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Project ‘Redo’ — The NFC

TJ's Saints

By Phil Hecken

I have a very special treat for those of you who love the “tweaks” this holiday weekend. Today, I’m joined by my “SMUW” college football guru, Terry Duroncelet, who has been undertaking what at first glance seems to be a very minor project — tweaking the new NFL uniforms produced by Nike for this season (and beyond). But the (for the most part) very subtle tweaks you’re about to see are incredibly well reasoned, and in most cases (at least in my opinion), really are the ‘final piece’ to making good uniforms even better. What I like best about TJ’s concepts is he doesn’t embark on any wholesale changes; rather, the fixes are just enough. I really think these turned out great. So, I will simply turn the rest of this lede over to Terry, who not only explains his changes — he sets the whole project up in a way that shows you just how devoted he is to improving NFL design. You’re in for a treat. Here’s TJ:

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Project Redo the Nike Football League
By Terry Duroncelet

Like the many (or few) of you from October 2010 to April 2012, I was eagerly waiting for the NFL’s uniform partnership with Nike to go underway. Then came April 3rd, 2012. Looking at the uniforms the first time around, there were some things that I really liked, and some things that I didn’t like. Some of the good highlights include the death of the shoulder nubs and Laffy Taffy fabric for some teams, and other designs that were once lame have become quite pleasing to this 21 year-old’s terrible eyes (seriously, my vision sucks).

However, underneath my preference for the swoosh is someone who looks at things from both sides.

Some of the unfortunate highlights include the washing out of my beloved Saints’ gold (but the trade-off is that the golds match!), the mesh panels that have aptly been named the sweat polygons, and one of the most noticeable changes (if not the most noticeable change): the effect that the Flywire collar has on teams with contrast collar colors. Actually, I don’t have a big problem with this. Sure, it’s gonna look stupid and gimmicky next season, but for this season, I can live with it. Although, the biggest casualty in this is what the collar did to the Buccaneers‘ uniform. To me, Tampa Bay’s uniform — if not the best uni in the NFL — is definitely the most perfectly-constructed uniform in the NFL. The colors are perfectly balanced, the pewter is unique, and even though some may disagree, they look just as good in the white pants as they do in the pewter.

Of course, specific details regarding the Nike Pro Combat/Speed Machine/Elite 51/whateverthefuckit’scalled uniform is different for each team. For example:

• The Patriots have three uniforms that use the Speed Machine template from head-to-toe, but the collars for the standard home and roads have the traditional collars that you would find on the old Reebok and Adidas uniforms from New England past, and the throwback uniforms have the Speed Machine collar base, but without the Flywire technology.

• The Steelers‘ and Texans‘ unis also take a cue from the NE throwbacks.

• The Cowboys use a white and a navy Speed Machine jersey, but with the shiny blue-green-silver pants for the white top, and the same treatment is applied to the more grey-silver pants that are paired with the rarely-seen blues. The white top has the full Flywire collar (you’ll have to zoom in), while the blue top has a traditional collar. This means that teams that use the neck-fauxll (that’s ‘neck roll’ and ‘faux’ combined) volunteered to do so. So really, while Nike did offer this poison to the Bucs (among many others), TB still chose to rub it on their necks.

• And let’s not forget Green Bay, Carolina, Atlanta, Philadelphia, and Oakland, who were the five teams that didn’t take any of Nike’s offers (small mesh pant stripes and a change in maker’s marks aside). The main thing that bothered me with the new uniforms was this: with the way the Speed Machine jersey top is constructed, I honestly thought that teams like the Vikings, Falcons, Cardinals, Bengals, Jaguars (somewhat), Patriots, and Broncos were going to have to get rid of their side panels. With that half-circle thing at the hip, and the two different fabrics, I was sure that this move was certain. Alas, ’twas not to be. At least the Broncos look better … slightly.

Overall, I liked the huge improvement in cuts and technology, but it left me hungry for more change. Then came The Gridiron Uniform Database’s announcement that the graphics were going HD with their 2012 NFL uniforms. I was sorta-but-not-really counting the days until the Hall of Fame game between the Saints and Cardinals, because I knew that it would be my first opportunity to see the new graphics, and I was amazed! They were a lot better than I was expecting! I immediately downloaded the graphics from the site, just to play around with them. What first came out was a cleaned-up version of what the Cardinals currently wear. After letting it sit in my computer for a few weeks, I decided to mess around with the Saints road, along with the Packers road, the Cowboys home, and the Raiders home, when an idea came to mind: “Hmmm, these are looking like what I envisioned the NFL would look like with the jump to Nike. What if I did this for all of the teams?” Enter: Project Redo the Nike Football League.

What I’ve done is taken every team and given them at least one tweak. The one rule that I imposed on myself: keep these designs as realistic and close to what the teams currently wear IRL (in real life) as possible. Some teams were tempting to just give a big overhaul to, but I pretty much stayed in the lines here. Three things are consistent with every team: 1) Every team pant gets a contrast belt 2) Every pant uses the padded belt chamber that most of the teams IRL use 3) Every jersey top uses my tweaked version of the Speed Machine jersey, with the small change being this: you see the woven fabric that makes up most of the jersey in this LSU tweet (that means no armpits or abdomen)?

I figured if Nike’s gonna talk a big game about how the fabric can stretch 8 quillion ways to the 2016 election, it can repel water, it’s 28.8675309% lighter, and all of these out-the-ass numbers, why aren’t they using this for the ventilation panels? I’m not gonna stand here and act like I know everything about how a uniform is constructed (because I don’t), but is it that hard to simply perforate it a bit so that the players can still have ventilation in those heat zones, but we won’t have mess like this?

I understand if I come off as a n00b here, but this just seems like one of those simple logic (or common sense — take your pick) situations. Maybe someone can set me straight on this. Anyway, a ventilated version of the woven fabric would be used in place of the sweat polygons for my vision of what the NFL should’ve looked like this season. One thing that will remain a varying option for teams is their choice of pant fabric. The new fabric being used by most of this season’s teams shows a straight up-and-down fly, while teams with shiny pants (Cowboys, Raiders, etc.) will have a lace-up fly.

Another thing that will still remain a varying option for all teams is their choice of collar design. Only this time, I game them a little more liberty by adding an option to have a fully-color-blocked Flywire collar, giving you three Flywire collar possibilities instead of two. And of course, the traditional and Speed Machine collars sans-Nikelace will be available options. Both the Nikelace and non-Nikelace will be about half the size they are now, even though the concepts may say otherwise.

Another change that I added was that the Flywire… wires *ahem* won’t have that strange film over it. Two reasons for this: 1) if they didn’t need this for the shoulders on the Nike Pro Combat v1.0 uniforms from 2009, I see no reason why they need it for the collars 2) As reader andyharry (Andrew Harrington) put it in the comments regarding LSU’s move to the Speed Machine uniform linked above: “The flywire on white, however, looks like they cut up a condom and glued it on the neck”¦” … Thanks for that mental image. I guess you can say the construction of those collars are… well protected.

Bad jokes aside, another reason that I wanted to do this was to challenge myself by expanding my *limited* skills in GIMP. I didn’t want to keep saying that I can’t change the black in the Eagle’s helmet wings, or this or that anymore. This project has proven to have done just that, and I’ll be sure to apply these new skills in the near future. Anyway, I’ve done my fair share of blabbering, it’s time to throw all of the things that I’ve been doing behind the scenes since August at your computer screens and blabber even more! Starting with the NFC, of course. One more thing to take note of: the descriptions of each design were taken from my deviantART account with some slight revisions in text, because some things that I stated in the original descriptions I either changed or took out here, because some parts would be repeating points that I stated here already, and others are things that most of you here on Uni Watch already know (like what the Nikelace looks like on contrast collars). So grab a seat and ready your bodies, because you’re in for a marathon of reading (assuming you aren’t already exhausted from what I’ve written so far today). All original templates taken from The Gridiron Uniform Database.

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NFC North

Detroit Lions: I actually don’t hate the Lions’ uniforms all that much, but they would obviously benefit from eliminating the black. The Honolulu Blue is slightly lighter, to better match the classic shade. The black facemask becomes Honolulu Blue, and the helmet/pant stripe is changed. The sleeve stripes are a nod to the sleeve stripes worn from 1975-2002. All of the black has been eliminated except for the cleats. Everything else stays the same. Home uniform is on the left, road uniform is on the right.

Minnesota Vikings: In my opinion, the Vikings currently have the worst uniforms in the NFL. The ugly side panels, the weird burple color, the once every blue moon burple pants… it’s a mess. What I did here was replace the burple with a more traditional Vikings purple. I also jettisoned the side panels on both jersey tops, as well as created a more streamlined pant stripe, while still keeping the white section that houses the Norseman logo. I kept the “horns” on the shoulders because I really liked them in a vacuum, but the Vikings could never get them right with their current uniforms. I did the road uni first a few weeks before I did the home, and my sloppiness on the front of the white jersey shows that I still need practice in GIMP. But I did a fantastic job on the purple jersey’s horn thingies, if I do say so myself. Everything else stays the same. Home uniform is on the left, road uniform is on the right.

Chicago Bears: I’m not gonna mess with perfection, but every team is going to get some change to their uniform, even if it’s as small as a belt color change, which is exactly what I’ve done here. Both the home and road unis get navy and orange belts (respectively), because I love contrast belts with uniform pants. I probably could’ve thinned out those sock stripes on the home uni a bit, but considering how wide the stripes are on the IRL uniforms, and that I wanted these concepts to be as plausible as possible, I left them as is. Everything else stays the same. Home uniform on the left, road uniform is on the right.

Green Bay Packers: While the Packers’ current uniforms are very much a staple of the franchise, I do feel that they could use some changes. I gave them the correct number of sleeve stripes on their home and road jerseys, in addition to reviving their striped socks. Also, I went back to the Cleveland Browns-style sleeve striping on the white tops. I wanted to use the darker green that they used back in the 1960’s, but I also wanted every concept to be as “real” as possible, so I (reluctantly) kept the current shade of green (which is not exactly Forest, but not exactly Kelly, either). I changed the collar on the green jersey to the Nike Speed Machine collar, but without the Flywire technology. I kept the striped collar on the white jersey, because I prefer the 1960’s look with the green jersey’s solid green collar, and the white jersey’s striped collar. The last thing that I did was change the entire pant to the Nike Speed Machine pant style (you can tell by the belt chambers), with a contrast green belt. Everything else stays the same. Home uniform is on the left, road uniform is on the right.

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NFC South

Carolina Panthers: The Panthers actually changed their uniforms slightly for the 2012 season: they changed their logo and wordmarks. However, at the Nike unveiling back in April 2012, the Panthers were one of five teams to not go with the Nike Speed Machine technology (along with the Packers, the Falcons, Eagles, and to an extent, the Raiders). I was honestly disappointed in the Panther’s decision to stay with last year’s technology. The main issue with the old tech lies within their shoulder stripes. Some players with the more Quarterback-style cuts have full stripes that go around the armpit, while others with the Lineman cuts (like #83) have stripes that run into and end at the top of the sleeve cuff. This uniform switches to the Speed Machine template (as it should have), which gives the black and white jerseys, plus the white pants a matte finish. The shiny silver home pants stay the same, except for two things: the belt chamber gets the same padded treatment as the other Speed Machine pants, and the pant stripe becomes mesh, instead of the current tackle twill. I changed the shape of the shoulder stripes so that they don’t wrap around the armpit, but also don’t truncate at an awkward position. They actually mimic the pant stripes. This gives them a more consistent look all around. The panther logos on the sleeves are currently printed, but my tweak would see that they are stitched on, because we all know that screened-on anything in uniform design sucks. Period. Well, maybe sleeve stripes can have a small pass. The Panthers’ collar slogan still says “KEEP POUNDING”. Everything else stays the same. Home uniform is on the left, road uniform is on the right.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Before 2012, if you would’ve told me that there was something about the Bucs’ current uniform that I was going to change, I would’ve called you nuts, but their choice to go with the Flywire collar this season was a bad one. Now, before everybody jumps on me saying “Oh! You can’t like their uniforms, you’re a Saints fan!”, let me say that I obviously don’t like the Bucs, but as stated earlier, I think that they have the most perfectly-constructed uniform in the NFL. Not the best, but the most perfectly-constructed. However, the Flywire collar needs to go. I decided to give them the Speed Machine collar without the Flywire technology for both the home and road jerseys. The pants are slightly different, as I changed the belt chamber to the Speed Machine padded belt chamber. Everything else stays the same. Home uniform is on the left, road uniform is on the right.

Atlanta Falcons: The Falcons are… not my favorite team, to say the least. You would think that I would want the lamest team (just a personal opinion!) in the NFC South to have the worst uniform in the division, but no. No team — no matter how lame — deserves to look like clowns when it comes to their gameday gear. What I did here was strip the jersey tops of those weird triangle thingies from the underarms, and left the tri-color stuff on the sleeves as a sleeve-cap design (where “sleeve” stripes would normally go). I made the decision to give them the Speed Machine collar without the Flywire technology, because I wanted to preserve the striped collar on the road jersey (one of the only good things about their current uniform). I understand that they’ll look rather weird considering how large the IRL collars look on most of the new Nike uniforms, but I gave them this collar because I think that it would be appropriate for such a modern-looking uniform like what the Falcons have. I should also note that the Falcons were one of the teams that chose not to use the Speed Machine template, which I thought was a weird and kinda-bad move IMO, so I moved them to the Speed Machine template for the jersey and pant. Speaking of pants, they do something really interesting with their pants: for the red jersey, they have white pants with a red triangle at the bottom of the leg with a black pipe, while their white jerseys are paired with pants that have a black triangle with a red pipe. That’s another thing that I really like about their current uniforms: the balance of black and red. I did my best to preserve that, so I gave them a black belt for their home pants, and a red belt for their road pants. I also put their pant stripe design on a serious diet, whittling it down to just two colored pipes: a red/black stripe for the home pants, and a black/red stripe for the road pants. Everything else stays the same. Home uniform is on the left, road uniform is on the right.

New Orleans Saints: Ah, yes. THE New Orleans Saints. The best team. Ever. Although, I won’t give them any special treatment uni-wise. While the Saints did work with Nike to correct the glaring error of the 4-5 different shades of gold that they were using in the old Reebok days, they used the WRONG SHADE OF GOLD. It should be Old Gold, not this washed-out mess that they continue to use! And the black pants are just flat-out ugly, whether they’re paired with the black jerseys or white jerseys. Gold pants are the TRUE Saints pants. What I did here was change the shade of gold to Old Gold, as it was intended. I also changed the pant stripe so that it matches the helmet and doesn’t encroach on the pant design of the NFL’s other black and gold team, the Steelers (I know most people will say yellow, but bear with me here). I really wanted to add the striped socks that they wore in their first two seasons (1967 and 1968), but I decided against it, because I want these designs to be as plausible as possible in the event that an NFL executive stumbles across this and actually wants to use this as a real uniform for the Saints (which seems unlikely, but you never know). The last major thing that I did was change the collar so that they’re all-black on the black tops, and all-white on the white tops. And no frickin’ black pants. EVER. Everything else stays the same. Home uniform is on the left, road uniform is on the right.

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NFC East

Philadelphia Eagles: The Eagles are one of the five teams that chose not to go through the Nike Speed Machine makeover machine. However, the reason was that Nike supposedly couldn’t match the Eagles’ shade of green to the team’s specifications (officially called “Midnight Green”, although Nike is calling it “Sport Teal”). I wanted to put them back in Kelly Green SO bad”¦ but I knew I couldn’t, because that would defeat the purpose of this whole project. Still, if Nike can color-block intricate patterns on football jersey numbers and re-create the frickin’ Taj Mahal on the backs of basketball uniforms, then there should be no excuse for Nike not being able to get the colors right for the Eagles, especially considering that they’ve had a year-and-a-half to work with the color (the Nike/NFL partnership was announced in October 2010). What I did here was move their current uniform to the Nike Speed Machine template (again: this is all hypothetical). They will not be getting the Speed Machine collar on either jersey, but the pants will be getting the padded belt chamber (those are what those two large chambers are on the hips). Everything else stays the same. Home uniform is on the left, road uniform is on the right.

Washington Redskins: I have a bit of a problem when people call an entire uniform a “jersey”. For instance, when people say “Check out the Bills’ new jerseys!”. Well, it looks like they got new helmets, pants, and socks, too. Where am I going with this? In 2010, Washington made one of the smartest moves in years and brought back the gold pants, along with some striped socks. This turned a decent-looking team into one of the best-dressed teams in the NFL, all without altering the tops, which is proof that there is more to a uniform than just a jersey. However, they haven’t made a permanent commitment to the pants yet. They still use the white pants with solid-burgundy socks, and the burgundy pants with the white striped socks. Not saying that that’s a bad thing, but uni-wise, they are at their best when wearing gold britches. What I did here was literally nothing but change the collar on the road jersey to solid-white, instead of the burgundy neck-fauxll that they currently have. Also, only one pant (gold) and one sock (“Packer-style”). Everything else stays the same. Home uniform is on the left, road uniform is on the right.

Dallas Cowboys: The Cowboys have some uni quirks that are unique and awesome, and some that should be laid to rest. The main issue with their current uniforms is that they use at least two different shades of silver, and at least three different shades of blue. It’s inconsistent. I don’t really mind the fact that their whites and their rarely-seen blues are not mirror-images of each other, but the colors need some order. What I did here was streamline everything to ONE shade of blue and ONE shade of silver (both derived from their 1971 Super Bowl season, which was their first Super Bowl title in team history). Everything else stays the same, including their current collar format, which is Flywire for the white tops, and traditional for the blue tops. Home/road uniform is on the left, blue uniform is on the right.

New York Football Giants: After years of wearing Reebok’s crappy stretch fabric (better known as “TechFit” by Reebok’s parent company, Adidas. Although, Reebok’s bodysuit came out a year or so before Adidas started using it for their college football teams), the Giants are back to wearing a REAL uniform. They were definitely one of the teams that benefited greatly from the switch to Nike. However there is still one detail that remains to be remedied: the T.V. numbers on the shoulders on the home uniforms. What I did here was move the T.V. numbers on the blue jersey from the shoulders to the sleeves, where they belong (IMO). The reason is that if there isn’t a team logo or a set of stripes on the sleeves, then I feel that T.V. numbers should go there. Everything else stays the same. Home uniform is on the left, road uniform is on the right.

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NFC West

Arizona Cardinals: It’s only fitting that the Cardinals are the ones who inspired me to do this project, because it was actually their stupid black uniforms that they unveiled in June? 2010 that actually got me into doing the uniform tweaks, revisions, and concepts that I repeatedly saw on Uni Watch almost a year prior. I remember it clearly: the Cardinals (who actually get their name from the color of red, not the mascot) completing the systematic collapse and destruction of their once-classy uniforms by going BFBS. It made me so mad to the point that I grabbed a couple of uniform graphics from Chris Creamer’s site, and put them in MS Paint (which I still use to this day in conjunction with GIMP), just to say “THIS is how the uniforms should look”. Those first three uniforms were those worn by the Broncos, Saints, and the Cardinals. I guess to sum it up, I HATE the Arizona Blacks uniform, but at the same time, I’m very thankful that they came out with it, because it basically got me to where I’m at today. But enough chit-chat, let’s get into the details of the Cardinals uni you’re looking at right now. What I did here was eliminate the side panels from both the home and road jerseys, as well as created a more consistent shape for the pant stripe. I moved the T.V. numbers to the sleeves, and the black line you see on the sleeves is actually a contrast seam pipe (see: Syracuse football uniforms that have been in use since 2010). The shoulders on the white jersey are still cardinal red, as I like the look of contrast shoulders on some football uniforms. Everything else stays the same. Home uniform is on the left, road uniform is on the right.

St. Louis Rams: I grew up in the tail end of the L.A. Rams-era, and was very fond of the old royal blue and yellow uniforms, even when they moved to St. Looey. With that being said, I very much like their current uniforms as well. Earlier this season, they announced that they were going to retire a pair of pants, which wasn’t a problem with me until I found out that they were going to eliminate the GOLD pants. Why would you do that?! You should’ve eliminated those awful blue pants! Sigh. What I did here was correct their monumental error by giving them only one pair of pants: gold. I also changed the shade of gold to its original darker tone, since they tweaked it to be a little bit lighter this season. Not a glaring eyesore by any means, but I personally prefer the darker tone. Everything else stays the same. Home uniform is on the left, road uniform is on the right.

San Francisco 49ers: The 49ers have an okay uni set, but they have two glaring issues: one being the lack of sock stripes, and other being the situation going on with the sleeve stripes. The designer(s) of the current Niners uniform made the stripes that way in response to the shrinking sleeves on most football jerseys you would find on T.V. today. While their intentions were good, the execution was, well”¦ not good. Actually, with the move to Nike this season, 49ers Quarterback Alex Smith is one of the only players on the team (if not the only player) with a full set of stripes on his sleeves, which weren’t available on his Reebok uniform. What I did here was restore the sleeve stripes to their proper positioning, and I also added/brought back the striped socks. Everything else stays the same. Home uniform is on the left, road uniform is on the right.

Seattle Seahawks: Oh boy… the Seahawks. The only team from 2012 that chose to let Nike do whatever they wanted. I have to be honest; I actually don’t hate their new “identity”. The blues are more consistent, the neon snot green plays a slightly-larger role without being too obnoxious, and I really like that Haida stripe thingy going down the pants. Of course, some things suck, like those weird collarbone stripes, along with the even weirder wordmark on the left collarbone stripe. It’s not a bad uniform, it just needs some fine-tuning. What I did here was strip the jersey of the collarbone stripes. I also gave them only one pair of pants to work with: grey. The last thing that I took the liberty of doing was changing up the pant stripe so that it didn’t look so empty. I feel that these tweaks give more balance to the uniform, and give it a cleaner look without changing too much. By the way, if the numbers look off-sized, that’s an illusion brought on by the green outline being so bright, that it sorts blends in with the white jersey, but rest assured, the back numbers for the blue and white tops are very similar in size. Everything else stays the same. Home uniform is on the left, road uniform is in the right.

That’s it for the NFC, tune in next week as I take on the AFC.

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Thanks Terry! Readers? How about a big hand for the first part of this project! And, tell us, how’d he do?

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50 Years Ago This Week

50 Years Ago…This Weekend

Last year, Rick Pearson took us “back in time” to bring us his look at the featured television college football match-up from 50 years ago. (If you’re not familiar with it, this was the inaugural post of “50 Years Ago” from last year — after that, it became a recurring feature on UW for the remainder of the season). Last year, Rick looked at the 1961 season, and fortunately for us, he “uni tracked” the games from 1962 as well, documenting the game via his “kid cards”. Each week this fall, he’ll do the same, again.

It’s Bowl Season now, so Rick has the Bowls of the Week for us:


Wk 16a Card

Dec. 22, 1962…BLUEBONNET BOWL…Missouri 14, Georgia Tech 10 on CBS

The Bowls roll on. Sorta. First game on TV today was the Bluebonnet Bowl. No “Astro”, they were still playing this one outdoors at Rice Stadium. Lotta black and old gold in the unis. Georgia Tech dug out the gold pants for this one, after wearing white (as near as I can tell) most of the time in ’62….Johnny Roland went on to seven years with the St. Louis Cardinals and one with the Giants…Billy Martin (we saw earlier this year) played TE for the Bears and Falcons.

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Wk 16b Card

Dec. 22, 1962…NORTH-SOUTH SHRINE GAME…South 15, North 14 on ABC

Not as famous as San Francisco’s East-West Shrine Game, this one was played in Miami’s Orange Bowl. The announcers may have described the unis, or I may have made my best guess (black and white TV was like that). The pants may well have been silver gray, but perhaps they looked dark enough for me to believe they were gold. Also, the South’s numbers and stars could well have been red, because flop-flopped colors happened often in some of these all-star games…Worth noting (I guess) is that Dave Gash’s cleats were the first time I ever saw Pumas in a football game on TV….He didn’t play pro football…Sanders, whom we saw earlier for the Spartans, played DB for the Redskins and St. Louis Cardinals.

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Thanks Rick! Great job with that as always.

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Screen Shot 2012-06-24 at 10.32.36 PM

“Benchies” first appeared at U-W in 2008, and has been a Saturday & Sunday feature here for the past two years.

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They also opted out of Secret Santa…

12-22-12 d-Flap

Click to enlarge

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Shipwreck vs. Skipper 12-22

Shipwreck vs. Skipper

Well, kids, the first four bowls of the season are now in the books, and lets have a quick look at how Shipwreck & Skipper are doing with their picks. Remember, Skipper picked his games based on his opinion of who has the better uni…Shipwreck…well, we’re not always sure how he makes his selections. As you can see by the above graphic, Skipper has taken a 3-1 vs. 1-3 lead over Shipwreck, but it’s still early and there’s a long bowl season ahead.

Gildan New Mexico Bowl: Both S&S took Arizona, and based on that look — it was the proper choice (Arizona did win, 49-48, but failed to cover). However, if you really looked hard at the two teams’ unis, it was clear Nevada was the better looking team. Despite the horrendous side panel stripes, they edged out Zona who inexplicably went with the red dome which needs some kind of stripes and no red facemask. The uni gods were not impressed. Shipwreck 0-1; Skipper 0-1

Famous Idaho Potato Bowl: In a battle on the smurf turf of Boise, Toledo and Utah State did battle, with Shipwreck preferring Toledo’s unattractive fonts and wavy lines to Utah State’s classic remake and matte helmets. The uniforms, like the game, were no contest, with Utah State destroying Toledo, 41-15, easily covering the 10 point spread. Shipwreck 0-2; Skipper 1-1

San Diego County CU Poinsettia Bowl: In another inexplicable call, Shipwreck went with this hot mess of a uniform for the Aztecs, while Skipper selected the classically attired BYU Cougars in a game that was actually pretty close through 3 quarters. But in the end, BYU’s punishing defense proved more than a match for SDSU. The uni gods know their stuff. Shipwreck 0-3; Skipper 2-1

Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Bowl: Desperately hoping to avoid an oh-for-four start, Shipwreck smartly chose UCF over Ball State, a pick that was easy for Skipper. With a 7-point spread in favor of UCF, a good offensive output was needed by the Knights (who, despite their awful bumpersticker wraparounds, look good in white/black/gold) over the Cardinals (who would, on the surface, appear to sport a superior uni). But the game, much like the horrible tramp stamp, truncated stripe, TNOL, and rear stripe panel, plus the psychotic looking Cardinal, would go to the better-attired Knights. With a final score of 38-17 UCF, it wasn’t even that close. Finally, a win for ‘wreck. Shipwreck 1-3; Skipper 3-1

So…going into today’s games (and there are two of them), Skipper holds the early lead. In what could be the ugliest uni-matchup of the bowls, both Shipwreck and Skipper have grudgingly taken East Carolina (getting six points) over UL Lafayette in the R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl, and Shipwreck has selected the Washington Huskies (getting 5.5 points) and Skipper took the Boise State Broncos in the MAACO Las Vegas Bowl.

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That’s going to pretty much do it for today folks — if you’re wondering where “Stirrup Fridays” is — it may appear tomorrow — or it may take a hiatus. Our leader, Comrade Marshall, is traveling and while we did correspond yesterday, there may be a week delay in selecting a winner. I do know he took care of a few people already. Also, stirrups have been sent out, but no new orders will be taken until the holidays are over.

Big thanks to Terry D. for this look at the NFC, TJ-style. He’ll be back with the AFC next weekend. I’ll catch you guys tomorrow.

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“As a graphic designer myself I must say I hate these mock projects that designers undergo on the basis of ‘this design sucks and I can do better.’ Whether that is true or not, I call this design masturbation.”
–Alex Parisi

Comments (51)

    I was wondering if/when this little project of his would end up on here…

    Honestly, I think he limited himself a little too much. I understand not wanting to make drastic The Jeff-like changes, but for so many of these revisions, you have to look 2 or 3 times just to figure out what was actually changed.

    ” I understand not wanting to make drastic The Jeff-like changes…”


    what…you don’t think his ravens are going to show up in purple-to-black gradient next weekend?

    “you have to look 2 or 3 times just to figure out what was actually changed.”

    Isn’t that a little like saying it’s only a good haircut if people can tell you just had a haircut? :)

    Would to God that the Lions and Packers see this and adapt the tweaks.
    Paul…congrats on losing the cast, hope you are back to normal very soon.

    Parisi is full of it. These ‘mock projects’ are all for fun speculation of what a team could possibly look like. We does he need to rain on the parade.

    Yeah, I don’t get that one either. Even if you’re a “professional designer”, what’s wrong with practicing your skills?

    The only bad thing is that thanks to lawsuits like the Baltimore Ravens faced, pro teams are going to try to avoid any concepts that get posted by amateurs, so some really awesome ideas will never see the field.

    Yeah. I mean, just look at all the not-for-a-paying-client building designs Frank Lloyd Wright did for his own sake. What a hack!

    I refuse to get into a conversation about masturbation.

    I hate talking about things I’m not very good at.

    My original comment had to do with a professional designer presenting his Hawaii Bowl logo redesign, which he felt need to be addressed for the good of… who? So he’s a better designer than whoever designed the fucking Sheration Hawaii Bowl logo – good for him.

    Concerning your parade about the mock uniform designs, I will say this. Please congratulate me for honing my design skills and pushing the limits of my conceptual thinking when I send Paul a mock-up of my proposed uniform redesign of the Green Bay Packers with this note, “Hey Paul, here’s my uniform redesign for the Packers. It looks basically the same but I changed the face-mask to gray because I thought it looked better.”

    Hey Paul, love reading your posts! As an avid Eagles fan living in PA, I can tell you that everyone I’ve talked to wants to see the Eagles back in Kelley Green. Actually, it was their owner’s wife who decided on the Midnight Green, and soon enough, that owner may be getting the boot. I think it would be really awesome if you could make up some Kelley Green uniforms for the Birds. I’m sure they’d look great!

    Finally someone who agrees with me on the Giants’ TV numbers.

    Nike must have a real problem with the color green, because they couldn’t get the Jets’ green right either. Let’s hope they fix it next year so at least the team will look good whilst losing 13 games.

    Amen! Since 2000,when they brought back their current uniform set,my biggest gripe with the Giants’ blue jerseys were the TV numbers on the shoulders rather than the sleeves. In the 1960s
    and early 1970s,seeing the Giants on CBS from Yankee Stadium,I always felt that their uniforms
    were the football equivalent of a “business suit”.

    Well, throughout the TV era (and perhaps before) the Giants have many times been referred to as having a “Madison Avenue” attitude and image.

    Wow, graphic designer Alex Parisi is never going to be more than that with that kind of atitude. I guess he’s content on not being creative, not pushing himself, and not learning new things.

    I am an art director with a fulltime job, yet I do self initiated projects during my free time all the time to continue my growth as a designer, try new design styles, learn new tricks in the programs, etc. Why? Because the work I do at my fulltime job is confined to one type of overall style and look. I would have never gone from graphic designer to art director in my company if I were to sit idle and be content with that. I would have never gained freelance clients that pay decent money, I would have never had the opportunity to speak at design events, I would have never been interviewed by local ad international publications, I would have never had my art on the walls of people’s homes or on the t-shirts they wear. All of this happened because of one of my self initiated projects that kind of made it big.

    And I’m not an egomaniac, and I rarely, if ever, talk about my design accomplishments, but the quote Phil selected just kind of pissed me off. How can this guy rip on self initiated design? Our industry is based on that nowadays. It gets you noticed. It gets your name out there. It gets you jobs. It makes you money. And it is probably something Alex Parisi will be doing within the next year or two.

    I’m not exactly ripping all self initiated design. Without knowing the type of work you do, I don’t believe design masturbation applies to your self initiated projects. If you’d like to discuss more about this please feel free to email me… (Merry Christmas)

    Did you say you were 21 in the article? It shows. There’s not enough attention to tradition. Older teams such as the Vikings, Rams, and Philly had uniforms close to perfect in the 60s and 70s. Your subtle tweaks of Dallas and Detroit hit the mark. You should have been bold with teams like the Seahawks. Seattle loves their MLS team in that crazy neon and it’s nice to have a few teams be Oregon. Arizona should have incorporated blue and yellow to match the flag. Be bold in the AFC with new teams like Houston and Jacksonville and be traditional with AFL teams. Think about incorporating the longsleeve to display stripes or TV numbers

    Having seen the full set already, I can say that the AFC suffers from the same issues.

    He’s not trying to reinvent the league (but perhaps he should have), he’s just making some mostly subtle revisions.

    There’s a difference between editing and rewriting.

    Terry’s approach probably would be best described as the former. And it is NOT an invalid choice.

    “There’s a difference between editing and rewriting.”

    Speaking of, there was one thing that I totally forgot to add in: I decided that for this project, I wasn’t going to use the striped compression shirts (the whole “plausible as possible” thing and such).

    Vikings – solid purple or white unis. Got it right the first time.
    Lions – that number font sucks. Should be in block
    Bears – match the home sock stripes width with the home jersey sleeve stripes
    Eagles – kelly green, one-color block numbers, no black.
    Rams – royal & Athletic Gold
    Saints – I’d rather see 3 sleeve stripes gold/white/gold home, black/gold/black road than another fleur-de-lis/logo on the sleeve, which seems redundant.
    Cowboys – I just don’t like that navy jersey. It looks too 1990s-tacky with the logo on top of sleeve stripes & double outline trim on the numbers, the tiny wordmark above the numbers. I’d rather see the Cowboys wear a white jersey 100% of the time.
    Falcons – another team that got it right the first time. Please, no quilt/swatches/piping. It looks like shit.
    Buccaneers – their uniforms blow 100%. Pewter looks like dirty pennies. I’d rather seem them in Creamsicles & Bucco Bruce; “toughness” be damned. The current set always looked like a 1996-08 49ers wannabe & pewter came 1 season right after that.
    Seahawks – their uniforms suck so hard. Another team that got it right the first time.

    That right there is terrible journalism. I read the whole thing, and I still don’t know the answer to the question, What the hell is a Beef O Brady?

    Kidding, of course – about the bad journalism part; I really and truly do have no idea what a Beef O Brady is – but it did leave me wondering why is it the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl and not the Idaho Potato Bowl? The “Famous” bit may be part of the trade group’s name or slogan, but it only serves to confuse the public and lessen the impact of the “Idaho potato” part of the name, and the whole point of the sponsorship – of the trade group itself! – is to link the words “Idaho” and “potato” in the public consciousness.

    I can’t believe I’ve waited this long to thank Ricko for his “50 Years Ago” work. I love ’em, so Thanks Ricko!! I hope you have many more for us to enjoy.

    yes…these have been an absolute treat

    not sure how many bowls there were in 1962, but the FYA will run until there are no more

    I thought the NFL jersey article was poorly written, too long of a read for this site, and the writer’s knowledge of the subject was sub-par. I actually read quite a bit of it to see how bad the article could get, and about halfway through the jersey changes, I had to stop. I’ve been reading UW for years and have never ever commented on an article, until now.

    Please, tell me, in what way is Terry’s knowledge of his own concepts sub-par? He created them, I think he knows everything that he possibly could about them.

    wow…when ecu doesn’t dress up like purple people eaters, they don’t look half bad…the ragin’ cajuns OTOH…

    1. The San Diego State uniforms in the photo are LAST season’s.

    2. What’s wrong with the Aztecs’ uniforms? Red helmet, black jerseys with shoulder stripe, black pants has been their traditional home uni for more than 40 years. It’s not a BFBS thing, it’s not being trendy, it’s what they are.

    If you want to see a REAL hot mess, look at what they wore during the Tom Craft era – faded red/black helmets, red “bibs” and all.

    “1. The San Diego State uniforms in the photo are LAST season’s.”


    yeah…noticed that in my writeup and totally forgot to change it — now it is

    that image came up in my search for “poinsettia bowl sdsu” — and i forgot they played in the 2010 bowl — which they won vs. navy

    my bad for not correcting before publication

    With all the different teams wearing memorials and the such, I wish they would just write “GUN CONTROL,GODDAMNIT!” where the team name should be. Wearing the “Sandy Hook” logo is so reactive, but I guess it makes people feel better.

    And the whole NFL added a “SHES” black memorial sticker starting with tonight’s Atlanta-Detroit game.

    THANK YOU! As a Cowboys fan, I’ve been arguing for exactly this tweak to Dallas’s unis FOREVER. Now if we could just get Jerry on board

    I’d like to see the Saints with stripes on the sleeves rather than the fleur-de-lis. It’s already on the helmet.

    I don’t have much of an issue with the whole uni re-do piece except for one thing. All season I have been variously annoyed or downright irritated by the collar treatments on these Nike unis. The Flywire mess I call “the feathers” because it just looks stupid – if it was on one team’s uni as an image that made sense – let’s say, the Eagles, where feathers work – that would be one thing. But when most of the teams all have the same thing plastered on their neck, staring you in the face for no good reason, that just looks dumb. Same with the neck roll contrast color – dumb. Teams are supposed to determine the uniform graphics and design, not the uni manufacturer. This is just crazy.

    Teams went with those designs, Nike didn’t get to decide that (see: all the teams that elected to keep the same templates/designs/fabric).

    Don’t blame Nike.

    Well, we don’t know if Nike paid the teams bonuses or other compensation for adopting their gimmicks. I suspect that is likely. Flywire looks absolutely horrible on most jerseys as it just sticks out like a sore thumb.

    What does Flywire do in a functional sense? I can’t say that I ever saw a whole lot of uniform problems in that area of the jersey.

    Glad to see someone else realizes that “old gold” is not metallic beige. Nike has bastardized that color everywhere they go. Look at Purdue in the 70’s and 80’s vs now. Here’s hoping that the Saints can make Nike include old gold so that more teams can use it.

    I think the Saints should go to black hats and britches with gold numbers and Fleur di Lis. The Dallas Cowboys are just fine they way they are. For those squads with dark hats, they should wear dark britches with white shirts. I love it when the Texans go all blue. I love the Jaguars in all black.

    I enjoyed both the tweaks themselves and the concept of going for minor changes rather than major revisions. I thought it was a well executed change of pace.

    One change that I would add: the Redskins sleeve stripes. I whole-heartedly support the idea of them going with the gold pants full time, but when they do that the sleeve stripe becomes the only asymmetrical stripe on the whole uniform. For reasons that I can’t explain, that just drives me up the wall. It needs to be some type of symmetrical stripe — ANY type of symmetrical stripe.

    Glad to have that off my chest.

    the weird collarbone stripes on the ‘hawks jerseys are supposed to represent the wings that are seen on totem poles. neither here nor there on if the look is good or not, just pointing out there was some meaning behind them other than stripes just for the sake of having stripes (like on the jags’ jerseys).

    Great work Phil.

    You pretty much matched verbatim how I would’ve fixed the 49ers uniforms’ shortcomings (I also posted a mockup of a potential alternate/”fauxback” on the GUD forum):

    My crazed-out “Oregon-esque” 49ers season would have them gradually shifting from a red & gold “summer” uniform to a red & silver/white “winter” uniform, with varying combos:

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