By Phil Hecken, with Rick Pearson
As we wrap up 2010, I’m joined by Ricko, as he and I join forces for our year-end quiz. It’s been a while since I worked with Rick, and as always, our sage uniform historian will both entertain and hopefully, enlighten us as he has broken into the Ricko Files to come up with a devilishly difficult “Who Are These Guys” challenge.
Time is running out on this year, so let’s get right to it. Here’s Rick:
NOT the Dirty Dozen
Around here, the “Look At Me” aspect of big-time sports gets mentioned a lot. But let’s face it, there’s plenty of “ham” gene — lots of the performer chromosome — in most athletes. Almost has to be, doing what they do in front of huge live crowds and massive TV audiences game after game. Also they have to deal with high-profile failure. So do actors, every time they audition for a part and don’t get it.
From time to time, though, almost since the advent of “talkies,” name athletes have found their way onto the screen, first in movies and later on television.
So, just for fun of it on New Year’s Weekend, here’s a little quiz, the “NOT Dirty Dozen” … 12 jocks who’ve gone all thespian either during or after their athletic careers. For each, there’s a movie photo, a clue in the captions and a visual uni hint. In some instances their cinematic careers were brutally brief. Others managed to make quite a successful profession out of it.
Will anyone get them all right? Probably not likely. But there are some interesting tidbits here to be learned about the cross-pollination of big-time sports and show biz. Have fun with it.
Thanks Rick. At the end of this article, I’ll post a link to the answers. Try your best to guess them without the cheat sheet. You won’t find many of these pics on the Interwebs, and googling may or may not help. Use any means at your disposal and see how you do.
For this quiz, you’ll be given a set of 12 photos of actor/athletes in a movie role. You’ll then be given an additional set of clues to help you identify the athlete. You need to come up with the names of the actors based on the photos and the clues. Sounds simple, right? Ready? Let’s go!
OK, that will do it. Obviously, some of them are easier than others. List the actor’s name, and give yourself bonus points if you can identify the role and the name of the movie or TV show in which they appeared.
Big thanks to Ricko for coming up with the idea for the annual year-end quiz, and also for hunting down all the photos — and the clever clues. And you thought today’s athletes were actors. Ha! They got nothing on these guys.
Ready for those answers? See the bottom of the page…
…and next year, a different strategy.
The 2010-11 Bowl Season is now halfway complete, with the first 18 games in the books. Some good games, some stinkers, and some…somewhere in between. My technique of “picking the team with the best uniform” has taken a beating, especially since some of the matchups haven’t quite panned out the way I’d planned. Some teams decided to either break out their “worst” possible combinations, or their best — or something they’d never worn before. Had I known some of these matchups ahead of time, well…I might have chosen differently. But at the halfway point I’m being beaten like a rented mule. Maybe I can rally for a respectable record once the next 17 Bowls are mercifully over.
Lets see how they’ve stacked up so far:
New Mexico Bowl: BYU 52 – UTEP 24. No question the best dressed team won here. An easy pick got me off to a fast start. (Record 1-0)
Humanitarian Bowl: Northern Illinois 40 – Fresno State 17. Ugh. Both teams dressed like Division III schools, although I’d still say Fresno State had a slight edge in un-suckyness. On the smurf turf of Boise, the game was almost unwatchable, but at least both teams were visible. (Record 1-1)
New Orleans Bowl: Troy 48 – Ohio 21. In one of the prettiest matchups so far, and sure to make the Mothervilker 5 & 1 (coming Sunday), Troy took Ohio behind the woodshed. I still say Ohio looked better, but they both looked great. (Record 1-2)
Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Bowl: Louisville 31 – Southern Miss 28. The ‘Ville has sported many awful looks this season, so I was anticipating their worst and they surprised me by looking better than So. Miss — definitely would have picked the Cardinals had I known of this hookup. But I didn’t. Slam. (Record 1-3)
Las Vegas Bowl: Boise State 26 – Utah 3. Boise came out in about the only look I could like, sporting their toy combat unis, and destroying Utah (which I expected). Like an idiot, I picked Utah fearing the Boise stripes and file folders. Utah still looked better, but with a spread of 17, I should have gone with the slam dunk. Another in the L column. (Record 1-4)
Poinsettia Bowl: San Diego State 35 – Navy 14. Just one day before they played, the Murph was under 3 feet of water. Those may have been the only conditions under which the much better attired Middies had a chance. Alas, they did not. SDSU looked awful, but still won big. Ouch. Another loss. (Record 1-5)
Hawai’i Bowl: Tulsa 62 – Hawai’i 35. Neither team looks good, and Tulsa has waaaaaaaay to much crap on their uniform, but they do have great colors. Had I seen this one coming, I’d have taken Tulsa, but of course, their prior messes scared me off. Tulsa took Hawai’i behind the woodshed in their own stadium, too. Interesting uni quirk: Tulsa wore a floral print in their helmet stripe. (Record 1-6)
Little Caesar’s Bowl: Florida International 34 – Toledo 32. FINALLY, the uni gods decide to strike a blow for the “least poorly attired” team, as neither team sports anything particularly appealing, but Toledo may have the worst number font in all of football — and that includes Belotti. The only people who may like that font are the official scorekeepers, since you can see those things from the space shuttle. Finally, a win. (Record 2-6)
Independence Bowl: Air Force 14 – Georgia Tech 7. I wasn’t expecting AF to come out in a hybrid of their thunderbirds and stars & stripes helmet, but they did, and they looked outstanding. Wouldn’t have mattered, because anything they could have worn was better than anything the Ramblin’ Wreck would wear. Score another one for the better dressed team. (Record 3-6)
Champs Sports Bowl: North Carolina State 23 – West Virginia 7. Although NC State isn’t one of the prettier teams in their monochrome red, with a white lid and black socks, they were still better attired that WVU in their soot suits, also known as toy combat unis. I didn’t know going in WVU would wear them, but I had a hunch. The better attired team emerged victorious, once again. (Record 4-6)
Insight Bowl: Iowa 27 – Missouri 24. Mizzou could have a really outstanding uni if they’d ditch those stupid side panels, and stuck with the black and mustard scheme, but Iowa had the better uni regardless. This was a pretty game and a damn exciting one. (Record 5-6)
Military Bowl: Maryland 51 – East Carolina 20. This one was almost a tossup going in, but having seen the two combatants, I would have chosen the Terps. The uni gods chose wisely, even though I didn’t. (Record 5-7)
Texas Bowl: Illinois 38 – Baylor 14. Another one where I was hedging, and I eventually took Baylor because I preferred their colors. When all was said and done, I should have taken the Illini, as they were slightly better attired than the Bears. (Record 5-8)
Alamo Bowl: Oklahoma State 36 – Arizona 10. Going in I didn’t know Arizona would break out their seldom-worn blue tops and blue helmets, but it didn’t matter, I would have taken them over the Cowboys regardless. This turned out to be a pretty decent looking game, but OSU still has crummy unis. I don’t want to remember this Alamo Bowl. (Record 5-9)
Armed Forces Bowl: Army 16 – SMU 14. Slam dunk — Army couldn’t possibly look better than SMU, could they? I mean, SMU has one of the greatest uniform sets of all time. But when you go BFBS and piss off the uni gods, you get the short end of the score. Didn’t see this one, but apparently the announcers said SMU was paying tribute to Army. Nice move. You got what you deserved. (Record 5-10)
Pinstripe Bowl: Syracuse 36 – Kansas State 34. Another beauty of a game, and definitely one to watch for in the Mothervilker 5 & 1. I so wanted to take ‘Cuse, and of course, I should have. In a cold, gray, overcast day in Yankee Stadium, the Orange looked and played just slightly better. (Record 5-11)
Music City Bowl: North Carolina 30 – Tennessee 27. Woulda…coulda…shoulda. I knew Tennessee would be wearing their new “NFL” cut uniforms, which actually look better on them than some adidas-clad teams, due to their lack of jersey stripes, but I didn’t foresee their orange jerseys not matching the orange on their helmets. The uni gods noticed, and the ‘Heels won in a double OT squeaker, just to spite my pick. Or so it seems. Can it get any worse? Nebraska couldn’t possibly lose, could they? That’d be like the U-Conn women losing in hoops — it’ll never happen. (Record 5-12)
Holiday Bowl: Washington 19 – Nebraska 7. OK. Now the uni gods are just trying to piss me off. Full-BFBS Washington pulls off the biggest upset of the Bowl Season? Are you kidding me? Apparently not. At least I won’t be the only one who picked this one wrong. Ugh. (Record 5-13)
Well. There you have your uni-wrap of the first 18 bowls. If you picked in the UW pool, you’re probably doing better than I. Let’s hope for a big turnaround as the bigger bowls get underway.
Here Comes The Sun (Bowl)
Some time ago, everyone’s favorite college football uniform critic, Jim Vilk (yeah, bookmark that one for future photoshops, kids) mentioned in the comments that his favorite of all the bowls was the Sun Bowl. Really? I mean, it’s not like it’s the Sugar or the Orange or even the Granddaddy, but who picks the Sun Bowl as their favorite? Jim Mothersunbowlvilker, that’s who.
Well, the Sun Bowl is today, the last day of 2010, and it pits the U against the Fighting Irish. So it’s got that going for it, which is nice. Anyway, Jim’s love for the Sun Bowl can only be explained by Jim himself, so without further ado…here is Mr. 5 & 1â„¢ himself…
Finally, a bowl I can see! That’s right, today features one of the three free-TV bowl games, and it just happens to be my favorite — the Sun Bowl. It’s not my favorite because of this year’s matchup, as I’m not fond of either team. It most certainly isn’t because of the uniform matchup, as the Sun Bowl web site suggests Miami’s normal orange vs. Notre Dame’s regular white. I’d be much happier with a retro matchup, or better yet, the Joe Montana look vs. the Hurricanes’ Toy Combat unis. It’s not so much the past matchups, either. There isn’t a Sun Bowl that ranks anywhere in my Top 5 favorite bowl games, but on the whole, it’s the game I look forward to the most each year.
Why? Well, the first thing that comes to mind when I think of the Sun Bowl is the scenery. I love how the stadium is nestled between the mountains, which almost always means the camera crew will find a shot of someone who climbed up one of the hills to watch the game. The next thing I think of is the weather. As the name suggests, the Sun Bowl is usually sunny. There have been games, however, that were played in the fog and even in the snow. Basically, it’s not your typical bowl, which is why I always tune in, even if I just have it on in the background.
As I said, there isn’t a Sun Bowl in my best games list, but there have been some good matchups and memorable games. Probably the most memorable for me was the 2003 matchup between Minnesota and…Oregon? Yep, that was when the Ducks knew how to dress, plus it was a pretty good game that came down to the wire. You can read all about that game and others on Mark Bolding’s wonderful web site of his favorite bowls. Don’t do it during the game, though. Just sit back, relax and soak in the Sun Bowl, as I will be doing.
Thanks, Jim. I’m sure we’ll all be thinking of how happy you’ll be today as you enjoy the sights, the sounds, and the smells of the Sun Bowl … while you’re out bowling.
Lots and lots of tweaks keep pouring in, so obviously this is a popular feature. A bunch new to get to today. If you have a tweak, change or concept for any sport, send them my way.
Remember, if possible, try to keep your descriptions to ~50 words (give or take) per tweak. You guys have been great a keeping to that, and it’s much appreciated!
Got a big set of tweaks today…so lets get right into it.
Now, on to today’s tweaks:
Starting off the show is Mike Engle, everyone’s favorite crayola-artiste, who has some ideas for the Caunucks of Vancouver:
I’ve tweaked the Vancouver Canucks. Just three colors: royal, green, and white.
Alternate greens: Clear cue from the ancient Millionaires on the front, so the other stripes are straight to keep it old-school. Captaincy on patch for an extra retro feel. Consistent color palette (yes, Florida), helmet, gloves, and breezers ensure that the Canucks’ identity remains.
And just for the heck of it, I threw the captaincy letters on the northwest corner, because Vancouver is the NHL team in the northwest. Yeah, change for change’s sake, but isn’t that what the tweak show is?
Next up is W. Barrett, who thought the Seahawks look funny in their monochrome:
I’m tired of seeing Seattle wearing their awful monochrome look. So I put this together. I added sleeve stripes using the new logo with old colors, changed the helmet and pants to their old silver/gray look, and fixed the blue jersey to add green trim and sleeve caps.
Next up is Jack Brudvig, who has a new combo for Oregon. Keep in mind, Jack is like 12 years old, so more power to him for submitting this:
Thought this up while watching their game against Oregon State. Hope you like!
And finally we have Brennan Keller, who has some Stanford concepts:
Hi my name’s Brennan, I’ve always been had an interest in sports uniforms, I went ahead and did a Stanford football Home and Away concept. I feel Stanford’s current uni set is very plain, and could use a remodel. I’m still learning to how to use Adobe Illustrator CS5, so on both the of the helmets imagine a “S” on each side, just like the current helmet.
Lemme know what you think?
Thanks, Brennan (from Kansas!)
That’s it for the tweak show today. Check back tomorrow for more.
Calling All Yinzers!
And now, a few words from everyone’s favorite Yinzer, Doug Keklak:
SECOND ANNUAL YINZER WATCH GATHERING: Saturday, January 8th, 2011 at the Fox and Hound on McKnight Road in Pittsburgh. Noon till whenever. The planning committee (aka, me, Ryan Connelly and Jason Bernard) at first thought we’d keep tradition and do it on the night of the BCS Championship Game but then we reconsidered for two reasons: Pitt’s bowl game will be on this date and we’d like to accommodate any readers that might want to come in from out of town. Native Pittsburgher? Displaced Pittsburgher? No ties at all to Pittsburgh? It doesn’t matter, ALL are welcome. Please RSVP to me at dkeklak(at)comcast.net if you are able to attend so that I can get a handle on how many folks we might get.
And now…here are the answers to the Who Am I quiz.
Alrighty, everyone. That will do it for this last day of 2010. Hope everyone had a good year … and here’s to a better year next year, right?
Lots and lots of bowl games on tap today, (Meineke Bowl, Sun Bowl, Liberty Bowl, Chick-Fil-A Bowl), so there will be plenty to keep you entertained. If you’re going out tonight — remember, it’s “Amateur Night,” so please do be careful. We want all you Uni Watchers to be around for 2011.
Thanks to one an all for all your kind words and support! Happy New Year to one and all. See ya next year.
Speaking of animals, there’s no getting around the fact that anything is cuter with a beaver on it. — Paul Lukas
Huskies are renowned for their vicious dispositions. Hardly a day goes by that I don’t read about a husky attack. Parents, if you love your children, then for God’s sake, keep them away from that Iditarod — James T. Huening