutual Radio Network sticker suggests.

• Some primo logo action on this 1970s NBA toy chest. Buffalo Braves!

• Love the look of this 1960s Chargers pennant.

• Great looking 1960s NY Football Giants bobble. Usually you see some decay/cracking along the helmet neckline, from bobbing up and down — not the case here.

• Terrific artwork on this 1970 Broncos poster.

• Used to love ICEEs back in the day (Cherry Smash on the bottom, Cola on top — always). I’d try to beat my dad putting on the golf course at the Harmony Landing Country Club in Louisville for an ICEE. Check out the logo art on this 1970s Phillies/ICEE cup.

• Remember “Baseball, Hot Dogs, Apple Pie and Chevrolet”? I hear echoes of that in this 1970 baseball promo pin. Has to be from 1976, right?

• Pckers fans, here’s a 1960s Football Beer Stein and 1976 Helmet Radio combo for you.

Follow Brinke on Twitter: @brinkeguthrie

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Special deal on striped socks: If you’re a regular visitor to the site, you’re probably used to seeing the ad for American Trench striped socks in the right-hand sidebar. Now American Trench is offering a special deal available only to those who are reading this text right here: the “Go Big or Go Home” multi-pack, which features seven pairs of rugby-striped socks for $49 — a really good deal.

I have several pairs from this series myself (I’m wearing one of them right now, in fact), and I can attest to their quality. You know what to do.

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Uni Watch Hit Parade: If you were a political science major like I was, you may be familiar with the historian Richard Hofstadter and his highly influential 1964 essay “The Paranoid Style in American Politics.” And you may therefore also appreciate the name of a DC indie group called the Paranoid Style, which is almost certainly the only band to name itself after a Richard Hofstadter essay.

But even if you’ve never heard of Richard Hofstadter, you should definitely hear the Paranoid Style, because they’re hot stuff (which is probably the first time Richard Hofstadter and the term “hot stuff” have appeared in the same sentence). Built around a husband/wife team who sound really, really smart, a guitar sound that totally delivers the goods, and a vocalist who sort of glides above the sonic chaos, they make it sound easy. Here are the three best songs off their new EP, which I’ve been playing non-stop for the past week or so:

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Uni Watch News Ticker
By Garrett McGrath

Baseball News: The Giants have added a memorial patch for broadcaster Lon Simmons (thanks, Paul). … “During the World Series banner celebration yesterday, Madison Bumgarner delivered the Giants’ championship flag astride a SFPD horse,” Chris Schoenthal says. “I thought it was even more interesting that the logo painted on the horses appears to be the rounded Giants ‘SF’ from the ’83-93 years, rather than the angled one that is currently in use.” … Here is a nice roundup of MLB promotions going on this season (thanks, Phil). … The Diamondbacks are still asking fans behind the plate to not wear opposing team gear (from M. Skuz). … According to Angels beat writer Mike DiGovanna, it seems that the team has pulled Josh Hamilton merch from its team store (thanks, Brinke). … A bobblehead of Wally the Green Monster was installed at Fenway Park (From Paul Dillion). …Yesterday, Paul posted about the Braves having five players named Johnson over the past three seasons and asked if that was a record. It appears that it is not. “”The Pawtucket Sox had five players named Rodriguez on their 1994 roster -– Steve, Carlos, Frank, Tony, and Ruben,” says Joe Kuras. “In 1995, all but Ruben returned and were joined by Victor (currently Boston’s assistant batting coach). All five Rodriguez players appeared in the same game once in 1995.” … Mike Delia had attended 11 consecutive Opening Days at Fenway Park but was unable to attend this year due to a new job he took with the San Francisco Municipal Railway. But he was there in spirit, thanks to these cool Bosox stirrups that he wore (courtesy of Uni Watch’s own Robert Marshall III). … Actor Kevin James wore a Mets jersey to the premeire of Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 (from Chris Flinn).

NFL News: The Browns have set up webpage complete with a live stream for their uniform reveal tonight at 7:30 PM EST. Nine current players and nine alumni will model the uniforms for the reveal (thanks, Phil). … There was another leak of the new orange uni yesterday. … The Giants posted a photo of a behind-the-scenes mock draft board completed by Amani Toomer that used outdated logos for the Buccaneers and the Jaguars (thanks, Phil).

NBA News: Kobe Bryant has released a new sneaker. That link also has multiple photos and information on all of the colors. … A gallery in Rip City is having a Trail Blazers-themed art show next month.

Grab Bag: Contrary to what had previously been reported, Army’s sports teams will still be called the Black Knights. Further info on the school’s redesign here, here, and here. … “The Essendon Football Club (the Bombers/Dons) is running TV advertising around the concept of their very traditional uniform,” James MacNeil says. “It’s rare for teams to promote themselves in TV adverts, but they just emerged from a PED/PR nightmare, so perhaps that’s why.” … “The Vermont men’s lacrosse and Champlain Valley Union boys lacrosse teams have worn this ‘Scotch 30′ decal for the past two seasons,” says Tris Wykes. ” It honors former UVM player and youth coach John Scotnicki, who died of cancer in June, 2013.” … “I wrote a piece on my beer blog highlighting Modern Times Beer and their amazing brand design,” writes Ryan Lindemann. “The can design reminds me of a baseball jersey and stirrups, with the overall uniformity, script logo, and colored stripes at the bottom of each can.”

Pro Sports Fight Songs: NFL

Greetings from Milwaukee, where I’ll be covering the unveiling of the Bucks’ new logo set tonight. Uni Watch intern Mike Chamernik, who’s a big Bucks fan, will be coming up from Chicago to join me. I’ll have two ESPN pieces on this: Tonight there’ll be a basic reaction/assessment piece, and then tomorrow I’ll have a big feature on how the Bucks’ new identity was developed, including exclusive quotes from the designers, developmental sketches, and more.

Meanwhile: Last week Mike gave us his list of MLB fight songs. He’s back today with the NFL installment. Enjoy. — Paul

NFL Fight Songs
By Mike Chamernik

Before we get into our song-by-song breakdown, here’s a quick reminder of the ground rules: I ignored adopted songs, like how “Chelsea Dagger” is now a Blackhawks song and “Sweet Caroline” is an anthem for Red Sox Nation. Those songs don’t make references to those teams and were their own pieces of music before being attached to sports. I ignored team remixes to popular songs, because nearly every team has its own terrible version of Wiz Khalifa’s “Black and Yellow.” I also didn’t include fan-made songs because any yutz can make an EDM beat on his laptop and lay over some half-baked lyrics. And I stuck to things that are available on YouTube.

Ready? Here we go.

Baltimore Ravens – “The Baltimore Fight Song” and “Ravenstown

The Baltimore Colts had a famous marching band, but after that team moved the band eventually joined the Ravens. The Ravens’ fight song is just a current version of the “Baltimore Colts Fight Song.” Meanwhile, “Ravenstown” is a hip hop song from 2011.

Fun fact: The Ravens and Redskins are the only two NFL teams that still have marching bands.

Buffalo Bills – “Shout

I’m breaking my own rule by listing “Shout” here, as the Bills just took the Isley Brothers’ hit and turned it into a blue-eyed soul remix with some team references. But the Bills have adopted it as their own, and the fans have loved it: When the team balked at paying rising royalties for the song in 1993, fan outcry made helped reverse that decision.

Fun fact: Former coach Marv Levy wrote his own Bills fight song.

Chicago Bears – “Bear Down Chicago Bears

The Bears probably have the fight-iest of all fight songs. This version, made by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, is a very rich orchestral piece. The song was made all the way back in 1941 and the original lyrics included a reference to the T-formation.

Not quite a fight song, but…: Bears players also sang “The Super Bowl Shuffle” in 1985. High comedy. Lyrics like “Well, they call me Sweetness/ And I like to dance/ Running the ball is like making romance” are fantastic. Here’s a lengthy oral history of the song. By the way, the song came out well before the Bears eventually won the Super Bowl. Could you imagine if a team did that nowadays? Like if LeBron and the Cleveland Cavaliers released a song called “Championship Ring Boogie” right now? My God, the internet would self-combust with mockery and hatred.

Cincinnati Bengals – “Bengals Growl,” “The Who Dey Rap,” and “Fear Da Tiger

Created in 1968, “Bengals Growl” is still played after Bengals touchdowns, and it sounds like the theme song to a Hanna-Barbera cartoon. Before the Bengals run to the Super Bowl in 1989, several players made the quintessential late-80s rap song “The Who Dey Rap,” which was influenced by the team’s classic chant. Sixteen years later Cincy-native Bootsy Collins released “Fear Da Tiger” when the team was making a playoff push.

Notable lyric: “Fear the Tigers/ Fear the Tigers/ ‘Cause we’re the Tigers/ We’re ready to rumble/ We’re ready to rumble/ “Cause we’re king of the jungle.” On paper those are awful, awful lyrics, but they’re not bad in the flow of Bootsy’s song.

Cleveland Browns – “Hi-O-Hi-O for Cleveland

Created in 1946, “Hi-O-Hi-O” has lyrics, but every video I’ve seen online is just a marching band instrumental version of the tune.

Fun fact: The song was rerecorded by the Cleveland Pops a few summers ago.

Dallas Cowboys – “Dallas Cowboys

African-American country artist Charlie Pride released the single “Dallas Cowboys” in 1977. It reached No. 89 on the Hot Country Songs Billboard chart.

My opinion: This song is a mix of country, disco and the horns sounds of the 1970s. It’s awesome.

Detroit Lions – “Gridiron Heroes

Played after every score, “Gridiron Heroes” dates back to the 1930s. Theo “Gridiron” Spight sings the tune with a pleasing baritone at Ford Field on gamedays, and he wears a hardhat and a Lions No. 00 jersey with his nickname as the NOB.

Notable lyric: “With honor you will keep your fame” is wince-worthy when you remember that the team went winless a little while back.

Green Bay Packers – “Go! You Packers, Go!

Milwaukee jingle writer Eric Karll made the NFL’s first fight song in 1931. At Lambeau Field, the song is played after player introductions and after Packers extra points.

Notable lyric: The original line in the song was “On, you Blue and Gold, to glory,” but was changed after the Packers switched to green and gold.

Los Angeles Rams – “Rams Marching Song” and “Ram It

We’re going back in time with these team songs. Even without lyrics, The “Rams Marching Song” is about as fight song-y an NFL song imaginable. “Ram It” is a perfectly bad team pop music video, with the distinct 1980s sound, the cheesy effects, the overacting (and underacting) and the general L.A. feel to the song. And the interweb seems to enjoy the song’s double entendres.

Remember, brevity is the soul of wit: The major downside is that the tune drags on for more than five minutes. So fittingly, Grantland wrote way too long of a piece on it.

Miami Dolphins – “Miami Dolphins Fight Song

Just a standard 1970s fight song with a twinge of country twang to it, nothing special. Floridian rapper T-Pain and his auto-tuner jazzed it up a little in 2009, though, giving it a little more of a tropical sound.

Sham alert: Whoever wrote the Dolphins’ fight song also wrote the Houston Oilers’ fight song and didn’t bother to change the lyrics.

Minnesota Vikings – “Skol, Vikings

The song was made in 1961, around the time of the team’s inception. “Skol” is a Scandinavian toast meaning “cheers” or “good health.” The Vikings get bonus points for honoring their team’s namesake.

Fun fact: Minnesota native Prince also made a team song in 2010. The less said about that, the better.

Oakland Raiders – “The Autumn Wind

It’s not quite a song, but I’ll happily make an exception here. This poem was written by NFL Films president Steve Sabol and was narrated by John Facenda (who, of course, was nicknamed “The Voice of God”). Mix Sabol’s words and Facenda’s voice with music composed by NFL Films Orchestra mainstay Sam Spence and set it to old Raiders highlights and you have a work of art.

Notable lyric: “The Autumn Wind is a raider/ Pillaging just for fun./ He’ll knock you ’round and upside down/ And laugh when he’s conquered and won.” Perfect. Raiders owner Al Davis said the poem epitomized everything the team stood for.

Philadelphia Eagles – “Fly, Eagles Fly

Not a complex song by any means, but “Fly, Eagles Fly” is simple, catchy and easy to recite in a chant. The song dates back to the early 1960s and was even played in the 2012 film Silver Linings Playbook.

Notable lyric: “Him ‘em low/ Hit ‘em high” is an obvious affront to the safe football environment Roger Goodell has created over his tenure.

Pittsburgh Steelers – “Here We Go Steelers

Steelers fan and singer Roger Wood made the song in 1994 and it has been updated after each Steelers Super Bowl since then, incorporating different players and coaches into the lyrics. For instance, “We’ll get three points off of Jeff Reed’s toe” became “We’ll get three points off of Suisham’s toe.” The other tweaks are a little more exciting.

Replayability: Wood said in an interview, “I can listen to the song again and again. It is like a Christmas carol. You never, ever get sick of it.” I respectfully disagree.

San Diego Chargers – “San Diego Super Chargers” and “San Diego Chargers

“Super Chargers,” a 1979 disco hit, has been described as kitschy and campy and still gets referenced on air by ESPN personality Chris Berman. It’s upbeat and happy, obviously influenced by the Air Coryell era. Then, in 2008, alternative rock group Plastilina Mosh made “San Diego Chargers,” a funky drum- and base-heavy instrumental song in honor of the team, with the chant of “Let’s Go Chargers” faintly audible in the background.

Fun fact: In the late 80s the team scrapped the disco version and replaced it with a bad “modern” version. The disco song was revived in the 2000s.

San Francisco 49ers – “Who’s Got It Better

In 2011, Bay Area rapper Bailey took then-current Niners coach Jim Harbaugh’s motto (“Who’s got it better than us? Nobody.”) and made a song off of it. Bailey added in some references to the city of San Francisco and current players and shot a video on the field at Candlestick.

Notable lyric: I know rappers usually make rhymes that are a stretch, but Bailey rhymes “body” with “party” in his first verse. That’s a bridge too far for me.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers – “Hey Hey Tampa Bay

The song was made my jingle writer Jeff Arthur in 1979, the year the Bucs reached the NFL title game. “Hey Hey Tampa Bay” easily brings the creamsicle Bucs unis to mind.

Fun fact: Arthur created other notable jingles, including “Make It a Blockbuster Night” and “Original Home Of The Whopper.” I miss jingles.

Washington Redskins – “Hail To The Redskins

In the late 1930s Redskins owner George Preston Marshall wanted a team song with plenty of pageantry, so his wife Corinne wrote the lyrics, band leader Barnee Breeskin set the music, and a 150-piece marching band made the song.

Notable lyrics: Of course, because it’s the Redskins, the song originally contained the line “Scalp ’em, swamp ’um / We will take ’um big score” and also included the ending “Fight for old Dixie.”

Do you know of more NFL fight songs? Post them in today’s comments. We’ll have the NBA and NHL songs soon.

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LAST CALL: Today is the final day to order the Uni Watch T-Shirt Club’s latest limited-edition design, jointly inspired by Cinco de Mayo and the Brewers’ “Cerveceros” jerseys, which is available until 11pm tonight. After that, it’s gone for good, so get it while you can. Full details here, or go directly to the ordering page.

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Baseball News: A small ballpark is sometimes referred to as a “bandbox.” But what does that mean? What exactly is a bandbox anyway? Learn the answer here. … This is interesting: a 1977 spring training shot that appears to show the Pirates’ pillbox cap but without the stripes (from Jerry Wolper). … During NBC’s broadcast of Game 2 of the 1973 World Series, the broadcast team referred to the A’s white-over-white uni as their “polar bear whites.” “I’ve heard ‘wedding gown
white’ many times when referring to the A’s, but ‘polar bear white’ is a new one to me,” says Brendan Tarpey. Same here. … Longtime reader/contributor Cort McMurray has written a piece for The Houston Chronicle about his memories of the Astrodome. … Our latest hosiery hero: stirrups-clad Indians pitcher TJ House (from Geoff, who didn’t give his last name). … Speaking of the Indians, Matt Shadrake notes that they’ve worn their cream-colored alternate uniform for most (all?) of their home games so far, not just on Sunday which had been the previous protocol for the creams. … Jeffrey Schmidt spotted this cool Mariners-themed car in San Diego, of all places. … “I’ve noticed Braves players Chris Johnson, Kelly Johnson, and Jim Johnson are all simply wearing ‘Johnson’ for their NOB,” says Michael Rich. “Seemed odd to me, but then I did a bit of Googling and discovered that the Braves did the same thing in 2013, when Chris Johnson, Reed Johnson, and Elliot Johnson were all on the roster.” NOBs notwithstanding, this must surely approach the record for the most same-surnamed players on a team over a three-season span, no? … Also from Michael: Someone at yesterday’s Mets/Braves game repurposed his Jason Heyward jersey. … Love WVU’s new striped socks, but too bad about the brutal G.I. Joe jerseys (from Nelson Warwick). … Here’s a weird one: Yankees OF Chris Young played an inning with a baseball in his back pocket, although there was a good reason for it (from Chris Flinn).

Pro Football News: Another day, another Browns leak of indeterminate legitimacy. … Texans DE J.J. Watt has signed an endorsement deal with Reebok, which is particularly surprising because the Reebok logo isn’t even allowed to appear on the field during NFL games. … Tommy LaSorda showed up for the L.A. Kiss’s first game and wore a team cap, complete with his familiar No. 2 on the side (from Ferdinand Cesarano).

Basketball News: Jan van Breda Kolff often wore “VBK” as his NOB, but here he is with his surname fully spelled out. So many letters that they had to leave out the spaces between the words! (Nice find by Jerry Wolper.)

Grab Bag: New uniforms for all of Army’s teams slated to be unveiled tonight.. … Rugby players in Saturday’s NRL game between the Melbourne Storm and the Canberra Raiders wore yellow armbands in memory of murder victim Stephanie Scott (from Graham Clayton). … Also from Graham: Good video report on the manually operated scoreboard at the WACA Ground in Perth, Western Australia. … Auto racing enthusiast David Firestone has designed a Uni Watch funny car. Nice! … Lots of military tributes yesterday from Duke lacrosse — a camo helmet logo, a special back-helmet decal, and a pregame warm-up top (from Jared Buccola). … If you’re not impressed by newly declared presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s campaign logo, you’re not alone. Additional info here and here. … The Minnesota town of Lindström wants the umlaut restored to its highway sign (big thanks to Tris Wykes).

Designing For The Women's World Cup

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By Phil Hecken

As many of you are aware, the Women’s World Cup is taking place in Canada this summer (June 6 through July 5), and unlike in the Men’s version, the United States actually has a chance to win. It hasn’t been around as long as the Men’s tournament, and it’s not as prestigious, but it’s still some high quality women’s soccer. If you’re interested in the short history, click here. The US Ladies won two of the first three tournaments (including in 1999 as host, which included the Brandi Chastain moment, which put women’s soccer on the map for many), and was runner-up in the last one.

A few weeks (ok, about 2 months) ago, I received a bunch of concepts from Saurel Jean, Jr., who posts in the comments as “El Duderino,” for the Women’s World Cup. I try to run the concepts in the order they’re received, and if there as many (and as high quality) as what you’re about to see, then I’ll try to feature them as a lede.

El Duderino didn’t provide too much of a backstory/set up with these, but you’ll get the idea pretty quickly. I’ll just leave you with his short writeup, and then run the concepts below that. Click any image to enlarge. Enjoy!

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I decided to tackle the FIFA Women’s World Cup as my first uniform design project. I made primary and secondary sets (w/ auxiliary items in case of possible clash) for all the competing countries except Canada.The primary sets correspond with the font color of the country’s name. I also have an attachment where I have all the group stage matches worked out.

El Duderino

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Costa Rica:


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Ivory Coast:


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New Zealand:


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South Korea:


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United States:


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Nice job, El! Great stuff. OK, readers, what do you think?


EPL Tracker

Each Saturday or Sunday, Alex Gerwitz will be tracking the kit combinations (shirt/shorts/socks) of the teams in the English Premier League from the previous weekend and the current weekend.

Here is the EPL tracker for Weeks 30 & 31 (click to enlarge):

EPL Tracking Weeks 31 & 32


T-Shirt Club reminder: The Uni Watch T-Shirt Club’s latest limited-edition design, jointly inspired by Cinco de Mayo and the Brewers’ “Cerveceros” jerseys, is available from now through Monday. Full details here, or go directly to the ordering page.


USFL splash
LAST CALL For The Latest Contest

In case you missed it or were distracted by Paul’s ESPN contest to design a uniform for the future Las Vegas hockey design, Jim Vilk & I are hosting another uniform re-design contest on UW.

You can read the full details here, but basically the idea is to “free up the great names, colors and logos of the USFL and reuse them” for other teams in current leagues — all teams/leagues are open (except football, since the USFL was a football league).

I’ve received a few submissions over the past week and a half, but not the usual number I receive for a contest such as this. If I don’t receive any more, I’ll just run all the ones I did receive in one contest. The deadline is April 15th, so you still have time to get your concepts in.


Uni Watch News Ticker:

Baseball News: On Friday night, there was an epic hosiery battle going on in Oakland (from Spencer Cooper). … “NESN is the channel that broadcasts the Red Sox games, and they have a lot of stupid commercials, including one where a guy fakes sick and calls in to work for the home opener every year,” writes Stephen Hayes. “This commercial shows him doing this in 1998, however the screen grab attached has a Red Sox logo in the background that wasn’t used until 2009.” … The Phils AA squad in Reading has seemingly replaced the navy blue ostrich caps with the red the ‘F-fist’ logo, reports Michael Trautman. “(I)t’s a plus considering how little navy blue is actually in their home uni. They look so much better! How they used to look. And here’s the (formerly alternate) cap in navy blue.” … Here’s your First Look at the Toledo MudHens Veterans Appreciation Jerseys coming 5/23 (thanks to MiLB Promos). … I got three really awesome old photos from Bruce Menard (who else?) that need to be seen: April 12, 1950 – 87 yr old Connie Mack in a full A’s uniform!; also 1912 (April 11) Cincinnati Reds >Opening of the New NL Ballpark Panoramic. At the time it was renamed Redland Field, wouldn’t become Crosley until 1934. Bruce enhanced the color a bit, made the grass green; and, April 12th, 1909 Opening Day Program Washington Senators vs NY Highlanders, featuring Walter Johnson on the cover. Just awesome, Bruce! … “This always bugs me,” says Pat Costello. “Since Fordham baseball and football share a field the logo on the 50 is awkwardly placed in left center. It’s very strange looking.”

College Football News: I’m not entirely sure what this Autism-themed jersey is for — but submitter Clark Ruhland is a big Virginia Tech guy, so maybe it’s for them. … Joining the anthracite-for-anthracite’s-sake brigade is the Purdue Boilermakers (from Rob). … Here’s another look at the TCU Horned Frogs’ new uniforms, with mis-matched pants, which look much better (h/t Sam Parnell). It also looks like they may have a gray helmet as well.

Hockey News: The Syracuse Crunch Hockey Team honored the 60th anniversary of the Syracuse Nationals NBA Championship, notes Rick DiRubbo. The players were never given rings when they won 60 years ago so the Crunch gave them rings and also a piece of the original court they played on.

Grab Bag: “This is an 2 or 3 year old photo gallery on the Tribune website, but I don’t remember if it ever hit the Uni Watch ticker” writes Joshua Held. “It just bubbled up on a Northwestern forum, because it’s got quite a few sports photos included. The 1869 baseball team!” … “Not sure if this is corporate douchebaggery,” writes Douglas Ford, “But my local dunkin donuts topped some donuts with the Atlanta Braves’ “A”; also not sure if I screwed up that apostrophe.” … From Brinke we have this: What Women Used to Wear to Play Sports. … From the New York Times, Paul sends this 10 Sports Prizes Stranger Than the Masters’ Green Jacket. He adds, “The coat is one of the most coveted prizes in sports. Unusual? Yes, but it does not even make the top 10 when it comes to the strange things presented to the winners of other events.”


That will do it for today — due to traveling, I apologize there is not a full ticker. Big uni stuff ahead with the Army and Bucks unveilings tomorrow, and then the Browns on Tuesday.

Everyone have a great week. Peace


At Least There Is No Blood Shooting From The Eyes

Frogs 550
Click To Enlarge

By Phil Hecken

Yesterday evening, the Texas Christian University Horned Frogs unveiled new uniforms. Let’s just cut straight to the chase: Yes — that is supposed to be sublimated “frog skin” on those uniforms. So far, we’re seeing in their monochromatic form (white, purple and gray), but at their spring game last evening, the team also unveiled some new combinations.

I’ll just let Nike’s wordsmiths describe the new uniforms:

The TCU Nike Mach Speed Uniform features the latest innovations in lightweight fabric built for maximum speed, ventilation and comfort. The new uniform design is one of the first to include a full sublimated pattern on the jersey and pants. Like the fierce, desert-dwelling mascot, the horned frog, the TCU football team uses speed, quickness and defensive tactics to outwit opponents. The horned frog’s scaly body armor inspires the new sublimated pattern — a digital evolution of the program’s existing lizard skin pattern. Covering the entire jersey, and extending through the pant, the motif embodies the fearless attitude that defines both the mascot and the team.

Let’s take a look at each one (and yes, for each photo you can click to enlarge, if you dare).

. . . . .


150320_Nike_TCU_home_3486_original 150320_Nike_TCU_home_3269_original


150320_Nike_TCU_home_3286_original 150320_Nike_TCU_home_3205_original

According to Nike, “The purple jersey and pant combination serves as the Horned Frogs’ home uniform. The color represents nobility while embodying a powerful aura and undeniable energy. White numbers, symbolic of honor, accent the purple uniform in a bold, high-contrast combination.”

. . . . .




The white uniform (which is the away uni) is described as such: “TCU’s white-on-white away uniform holds special meaning: The white color reflects good sportsmanship and serves as inspiration for victory even in the harshest environments.”

. . . . .


150320_Nike_TCU_alt_3419_original 150320_Nike_TCU_alt_3464_original



“TCU’s third uniform features a gray jersey and pants, providing a neutral base for the purple and white accents,” according to the manufacturer.

. . . . .

Is there anything else we need to know? “Further graphic details on the jersey include the words, ‘GIVE EM HELL,’ embroidered on the back neckline. The phrase echoes the school’s famous ‘Riff Ram’ cheer, which has been a stadium standard and a fan favorite since the 1970s.” Interestingly enough, in the photos provided by Nike, there was no closeup (or shot at all, actually) of the “GIVE EM HELL” embroidery.

Where do we start. First of all, I don’t hate these, although I think Nike is taking their ability to sublimate patterns just a tad too far here. It’s not like they haven’t done the frog-skin pattern before, either — they’ve had it on their helmets a couple of different times, and even went so far a couple years ago to add a red stripe — symbolizing the blood shooting out of the eyes of the horned frog. The new helmets (assuming they only have the purple and white), have the frog-skin pattern on the shell and on the stripe, respectively. Those actually compliment the unis pretty well.

I don’t even mind the sublimated pattern present on the gray and purple uniforms. I think from a distance it won’t be all that noticeable (although that remains to be seen — and who knows how they’ll look when players perspire). What I don’t particularly like (at first glance) is the monochromatic look of the gray and purple uniforms. I’m hopeful they’ll break those up by wearing white pants or some other color pants from the jerseys. But the frog-skin pattern, aside from the fact that it’s completely unnecessary, is fine. I’m not sure how big a recruiting tool that’s going to be, but hey, it’s different. It also looks like they’ve dumped a significant amount of black from the colorscheme (and replaced it with GFGS). And at least there is no blood shooting from the eyes.

OK readers…you’ve seen them. What do you think? Good, bad, or something else? Did Nike push the envelope just enough, or is this the beginning of the end? Let’s hear your thoughts in the comments below.


classic scoreboards splashClassic Ballpark Scoreboards

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

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

. . . . . . . . . .

Classic Ballpark Scoreboards – Series II
by Gary Chanko

This week the series visits that once massive, hulking edifice along Lake Erie, Cleveland’s Municipal Stadium.

Cleveland Municipal Stadium

Cleveland Municipal Stadium UW

Home of: Cleveland Indians (1932-33, 1936-1993);
Cleveland Browns (1946-1995); Cleveland Rams (1936-37, 1939-41, 1945)
Closed:December 1995; Demolished: November 1996

Municipal Stadium, Cleveland Stadium, Lakefront Stadium, Mistake by the Lake; all refer to the same cheerless place the Cleveland Indians called home for parts of seven decades. The ballpark’s location (next to Lake Erie) and cavernous size combined to create an unwelcoming venue for baseball.

The Stadium was among the first multi-purpose facilities and served as the playing field for both baseball and football from the beginning. At the time the Stadium was completed in 1931, the 78,00 plus seating capacity was the largest in the world. But the massive seating capacity was tough to fill during the ballpark’s initial depression era years.

Complaints by fans and players (monstrous size outfield) drove the Indians back to League Park in 1934 where they continued to play some (mostly weekday day games) of their games through the 1946 season.

The ballpark’s rudimentary scoreboard was located in dead center field among the bleachers and some 500-feet from fans behind home plate. It must have been a challenge to see the postings. Gruen sponsored the analog clocks; the one on the right was purposed for football.

This scoreboard illustration depicts a game in progress with the Yankees on May 23, 1948.

A Few Things to Know

• The opening event in the new stadium occurred on July 1, 1931, with 37,000 fans in attendance. But this event wasn’t an Indians baseball game. It was a world heavy weight championship boxing match. The Cleveland Indians inaugural game will take place a year later.

• The 1948 version of the scoreboard was replaced by 1953. The new scoreboard now included advertising (the ubiquitous Chesterfield ad) and a new watch sponsor – Longines, of course.

84,587 people attended a Yankees-Indians game in 1954.

• Cleveland’s Osborn Engineering Company and the architectural firm Walker and Weeks designed the original Stadium. Oddly the same two companies were involved in the demolition.

Next week Classic Baseball Scoreboards returns to the City of Brotherly Love for a look back at Connie Mack Stadium in the 60’s.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

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


all sport uni tweaksUni Tweaks Concepts

We have another new set of tweaks, er…concepts today. After discussion with a number of readers, it’s probably more apropos to call most of the reader submissions “concepts” rather than tweaks. So that’s that.

So if you’ve concept for any sport, or just a tweak or wholesale revision, send them my way.

Please do try to keep your descriptions to ~50 words (give or take) per image — if you have three uniform concepts in one image, then obviously, you can go a little over, but no novels, OK? OK!. You guys have usually been good with keeping the descriptions pretty short, and I thank you for that.

Like the colorizations, I’m going to run these as inline pics — click on each one to enlarge.

And so, lets begin:


First up today is Marcus (no last name given) with a new look for the Broncos:

NEWAGE - Marcus

Hi Phil,

This is a bit more modern than most concepts I see featured, but I wanted to completely re-vamp the Broncos, and give them what would be one of the boldest looks in the NFL. Dull but intimidating primary color, vibrant, in your face numbers and accents. Pretty much the opposite of the attitude Denver went into the Playoffs with.

Thank you,


. . .

And we close today with Jeff Callahan who has a Cardinals concept:

Cardinals - Jeff Callahan

Hey Phil,

Here’s my uni tweak for the Cardinals. I love the black bat and 1940s lettering paired with the current birds.

Thanks! Uni-Watch rocks!


. . .

And that’s it for today. Back with more next time.


T-Shirt Club reminder: The Uni Watch T-Shirt Club’s latest limited-edition design, jointly inspired by Cinco de Mayo and the Brewers’ “Cerveceros” jerseys, is available from now through Monday. Full details here, or go directly to the ordering page.


USFL splash
LAST CALL For The Latest Contest

In case you missed it or were distracted by Paul’s ESPN contest to design a uniform for the future Las Vegas hockey design, Jim Vilk & I are hosting another uniform re-design contest on UW.

You can read the full details here, but basically the idea is to “free up the great names, colors and logos of the USFL and reuse them” for other teams in current leagues — all teams/leagues are open (except football, since the USFL was a football league).

I’ve received a few submissions over the past week and a half, but not the usual number I receive for a contest such as this. If I don’t receive any more, I’ll just run all the ones I did receive in one contest. The deadline is April 15th, so you still have time to get your concepts in.


Uni Watch News Ticker:

Baseball News: Rather bizarre item from the NYT, notes the “Nationals are playing slow soft-rock songs during the visiting team’s batting practice. As if their standout starting rotation were not daunting enough, the Nationals are also trying to gain a psychological edge on their opponents, at least in some small way” (thanks, Paul). … For those interested, here’s the video from last year’s Opening Day Chief Wahoo protests (from Peter Pattakos). … Speaking of the Indians, “You would think the Indians would learn,” says Dwayne White. “Speaking of racist images, this is not just racist, it is stupid too.” … Reader Andy Horne went to the Potomac Nationals (aka P-Nats) Class High A team opening night Thursday against the Lynchburg Hillcats and got a few good pics: “1. Nellie Rodriguez (1B for Hillcats) going high-cuff; 2. Wilmer Difo (SS for P-Nats) going high-cuff with some great stirrups; 3. A bad pic but Jason Werth is on a rehab assignment and is using his Washington Nats helmet with his number 28 instead of the P-Nats team issued. He also was issued #44 as another player on the P-Nats has 28; 4. Sponsor creep alert! Wegmans (a grocery store chain) sponsoring the on deck hitters circle; and, 5. The P-Nats won the Carolina league championship last year and their opening day giveaway was a replica championship ring. What I thought would be some plastic cheap-o ring actually was legit.” … Perhaps the Padres are unaware of the purpose of the “batters eye” background? (nice spot by Jim Walaitis). I believe that’s visible ONLY for the TV audience, however. … Cubs GM Theo Epstein threw a brushback pitch at Clark the Cub (thanks to Patrick O’Neill). … Looks like the 2015 World Series & Post Season logos have been revealed. Chris Creamer has the scoop. … On June 28th, Aberdeen Ironbirds players will be wearing these jerseys on Autism awareness night. More info here (h/t Joseph Young). … Vanderbilt has some custom new gloves (from Trés Lawless). … “The Richmond Flying Squirrels outfitted Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe in a team jersey with number & NOB for their hope opener (Thursday) night,” writes R. Scott Rogers. “The team gave McAuliffe the number 1, alas. He’s officially the 72nd governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia. Maybe the 1 stands for the number of consecutive terms he is constitutionally permitted to serve?” … Here are the orange jerseys the Richmond Flying Squirrels will wear every Friday this season (via MiLB Promos). … The Toledo Mud Hens will be going back to the future this year (how original). … The Salem Red Sox have a throwback Avalanche hat and a remembering VA Tech shooting in 2007 cap (via Alex). … Oops. The scoreboard at Camden Yards was just a bit off yesterday (nice grab by Rasher2). … Alexei Ramirez honored Minnie Minoso at yesterday’s White Sox opener (h/t Mike Chamernik). … “Alexei Ramirez is wearing a Minnie Minoso jersey today,” Eriq Jaffe adds, “Either MLB gave him permission, or there’s going to be a fine. This may be the first time that a player has worn a ‘tribute’ jersey for a player with a memorial patch for that same player on the jersey.” … Ohio State wore these camo things yesterday (h/t Ron Mexico). … Is this a new script for Indians? Says Kevin J. Chmura, “I don’t know why they would trademark it unless they plan on using it.” … Here are the Omaha StormChasers All Star patches for this season (thanks to Ben Matukewicz). … Here’s a look at the Unequal™ protective shell in Hector Noesi’s hat. Made of a composite that contains Kevlar (h/t, literally, to Jeremy Dodson). … New Era has introduced a really awful cap. Actually, that cap might go well with my Hawai’ian shirt, but otherwise…it’s awful. … Check out the socks Cameron Maybin was rocking yesterday (via Chris Brueckner). … The San Francisco Giants will wear this patch in honor of Lon Simmons, starting Monday (thanks Brinke). … “It looks like Brewers outfielder Khris Davis is wearing one of those ‘Say No To Drugs’ wristbands,” says Randy Allemann — who thinks it may be one of these.

NFL News: Cleveland Browns uniform leaks (allegedly) are everywhere. Nothing ‘new’ in that article, but as we at UW (and the article) have pointed out, take everything with a grain of salt. One interesting factoid from that article though: a tweet from Daryl Ruiter with this quote — “Will also say #Browns regime has history of spreading different info internally to see what becomes public to figure out who’s leaking info.” Good point.

College Football News: Oops: Looks like ESPN was using JT Barrett as “cover boy” for a Braxton Miller story (nice spot by Hunter Ginn). … In this photo of Michigan’s April 2013 Spring Game, Taylor Lewan wears the team’s usual helmet, but Kyle Kalis is still wearing the matte finish helmet from the January 2013 Outback Bowl (good spot by Brian McCrodden). … The Colorado Buffaloes will unveil new uniforms on May 1 (h/t Matthew Robins). … The Memphis Tigers played a spring game last night. They put their area code on their lids (h/t nick fromtheinternet). … The short-season baseball Boise Hawks hinted on Twitter that they may soon have a purple alternate jersey, just like the Albuquerque Isotopes announced (via Brad Iverson-Long).

NBA News: Whoa — is this a Memphis Grizzlies logo on Native American ceremonial wear? Great spot by Victory Cheeseballs. … Wow — check out the inconsistent script “Nats” font on these 1955 Syracuse Nationals jerseys (they won the NBA championship that year). Thanks to Matt Newbery). … “While watching ’30 for 30 – Sole Man: Kobe and The Gunslinger,’ I noticed at the 7:56 mark they are just starting to talk about Kobe’s Crazy 8 Shoes and the actor appears to be wearing Nike sock,” says Chuck Betts. “Found it odd considering the subject matter of that part of the film with Sonny Vaccaro just being fired by Nike.” … Yesterday the Cavs and Celts (h/t Scott) hooked up in a color vs. color game (h/t M.R. Villwock).

Hockey News:Flag spotting on Ryan (McDonagh)’s shoulder pads,” writes Luke Rosnick. “This is from the webleedblue.com facebook account. This was during the Rangers’ annual ‘Blueshirts off our backs’ ceremony, so perhaps was just for this occasion.” … Check out the beautiful unis worn by the 1934 Stanley Cup Champion Chicago Blackhawks (h/t John Urbina).

Soccer News: Liverpool has unveiled their 2015-16 kits by New Balance. Says holycalamity, “Not Bad.” Here’s another look. And here’s an article with some more photos. … Here is a render of leaked details of the USA 2015 home kit (from Conrad Burry). And an actual picture of the USWNT kit. … Also from Conrad, here’s a leaked photo of the 2015-16 Juventus home kit.

Grab Bag: Reader Brady Graham writes, “Don’t know who singer Naughty Boy is, but a dancer in his music video was wearing a Kansas City A’s inspired hat I received as a giveaway on A’s Night at Kauffman Stadium in 2011.” … D-baggery alert: adidas is suing Marc Jacobs over the use of its stripe design (h/t SoleCollector). … Here are the uniforms the Buffalo Bandits will be wearing for their Tucker Out Lymphoma night on April 25th (h/t Ryan McConnell). … Check out the USA flag stripes on top of Johns Hopkins University helmets (via Griffin Smith). … Here are the outfits Masters Leader Jordan Spieth will be wearing today and Sunday (via Darren Rovell). … The original members of Grateful Dead will host two shows at Levi’s Stadium on 6/27 & 6/28 (read more here). … Yesterday, Phil Mickelson’s caddy was wearing a North Star’s tee under his caddy jumper (h/t Ryan Hagen). … Carla Borrego of the Adelaide Thunderbirds in the ANZ netball championship is the only player who wears knee-high black socks (thanks to Graham Clayton).


And that’s all for today. As you may have seen in yesterday’s Uni Watch, I’ll be traveling today and have only limited access to the computer — and I will probably only be able to take ticker submissions by e-mail. I should have full content tomorrow (although any breaking uni news will possibly have to wait). Try to keep the ticker submissions light, if you can! Thanks.

Follow me on Twitter @PhilHecken.


.. … ..

“Look, if you’re embarrassed to be wearing a hat called a trilby, then don’t wear it. Wearing a trilby but calling it a fedora isn’t the answer.”

— R. Scott Rogers