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Uni Watch DIY Project: Letter Perfect

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[Editor’s Note: It’s been a while since we’ve had a DIY entry, so today we have a guest-written piece from Steve Dodell, who wanted to match the dugout jacket NOB font used by the 1986 Mets, 1989 A’s, and 1990 Reds. Enjoy — PL]

By Steve Dodell

I bought an authentic Starter Mets warm-up jacket in 1988 at Gerry Cosby’s at Madison Square Garden, one of the few places at that time that sold authentic team apparel. It’s the same one they wore in 1986. I bought an authentic 25th Anniversary patch on eBay and had it sewn on at a uniform store a few years ago. This summer, after seeing this on eBay, I decided I had to have my name on back of my jacket, but only if I could match the font exactly.

The font may seem conventional, but it’s actually fairly unique. I have seen similar fonts, but none exactly like it. And every picture I’ve ever seen of the font has been on a Starter jacket, so I assume they had some embroidery machine that had this font. If you’re interested in embroidery techniques, I know that this font embroidered a white outline first. In the case of the Reds and Phillies, they stopped right there.

For a team like the Mets, the machine would then embroider an orange letter over the white to make a two-color letter. This second layer changes the look of the font a bit, because the initial white outline is covered slightly and thus looks thinner, but it is the same basic shape. (Unless we find someone who worked for Starter back in the day, I guess I am now the world’s foremost expert in the font. I don’t know its official name, so for now let’s called it Starter Old School Varsity.)

The font hasn’t been used in years. To help recreate it, I was lucky enough to buy a Starter jacket worn by coach Rich Miller on eBay. That was key, because it gave me the E and the L that I needed for my own name (I love how the serifs on those letters are slightly slanted), and the R gave me the corner I needed to figure out how to do the D and the O.

I’m pretty good copying artwork. So using MS Paint, with some help from Bill Henderson (author of the MLB Game Worn Jerseys guide), I recreated my name and most of the whole font.

The next step was to find an embroiderer. Or, rather, the right embroiderer. Embroidery is a tough skill — different fabrics and designs react differently, and I was trying to match a 20-year-old font. There are many stock alphabet fonts available, but none exactly matched Starter Old School Varsity to my obsessive need for accuracy.

The first embroiderer I went to I found by accident. I was getting a trophy engraved and saw they were also doing embroidery at the shop. I brought in my Miller jacket and my bitmap file of my name in MS Paint and asked them what they thought. The guy seemed very good, but he wanted to do things using modern techniques (embroidery machines use a special file format — your artwork needs to be digitized in their software so the machine can sew it out, and it won’t look right if they don’t digitize it properly), plus the guy was was too gruff. I could tell he would not put up with the multiple tweaks I would probably end up asking for.

I then looked online for other embroiderers in Westchester and came across America’s Stitch. The woman I spoke with was very nice, a perfectionist, and seemed flexible. She digitized my art and ran a sample. They charge by the number of stitches in the design — mine came out to $120, double what the first guy charged, but I was more comfortable with them. She called me in a week with the sample. The sizing of the letters was slightly off — the seams of the orange letters weren’t quite right, and we fiddled with the letter E a bit. After making the fixes, I cajoled her into doing a second sample and it looked great, so we went with it on my jacket. She played with the density of stitches a bit to give it the old-school look of a vintage baseball jacket.

My jacket is almost a perfect re-creation of the original. The only difference is that embroidery machines and software today are much more sophisticated and it was hard to get the embroiderer to give it the rough-and-tumble feel I wanted. Today’s machines produce embroidery that’s too perfect — I called it baby pillow embroidery — but we eventually got the desired effect and I’m very happy with how it turned out.

This font was also used by the Mets on satin jackets up through the early 1990s. I’d be interested if anyone knows the full history of the font. If someone wants to use the font to embroider, I may be able to help them.


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SNADU: Situation normal — all Ducked up: Paul here. Today should be a very interesting day, because it’s the day Nike will be unveiling the new bowl game uniforms for Oregon and three other schools nobody really gives a shit about TCU, Florida, and Boise State. But exactly when today will that unveiling take place?

Good question. Over the past several days I sent communiqués to several folks at Nike, Oregon, and the Oregonian newspaper (because they first broke the story about the unveiling) — no response. Yesterday afternoon I figured I’d simply call Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, because that’s where the event is happening. I was told — and this is a quote — “The guests will be arriving at 5pm and leaving by 11pm [both times Central].” That suggested an evening event.

But then last night the Oregonian posted this story, which says, “The proceedings begin at 7:30am Portland time.” So maybe it isn’t an evening thing after all. (Duck-tracker Michael Princip tells me he’s confirmed the morning start time via a Nikeblog representative.)

I’m hoping for the morning slot, in part because it’ll give me more time to write my Wednesday ESPN column and in part because I have an important appointment this evening that simply cannot be rescheduled. (No, it’s not with an oncologist, a bankruptcy attorney, a hot chick, or Wayne Hagin, but feel free to speculate.) I’ll be getting home around 11pm. So if the unveiling turns out to be in the evening, I’ll miss the whole thing and then will have to sit down after I get home, paw through a few hundred photos that everyone will have sent me, and stay up until 2am-ish cobbling together tomorrow’s ESPN column. Ugh.

Anyway: Watch this space for details, as I’ll update it as I learn more. Update, 12:18pm Eastern: Unveiling now in progress. I’ll have a short piece on ESPN within the hour or so. Full-length ESPN column tomorrow.

Further update: Here’s today’s short ESPN piece. Full-lengther tomorrow.

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Meanwhile, Auburn — remember Auburn? — will just be wearing their regular uniforms for the big game (or they’d better be, because that’s what several Auburn and Under Armour people have told me over the past week). But they’ll have special gloves and cleats. Those designs were released yesterday. In the evening. On the web, with no live event. So much easier.

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Line dancing: Yesterday I mentioned that the snowy conditions at the Pats/Bears games were wreaking havoc with CBS’s first down stripe. For those who want a fuller explanation, reader Adam Seabury has provided one:

First, a few basics of how the whole system works. I know this is obvious, but the line is computer-generated. Any camera that’s going to have that line projected onto its image pretty much needs to be bolted to the floor, so that it doesn’t move. When the exact location of the camera is entered into a computer, a program can then figure out exactly where the camera is pointing and can create a line that appears like it’s actually right on the field.

That’s all well and good on its own with an empty field. But when there are people running around down there, the computer needs a way to tell the difference between the turf and the people. To do that, they use the same method used on movies and TV when they use a green/blue screen. You pretty much see it every day when the weatherman stands in front of his big map. In a studio, a very specific pure-green is usually used. That color can be “keyed out” and replaced by a different image.

On a football field, it’s a bit trickier. There isn’t any pure color tone. Usually, though, they do a pretty good job of finding the field’s exact tone, and the computer will only show its line on those areas. But when it snows, the field is much lighter. In order to still have that yellow line on the field, the color they need to project onto is nearly white. That creates issues when one team is wearing white jerseys. (Once in a while a weatherman will accidentally wear a green tie, and the same type of thing happens.)

If you want to learn even more, this page goes into a bit more detail.

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Fascinating stuff. Meanwhile, one item regarding that game that I neglected to mention yesterday: The grounds crew painted the yard lines red so they’d be more visible in the snow. Never seen that before.

Blast from powder blue past: A while back I posted this photo of former UCLA start Gary Beban posing with his old jersey. Someone out there liked the jersey so much that he commissioned Alain Nana-Sinkam of Classic Old School to make a reproduction of the jersey. Unfortunately, Alain’s customer — you know who you are — turned out to be a deadbeat and stiffed him on the fee for the jersey, so Alain sent it to me.

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It’s a very nice piece of work, and it actually fits me quite well. But the most interesting part is the crotch extension (or “diaper,” as Joe Skiba likes to call it). I’d never tried on a jersey with one of those before. Feels a bit odd, but it certainly succeeds in keeping the jersey tucked in. Glad I finally got a chance to see what one of these feels like.

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So here’s an idea: When I do one of my “Uni Watch Profiles” interviews, the transcribed text is usually really long, and I don’t mind telling you that the transcription process is pretty much my least-favorite Uni Watch-related task. So Johnny Ek has proposed an idea: What if we posted these interviews as audio podcasts, instead of transcriptions?

The pluses: You wouldn’t have to slog through a really long stretch of text; I wouldn’t have to transcribe everything; you’d get to hear the nuances of voice and inflection that are inevitably lost when a conversation is transcribed; I’d get to feel like I’m at least vaguely tech-current, even though I don’t actually own an iPod myself (yes, really).

The minuses: I sometimes link to things within the transcripts, and that would no longer be possible; maybe some of you prefer reading over listening.

I’m sure there are other pluses and/or minuses I’m overlooking, so I’d be curious to hear what you all think of this idea. Speak up, please.

Uni Watch News Ticker: Ladies and gentlemen, your new Big 10 conference logo. Can’t say I’m in love with it (and neither are the people behind this Facebook group), but the real issue isn’t the design itself. R. Scott Rogers, posting in yesterday’s comments, said it better than I could: “Not worth protesting the particular design of the logo as long as the name of the conference continues to be ‘Big Ten’ and it has any number of member schools that does not equal 10. As long as the message being communicated is in and of itself wrong, then the aesthetics of the thing are moot. It’s one of those deals where there’s no right way to do it.” Indeed. Further info here. ”¦ Annual disgrace rolled around last night in Houston, as the Texans trotted out their Halliburton blood-clot uniforms. … Latest example of cross-dressing: Cal volleyballer Robin Rostratter has been wearing a martial arts helmet since suffering a concussion last year. Further details here (with thanks to Ken Singer). ”¦ Here’s a nice little item about why Cardinals placekicker Jay Feely wears gloves (big thanks to Tom Nawrocki). ”¦ Hmmm, could this be where the Rays got the idea for their Braysers? (Nice find by Scott Little.) ”¦ Check out the sensational chain-stitching on this old Oregon hoops warm-up. I’d totally be bidding on that, but the seller says the pit-to-pit measurement is 24″, which is too big for me (great find by our own Scott M.X. Turner). ”¦ St. John’s is called the Red Storm. And before that they were called the Redmen. So of course it makes total sense that they wore black uniforms a few nights ago. Another milestone in stupidity from our friends at Nike (with thanks to Dylan Jenkins). ”¦ Color-on-color alert: Kansas and Colorado State got in the Xmas spirit on Saturday night (with thanks to Adam Yarnevich). ”¦ With all the current concern about concussions, ProCap inventor Bert Straus is back in the news. That article doesn’t add much that we haven’t already covered regarding Straus, but it does include a great Steve Wallace ProCap photo that I hadn’t seen before (with thanks to Paul Hirsch). ”¦ Fergie Jenkins is being commemorated on a Canadian stamp. I wonder how many other people busted for cocaine have received that honor (with thanks to Mike Hersh). ”¦ Ryan Connelly has taken his long-running Invaders DIY project into the T-shirt realm. ”¦ The Cubs will add a memorial patch next season for Ron Santo, but no word yet on what it will look like. ”¦ Really weak all-star uniforms for the AHL. ”¦ In a related item, the NHL All-Star logo has been applied to the RBC Center ice. ”¦ Good to see that Comcast is staying up to date on the NFL logo (with thanks to David Ross). ”¦ Check out the NOB on the guy in the center. Never seen that letterform before. “That’s Gregor Łomacz of Poland,” says Jeremy Brahm. “Wikipedia calls that character an L with a stroke.” ”¦ Interesting case of possible logo copycatting in the political realm. Recommended reading. ”¦ Oh, great: Look what logo showed up at yesterday’s Man U/Arsenal game. “I have a buddy overseas who sent me that screen shot,” says John Sobotka. “I think he put it best when he said, ‘Please tell me the US isn’t gonna corrupt our football with those shite kits that you guys like.'” ”¦ Latest team considering going to colored turf: Alma College, a D3 school (as reported by Colin Wasiloff).

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Comments (164)

    As someone who holds a degree in television production (that is going completely unused) I initially thought the same thing that Adam did in regards to the the first down line going over the players. That was until I looked at the picture and realized that the only color on the players that was not getting “keyed out” was the white parts of the uniforms. If they had set the key to place the line over the white snow you would think that the line covering the players would be the inverse of what we actually see.

    I was going to be all snarky and point out the TV issues with snowy fields and white jerseys as another reason to wear color vs color… but that isn’t the case here since they’ve got the line going over colored jerseys and not on the white parts. Someone just messed up.

    Did anyone get a screenshot of the scrimmage and first down lines moving in tandem with the camera pan in last night’s Giants/Vikings game? It was really weird.

    I saw that too. And they have been showing that clip on SportsCenter last night and this morning. The lines turned almost 45 deg. as the camera panned.

    Also as referring to the snow game…I think that they used some other technology besides “chroma key” for that game. The whole thing looked different than normal. I am not sure how to explain it but the lines looked solid as opposed to semi-transparent. It was very distracting.

    Well I’ll be damned. I didn’t even look too hard at the pictures because I know I’ve seen similar issues before that were definitely a chroma key error.

    Maybe it had something to do with the field ranging in color so much. The places that are cleared are pretty dark. Maybe they had to have a very wide range just to keep it showing up at all, and pure white was the only thing that was still getting blocked. When you look at that picture, you can definitely see that the white on the uniforms is brighter than any white on the field.

    I’m not sure where I’m getting this, but I seem to remember past snow games not having that line show up very clearly. Maybe in the past they sacrificed the clarity of the line in order to keep it from showing on top of players.

    Earlier this season on one of the New York Jets broadcasts the lines were pretty clearly going through the Jets player’s green jerseys (one of the night games). It was pretty bad but I believe they made an adjustment during half-time as I don’t remember it happening late in the game. I found it weird since I hadn’t seen it as bad before.

    I wonder if Cliff Lee still had his Philly Unis in the closet…..Everyone is saying “poor Yankees” they didn’t get what they wanted….

    But what everyone should be saying is “poor Mets” the will not sniff 1st place for the better part of this decade… what a rotation.

    Seriously though, what do players ( or teams for that matter ) do with uniforms once they are traded, sign elsewhere or retire?

    Uniform gets left behind — belongs to the team, not the player. Team will either sell it on the game-used memorabilia market (many teams have deals with specific auction houses, and some teams have Charlie Samuels to skim stuff off the top and sell it on the side) or repurpose it for use in the minor leagues.

    Paul, in case you’re interested, I know that in Japan, in some cases at least, all of a player’s equipment is issued to him and belongs to him. This is why game-used stuff can be so hard to find for a lot of teams. I was able to acquire several jerseys bearing the number 112 because the staffer (who are assigned such numbers) was selling off a pile of his old stuff.

    I think 33 is available. Last Phillie I remember with it was Aaron Rowand.

    Guess this means my Braves are playing for the wild card again.

    I’ve been watching the Premier League since the beginning of this season, and I’ve seen the “Pro Combat” ads in pretty much every game. It was bad enough seeing arsenal in their yellow & maroon kits, but the thought of them in anything resembling the Pro Combat unis is terrifying.

    well nike has f’ed with them before with the stupid white stripe so i wouldn’t put it past em. but for the most part i give nike credit with soccer unis b/c the keep tradtions for the most part.

    I think my buddy may have jumped the gun thinking its for the unis… the replay played stateside in the evening and it looks like the ad was for all the under-uni clothing they have (remember those weird ads with lebron made up of the octagonal pattern?)

    The rest of the ad said something about melting igloos and fighting against the cold, real bizarre

    I was watching the Portuguese Cup game on Sunday between Benfica and Braga, and that same Nike Pro Combat ad was being displayed. Neither team wears Nike, but they are the official supplier of the Portuguese Federation and Cup games, hence the ad.

    The “Å‚” character is pronounced like a “w” (and “w” is pronounced like a “v”) in Polish. So, with someone like Lech WaÅ‚Ä™sa of Solidarity fame, his last name is properly pronounced “va-WEN-sa.”

    It is interesting – I got pretty good with this during a link not long ago. I had to give a pre-show speech in front of some pretty large audiences, Polish and otherwise, who knew full well how I should pronounce the playwright’s name.

    As for the political logo stealing, I have no idea why Warren isn’t just owning up to and making up a baloney excuse like how he forgot to give credit or something. The designs are not only identical, but their arrangement is exactly the same as well. This isn’t even a case of a concept being copied, its just blatant lazy thievery.

    The whole thing isn’t arranged exactly the same, but enough of it is that it’s simply not possible that it was independently concepted and executed.

    Though to be fair, the copycat logo is a perfect expression of what the “No Labels” group is selling. So I give the logo designers credit for excellence in design. Originality and innovation are great in the abstract, but it takes real courage for a designer to resist the urge to create when unoriginality and tired hand-me-downs are what the project requires.

    Well, I don’t know about that. “No Labels” seems to be inclined towards political organization, or at least generating light if not heat.

    “More Party Animals” is, to judge from their website, entirely about selling t-shirts and stickers.

    Hmmmmm, that’s all the Big Ten logo / divisions announcement gets? Is that a case of poor planning on behalf of the conference’s PR team by dropping this announcement on a Monday with little warning?

    Or, is it a case of you don’t really give a shit, Paul?

    Frankly, I think it merits more consideration based on the weight of impact the conference makes across the collegiate sports/academic landscape. “Big Ten” is an iconic name, it doesn’t matter how many schools are in the conference.

    It’s like changing the name IBM… when everyone damn well knows there are no “machines” being sold at “International Business Machines.”

    Coca-Cola. IBM. General Motors. The name is in line with these types of iconic American organizations … less the flavor of the month Southwest Conference, Big (L)East, Mountain West Athletic Coast Conference, among others.

    Hence, the Pentagram design. Old school. Showing the true legacy of the leading collegiate organization.

    PS, I swear if the Big Ten expands to 20 (10 in two divisions…so everyone will be happy that the name fits) that the NCAA will go out of business. Seriously. If I’m Delaney, I’m moving in that direction. Add:

    Something international like the University of Toronto
    Cal, UCLA and/or USC
    ‘Cuse and/or Rutgers

    Something along these academic/athletic/geographic lines… the NCAA is “out of business,” and the Big Ten controls everything: television, research $$, athletics.

    Or, is it a case of you don’t really give a shit, Paul?

    Yes. That. I mean, I did make it the lead item in the Ticker. But a conference logo just isn’t that big a deal to me. How many people (outside of this web site) knew what the old logo was? Or the version before that? The name may be iconic, the but logo is a vanity project.

    Speaking of which:

    “Big Ten” is an iconic name, it doesn’t matter how many schools are in the conference.

    By that logic, it also doesn’t matter what its logo is. Iconic status trumps all!

    Come on, Paul. This identity is more than a vanity project. It’ll be on a television network (and god knows what else).

    You know there are millions of people outside of this website who knew the old logo. They’re the alums, supporters and such of the existing institutions and just about anyone who’s a college sports fan. Hell, there are a million tOSU supporters alone!

    Not in agreement with your logic. But, hey, it’s your site. Seems to me the most important/forward-thinking collegiate conference deserves more than a passing mention. You know, it’s up there with Oregon’s bowl uniforms, or the latest DIY project. lol I’m okay with agreeing to disagree. Just busting your balls.

    “Seems to me the most important/forward-thinking collegiate conference deserves more than a passing mention.”

    You mean the SEC changed its logo, too? ;)

    I watch at least two Big Ten football games each Saturday beginning at 11:00 CST on ESPN. I like Big Ten football and consider myself a fan. And I do not know what the logo/icon for the Big Ten conference is despite seeing it 4-5 times each Saturday for at least ten weeks in a row. I do know that they use a “1” in place of a “i” somewhre in the logo. OK. So what.

    I don’t know and I don’t care what ir looks like either. I live in Louisiana and could care less what the SEC logo looks like. Sorry. I think the twenty people that work in the Big Ten office might care, but then again, they probably have to look at that logo on every piece of paper going off of their desks …..

    No wonder the US lags behind in mathematical and scientific education. Here’s a sample test question:

    Q: How many schools are in the “Big Ten”?

    A: 10
    None of the above.

    Correct answer: Infinity.

    Makes sense to me.

    I’ve seen that comparison a few times. It’s a slab serif in all caps, and that’s where the similarity ends, for me. It is ‘quick glance’ similar, but when you really compare them, they’re not quite as similar as they were in that first look.

    What often happens with things like this that fall outside the ‘sports aesthetic’ is that many sports fans dislike it, while many designers like it, and we’re seeing that again based on the comments seen on Brand New compared to the comments on a sports-centric design forum like the Creamer Boards. Strange how that works.

    I’m involved with both the sports design world and the regular design world. I see it from both sides. I’m neither as high as the designers on it, not as low as the visually-inclined sports fans on it. I don’t mind calling it ‘Big Ten.’ To me, that’s like MTV. You would never change that, even though the programming is not really even music-centric anymore. ‘Big Ten’ it shall be until the end of time, but then, I don’t think the ’10’ should have been dropped in there. It already says ‘Big Ten.’ I think that’s enough of a callout to the original 10 members, as it has been since they last changed the logo. I also would have preferred a more athletic block look to the letterforms as the previous logo had. Not those same letters (didn’t love them, either), but similar letters.

    Well, the new B1G mark is hugely better than the full “BIG TEN” mark with the negative-space “TEN.” The problem is that, just as the full mark is hopelessly stuck in 1973, the smaller mark is hopelessly stuck in 1993. I happen to like 1993, so I like the logo, but the visual trick of the logo really depends on the viewer having a pre-internet mindset. Back then, you’d look at the visual pun and pronounce the word as either “BIG” or “B-Ten.” Today, thanks to internet naming and pronunciation conventions, that’s neither “BIG” nor “B-Ten.” It’s “Bee-One-Gee.” We’re now used to pronouncing numbers inside words like Y2K or 4G or Web 2.0 or MST3K. So now, if you throw a number into text, you can’t rely on the reader getting the visual pun and pronouncing the number as the letter it replaces. Today, the average reader will expect to pronounce the number as the number.

    As to the comparison with corporate names, that actually makes my point about “Big Ten” needing to update its name. IBM and GM don’t use their full names any more. There is no “machine.” There’s just the initialism. In fact, most businesses, when they transcend the descriptive accuracy of their original names, change their names, precisely because an inaccurate name is limiting and thus bad for business. Some simply drop the words behind the name, so General Motors becomes GM, British Petroleum becomes BP, or Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing becomes 3M. Some adopt a nickname, so Federal Express becomes FedEx. Others adopt completely new names, so Arthur Andersen Consulting becomes Accenture.

    If the time was ripe for a rebranding as comprehensive as the Big Ten just undertook, then the time was ripe for solving the unnecessarily limiting paradox of the numerical name. I mean, if the U.S. government could figure this out in the 1810s and permanently set the flag to 13 stripes but an increasing number of stars, rather than either maintaining both stars and stripes at 13 or at the current number of states, then surely the professionals working the Big Ten account two centuries later can be expected to come up with a real solution.

    “I mean, if the U.S. government could figure this out in the 1810s and permanently set the flag to 13 stripes but an increasing number of stars, rather than either maintaining both stars and stripes at 13 or at the current number of states, then surely the professionals working the Big Ten account two centuries later can be expected to come up with a real solution.”

    That’s a bad analogy because adding the 50th star to the flag without renaming the country it is akin to changing the logo with the addition of the 11th and 12th universities without renaming the conference. It’s still the United States of America despite the fact that the 50th state not on either American continent but rather is part of Polynesia.

    What I’m saying is that the flag manages to communicate both the revolutionary origins of 13 states and the current national structure of 50 states, whereas prior to the 1810s the flag was most commonly used to communicate one or the other but not both. Surely if the Big Ten, or Bee-One-Gee as it now calls itself, wants to maintain the concept of ten-ness as part of its legacy intellectual property, there is a way to do that using its logo – its flag – while still updating its name to reflect its status as a conference no longer defined by a particular number of member schools.

    And just because those companies dropped their original long names in their corporate style guides in favor of acronyms doesn’t make people forget what they stand for. If the name had changed, there would be just as many people clamoring about the loss of ‘Big Ten’ as there are now that are clamoring that it’s still called the ‘Big Ten.’ It’s just a double-edged sword.

    I don’t know if I can really put my finger on something that justifies keeping the name as Big Ten. In truth, yes, it’s an ill-fitting name. But it just “feels” right.

    “Big Ten” just has gravitas, I guess. “Big Twelve” (not an option, anyway) or “Big Dozen” or “Intercollegiate Conference of Faculty Representatives” or whatever you’d have them call it just sounds lesser by comparison.

    I heartily disagree that keeping the name intact will be in any way bad for business.

    At any rate, I stand by what I said yesterday that just because the conference name is misleading does not mean that the logo’s aesthetic value is moot. I say you can still design an aesthetically pleasing logo for an ill-named conference.

    Another good example is the East Coast Hockey League. The name made sense when the teams were in North Carolina, Virginia, even East Tennessee. But when the West Coast Hockey League folded and teams from Anchorage, Boise, Fresno, etc., were added, the name no longer made sense. The league changed its name to the ECHL.

    You think that logo sucks?

    The logo is the least of my worries. “Legends” and “Leaders”? Who named those divisions? Because I could do his job for half the salary.

    Overthink and arrogance. That’s what I thought when I heard those names.

    I can begrudgingly understand not changing the conference name, but the division names are awful.

    Hey Jim,

    Call me when the SEC forms its own stand-alone network. Oh, that’s right, they tried to model the Big Ten but had to get in bed with ESPN to do it.

    Okay, then call me when the SEC is the first to institute instant replay. No?

    How about you call me when more than one SEC institution actually cares as much about their academic reputation as they do their athletic reputation. (Vanderbilt.)

    That’s what I meant by the most forward-thinking collegiate conference, where the institutions actually SHARE resources (academic and athletic).

    Football results notwithstanding, as I’ll give you that with the SEC.

    Well, the SEC does have CBS as its network, along with that ESPN deal.

    Academics-wise, I’m not arguing with you. The B1G TEN is practically Ivy League-ish there.

    I was just keeping it in the realm of football. They seem to have this chip on its shoulder there. I was joking to one of my friends that they should have just named the conferences “We Think We’re Better Than The SEC” and “Don’t You Agree?” In many ways, I would agree, but not when it comes to football or football uniforms.

    Don’t get me wrong, I don’t root for the SEC. Well, unless they’re playing Ohio State. I’m a Penn State fan and a Big East fan, but I do acknowledge the SEC knows a thing or two about football.

    Did you go to a B1G TEN school, or just a fan? Just curious.

    We had the volleyball player earlier in the year on Oct. 26th.
    Also from Jeremy: Robin Rostratter, the libero on Cal’s women’s volleyball team, has had some issues with concussions, so she wears padded headgear.

    coupla things

    * while podcasts might be cool, and it’s an idea definitely worth exploring, i personally prefer reading the transcriptions…i guess it’s not possible to do both if “the transcription process is pretty much my least-favorite Uni Watch-related task” — also, many of us might be reading at work, and the podcast either might not be *doable* or we may not have the capabilities to listen, or something, so it might not work out as well

    not saying don’t try it — i’d totally be up for a podcast or two to judge feedback…just saying that either a partial transcription or offering both would likely be better…of course that defeats the whole purpose of the multimedia element and would require you to transcribe everything

    just my $.02


    * the texans looked like shit last night

    i even dismissed the idea of them wearing their blue pants with the red shirts, but after thinking it over…

    this isn’t the worst look they could have

    My vote is for transcripts. I read Uniwatch at work and virtually all media type stuff is blocked. I already can’t see half of the pictures (sometimes no pictures when they decide that they’ll try blocking flickr again). And I’m convinced that the only reason ESPN is getting through is because some VP wants to check on his fantasy team.

    I vote for both. A UW podcast would be sweet. And as an editorial matter, most publications use podcasting as a lever to permit shorter interview texts. So the transcript could focus on highlights, reducing the workload, with the reader directed to the podcast for the complete interview. And then in X years, X probably being a number less than 5, free voice-to-text will permit automated transcribing of sufficient quality that a light edit will permit full-transcript posting with less labor than a normal post.

    Oh, and a “podcast links ticker” would solve the links problem. Most quality podcasts provide a list of corresponding links; this has been standard practice and good podcast etiquette for at least five years now. Shouldn’t be a factor in choosing whether or how to introduce podcasting.

    Well, I do love the transcripts. I like to imagine the voice and reactions and pauses as I read and scroll…it feels like being a fly on the wall. But, yeah, that’s a lot of work!

    Bring on the podcasts.

    Meanwhile, nice DIY piece. I really like that font. Understated yet classy.

    put me down as a vote for sticking with transcripts.

    I’m much more likely to read an interview than I am to listen to one, especially if it starts getting lengthy.

    I agree. Here is my major issue with podcasts. Many of us read this while at work and do not have the ability to listen to audio.

    While if there was a topic that I was very interested in I might try and remember when I got home but I feel that typically I would forget or get sidetracked and never get around to it. Many of the interviews I read were great and I never would have thought they would interest me just by reading a description of the person.

    I, like many other readers, might not realize what we are missing by not listening.

    That’s kind of a weak excuse of “I got home but forgot”. Leave a Post-It-Note near the monitor or something.

    Personally I’d prefer a transcript, but I know transcribing takes a lot of time, effort & attention to detail. I could see why Paul would want to stop doing them. So my vote goes to Podcast.

    Is there some kind of program out there that automatically transcribes voice patterns into text? There has to be an app out there for something like that.

    I vote for both, but obviously you’re trying to reduce your workload- and that wouldn’t help would it?

    I’m curious if your transcription is the entire interview or an edit? If its the latter, I’d love to have the option of hearing the entire interview.

    Anyway, as an avid reader… if you want my single vote… a podcast/mp3 is what I’d choose.

    Also… no reason you can’t link to the mp3, and then provide a list of relevant links that previously were in the text.

    link to mp3 here

    relevant links mentioned:
    click here for this uniform
    click here for photo of so and so

    In addition to Comcast using the old NFL logo, (of all places) continues to use outdated logos for their online NHL game recaps. They have a Bruins logo that is over 4 years old. I know the NHL isn’t their premier sport, but come on…

    The Power Rankings page has similar issues. The main rankings page (with the picks by their staffers) has the current logos, but go to the “You pick ’em” page, and you’ve got the 1995 “B”, the 1998-colors Orca, the navy-blue Islanders logo, and the original Lightning, Sharks, and Senators logos. It was also more than a year after the change before they updated the Caps, Sabres, and Ducks logos, although they did get rid of the Buffaslug quickly – leaving a full image of the logo instead of the zoomed-in section the rest of the teams have, showing just how half-assed of a job whoever’s responsible for that page is doing.

    Of course, organizing that list alphabetically by nickname, instead of by geographic location, throws me off anyway.

    Hey Paul, ease up on the A.H.L. will you. First, the game is in Hershey, the oldest team in the league (since 1937-38, one year after the league was formed)and it celebrates the 75th Anniversary of the A.H.L. The Chocolate Brown and Cream colors of the sweaters replicate the Bears’ original hues in the days when the sweaters were made from wool.

    And DYK that the Hershey Bears (74-years old) and the Rochester Americans (55-years old) are the seventh- and eighth-oldest continually-operating professional hockey clubs in North America? The Bears and Amerks trail only the “Original Six” of the N.H.L. in longevity.

    Give the league its due, eh?

    I’m an AHL fan. Went to many AHL games while I was in college. I fail to see how critiquing an all-star jersey qualifies as “[not giving] the league its due.”

    I think the AHL jerseys. I wouldn’t call them weak. They are simple and classy. They look A LOT like the 2004 NHL All Star unis. Very nice.

    I give the AHL credit for doing the 75th season with the throwback games earlier in the year and now these jerseys. Then again I am a big fan of throwbacks. Even the odd and ugly ones. Beats any swoopy and over-designed hot mess that teams have been going with since RBK took over.

    The 2010 AHL unis were horrible just like the NHL’s.

    Can’t wait to see these on the ice with the full uniforms. Some might call them weak but I call them classy.

    How come these uniforms get cream-for-cream’s-sake (or the so-called “vintage white” treatment), when Hershey’s own throwbacks used regular white?

    These remind me of the 2004 NHL All-Star Game unis that we got in Minnesota, and I didn’t like those fauxback designs either – mainly because they insisted on using Minnesota’s “wheat” color instead of white. Speaking of the Wild, it’d be nice if they incorporated a little white in their red and green uniforms, and not so much of the “wheat”. (Between the two sets, the only bit of white is the star/eye in the red uniform’s logo.)

    Is that what they’re calling it these days? I’ve been calling it khaki, and yeah, it fails as a white-substitute. That said, I generally like the Wild’s jerseys.

    I do like the Wild’s unis somewhat, and I’ve given them a pass on the non-white only because wheat has been part of their color pallet since at least 1998, when the franchise’s identity was established. Similarly, I don’t have a problem with the Blackhawks’ thirds/WC jerseys if only because they actually wore that tan/khaki color on the mid-1930s uniform they’re emulating.

    It’s when teams use the cream/”vintage white” because it “looks old”, and therefore gets somehow mistranslated in their heads as “traditional”, that drives me up the walls.

    Incidentally, I have no problem with a few baseball teams wearing cream, mainly because when they do, they still stand out quite well against the green/brown field, and the grays of the opponent (or dark color over gray pants if the road team’s wearing an alternate).

    Where’d you go to college? Albany? Syracuse? Philly? Haaahtford? The league’s choice of the old-school Hershey design is classic. These shirts do look like real, “old-time hockey” sweaters like the Bears wore in the late 1950s. They ought to play the game at the old Hersheypark Arena, the Bears’ original home. THAT would be a real throwback night.

    Things are a bit better in the world now that the Saints chose to wear their much-better-looking, more-professional, and NFL-worthy Gold Pants this past week while dismantling the Rams.

    What is curious about the Saints’ choice of tog-wear are that:

    1.) They chose to wear the Gold pants in the midst of a winning streak where they had won the previous four games wearing their disgusting Black Leotards (thus defeating my theory and mental concession that they’d wear the hideous leotards for the extended future in some gris-gris laden, superstition plan to stick with what brought them good luck – class and hideousness be damned); and

    2.) They chose to wear their Gold pants in a game where the Rams also chose to wear their Gold pants (thus defeating my theory that they would wear the pants that most contrasted with their opponents’ uni ……)

    There is no rhyme or reason as to what the Saints wear and when they wear it. I was by chance able to have a long conversation about this with Saints GM Mickey Loomis after the last years’ NFC Championship Game (no, I did not stalk him over my incessant hatred of the Black Leotards – he was trapped anyway at a notoriously lengthy 2:00am auto valet stand and it just seemed like the right time to traverse his thoughts on the subject…), and Loomis said that while he preferred the White jersey/Gold pants combo, that there was no clear chain of command on who and when they would chose the uni to wear.

    My sense of it is that the team lets the players and/or coaches choose the uni, and that the players and assinine young coaches and assistant film crew members tend to want the Black leotards because they believe that it looks “bad” in the same sense that Gene Wilder/Richard Pryor made fun of in 1980s movies when they put ghetto blasters to their ears and pimped walked around shouting “WE BAD, WE BAD”, but that after wearing the crappy black rthug-wannbe leotards for a stretch, and that after a goodly portion of adult complaints overheard by the owner Tom Benson, the owner will then “suggest” a more appropriate uniform for an NFL team, and the Black pants will go away for a couple of weeks until the idiots that want them find a way to wear them again (contrast, or luck, or whatever …)

    And so the Ying and the Yang of the Saints’ uni choices continue.

    I am just happy that this past Sunday I got to see my Saints dressed like an NFL team again. Now maybe we could dig up Roman Gabriel, make him play again for the Rams again, and sack him about 350 times to make up for the misery he and his Rams brought us for all those years so long ago …..

    I love podcasts…and it’s an interesting idea. But I do agree that you’d lose some of the links. I guess you could dump any photo links in the section where you would drop the audio link.

    Maybe do one as a trial and see how the feedback is?

    Could spawn a weekly podcast about unis. I’m sure you could chat with some of us for a half hour a week about unis, Mondays after an eventful Sunday in the NFL, for example.

    Yes, the European complaints about the Evil Empire’s Nike Division ruining their kits is a bit late. Nike has been outfitting a handful of teams for quite a while. They changed Arsenal’s logo to one that is simple and more TV friendly and that happened probably 10 years ago.

    They will certainly outfit some teams in crappy looking kits (the previous Arsenal home was no all-star) but it just look at some of the crap that took the field in the 80’s when Nike was nowhere to be seen. Bad design happens.

    Agreed. Although Arsenal had a trademark on the old crest, under the UK’s laws, they couldn’t copyright it since they weren’t able to provide certain details of its creation (including the designer, or first use). Not that uncommon for a logo from the 1940s, but there you have it.

    The crest had changed under Nike’s watch, but only slightly – from link.

    Interesting (and disheartening) story about Bush Stadium in Indianapolis, and its current status as a “cash for clunkers” junkyard:


    Actually nope, the hat tip says Jeremy. I sent it to Jalopnik Saturday night.

    Sat 12/11/2010 7:55 PM
    Subject: A baseball stadium full of cars

    When we were having the cash for clunkers, cars in Indianapolis were put into old Bush Stadium. This is where the Indianapolis Indians played Triple-A baseball and was used as the basis for Comiskey Field and Crosley Field in the movie “Eight Men Out”

    Here is a Google aerial map of the stadium full of cars to go to the junkyard.

    Just amazing

    That is sad. Last I knew, it was still being used for drag racing or something like that. My first Indians game was at that stadium. I’ve still got the big duffel bag from the “sunset season” that I regularly use for luggage.

    Still, Victory Field really is a beauty of a minor league park, eh?

    Add this to your different use for stadiums pictures, Paul. I saw it this weekend and sent it to Jalopnik. Got used today.


    Totally random, but speaking of outdated NFL logos, I want to know why the Saints are the only team for which ESPN for some reason uses a “reverse field” logo: they show the Saints’ fleur-de-lis in gold instead of black, like it is on their helmet.

    It probably has something to do with the Saints own official designation of that logo. The Saints themselves currently have the gold version on their own website.

    ESPN using it instead of the black one is pretty much the same thing as when they use the Eagle’s head instead of the wing.

    According to Chris Creamer (who usually gets these things from the official sheets), the gold fleur-de-lis is link. The helmet version is an alternate.

    Which is why the link uses the gold fleur-de-lis.

    I’m shocked, but Wikipedia actually has this one link.

    PAY UP DEADBEAT!! Alain made a terrific recreation of my dad’s 1958 high school football jersey for dad’s 50-year reunion. He was professional, communicative, asked questions about a level of detail that I could not have imagined. I could not have been happier with Alain or more proud of a gift for my dad. I know Uni Watch is not necessarily about product endorsements, but Alain is a class act, and deserves to be treated that way.

    Agreed – although I’ve not had any direct experience, my father and brother had him make my entry from the NFL re-design contest as a consolation prize. The result was terrific, and by their accounts he was great to work with.

    I’m having Alain make my MLB redesign entry, and he’s not asking for payment until completion. Which is great for the customer, but as someone with a rooting interest in the success of his business, makes me kind of nervous!

    And let me join dad and the bro in vouching for Alain’s professionalism, collegiality, and general great-to-work-withiness.

    Gorgeous Oregon jacket – that’s exactly the kind of thing I wanted to buy when I went there, but of course they didn’t offer it at the time.

    Am I bidding against anyone else here?

    To say nothing of your “I’m never buying anything that has to do with Oregon” mantra (and maybe your “I’m never buying anything with a mascot who looks like Donald Duck” mantra), right?

    “your “I’m never buying anything that has to do with Oregon” mantra”

    my what?

    hey…what happened to that cup of neon kool aid that was just on my desk???

    Overall the vikings redux to the field was great despite a noticeable blue hue where the lions logos were so I’m not knocking that in the slightest, they did the best with what they had…

    I just got a laugh a couple times when there’d be an errant blue splotch at some random part of the field… who dropped the paint??

    I like the transcripts because with them you get Paul’s amusing little editorial comments between brackets. Used to think the transcriptions of Mets radio broadcasts were hilarious for this very reason.

    I really kinda like the Houston “Battle Red” jerseys, well, when they used to wear them with the white pants. Last night’s outfits made it look like the Ravens vs a team of Santa Claus’ from the local mall. Man, that all red look is completely hideous.

    Houston radio gamers have been calling that set ‘The Ketchup Bottles”. But The red over white pants is a good alternate.

    Damn my head is about to explode with all this today!

    1.DIY Mets jacket is great, the attention to detail is what make the followers of this site the best

    2.UCLA Jersey=Uncomfortable

    3.Texans how bout a look at the White road jersey over the red pants?

    4. BFBS St Johns= Loss to Fordam after blowing two double digit leads serves them right.

    5. Paul you must have seen the glory days of the Binghamton Whalers? I loved the W logo that was tipped on its side to look lie a B. The blue/green/white combo is very underused in todays sports.

    6.Unrelated, I just received the Pittsburgh Crawfords jersey from EFF I ordered a while back. All I can say is AWSOME!

    Yes they did! I can remember listening to the games on WNBF 1290 am, and hearing that everytime they scored.

    >>3.Texans how bout a look at the White road jersey over the red pants?

    Ask, and you shall receive: link

    The original picture was blue pants and red socks. The red pants & red socks looks like crap, so I switched the socks to blue.

    Chris Creamer’s Sports Logos Community! One of these days, the two of you need to do a sit down interview…

    it could be…looks like boise community college just added a blue top to their september toy combat uni

    Don’t know why…But I’m diggin’ the socks. The rest…meh.

    Us Uniwatcher’s like to build up nike things because we always expect it to be crazy/over the top. But this was a huge ordeal for numbered undershirts with yellow socks.

    Are those gray numbers with yellow trim on the Oregon jersey? Or is that the green/yellow-numbered version they’ve already used? It’s hard to tell.

    If those are green, the lighting is doing a really good job of making them not look it. It looks almost like a bronze or pewter color to me …which would seem to match the helmet, actually.

    Of course, biggest game in school history, and Nike feels they should come out in neon yellow socks with plain white pants. I seriously hope they change their minds come gameday. Cuz, that looks like shit!

    They need to take the black/gray/carbon sleeves and bring it down as the socks also. For the love of……

    im actually glad they’re not changing the feather template (much)

    they’re about to win the national champeenship…last thing they need to do is jinx it with something really drastic

    i think their best look this season was their civil war getup — but we knew they wouldn’t repeat that, and of course, it had no school colors (unless you count the outlines of the numbers)

    Interesting – the Nike folks forgot the conference logo on the Oregon jersey. Wonder if this means the PAC-12 logo will make its debut in the BCS Natty?

    Paul, Nike are Man United’s kit manufacturers. There’s a swoosh painted into the seats at Old Trafford as well.

    A more uni-related note from that game, and I wish I’d grabbed a screenshot: late in the second half, Rio Ferdinand went up for a challenge, inadvertently kicking Bacary Sagna and ripping a huge hole in the front of his shirt.

    The best part about the ad boards, by the way:

    At one point, two ads popped up back-to-back. “United Against Drunk Driving” and “Singha Beer”. Epic.

    Sorry to be a stickler. But, the UCLA jersey has a six button crotch-piece. There is a fold that hides 2 buttons in the photo and the re-make only has 4. That numeral font was originally created by Spanjian Sportswear of Pasadena. But a nice copy at any rate.

    I noticed that too. But here’s the thing: The repro is a much smaller jersey than the original. Everything got a bit smaller — including the crotch piece. Or at least that’s my take. Alain would know for sure.

    Phil, you looking for a quote to tack to the end of this Saturday’s post?

    Can I nominate this?

    “Everything got a bit smaller – including the crotch piece. Or at least that’s my take. Alain would know for sure.”

    you know…my 14 year old gutter mind was thinking of a way to quote that without appearing…ya know…purile

    you just took care of that for me

    No problem, buddy. That’s what I’m here for. I know you’re all about the prim and proper so I took one for the team.

    really fun post today, interesting about the font too. kudos to steve for his research, work, and not settling for just any font!!! the jacket looks great!

    don’t forget your horchata jeff. for someone who flies the anarchy flag in the face of tradition, or olde school, or however you want to phrase it, you sure do have a lot of rules. all this stinks, all that is great, teams should always, teams should never. you sound like one of the powder people sometimes, your’re better then that.

    I have to admit that I too hate all white football uniforms with dark or metallic helmets. It is the classic baseball look, but IMO it sucks for football. For some strange reason I do like an all white football uniform like the Colts or Dolphins, just don’t like the baseball look.

    all i i was saying is you can’t deal in absolutes in uni’s. you can have preferences, like in most cases i prefer dot dot dot, or as a general rule dot dot dot. for instance alabama’s road does not look good? there is one example off the top of my head. why the obsession with matching? what are we, a bunch of garanimals?

    Gary Beban’s jersey is a great illustration of the time when a shoulder loop was large enough to look appropriate and stylish, unlike the crappy facsimile worn by the Indianapolis Colts. I understand that jersey construction has changed over the years, but I would expect a sport that generates billions of dollars at the collegiate and professional levels to find a way to make their uniforms at least moderately appealing.

    For those in to Starter jackets:

    In this video:
    at the 3:47 mark you’ll see a jacket that’s done up in the old Blazers font. Are there any other name on back styles out there???

    Starter’s NCAA jackets had lettering that had stitching similar to what Steve describes, in which they embroider a letter, then used embroidery again to finish the letter. In this catalog scan:
    it was called “Starter’s Exclusive Swiss Embroidered Lettering”.

    So they may have options to change pants? or socks?

    With all the Ducks combos it is hard for me to tell if that was new or not.

    They need more green and yellow.

    For those who are just endlessly refreshing this page, I’ve added a new (very short) blog post about the Nikegon design. I suggest we take all the commentary on that uniform over to that post.

    i vote yes on podcast. ultimately i think it would mean more of your commentary and opinion, which is why i come here. i figure less time on transcription=more time on the story, even if it is a short write-up. then, if i want to hear this or that i can listen to whomever on the podcast. the way i see it the entry would be better for saving you torture.

    I’m not a fan of the Texan’s all red unis but what the hell does Haliburton have to do with it?

    RE: the Red yard lines and sidelines painted red at Soldier Field on Sunday- I was at the game and noticed the red yard lines and sidelines almost as soon as we sat down. It definitely helped in being able to tell whether runners made first downs, where the end zone/sideline was, etc.
    It didn’t matter where you were sitting in the stadium, the snow was literally swirling in all directions into the spectators faces- and everyone I talked to in our section commented on the red paint being a godsend just for following what was happening on the field.

    Steve Dodell, great jacket! Not a Mets fan, but I liked those 80s unis, including the jackets.

    Thanks also for reminding me I have several DIY projects piled up and waiting for me to complete.

    Ryan Connelly’s t-shirts are very cool as well. Good stuff.

    Alain, of course, did stellar work with that UCLA jersey, too.

    But the highlight of the day has to be seeing the weatherman’s tie on that youtube video.

    Saw this, lawyers apparently have filed for patents on several logo concepts for a Brooklyn basketball team, believed to be used by the New Jersey Nets following there move to Brooklyn.


    “I think he put it best when he said, ‘Please tell me the US isn’t gonna corrupt our football with those shite kits that you guys like.’”

    Oh yeah, we would hate to corrupt uniforms whose main design element is a corporate sponsor’s logo.

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