By Phil Hecken and the SMUW Crew
That’s pretty much what yesterday’s Eastern Michigan University vs. SUNY Buffalo game looked like.
For those who are not aware, EMU plays on a gray field, which is, in and of itself, both stupid and annoying, but it is what it is. They normally wear kelly green uniforms on said field, and their opponents are normally attired in white jerseys, so at least there is plenty of contrast on said gray field.
Well, yesterday, for some reason, EMU’s opponents — SUNY Buffalo — chose to wear gray jerseys on that gray field. That was bad enough in still photos, but on TV and in live action, the Bulls
were nicely camouflaged basically invisible:
— #MACtion (@MACSports) November 2, 2019
It wasn’t just one play either — it was basically that way for the whole game:
MOVE. THAT. PILE.@MarksKevin powers his way to the end zone.
— #MACtion (@MACSports) November 2, 2019
Take a look at the splash photo once again. Notice anything? Look closely. Yep — the unis, being the same color as the field, actually had ESPN’s graphics running right through them:
Not only did the Bulls wear gray tops, they also went with black hats and britches, rendering their entire outfit the equivalent of a walking black-and-white tv image. Playing on a gray field only made it worse. I don’t want to say this was easily the worst looking game of the season, but if it’s not, it’s pretty damn close. I write these intro’s before I get Terry’s part and Memal’s 5 & 1, so if this ISN’T the “AND 1” I’ll be shocked.
Who approved SUNYB going black/gray/black anyway? They’ve got a perfectly decent blue/white/blue uni that would have been fine (they also have a mono gray uniform, which would have been even worse). They should be required to wear some combination of white and blue, not black and gray. I mean, at least in Pleasantville, they knew how to use gray to bring out the color, not hide behind it.
I’ll go back to screaming at the clouds now (OK Boomer). Here’s TJ:
Sunday Morning Uni Watch
By Terry Duroncelet, Jr.
• Sad to see that Georgia decided to not go color-vs-color against Florida, as the Cornmother intended (although the last two matchups from 2017 and 2018 weren’t CvC, either). It just doesn’t hit the same. I guess you can say I was red with rage and blue with sadness. One of these days, I will be struck down for these horrible puns. Also: Spectrum continues down their path of confusion (like some of the people who have their services that don’t know if they’re called Spectrum or Charter): they used Florida Atlantic’s logo instead of the Florida Gators logo (H/T @rossteach33)
• James Gilbert also notes some weird decal business with
Virginia Seven Virginia Tech.
• Notre Dame and Virginia Tech treated us to a sweet-looking game yesterday.
• As did Wake Forest and NC State.
• And the even more colorful version of that game? Purdue vs Nebraska.
• Kansas wore new one-off uniforms in their game against Kansas State. From JJ Sledge on Twitter: “Part of a one-off uniform designed by KU students called “One Team” for the K-State game. Throwback jayhawk logo, gray jerseys with 2 different sleeve colors and blue pants. Supposed to signify unity across the school’s students, sports, etc.”
• Oklahoma State has been a favorite of mine for a long time now in terms of uniforms, and their helmets in their game against TCU was the latest example of why. The game itself was also a black-and-white affair.
Thanks, TJ! OK, now for the rest of your SMUW…
Memal’s 5 & 1
Following in the footsteps of the original “5 & 1,” Jim Vilk, Catherine Ryan after him, and finally Joe Ringham, for 2019 we have a new “5 & 1” (five good looking and one stinker) uni-vs-uni matchups — Michael “Memal” Malinowski. Like Joe, Catherine & Jim, Memal will pick HIS 5 best looking/1 awful matchup, and occasionally have some honorable mentions (both good and bad). You may agree and you may disagree — these are, after all, just opinions and everyone has one. Feel free to let him know what you think in the comments section.
We turn to the final month of the regular season and prepare ourselves for playoff deciding match ups and some of the renewal of some of the fiercest rivalries! Onto the list…
Honorable mention: Michigan at Maryland
The Terps looked like a real football team! If Michigan had packed their maize pants instead of their rather plain whites this would have cracked the top 5.
5. Mississippi State @ Arkansas
The Razorbacks look their best when it.looks as if they just stepped out of their Southwest conference days. The Bulldogs in their mono white set and maroon and silver stripes looked sharp against red/red/white of Arkansas!
4. Cincinnati @ East Carolina
This game was a thriller between the Pirates in purple/purple/white and the Bearcats in red/white/red. I really liked the how the skull and crossbones looked taking on the red metallic lids of Cincinnati.
3. Texas State @ Louisiana Lafayette
I wasn’t aware of the Bobcats look before I took this article over and just about every week I’ve wanted to feature them, but none of their opponents have looked as good as the Ragin’ Cajuns did in their mono-red set. I especially like how the bobcat head on the left side of Texas State’s helmet doesn’t face forward since the ear wouldn’t fit into the outline of the state of Texas.
2. Florida vs Georgia
Considering this game has been played in Jacksonville just about every year since 1933, this is one of those rivalries that doesn’t look too different from year to year. Considering both these teams have great uniform sets we’re lucky we get to annually enjoy what is always a hotly contested game between a pair of great looking teams.
1. Oregon State at Arizona
I’m a sucker for unique stripe patterns and there was some great stripe action going on in this game! I don’t know which detail I enjoyed more; the stripes going down the shoulders for the Beavers or the Wildcats having blue and red stripes on their helmets and pants. Very solid uni-match up!
And because someone has to be the sacrificial lamb…
&1 West Virginia @ Baylor
I thought there weren’t any atrocious looking games this week, so I went with this game which reminded me of middle school football where you played other kids in your grade and everyone wore the same color helmets, the same color pants, and the only way you told the teams apart was maybe the jersey color. And it doesn’t help that both team’s helmets look so dull, especially Baylor. I don’t know when they went away from the gold helmets of the RGIII era, but they couldn’t go back to it fast enough!
Thanks Memal! You can follow Memal on the Twitter and let him know what you think of his choices or make a 5 & 1 suggestion of your own!
NCAA Uni Tracking
Uni Watch will again track the uniform combinations worn by the “Power 5” conferences. All of the 2018 trackers are back!
We’ve got Rex Henry (tracking the ACC), Dennis Bolt (tracking the PAC-12), Kyle Acker (tracking the Big XII), and Ethan Dimitroff (tracking the B1G AND the SEC). Rex, Dennis, and Kyle and are all returning from 2015, and Ethan is back after joining the NCAA Uni Tracking a couple seasons ago. Ethan continues his dual role of tracking both the B1G and the SEC.
Here are the Uni Trackers for the Power 5 Conferences:
Rex is up first today (ACC):
And now, here’s Dennis with the PAC-12:
And here is Ethan, with the SEC:
And here is Kyle with the Big XII:
Follow Kyle on Twitter here.
And here’s Ethan with the B1G:
Welcome to the 2019 Oregon Ducks Uni Tracker. This little project was originally begun way back in 2008-09 by Michael Princip, who retired after several seasons, whereupon the project was continued by Tim E. O’Brien. He, too, retired from the tracking, but the project has been ably kept up by the man who also tracks the Pac12, Dennis Bolt.
Here’s this week’s Uniform Combo for the Ducks (you can click to enlarge):
You can read about this uniform, and MUCH MORE, by checking out the Duck Tracker here!
The Predators Unveiled Their Winter Classic Sweater
Yesterday, in what the twitter world at first thought was a leak — photos of a huge advertisement on a Nashville building — turned out to be just a prelude for the Nashville Predators to show off their Winter Classic
Here’s another look:
Interesting wordmark, yes? In case you’re wondering, that is actually paying homage to the old style of the Nashville Dixie Flyers, a minor league team that played in the Eastern Hockey League from 1962 until the franchise folded in 1971.
Of course, none of the photos (or unveiling) show pants or socks, and none of them show the back of the jersey.
As fate would have it, Paul & I were able to preview these uniforms earlier this week and we both got photos of the jersey front and back (unfortunately, there were no pants/socks to preview), but here’s how that jersey looks:
If you scroll back up to the splash or group photo above, you can see what the two sleeve patches look like. They’ll have a dark blue and gold “predator” on one sleeve and the Winter Classic patch on the other. If you look closely at the collar in the photo on your left above, you’ll note the guitar fret motif and the date of the WC (1/1/20):
The New Year’s Day game will feature the Predators against the Dallas Stars, who will be the home team, and the game is being played in the Cotton Bowl. The Stars will also have special uniforms for this game, but they’ve yet to unveil those. Hopefully we’ll get a look at the pants/socks for both the Predators and the Stars before the actual game.
Uni Watch News Ticker
Baseball News: Ladies and Gentlemen, the official t-shirts for your World Series Champion Astros — wait. Obviously they make these things well in advance, so now the children and adults of a “third world” country will likely believe Houston won in ’19 (from Nick Popusk). … Looks like Louisville Baseball will have some new uniforms next season (from several readers). … This is the Nationals Bullpen Cart made by Sean Garcia for the
Nationals parade. (He actually made it himself!) So cool! (via Paul). … There was some creative jersey altering for yesterday’s Nationals parade (from library branch davidians). … But that wasn’t the only creative jersey from the Parade.
NFL News: Remember this classic photo of Paul Brown selecting a helmet for the Bengals? Well, he has been voted the NFL’s greatest game changer. … Pretty good article here on uniform violations as they relate to the New Orleans Saints (from Paul). … In his monthly column, the Green Bay Packers president says new alternates for the team next year (from Brian Kerhin). Key quote (scroll down) “We will have a new historic third jersey next year.” I’m not sure what the phrase Historic Third Jersey actually means (but the Packers alternate jersey/uniform concludes its 5-year run at the end of this season). … Pretty cool Houston Texans London Game jacket here (from Ignacio Salazar).
College/High School Football News: On Friday night, Woodford County HS in Kentucky with yellow numbers on a yellow jersey (from Josh Claywell). Same thing with NOB too. … Here’s a really good history of Clemson wearing purple (thread), from Austin Pendergist. … No camo for ‘bama: “Promoted ad on Instagram 🤢 just glad the teams won’t be wearing camo next weekend,” writes Griffin Smith. … The awesome Blaise D’Sylva continues his NCAA helmet history with Brown University. … “Hideous high school jersey in Ohio,” proclaims Aaron Putka. “I’m the band director at Elyria High in Northeast Ohio. School colors are cherry and white. Bonus…national guard name on back (NGNOB?).”
Hockey News: The New York Islanders wore special warm-up jerseys for Military Appreciation Night on Nov 1 (from Wade Heidt). … Yesterday was Military Appreciation Day for women’s puck at U Minnesota Duluth, and here’s a look at the special goalie helmet (via Paul). … The 6th all time leading NBA scorer Dirk Nowitzki dropped the ceremonial opening puck between the Canadiens & Stars in Dallas yesterday evening, wearing a Dallas Stars jersey (from James Beattie). … Last evening, the Buffalo Sabres were in their home white/gold uniforms, with the Islanders in the “road” blue. Yet MSG, the home network for both teams though this is the Sabres home feed, had two similar blues in the scorebug. Submitter John Muir adds, “White won’t work, but the Sabres are awash in gold. SERIOUS gold. Be better, try harder.” … University of Denver hockey unveiled some pretty sharp fauxback sweaters yesterday for the 70th anniversary season! Submitter Zeke Perez adds, “Sounds like they’ll have them in the uni rotation throughout the season.” … The San Antonio Rampage became Los Chimuelos de San Antoniol last night for Dia de los Muertos (via Paul).
College Hoops News: “Kentucky pays coach John Calipari $10,000,000 a year, and he’s worth every penny of it,” says Josh Hinton. “But he still can’t wear a jacket with the new logo on it … something we changed in 2016!” … UC San Diego have introduced new men’s and women’s hoops unis. Says submitter Steve Hartsock, “They look virtually the same as the old design, which is a copied look with other UC campuses (see UC Irvine from last year’s DI tourney). Above all, the print is very small and tough to read. Not always sure which UC campus I am watching.” … At the home (exhibition) opener at the newly (now fully) renovated UD Arena. Both
Dayton and Cedarville wore Dayton Flyers-themed “Dayton Strong” tees for warmups (from John Bedell).
Soccer News: Here’s a look at the matchweek 11 kits in the Premier League. Some clubs will be honoring Remembrance Day this weekend, as it may be their last home game until the holiday. That is why some club will wear red poppies on their shirts, and some won’t (from Josh Hinton). … Also from Josh, check out this MAJOR kit clash between QPR & Leeds. … San Diego’s new USL Championship side unveiled their new name, crest, and colors. The club will be called San Diego Loyal SC. The colors are reminiscent of the “Tropics” of Semi-Pro fame (from Josh and Brady Phelps, respectively). And here’s a bit more (actually a LOT more) on that logo (from Al Goldberg) Be sure to check out Josh’s Twitter account for all you soccer kit news.
Grab Bag: This is pretty cool (and we see it in other sports as well), but completing the etching on the Rugby World Cup trophy happens in the final minutes of the game (from library branch davidians). … Our friends Jimmer Vilk and Gene Sanny will appreciate this Tudor Football effort (from Chris McGuire). … Brazilian men’s vball club Sada Cruzeiro who won the FIVB Club World Championship last year are wearing a winner’s shield on their jersey (from Jeremy Brahm). … Also from Jeremy, Turkish women’s vball team Eczacibasi Vitra is wearing a @CEVolleyballCL CEV Champions League 2020 patch (black shield on the left) in non-Champions League (domestic) matches … Get an up-close look at @Daniel_SuarezG’s helmet. It’s inspired by Dia de los Muertos, which started Thursday and ends Sunday (via Paul).