By Phil Hecken
After about six weekends off (interspersed with a month of subbing for Paul during the weekdays), I’m back — and wouldn’t you know it — it’s FOOTBALL season. And I’m pleased to announce I’m back with three of my devoted Uni Watching cohorts, Terry “TJ” Duroncelet, who’ll reassume his tremendous “Sunday Morning Uni Watch” articles, Catherine Ryan, with the ever-popular “5 & 1” best and worst uni matchups, and Tim E. O’Brien, who will again be tracking the University of Oregon’s uniform machinations with the “Duck Tracker.”
I may have been on vacation for the first weekend of the College Football season, but TJ (who posts as “Simply Moono”) was on top of it all, chomping at the bit. So today, in what is both a wrapup and a preview of what’s to come, I’m going to hand the pigskin to TJ while he brings us the Week One edition of…
Sunday Morning Uni Watch
By Terry Duroncelet
Aw hell, who invited frickin’
Moon Moon Moono? That’s right, I’m back and ready to start my third season of Sunday Morning Uni Watch! And let me just say, I missed you guys. I’ve had a pretty eventful 2013 so far, such as… well, you catch my drift. However, I wasn’t the only one busy this offseason. Lots of college teams have made enough uniform changes to make a chameleon jealous. Some small, some… ahem. Before we dive right in, I just want to give you a heads-up on one thing: whenever I refer to a team moving to the Nike Pro Combat v4.0 (Hypercool) template, it’s the one that has these chain maille mesh triangular shapes near the armpits. Oregon debuted it in the 2012 Rose Bowl against Wisconsin, and more teams will be wearing it this year. With that said, let’s get into this like a Supernatural fan gets into Tumblr…
• Isn’t it funny that South Carolina upgraded in the looks department this year while North Carolina downgraded? Before I talk about the good, I want to talk about the bad: Black? REALLY, Tar Heels? When you were doing this redesign, it didn’t occur to you to use navy, which is, oh I don’t know, an actual school color, and very close to black anyway? What’s sad is that the black everything and the wraparound pants stripes are really the main things that ruin a potentially good uniform. Sad. Now let the other USC show you to tweak your design for the better: no more strange arc stripes on the shoulders, they’ve established a theme with the twin stripe motif, and I’m really diggin’ the new base layers and socks. I would normally say something about the fact that they went mono-garnet, but the helmet, shoes, and new socks created this weird but nice-looking palindrome-ish effect, so I’ll let it slide… this time. Also, this happened.
• Remember that Tulane anthracite jersey that this guy was wearing a few months back, but was said to only be for “recruiting purposes”? Yeah, O.K. I may be two clouds short of a thunderstorm, but I’m no fool. I knew that they were gonna wear those at some point in the season. I just didn’t know that they were gonna wear them so soon. Like, first-game-soon. I like it, as I have a soft spot for the colors blue, green, and grey, but three things to consider for the next version of this uni: 1) make the numbers more visible (blue edged in green), 2) use the grey helmet that’s been seen everywhere by now, and three, NO MORE WRAPAROUND STRIPES (best image I could find of the pants).
• When people aren’t using the State of Texas as their punching bag for anti-progression, they’re using the State of Mississippi as their punching bag for anti-progression. That being said, it’s hard to argue that Ole Miss has become the most progressive team in recent years (specifically this year) when it comes to shoulder stripes. O.K., to be fair, LSU got it right first … twice, actually. These are Ole Miss’s “blue” road tops (they still have their usual white with red graphics). The navy pants are nice, but is the ‘REBELS’ down the left leg really necessary? I’ll answer that for you. On the Vanderbilt side, this guy had something going on with his numbers, and this guy is apparently a Changeling. Remember those Green Dot decals that Paul mentioned in Thursday’s ticker? Here’s a shot of one on a headset.
• The State of Florida is known for being colorful, so it was a good sight to see a color-vs.-color game between Miami (FL.) and FAU, even though both uniforms leave something to be desired.
• Texas Tech wore all-white against Southern Methodist. As much as I like the white helmets, I would’ve liked to have seen the black helmets and (I guess) pants, because the only real contrast was in SMU’s red jerseys.
And now to bring you all you can handle for the best Saturday of the tail-end of summer:
• Every team wants to start their season off with a bang. I started off my season with a laugh. A laugh hearty enough to make the burliest lumberjack sound like a giggling schoolgirl. Like, seriously, laughter is the only appropriate response to a uniform that was already so bad to begin with, and they somehow made it worse this season. It’s an unwritten rule of not just the Internet, but in life: just when you think you’ve seen or heard or experienced the dumbest thing of all-time, you’re proven wrong anywhere between the span of a week to a month. Buffalo enforces that rule. Excuse me: The State University of New York in Buffalo in the Northeast of the United States of North America of Planet Earth enforces that rule. Meanwhile, Ohio State shows UB how you should modify your uniforms. The Buckeyes have moved to the Nike Pro Combat v4.0 template for the jerseys and pants this year. An already good-looking team looks even better this year. Now if they can just switch to a darker grey…
• Speaking of the new Nike Pro Combat Speed Machine HyperCool Mach 287.333336 Sex Machine uniform or whatever they’re calling it, Florida made the jump this year. Wow, that block font is poor. O.K., it’s not that bad, but it looks like the numbers stopped at Sonic for half-priced milkshakes too many times this summer. Also, it was a color-vs.-color game with Florida in blue-white and Toledo in all-grey. The Rockets made some small changes for the better this year: for one, the ‘TOLEDO’ on the front of the jersey is not as massive, and the numbers and letters have gone from screenprint to tackle twill, which is an excellent upgrade. The number colors have also been simplified from navy edged in yellow to just solid-navy.
• FINALLY, Louisiana Tech figures it out and is now using a real block font!
• Now I’m sure a lot of you know my feelings toward Adidas: if they were force-fed a truckload of Tabasco and had the most painful runs anyone sadistic enough could ask for, I would not be able to find the resources to care less if I tried. Having said that, the Trademark Treadmarks seemed to have accomplished one thing: players who wear it don’t look as warped as they did with the previous version of TechFit. Also, Cincinnati broke out the white helmet in that same game. Not a bad look at all, but I say leave the black and white thing to the Brooklyn Nets.
• As much as I hate the contrast pit panels on the otherwise solid-looking new West Virginia uniforms, I like the fact that they made the panels black on the navy tops, so they’re more incognito than the whites and golds.
• Temple wore white feathered? helmets in their game against Notre Dame. Note that the ND player doesn’t look to be wearing the Adidas TT jersey, although some players probably were.
• Here are Mississippi State’s alternate helmets for their game against Oklahoma State.
• Oregon wore all-white… AT HOME! This is my first time seeing them in white at home. Also, Nicholls State is one of the many teams still plagued with the old Laffy Taffy bodysuits that Adidas casted on the realm of college football way back in 2010 (and earlier in the NFL via sister company Reebok in 2009). But that’s not the worst part: the helmets are silver while the pants are dark grey! What were they thinking?
• Louisiana Lafayette wore white helmets against Arkansas.
• Texas’s helmet numbers looked great against New Mexico State. They’re also one of the teams that went with Nike’s v4.0 uniform.
• Another color-vs.-color game between Alabama (crimson-over-white) and Virginia Tech (grey tops with maroon helmets and pants). Why didn’t the Hokies just use a grey version of their usual design, instead of using the old West Virginia template? Dumb. Alabama also joins the ranks of Nike’s “god-tier” teams to move to Nike Pro Combat v4.0 template, although this isn’t the first time they’ve worn the new uniform (they wore the white version in the Championship game against Notre Dame earlier this January).
• We knew that TCU would be wearing this, but I didn’t know about the stamp on the back of the helmet (just a case of me not paying attention). Thanks for ruining an otherwise awesome helmet, Bloody Lizards. Less is more. Meanwhile, LSU shows UCLA how you should wear shoulder stripes.
• Cal looked great (although that swoopy thingy on the legs will take some
yellow spray paint and someone who can get me into the UC Berkeley equipment room getting used to) against Northwestern, who wore their new white helmets, which I really dig.
• Pitt did this thing on Monday. Yuck. New this season is the addition of a helmet stripe. I’m normally in favor of the Nike Pro Combat pants, but they don’t really suit Florida State. I miss the shiny pants. Last but not least, Pitt retired Larry Fitzgerald’s number that night. Is it wrong to think about how much character this jersey would have in these colors?
I think that should cover Week 1. Remember, I’m still knocking the cobwebs off, so if I miss anything or screw up on any of the text and information, feel free to let me know. By the time some of you guys read this, I’ll already be behind my laptop
linking to enough ponies to warrant a C&D from Hasbro working on Week 2. Take care.
Great start to the season, TJ! OK, readers — that’s just a taste of what’s in store tomorrow, and every Sunday for the rest of the College Football season. I know most of this was probably covered already (but certainly not with this depth of detail), so let’s have a big “Welcome Back” for Terry and get ready for the slate of games (some big, most small, a few cupcakes) today.
Are you ready for some football? Yes, you are.
We have another new set of tweaks, er…concepts today. After discussion with a number of readers, it’s probably more apropos to call most of the reader submissions “concepts” rather than tweaks. So that’s that.
So if you’ve concept for any sport, or just a tweak or wholesale revision, send them my way.
Please do try to keep your descriptions to ~50 words (give or take) per image — if you have three uniform concepts in one image, then obviously, you can go a little over, but no novels, OK? OK!. You guys have usually been good with keeping the descriptions pretty short, and I thank you for that.
Like the colorizations, I’m going to run these as inline pics — click on each one to enlarge.
And so, lets begin:
We begin today with Kyle Allebach, who feels the Niners gold helmet shouldn’t be gold (or pants, for that matter):
I saw the white helmet on Uni Watch today, so I made a quick mock-up, with equally blasphemous white pants. And then I added a gold alternate, just so see how it would look with a white helmet. Also, striped socks.
Next up is Daniel Dahlen, with some new looks for the Milwaukee Bucks:
Just throwing a new Bucks logo/jersey combo your way. Have been a long time reader/follower and finally got the time to whip up a new Bucks logo concept. We’re in more dire need of talent, but a new, simple logo/image would more compliment our current direction of rebuilding (hopefully). Also, our current aesthetic ensemble is absolutely hideous…..
We close today with Christopher Hall with some new logos for the Trojans of USC:
I’m a longtime reader but this is my first contribution to anything Uni-Watch! I hope you like it.
These are three University of Southern California logo concepts, home, away, and blackout. I liked the idea of a face-on Trojan warrior mascot, as opposed to the iconic (but maybe overused) side-facing trojan head. I think the spikes on the helmet add a nice accent color and the entire logo adds some menace while still capturing the spirit that makes up the USC way of life. Thanks for letting me contribute!
And that’s it for today. Back with more next time.
Catherine’s 5 & 1 update…
As mentioned above, Catherine Ryan will be back with the famous “5 (good) & 1 (bad)” looking NCAA football games beginning tomorrow. Now, there are a LOT of games being played, and she can always use some tips as to what may be a really good, or a really bad, match up. So, she’s set up a special E-mail address where you guys can send her game suggestions. Here she is to describe it…
5 & 1 Tip Line
By Catherine Ryan
As I embark upon my sophomore year here at Uni Watch, I wanted to share the new 5 and 1 tip line! If you see a game I might miss or have any comments as the day goes on, please feel free to contact me at UW5and1@gmail.com. I’d love to make the 5 and 1 a little more fun this year and I think your input could help spice it up! Enjoy the games!
Duck Tracker Update
Tim E. O’Brien is back in 2013 to track the Oregon Ducks. He’s got some updates (and a look at last weekend’s matchup) below. Here’s Tim:
Duck Tracking 2013
By Tim E. O’Brien
Guess who’s back? Back Again. Tracking’s back, tell a friend!
That’s right folks, The Duck Tracker (and it’s bookish and less athletic friends) is back in full fighting duck glory this season. Though week one is already in the books and week two is already under way, Uni Tracking has been been a huge success already.
But onto the specifics of why you’re all here: The Quackers.
The Ducks of Autzen have simultaneously followed and created history last Saturday. While Oregon has worn the stormtrooper look in every season of Duck Tracking (2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012), this year was the first time they ever did it in Eugene.
And it looked great.
I can’t wait to see what happens the rest of this season, I think it’s gunna be fun. Part of that fun can be had by all thanks to new Uni Tracking twitter accounts: @DuckTracker, @NUniTracker and @Hoosier_Tracker. And if you have any tips, comments or questions, you can contact me at one of the new official email accounts:
Looking forward to an exciting season. See you guys tomorrow.
If you’ve been following Uni Watch, then you know about the Fantasy Football League uniform design contest and the subsequent creation of teams and a league, all engineered and run by Rob Holecko. The UWFFL has finished its preseason and now the real games are about to begin.
Here’s Rob to bring you and update:
UWFFL Regular Season is Here
By Rob Holecko
Well the preseason has wound down and after a week off, the UWFFL is now ready to kick of the regular season. Follow all of the action and vote right here to help choose the winners. Good luck to all the teams and we hope you enjoy the UWFFL competition this year.
Because we love the stirrup here at Uni Watch, this section is devoted to those of us who sport the beautiful hose on Fridays — a trend popularized many years ago by Robert P. Marshall, III. For many of us, it’s become a bit of an obsession, but a harmless one — a reflection of our times. Where we once had Friday ties, which has been replaced by Casual Friday — we now have Stirrup Fridays. It’s an endearingly simple concept — no matter where you work (or even if you don’t) — break out a fresh pair of rups to compliment (or clash with) your Friday attire.
Got a fresh set for this fine Saturday, and a goodly amount to get to — so let’s get to it:
Hey Padres- want to get out of the MLB Uni Rankings basement? Here’s a good place to start.
James Poisso (1):
This Friday’s stirrups were for a “Wear Blue Day” at my daughter’s school as they did so in support of the long-time Vice-Principal who has cancer.
Also, we found this pin at Disney World on a recent trip. Nice stirrups and not solid socks!
James Poisso (2):
I’m wearing throwback Phillies stirrups today. Are the red sanis too much?
TOUCHDOWN Red Raiders!
Yea, they aren’t really Texas Tech stirrups… but does it matter when Tech wears all white? #GunsUp
A few pics of “Hipster Charlie Brown” and the “HomerHawk”. After eleven years, we finally had our long driveway paved – which has lead to two-a-day sessions of kickball with the son (notice the difference in the position of the sun and shadows).
Comrade Marshall. Comrade Hecken.
The Revolution has started in Harrisburg, Oregon. I am the announcer for our high school football team, so the view is from the booth. Wore the Wildcats with gold sanis, to match our school colors. Walked by an older gentleman who just looked at me and said, “Nice stirrups.”
Josh (no last name given):
James Poisso (3):
This Friday’s stirrups are Astros throwbacks.
Comrade Robert Marshall:
So I am umpiring on the north side of Chicago, when no other then Ronnie Woo-Woo showed up to watch the game. I know he is kind of a nuisance, but her really was quite an affable fellow. I wonder how many times a day people take their picture with him?
And that ends today’s look at Stirrup Friday — all of you who participate, send me your pics and a brief (~50 words) description of their relevance, and when I do weekends I’ll run ’em here on Saturday (and sometimes Sunday too!). Be sure to visit Robert’s House of Hose for news on rups.
And now…here’s …
Comrade Marshall’s Rupdate:
I hope everyone is enjoying the end of their summer, and taking advantage their last stirrup opportunities on the diamond. There is a NC-State baseball player looking for a 1930 Cardinal or Blackhawk, but I am sold out. if anybody wants to part with one, get in touch with me.
from each according their strype,
to each according their stirrvp.
Uni Watch News Ticker:
Baseball News: Here’s the transcript of a radio interview that Dodgers broadcaster Rick Monday did with Dodgers equipment manager Mitch Poole (big thanks to John Salz for the transcription). … Avisail Garcia really needs some thicker socks. Like, are those sheer stockings or what? Jeez (from Jason Greening). … Peter Fahey “watched the ESPN E:60 special on Mariano Rivera and couldn’t help but notice a couple of issues with his 1995 home jersey. First off, it was a Wilson jersey, and Wilson stopped supplying jerseys to the Yankees after the 1991 season. Russell took over in 1992 and manufactured their jerseys through 2004. It is easily identifiable as a Wilson jersey by the evenly spaced buttons. Second, the numerals on the back were mismatched. The four is some oddball font, while the two is the standard block used by the Yankees. He seemed to wear this jersey from his debut in May of that year all the way through the postseason.” … Some new photos of Cal Ripken as a Red Wing in 1981 were posted to ebay that Paul Bielewicz had never seen before. See listings here and here. “To me the BP photo is particularly interesting because Cal is wearing some sort of early Red Wings BP jersey that I’ve never seen before,” says Paul. “Hard to tell for sure, but it looks to be mesh. There is a ‘Champion’ logo on the left sleeve.” … Here’s another minor league team that wore shorts: the 1970s Sacramento Solons (nice find by Rex Doane). … The Seattle Mariners will become Marineros today as the celebrate Latin American beisbol.
NFL News: Brady Phelps says it “fascinates me how they were able to convey the Bears NFL team w/o any licensed apparel or logos. The back of that jacket probably says Bears, but of course you can only see the S.” … Joe Morris, former Giants running back and Super Bowl Champion, now serves in a new role as uniform cop (with a good video clip). … This comes from Brinke: “Retired Baltimore Ravens Center Matt Birk Watches The Game Wearing His Helmet”
College Football News: Mike Vamosi was reading the release from my college THE University of Nebraska at Kearney and noticed they wore hideous uniforms in their opening night defeat. … Check out the different decals on the football helmets as the Luther College Norse celebrate 100 Seasons of Football. … Are new Syracuse football unis coming soon? … … The new KU football and basketball jerseys are starting to come out, says Joe Smysor. “We saw the helmets earlier in the summer, but the jerseys are new. Also new is a grey uniform.” In addition there are blue and white combos coming out as well (thanks to Kenneth Short). Also, according to Brennan Keller, “KU will no longer be wearing the powder blue helmet, powder blue jerseys, black matte helmets, or black jerseys. According to a team manager, the powder blue jerseys were just a prototype.” Interesting. … “Georgia Southern is adding interesting decals to all unis,” notes a commenter who wishes to remain anonymous. “Not sure if any other teams do it, but it feels like an attempt at what service academies when players represent their squadrons.” … The University of Nebraska @ Kearney went blue camo in their game Thursday night (thanks, I think, to Jason Johnson). … “Not sure if this has been mentioned,” writes Scott Holcomb, “but when my Auburn v Arkansas tickets came I noticed the stadium logo. May just be a ticket thing I don’t know.”
Hockey News: The Anaheim Ducks will bring the “Mighty” back as part of their 20th anniversary (thanks to Bill Stewart. … Reader Nick Ellies stumbled across this webpage showing some work from the Colorado Avalanche logo designer, Michael Beindorff. Says Nick, “If you scroll through, there is some concept art for the Rocky Mountain Extreme logo. I have always wondered if any concept work existed, so I was very excited to find this. I am probably one of the very few who thought ‘Rocky Mountain Extreme’ would’ve been an awesome NHL team name.” … Despite the leak on Thursday night of what is very likely going to be the Canadian Olympic sweater, Hockey Canada issued a statement Friday confirming the uniforms will be unveiled Oct. 8.
Soccer News: A youth league in Canada has taken the current “everybody wins” trend in youth sports a little too far, notes the Hungry, Hungry Hipster. “They have removed the ball from soccer games. At first I thought this was an article from The Onion but it is all too real. There is a radio interview embedded in the article but I couldn’t get the audio player to work on my Mac. Hopefully you’ll have better luck because I’m really curious how you could possibly play a soccer game without a ball!”
Grab Bag: Vodaphone has updated its logo (Thanks, Brinke). Reader “Sunny” noticed in the Madden 25 commercial, the Seahawks and 49ers were shown but if you look closely, when Russell Wilson is diving into the endzone, he is actually wearing the old pants that the Seahawks wear while wearing the new away jersey. … Reader Nik found an NFL official black Seattle Seahawks Jersey at Marshalls. He says he’d never seen it before. … Raafi Rivero saw a LeBron sneaker history on the web yesterday and thought we might dig it. Great research: 166 slides! Technically not part of the uniform, but still. It helps to view with a Deslider like this so you can see everything on the same page. … “New Riddell helmet???” asks Matt Sinclair. “I watched Katy High School (Katy, TX) play on ESPNU earlier this week. I noticed the RB and two LBs had a Riddell revolution 360, but had a cut out on the crown. Have you (or any other people in Uni Watch land) seen this?
And that, dear readers, will end today’s first post-vacation article. You’ll notice the weekend ticker — this is part experiment, part favor to Paul (who’s attending a wedding today and won’t be back to UW HQ until later Sunday afternoon/evening). If you guys ENJOY having a weekend ticker, I’ll continue to run it (it’s a bit more work on my end, and it’s a tad tricky coordinating the “handoff” with Paul), and I’ll definitely have a Sunday ticker (can’t speak for the content, that depends on YOU). But if you do enjoy having it on the weekends (at least for a few weeks or months, and possibly longer), then I will continue to coordinate the logistics with Paul so we have seven days of tickerful information. OK? OK!
Big thanks to TJ for his Week One College Football wrap up, and he’ll be back tomorrow with a look at this week’s games. Don’t forget to send your 5 & 1 tips to Catherine at the special address listed above, and you can always tweet your suggestions to me and I’ll pass them along to Catherine as well. Tomorrow of course, you’ll get your first 5 & 1 for the season as well as the Duck Tracker (the Ducks play Virginia today) from Tim E.
Everyone have a great Saturday and I will catch you guys tomorrow!
Follow me on Twitter at @PhilHecken.
“We Irish-Americans went from stepping off the boat to running the place faster than any immigrant group in American history.”
–R. Scott Rogers