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Confirming What We Already Knew

As you can see above, the NBA unveiled their Christmas Day jerseys yesterday. (If you’re reading this on a mobile device or are having trouble with the slideshow, look here.) These had previously been leaked via video game, of course, but it’s nice to see better views of them. Would’ve been nicer still if they’d put uni numbers on most of the jerseys, but whaddaya gonna do.

There’s absolutely zero reason for these jerseys to exist (well, unless you count merchandising as a valid reason), so they’re stupid by definition. But from a strictly aesthetic standpoint, I have no problem with them — they’re nice. Well, except maybe for the Knicks’ design, but I’ll wait to see it on the court before saying for sure.

As you may recall, there was talk about these jerseys being used for weekend games in the second half of the season. There’s no mention of that in Adidas’s press release, which only says that the jerseys will be worn on Xmas. I’ve asked for clarification; will advise.

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AmPac leak: A design that’s widely assumed to be Ohio State’s Amateur Pacifist uni for the Nov. 24 game against Michigan unexpectedly showed up on the Buckeyes’ web site yesterday and quickly become the subject of mucho discussion (at least among people who can take such things seriously). Reader Ryan Cox provides a good analysis:

The player is wearing a (chrome?) helmet with a black facemask. It also has a larger OSU helmet stripe. The jersey has the [Nikelace] collar and OSU logo shield, which the regular OSU unis do not have. I think it is safe to say that these will be the unis worn against the team from the North.

I’m assuming more AmPac leaks will be following shortly.

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I received several e-mails yesterday from military personnel who took issue with what I’d written about UVA coach Mike London’s G.I. Joe dress-up costume. Most of these communiqués led to respectful back-and-forths that resulted in the other party and myself agreeing to disagree. But I also traded several e-mails with an Air Force veteran named Michael Ingalls, who insulted me in various ways (all of which is fine, it comes with the territory) and then said something so extraordinary that I’ve actually taken a screen shot of his e-mail and highlighted the pertinent bit, just so you can see I that didn’t make it up (I’ve blurred out his e-mail address; click to enlarge):


Can you imagine?

What does this have to do with uniforms? This: The knee-jerk “Thank you for your service” mantra that’s spread through our culture in recent years is part of the same rubber-stamp rah-rah machine that gives us camouflage sports uniforms, and is just as problematic. It has helped create the notion of the military being a privileged class that’s beyond reproach. And it’s apparently gone so far that at least one veteran now views this rubber stamp as an entitlement. Incredible.

If you’re in the military, I repeat what I’ve said before: I respect what you do. But I also know that not all soldiers are heroes, and not all heroes are soldiers.

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Collector’s Corner

By Brinke Guthrie

I went to every Bengals home game at Riverfront from 1973 through 1977. I remember being so excited to get the new Pro! magazine each week, including, I’m sure, this one. Of course, the pre-Pro! era is also interesting, as in the case of this LeRoy Neiman Jets cover.

As for the rest of this week’s finds:

• Look at the detail on these late 1970s Chargers Tudor figures. Did you ever repaint yours? I think I mighta tried that once or twice, since my Tudor phase meshed neatly with my Monogram/Aurora/Revell models phase.

NFL Chiquita Stickers alert! Starting price, just $225.00.

• We’ve got a Steelers NFL Sears sweater-jacket right here.

• Sorry, Nike, I’ll take this old-school Vikes sweatshirt over your stuff any day.

• Speaking of the Vikes, check how they reversed the scheme on this vintage pennant. It took me years to realize that was a helmet horn on the side. Years.

• Are those Wilson “Bata” shoes on Ken Stabler? I say yes. (Remember when players could wear any brand they wanted?

• From reader Jeff Flynn, Jr., comes this amazing 1970s Indiana State baseball jersey.

• Also from Jeff: these groovy NFL helmet “pop-ups.”

• And we wrap up this week with a 1971 KC Royals decanter, in good shape.

Seen something on eBay or Etsy that you think would make good Collector’s Corner fodder? Send your submissions here, and you can follow Brinke on Twitter and Facebook.

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PermeRec update: Someone in Florida recently found 100 old snapshots in a Dumpster. They eventually told the story of a North Dakota man and his family. Full details on the Permanent Record Blog.

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Uni Watch News Ticker: In a development that doesn’t really qualify as much of a surprise, most players on the Browns would like to have new uniforms (from Jason Hillyer). … Florida Tech will field its first football team next year. Here’s an article about their uniforms (from Wayne Koehler). … Question: Does anyone track the number of times NFL players’ helmets come off during a game, or a season, or whatever? … Here’s more about the Panthers’ black pants. Interesting detail: “The option on whether to wear black or blue socks was left up to veteran wide receiver and team captain Steve Smith, who opted for blue in order to give the Panthers a more unique appearance.” … Also, if you’re wondering what the black pants would look like with the team’s white jersey, The Jeff whipped up this Photoshop image. Not bad — I like that better than the mono-black look. … Someone at Sunday night’s Bears game was wearing a full Urlacher uniform. “If I’d gotten a pic of his face, you’d see that he also had eye black stick-ons,” says James Huening. “But no helmet? Come on!” … Check this out: When 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick scored a touchdown on Sunday, he knocked the G.I. Joe ribbon off of the pylon. Why does Colin Kaepernick hate America? (From Marc Mandin.) … Conor Breen notes that Arian Foster, who normally wears gloves, went bare-handed on Sunday night. “Some players who normally don’t wear gloves (QBs, for example) sometimes wear them during bad-weather games, so I thought that it was interesting that Foster did the opposite,” says Conor. … America, fuck yeah, Southern Miss edition. What an embarrassment. … In a related item, the Toledo Walleye wore Captain America costumes on Saturday. “You cannot imagine how awkward and out-of place they actually appeared during the game,” says Chris Marcinko. ”¦ Two organizations with famous uniforms — let’s call them Group A and Group B — were in the news yesterday. Why? Because Group A will no longer donate money to Group B. Why? Because Group B insists on clinging to a policy of bigotry. … Whoa, check this out: tartan baseball uniforms! The full story behind this photo has been broken down in gloriously fine detail by Tom Shieberlook here. ”¦ Hey look, a Native American team name and logo that I can totally get behind. Why? Because the Lady Chiefs play for Wyoming Indian High School on the Wind River Reservation in Wyoming. And that’s why nobody else should use that imagery — because it already belongs to someone. ”¦ Bill Wallis found a great quote from the late Darrell Royal, who was asked if he’d ever change the Longhorns’ uniforms: “Hell no, I’m not going to candy these up. These are work clothes.” ”¦ Soooo many great details on the field itself in this 1971 Cowboys/Bills clip. Check it out: red hashmarks on the sidelines; alternating colors for the yard-marker numbers; little buffaloes in the Bills’ end zone; stars in the Cowboys’ end zone; and buffaloes on the 40-yard lines (I believe to indicate where the kickoffs took place). “And don’t overlook the Bills’ various NOB font sizes and the girl twirling a flaming baton in the opening — simply classic!” says Bill Kellick, and he’s right. ”¦ At the conclusion of last night’s Steelers/Chiefs game, one of the zebras was still signaling the game-ending field goal when a worker came out and began removing the G.I. Joe wapper from the goalpost padding (screen shot by Andy Henderson). ”¦ Also from last night’s game: Aaron McHargue notes that the helmets on the ESPN postgame set were facing away from each other instead of toward each other. I’m assuming they always put the home team on the right, and then they had to turn it around because the Steelers only have the logo on one side, so then they turned the Chiefs helmet around too. ”¦ Good story about the Steelers fans who came up with the “Immaculate Reception” moniker (from Jerry Wolper). ”¦ Excellent spot by Joe Sewash, who notes that WVU hoops had a small black patch above the NOBs last night. I’m pretty sure this is a cover-up patch for the Big East logo, because the Mountaineers now play in the Big 12 and are using the same uniforms as last year. … Learned last night that one of my very favorite people on this mudball planet — someone I love a lot, someone who’s super-remarkable in countless ways, someone from whom I’ve learned a lot and who I’m proud to call my friend and my hero — has been diagnosed with cancer. It’s bad. Feel free to think good thoughts about her. Thanks.

Comments (230)


    I came on here for the soul purpose of saying just that!

    Implying we are all risking our lives is like saying the equipment manager and waterboy won the super bowl. Good LORD get over yourselves! I’d laugh in the face of a fellow Grunt who said that crap, let alone some Air Force REMF.

    Beyond the obvious fact that I’d prefer to not keep adding names to my name with the names of dead friends, I can’t wait for this war to be over simply so fellow servicemembers can stop “servicing” themselves.

    Re the email you posted: That is some serious bullshit. Not even that he thought he was entitled to your gratitude, but the “I would never ask” part. What an ass.

    I reckon he was just mad and was throwing everything he had at Paul. I really don’t think anyone would actually say that and mean it. Its petulant and petty. Its akin to a middle school girl argument.

    Would you stop that crap? First, you clearly have no idea what you’re talking about, since only people that attend West Point or the Air Force Academy are called “cadets.”

    Saying we all act like that or are trained to think like that is akin to me saying “All civilians are cowardly, lazy people who only get off their couch to collect a welfare check and get another piece of cookie dough to shove down their throat.”

    The military is a microcosm of the country we serve, and that means there are a lot of fucking morons in our ranks, just like the civilian world.

    Regarding the previous reply; this is the second time in 2 days you’ve referred to “us” as cadets, which just shows you had a bad experience with a few servicemembers (not unlikely, I admit, especially in this day and age), and you are entirely ignorant of the military in general.

    I know a few cops and mechanics that are complete assholes. Am I right to assume that Cops and Mechanics are taught to act like that when they are learning to be cops and mechanics? Of course not. People are assholes because sometimes, people are assholes, regardless of affiliation and occupation.

    Pretty sure nobody ever built up their cadets …er troops/volunteers/employees with low morale.

    The mending of the military & the sports world is beyond obscene at this point. I have a less than favorable opinion of the military due to fiscal issues. I also think there is no accountability anymore & this “kicking the can down the road” approach is ruining this country.

    Michael Ingalis: wow, conceited much? No modesty or humility whatsoever.

    You served – you don’t walk on water. Get over yourself.

    As a military veteran, I am aghast at Michael’s e-mail. Pandering for praise is pathetic. I didn’t serve so that years later people would pat me on the back. Service before self, right?

    Congrats for serving in the Air Force almost 20 years ago. And good luck with your “major” media site.


    Fuck that guy. Do not lump his arrogant, undeserving ass in with those of us who were proud to serve for the honor of serving and nothing more.

    I wonder how much Paul’s traffic has bumped due to visitors from his site, compared to how much Michael’s traffic has jumped due to UW readers wondering (as I did) what the f*** a TheSabre is.
    Also, he’s a bit smug in his thanks for that. Perhaps he’s never heard of THE major sports media outlet for which Paul writes?

    Same here, Josh and Coleman. People join the military for many reasons- such as the opportunity to serve their country, gainful employment, or as a path to higher education. I’m not sure exactly when that became not enough.

    Is there any chance that anyone sitting in the upper bowl of an NBA arena is going to be able to read those color-on-same-color numbers? Which, of course, is the whole point of putting numbers on jerseys in the first place.

    Is there any chance that anyone sitting in the upper bowl of an NBA arena is going to be able to read those color-on-same-color numbers?


    But – how hard is it to read the Bulls or Pistons normal jerseys anyway? Black on red or red on blue, even with the white outline aren’t exactly the most legible combinations from a distance, and they’ve been using those for decades.

    The people that need to be able to read the numbers are close enough to do so. Everyone else has the jumbotron.

    Bad doesn’t excuse worse. I’ve had problems reading Bulls numbers, less so the Pistons, but “everyone else has the jumbotron” isn’t an answer. I’m actually paying to watch the court, not a television.

    Paul, I’ve felt the same way you do about the hyper-patriotic rah-rah stuff going on, but was never able to get it all straight in my head. You articulated it perfectly. Thanks.

    I don’t care for it, because it cheapens genuine remembrances and celebrations. When we remember war dead and veterans I think it needs to quiet and solemn. Something like the Flanders field poem.

    I sat through a huge Memorial Day fireworks display after a Savannah Sand Gnats game a few years ago. My father-in-law, a decorated Vietnam vet was with me. During this “barrage,” he had a stone-faced glare. Didn’t look up, just stared straight ahead. Several Hunter Army Air Field uniformed members had the same look. I’ll never forget it.

    Memorial Day fireworks? That’s perverse. A primer, since so many of the rah-rah types seem not to understand what our national holidays are for:

    Memorial Day: The holiday where we remember and mourn our war dead. Not living veterans, not active-duty personnel, but those who died in service to their country. A funeral, not a party.

    Armed Forces Day: The holiday where we honor those currently serving their nation in uniform. Not veterans, not war dead, but those on active, reserve, or National Guard duty. A party, but only so long as uniformed personnel are the guests of honor.

    Veterans Day: The holiday where we honor the service of veterans. Not active-duty personnel, not war dead, but those who served and returned to civilian life. We still do a lot of wreath-laying on this one, so that part is a funeral. Otherwise, a party, but only so long as actual veterans are the guests of honor.

    And a bonus:

    Independence Day: The holiday where we honor the founding of our republic as an independent nation. Not a military-themed holiday at all. A party, for everyone.

    You forgot the corresponding sales- you know, like the Veterans Day sale at the local car dealership, or the Memorial Day extravaganza at the home and garden big box store.

    Lol @ the car dealership “sales” for veterans. When I was active duty and was going through Indoc, one of the biggest “things to avoid” was any car dealership within 60 miles if the base. Those places feed on young military members with lots of money. It’s disgusting.

    So true. I try to make it a point to only shop “X Day Sale!” events on Presidents Day and Columbus Day, not the ones where we’re supposed to be honoring actual important people and history.

    So Coleman, are you saying it’s not a coincidence that the road I live near, which runs between the Army’s Fort Belvoir and Marine Base Quantico, is lined with small dealerships selling used Corvettes?

    If anything Independence Day is the quintessential civilian celebration. It commemorates a civil act. The signing of a document by elected representatives who were doctors, lawyers, merchants, scholars, and farmers. It was not a declaration of war, since the war was already raging and would continue to do so for another 7 years. Instead it was a document which proclaimed the rights of the common individual not the glories of battle.

    i was kind of expecting the hed to say, “My Name is Paul, and I’m the Jackass”


    on another note…i thought of the perfect way to help all future wounded warriors

    From my vantage point on the other side of the Atlantic, I find the recent fetishization (arguably trivialization) of the military in the US offputting.
    And when I saw Mike London on College Gameday Final (before reading yesterday’s Uni Watch) I cringed.
    You simply couldn’t get away with that in the UK. People would think you were either mentally ill or completely disrespectful.

    “Trivialization” and “disrespectful”. Exactly. On Veterans Day especially, when you see a guy wearing a military uniform:


    You shouldn’t have to ask yourself whether that’s a veteran, or just some dude who never served playing dress-up. It’s a form of “stolen valor” not unlike people claiming to have won military medals they did not earn.

    Look at all the GI Joe crap we do today. Then look at what baseball teams did in and after the Second World War: During the war, teams wore a patriotic patch on one sleeve, promoting war bond sales and public health programs. After the war, veterans link (though few eligible players ever did so).

    Either we’re doing it right today with all the gaudy camo and dress-up, and Americans in the 1940s were unpatriotic America-hating traitors; or the “greatest generation” knew how to do patriotism, and we’ve completely lost our minds. It really is one or the other here.

    Well put, Arr.

    More than once, I’ve admired a military-style jacket (e.g., a WW-II era flight jacket, which my dad would have worn as a cargo plane radioman), but have consciously chosen NOT to buy or wear one simply because I never served in the military and, thus, didn’t feel like I should.

    Probably over-scrupulous on my part, but just my way of acknowledging that only those who have done certain things have earned the right to wear certain items.

    It’s also interesting that Mr. Ingalls’ response has no real counterargument to what Paul wrote other than:

    — His opinion is more valid than Paul’s because he’s a veteran and has played organized sports.
    — Paul’s tone was disrespectful (which it wasn’t).

    By the way, if you have to say you created something “major,” then you probably haven’t.

    He’s wrong, but that doesn’t mean that you’re not an asshole. You’re rather blunt with most of your opinions, and you jump to claim free speech, which is your right, especially on this site. But the “Don’t blame me for what I say, I’m only reacting to this” attitude from the other day struck me as the move of a good old-fashioned asshole. This isn’t a new development either. You’ve got your right to opinions, and so does everyone else in the country, but now you’re trying to publicly shame another human being. There is no scenario here where you win. Goodbye, Paul. Thanks for years of free entertainment and a fun Uni-Watch membership. It was a really good time.

    you jump to claim free speech

    Actually, I don’t think I’ve ever used the term “free speech” to defend what I’ve written (nor should I have to — free speech is already my right as a United States citizen).

    As for the rest, more power to you.

    I wouldn’t call it fetishization — its worse than that.

    Due to several factors, I could not enlist in the military myself, but several of my family members are/were in the military. My grandfather flew bombing missions in Germany in WWII and my father was shot down twice in Vietnam and was in the Army for 25 years. I also have a brother-in-law that’s served several Iraq/Afghanistan tours.

    And I have no problem whatsoever saying that there is a growing deification of the military in this country, something embraced (obviously) by some people in the military. And I don’t just think it’s unfunny, it’s potentially dangerous.

    Paul, I wouldn’t sweat it at all. You’ve got it exactly right. We should respect what they do and the sacrifices their families make…but not all soldiers are heroes and not all heroes are soldiers. People that lose sight of that are the ones doing our nation a disservice.

    All soldiers are not heroes and not all heroes are soldiers. This is a misplaced and uninformed statement. All military members and War veterans will tell you that they do not ask to become Heroes. They are only heroes because they are put in a position that requires them to be Heroic. Having said that less than 1% of our nation serve under the conditions are veterans (volunteer) to serve under. They are all heroes because they are willing to put themselves in harms way day after day that at anytime could cause them to be heroic. The other 99% sit on the sidelines and comforts of the umbrella of security and prosperity provided by are Military Heroes!

    Why are you capitalizing heroic and heroes? These are not proper nouns, nor are they official titles granted to those who serve in the military. Also, it would be “our military heroes”, not “are military heroes”.

    Additionally, you make it sound like there is no more noble profession than being a soldier (because being in the military is essentially a job). What about teachers, fire fighters, police, municipal workers, and the like? Just as with military, our society does not function without them. To suggest that someone in the military is better than, or more important than anyone else based only on their job is misguided and offends me to my core.

    All soldiers are not heroes and not all heroes are soldiers. This is a misplaced and uninformed statement

    Would you consider William Calley a hero?

    Would you say this man was not a hero?


    Fortunately, servicemen and servicewomen have better advocates than you.

    I am a veteran, and wish to express my disgust about the ridiculous letter you shared in part with us.

    The military is another 1%, and is increasingly isolated from American society because it is all-volunteer. What we see now is a reverse Tommy Atkins syndrome (Kipling wrote about him many decades ago). The NYT has an interesting article about military culture involving dismissals of high-ranking officers, implicating that culture as somewhat responsible for the bizarre behavior of several general officers.

    Oh yes, the Virginia coach is clearly as idiot.

    Just curious….since when did a “job” get replaced with “volunteer”. Aren’t all of our soldiers paid to perform a service?

    Yeah, I kinda make that point below. I honestly have no idea what their salary is, but there are other benefits. I’m also not sure what soldiers in the draft days were paid in comparison. I’ve mentioned in the past how I believe there’s lifetime access to VA, but several took exception and noted that it’s a crappy way to get care (my familiarity with VA as a system is that it’s much more progressive and truly integrated than I think most of us really realize).

    It’s referred to as all-volunteer because, as there is no draft, all members sign up voluntarily. Does not mean they are not provided compensation for their service.

    Nice to see the NBA wearing practice jerseys for their special day. I’m taking it as a salute to kids opening their presents in pajamas.

    Exactly. They remind me of old video games or a rec league with everyone just getting the same shirt in different colors. Kramer as Santa Claus wouldn’t approve of this.

    For those who have served, I’m curious to know: how many folks enlist purely because they love their country and how many enlist because it’s a “last resort” to get out of poverty? I’m sure there are folks somewhere in the middle too.
    I’ve said this before and caused some controversy, but joining the military is a choice, and it’s a choice that has some (not great, but some pretty good) benefits to it that many other job options have. For example, the VA gets a bad rap, but several vets I am friends with swear by it.
    It’s just interesting how this culture continues to embrace the military and those who serve as the pinnacle of public service, but those civilians who work in the public sector are always demonized and in the crosshairs of those who dislike large govt. Yes, it’s a sacrifice to go into the line of fire, but like someone said above, those are probably far fewer than those who are stationed at bases and settle into nice careers.
    Ok, sorry for the rambling hopefully there’s a good point in here.

    I know quite a few who have enlisted because they simply had ‘no other option.’ I also know quite a few who have enlisted because they were so mentally unstable that they could not function in the private sector.


    When I enlisted, there were a variety of reasons – which seems to be true for most everyone I served with. I entered the Army in 2004, with the main reason being I felt like I wasn’t doing anything with my life of substance. I felt like I was going through the motions and just sliding by. I was managing a Gamestop and working part time as a bartender at a Ruby Tuesday – I wasn’t poor, but I certainly wasn’t rich. Money wasn’t a factor in my enlisting in the Army – education benefits certainly were though. I’d say those two things, along with a family history of service, are what pushed me to enlist.

    Most civilians I know who work in the private section once wore the uniform. Most – not all.

    On the overall topic, I think London’s outfit was silly. I’m not offended, but I think that was a “look at me and what I’m doing” move. I was stationed in Norfolk and went to quite a few Cavaliers games. I like London as a coach, I just think this was foolish.

    Mr. Ingalis’ comments were more offensive than the outfit. I never know what to say when people thank me for my service, because as you note, I received payment and benefits. I would never ask someone why they hadn’t thanked me for serving.

    I’m a 9 year Marine Vet. I joined the Marines because college wasn’t my cup of tea, wanted to travel the world, and believe it or not, the GI Bill. I didn’t want to go to college as a 19 year old, but I knew when I was older, I would want to go back. I have no problems admitting that.

    But honestly, it was the best choice I have ever made. I needed to have my ass kicked, and my Drill Instructors did just that. It was a wake up call for me. I have been to the Middle East twice as a Marine and 3 more as a contractor.

    As my time as a Marine, I have never looked for a Thank You, a free drink or any other offers people are willing to do. When I got home from every deployment, all I wanted was to be left alone and be around my kids and family. For this AF guy to in a back handed way and ask for a Thank You, he needs to be slapped into reality.

    While the pandering for appreciation is the epitome of poor taste, Mr. Lukas contradicts himself with the rhetorical question: What does this have to do with uniforms?

    To answer, – everything – now that Mr. Lukas has shared this correspondence with his audience as a way to prop up his side of the argument.

    By sharing this you make it not about uniforms.

    I do, however, agree with Mr. Lukas in his belief that the implementation of camouflage, flag colors and purely profit-driven association that is the merger between the military and sports apparel is nothing short of pathetic.

    This marriage only serves to embolden the false notion in our society that the American military is somehow beyond reproach, not an entity who repeatedly acts with deceit and secrecy to obscure atrocities, human rights violations and other criminal behavior from public view.

    “War is society’s dirty work, usually done by kids cleaning up failures perpetrated by adults.”
    ― Karl Marlantes, What It is Like to Go to War

    Abu Ghraib torture and prisoner abuse
    2008 Abu Kamal raid
    Air Mail scandal
    American mutilation of Japanese war dead
    Bagram torture and prisoner abuse
    Camp Lejeune water contamination
    Camp Liberty killings
    Chase Aircraft
    Danny Chen
    Cunningham scandal
    Fag bomb
    Gen. David Petraeus Sex Scandal
    Maywand District murders
    Girard incident
    Granai airstrike
    Guantanamo Bay homicide accusations
    Haditha killings
    Hamdania incident
    Owen Honors
    Incident on Hill 192
    Insurgents’ bodies incident
    Iran Contra Affair
    USS Iowa turret explosion
    Ishaqi incident
    Kandahar massacre
    Khataba raid
    Khosrow Sofla
    Lower Babur
    Mahmudiyah killings
    Michael Brown Okinawa assault incident
    Lee Mirecki incident
    My Lai Massacre
    2011 NATO attack in Pakistan
    Newport sex scandal
    1995 Okinawa rape incident
    1996 Padilla car accident
    1998 Eskridge car accident
    Ribbon Creek incident
    Jason Rother
    Sand Creek massacre
    Shen Chong case
    Tarok Kolache
    U.S. soldiers posing with body parts of dead Afghans
    Umm Hajul controversy
    United States Army beef scandal
    United Airlines Flight 93
    United States Navy dog handler hazing scandal
    Video of US troops urinating on Taliban fighters
    Walter Reed Army Medical Center neglect scandal
    Barry Winchell

    Couldn’t you have just linked to the Wikipedia page that clearly exists (I doubt you would have alphabetized these incidents on your own) and be done with it?

    Guys, let’s not turn this into a referendum on the military — that’s not what this discussion is about.

    My gripe has never been with the military; my gripe is with the inappropriate elevation of the military’s status and presence in civilian life, as exemplified by camouflage uniforms. Let’s stick to that. Thanks.

    It’s nice that you post one email from “several e-mails with an Air Force veteran named Michael Ingalls” and claim that he insulted you in various ways. Where are your replies?

    The insults and replies are both off-topic.

    What’s on-topic is one veteran’s sense of praise-entitlement and the way he responds to not having been personally thanked by everyone, in as far as the GI Joe dress-up games nurture and enable that mentality.

    It seems to me…
    For a uniform blog that has discussed the recent uniform trend of adding military camouflage, military logos, and desecrated flags as well as discusses the validity of programs promoted by the Nike, adidas, the NCAA, NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL (to a lesser degree – yay, hockey) and others whose motivation may be simply to make a quick buck – a blog that has established an opinion that this is pandering and has previously stated that its opinion is “Not all soldiers are heroes, and not all heroes are soldiers” – yes, it’s pretty well on topic to address a message from a former soldier who himself seems to be pandering for appreciation.
    But, I could be wrong…

    A good counterpoint on the “thank you for your service” issue is the novel “The Yellow Birds” by Iraq-war veteran Kevin Powers.

    The protagonist gives a nice explanation of why he does not want to be thanked for his service.

    Brinke, love the Kilmer PRO! misprint.

    ps, it must’ve been after the NFL implemented its strict “You gotta wear a chipstrap” rule, as Billy often didn’t wear one prior.

    With regard to UVA coach Mike London’s G.I. Joe dress-up costume, I hate it. As an active duty Marine, I cringe whenever I see anyone wear our uniform who was never a Marine. And to combine it with an Army cover, I cringe even more. I respect Mr. London’s desire to support our Veterans. Our service gives him the freedom to wear whatever he wants, and for Paul to have whatever opinion he wishes to have. If Mr. London wants to wear camouflage, by all means do so, but at least get the uniform combination right. Soldiers and Marines never play well together. Go all in, or just wear the “Ooo Rah” shirts and jackets that are available and probably make just as much of a statement as full camouflage. Hell, he can borrow my USMC running suit next time. It would look better.

    As for Michael Ingalls, take a second to reflect on your statement. You come off as an elitist and an idiot. I’ve always felt veterans should take the high ground in any argument. I have never demanded recognition, or felt that I deserved thanks for what I do. It just comes off as a selfish act that counters everything we do when we serve in the military.

    As for camouflage in sports, I’m fine with it as long as it’s done right. The service academies do it right. The Padres do it right (at least tan is one of their primary colors). Under Armour is getting better, but I would love it if they stopped using the American flag as a part of any uniform. There’s a flag code. Learn it, follow it, and maybe it won’t make the uniform cheesy. Stars, bars, red, white, and blue are all fine, but recreating the flag in such a way on any uniform that would tarnish it is not (IMO).

    Tan (or sand) hasn’t been a primary color of the Padres for a few years now, since they stopped wearing sand away unis in 2010. Time to do away with charade now?

    The Padres Sunday uniforms has nothing to do with their color scheme they had in the years prior. Those uniforms are the same design that the USMC uses. Since it was the USMC that signed off on the Padres using their MARPAT design, I’m ok with it.

    Growing up in San Diego, the Padres were doing promotions for the Military as long as I can remember. What the Padres do for the Military, it not a charade.

    “Our service gives him the freedom to wear whatever he wants, and for Paul to have whatever opinion he wishes to have.”

    Your service didn’t grant either of these guys shit. I get so sick of the perpetual regurgitation of the false idea that our military is protecting freedom. I’m not free to do shit in this country. I can’t carry a beer on the sidewalk. I can’t board an airplane without a fondling of my crotch. I can’t give a beer to my 18-year-old brother.

    Our military is protecting nothing but the interests of a few. And if you’re too stupid to see that, then please be the first to tell me how you’ll kick my ass or some other canned response regarding the unpatriotic.

    Actually, you CAN carry a beer, or any other alcoholic beverage of your choice, and walk down the sidewalk if you’re in New Orleans, and if its in a plastic container.

    You’re welcome.

    “Under Armour is getting better, but I would love it if they stopped using the American flag as a part of any uniform. There’s a flag code. Learn it, follow it, and maybe it won’t make the uniform cheesy. Stars, bars, red, white, and blue are all fine, but recreating the flag in such a way on any uniform that would tarnish it is not (IMO).”

    I can not begin to articulate how much I agree with this statement.

    The material on those NBA jerseys look like the “wife beater” ribbed tank tops.

    But I’m sure it’s just more technology to wick away sweat and keep the athlete 77% cooler or something.

    Not positive, but I think that’s only for the retail versions.

    If it’s for the game jerseys, that would indeed be new. The only time the Adidas logo has appeared on game jerseys has been in the last two or three All-Star Games.

    Looking at the jersey fabric, these have the same mesh holes as the on-court uniforms. The swingman jerseys don’t seem to have the same mesh holes.

    Paul – Here is another story of stuff left in a book, except the stuff is $20K. link

    The guy found the book in a dumpster and inside was the money and other items he is not shairing as he wants the owner of the book to name them to claime the money.

    These jersey are nothing but a blatant money-grab, nothing more. And didn’t there used to be just two games on Christmas? Now there’s 5? How long until the NBA says “f-ck it, let’s ALL play on Christmas…!”

    To me Christmas TV tradition was always the Hula Bowl or the Aloha Bowl or whatever bowl was on and basketball was over on “the other channel” Now that the NBA has muscled in and taken over that holiday, I say screw it and just watch 24 hours of red rider BB gun.

    Now the NHL is starting to horn in on on New Year’s Day. (Well except this year) These other fringe sports better not lay a hand on Thanksgiving. (Except for the Skins game, they could bring that back on Thanksgiving Weekend, as long as they bring Nicklaus, Palmer and Trevino, too. Or Couples and Woods and Daly, just don’t bother if it’s just gonna be a bunch of guys like Rich Beem that I don’t care about.)

    “If I wanted, I could tell you to stop critiquing me, since you’ve never been a reporter or a media member.” And you’re not an ass? Ignoring the fit of journalistic integrity that led you to posting private correspondence, I’m seriously bummed that this blog has degenerated to so much self-righteous politicizing.

    “If I wanted, I could tell you to stop critiquing me, since you’ve never been a reporter or a media member.” And you’re not an ass?

    Here’s the full context: He had said I’m not qualified to comment on military issues, because I’ve never been in the military. I said that was a false notion, and by analogy suggested that I could have said that HE wasn’t qualified to comment on media matters, since he’s not a reporter, but of course that would have been a false notion too. I was using an intentionally bogus line of reasoning to highlight HIS bogus line of reasoning.

    As you can see, it turns out that he IS a reporter — good for him. But it doesn’t change the parameters of the discussion, namely that he posed a false premise.

    Glad to have cleared this up.

    Everything is always on the record.

    Bullshit movies and TV shows convince people that they know how journalism works in the same way that Law and Order makes people think they know how to be a police officer or lawyer.

    I was taught if a source ever tells you anything is off the record, you tell them, “Sorry, I don’t do that. Either tell me what you’re going to say or don’t tell me at all.”

    ha! that’s funny.

    every time someone comes to me and says something like “hey, wanna hear a secret? promise not to tell anyone?” i always say “no…” LOL. i’m surprised at how many people say fuck it, and tell me anyway…


    To wit: “Recognize that private people have a greater right to control information about themselves than do public officials and others who seek power, influence or attention. Only an overriding public need can justify intrusion into anyone’s privacy.”

    I’m assuming this means public attention. If not, then everything we do to interact with one another is excluded from this, rendering the guidelines obsolete.

    You must have been taught by someone at ESPN: link

    Yep, those are the Bata by Wilson cleats Stabler is wearing. Supposedly he was under sponsorship to wear their helmets too. BTW, Bata also had a deal with John Wooden at UCLA for their basketball sneaker.

    Also, I love the arrogance of a guy who thinks his site that no one has ever heard of is driving “all of your page traffic” to UW. Couldn’t possibly be that Paul’s been an established writer for a couple of decades or writes on one of the biggest sports networks in the world. Couldn’t POSSIBLY be that.

    For the record: Based on our sites’ respective Alexa rankings (not a foolproof measure of site traffic, but a reasonably good barometer), his site does less traffic than Uni Watch, but not radically less. I wouldn’t call it a “major” site, just as I wouldn’t use that description for Uni Watch, but he clearly has an audience. Good for him.

    Ingalls’ “major website” covers U. of Virginia sports… They already have an athletics site, and I’m sure a lot more people visit that site. It’s fairly safe to assume your site is anything but “major” you self-righteous a-hole

    See above. No need to pick on every little thing about him; let’s stick to the issue at hand (i.e., how his comment exemplifies the same disturbing trend as camouflage uniforms).

    Perhaps I was a bit rough with the previous comment but, as a fellow writer, his attempt to be the “dominant one” because he made a second-tier college athletics website kind of grinds my gears.

    But to the topic at hand, it is rather disturbing that he feels that sense of entitlement. The fact that he served our country is worthy of our respect, be we need to thank him every time someone interacts with him?

    And I have to imagine the average marine that sees a coach who has never served wearing fatigues and sneakers would be a little upset by that.

    Why can’t players and coaches just wear a patch?

    As a hockey jersey, I don’t think the Captain America uniforms are that bad. Of all the superhero costumes that exist, it is one of the better conversions with an identifiable “crest” — the other notable ones being Batman and Superman — although I can see the Tampa Bay Lightning having add adaptations/appropriations of the Captain Marvel (known as Shazam to some) designs.

    Folks liek me click on this website to satiate their (somewhat) nerdy sports uniform interests, and for that purpose the site has no parallel. But we’re starting to get into some new and in my view, unsavory territory when we start impugning the entire character of good men with good intentions either because we disagree with their statements or how they make them; the stink gets stronger when we take a step back to examine folks like Coach London’s and Mike Ingalls’ entire bodies of work, recognize their backgrounds, the values they preach, the adversity they’ve faced, and the successes they’ve had despite (if not because of) that adversity. I’m as cynical as the next guy, and recognize this blog isn’t breaking any new ground in the modern internet media market by taking any person’s mistake, blowing it out of context and proportion, and shaming that person so that authors and readers may feel better about themselves. But I’ll say that there are many other websites whose expertise is to provide such a function, and the further this site gets away from its own expertise, the less likely I am to be a patron.

    Your concept of this site’s “own expertise” is just that — your concept. You’re welcome to it, of course. But Uni Watch is many different things to many different people. If you don’t think a coach’s attire is relevant to Uni Watch, that’s your prerogative, but I strongly disagree.

    In any event, yesterday’s item about Mike London was the second major item down the scroll; today’s item about Mike Ingalls is the third major item down the scroll. It’s not like I’m leading with this stuff. If it’s not your cuppa, what’s so hard about just scrolling past it (just as I assume you scroll past the Permanent Record updates)?

    just as I assume you scroll past the Permanent Record updates

    Seriously, if anybody is actually doing that, stop it. I don’t think I’ve ever enjoyed anything of Paul’s as much as I have the PRP.

    Respectfully, the discussion has tilted far past a coach’s attire into 1)an assessment of the coach’s character (the headline called Coach London “Jackass”) due to his attire choices, and 2)the interactions between the US Military and American popular culture (assuming sports and uniforms are an element of pop culture). And today it’s gone even further down the road than that, because now we can talk about 3)the tactfulness/fairness/ethics of publishing – for ridicule – portions of a private email without giving readers the benefit of the entire email exchange, and broader issues of 4) whether the military is a privileged class, what respect veterans are entitled, and how best to express that respect. To classify the subject matter of your posts/columns as merely about coach’s attire is simply not credible.

    But my broader point is, why even go there? You can stick to what you do a fine job of doing, and that is presenting the facts for your readers and let them form their own conclusions. The classic journalism approach. You can even depart from the classic approach with a respectful editorial discussion of broader issues…give yourself a forum to express your views, while you can stay above board with an intellectual high road. Or you can call a coach a jackass, support the comments by adopting the letter from an anonymous commentator who leaves out important details that your posts and columns otherwise thrive upon (ie. the fatigues London wore had no military markers/designations which would require it to be worn a certain way, that the uniforms worn by players made no bastardization of the US flag or military camo like many other schools, that other coaches have worn fatigues pants for years, that London was born at West Point with a father in the military, etc.), and then make semi-controversial comments about service members that you don’t need to make to get eyes on a sports uniforms site. Regardless of your position on the issues above, are the viewers you’re going to get/keep going to outweigh those you are going to alienate?

    The purpose of my original reply was not to tell you what you should do with your forum. The purpose was merely to give you feedback on why I find your forum valuable, and how that value is diminished when the editorial component is objectively irresponsible. Admittedly, I’m presupposing that the feedback of a long-time visitor of your website is valuable to you and your business; if I’m incorrect in that assumption, then please accept my apologies.

    Awesome reply — that’s how it’s done, kids.

    Two quibbles:

    1) Uni Watch is not “a business.” It’s a creative project that I engage in because it pleases me. (Yes, yes, it has ads. And a painter can sell his paintings. Just because a creative project can be monetized, that doesn’t make it any less of a creative project or any more of a business.)

    2) Your assertion that I’ve been “objectively irresponsible” is an overreach, and I suspect you know it. You’re better than that. Yes, I know, “You’re better than that” is exactly what you’re trying to tell me. Maybe we can both learn something from this exchange.

    You would think that with all of the money that West Virginia and its boosters have shelled out to change conferences, they would have saved a little bit of money to buy new basketball uniforms…..

    I’m wondering if this might have something to do with the “Nike didn’t get some of the new unis made on time” storyline that I reported on in my college hoops season preview column on ESPN. Maybe WVU was supposed to have new uniforms but they aren’t ready yet.

    Michael Ingalis: You sound like a tw@t piece of sh!t. I AIN’T THANKING YOU FOR SH!T. C U Next Tuesday Motherfvcker.

    I appreciate where Mike London’s head was when he woke up on saturday morning, but he came off looking like some third-world warlord or a Bond villain. All coaches should dress like Al Golden; end of story.

    On your lovely email: If one has to constantly tell people the reason they should be respected or honored, then they probably don’t deserve it.

    The problem with the GI Joe look is the same problem with Pink Month.
    They are ideas that started out with good intentions and have now devolved into crass commercialization presented as honorariums. Get those shoes, shirts, flags, and ribbons moving. Sell, sell, SELL MORE! Honoring others should NOT have any commercial motivation (and don’t give me that “Money is going to a non-profit” Bravo Sierra). The Crass Commercialization of this “honoring” however does bring exploitation to mind.

    I don’t put the two events in the same category (yet) because the NFL hasn’t monetized the camo event to the same level (yet).

    With the pink-out, the NFL is cashing in with thousands of items for sale and giving a tiny fraction of the money to its stated purpose. With the camo, they’re contributing to what I see as a disturbing societal trend, but not raking in the dough while doing it.

    Crass self-promotion is bad, but not crass self-promotion while grifting.

    So, um, in regards to athletic aesthetics … regarding that pylon logo getting knocked off …


    Why is the NFL printed backwards? My first thought was that we’re looking at the back of the sticker, but it seems awfully bright and crisply colored for the back of a sticker. Other ideas?

    My high school job was working at a movie theater, and I loved how movie posters were printed on translucent paper so that they could be lit from behind in their frames. I almost always thought they looked better reversed, since the lettering becomes an abstract element that way.

    Why would you use an embroidered patch on an endzone pylon? Surely it’s cheaper to use a decal… isn’t it? That would also explain the vibrant colors and reversed lettering though.

    I attended the Nebraska / Penn State game in Lincoln this weekend. As a lifelong fan of the Huskers and a native Nebraskan, you can probably surmise where I stand in terms of political ideology and support of the military. I am also a huge fan of tradition and traditional uniforms… hence, the reason why I truly enjoy this website and the work Paul and others do. Believe me, I’m all about supporting the military — as I have family members that served in the past and serve today. I am so grateful for their service. I am also glad that those at the University of Nebraska honored the service members from every branch of the military. They did so, not by adjusting/abusing the Cornhusker uniforms (nor did Penn State do anything to their uniforms for that matter), but rather by: having the band perform military songs at the intro of the game that led up to the National Anthem; honoring those who served during the various breaks in action and TV time-outs; and showing uniformed servicemen doing push-ups when the home team scored. Bo Pelini was not dressed up in camos; the iconic Nebraska “N” did not have an American flag infused; and everything to honor Veteran’s Day was done tastefully with just the right amount of honor and respect without over-doing it. Generally speaking, I think this is what people who “get it” are hoping for… That’s just my two cents, I could be wrong. Go Big Red!

    I don’t think anyone could have a problem with this. Military tributes are okay when done sparingly and with a sense of proportion. It enhances the specialness of the occasion.

    I went to the major site, and in the columns there is an article entitled, “Why Was Founded And How I Became A Virginia Fan” – May 24, 2012 which in the intro says: “So 15 years ago I started as a hobby” but to read the whole article you have to join the site and pay $5.99/month or $60/year.

    It must be good content if you have to pay for it.

    I don’t know if the OSU uniforms were necessarily “leaked” as many sites have been saying. They are going to have to unveil them soon (the game is a week from Saturday) and the t-shirts are already on many websites for sale. I like them waiting until closer to the game to release them, like they did in 2009 instead of relasing them all at once in September like they did last year.

    Exactly, everyone on twitter kept saying the official store leaked them. No, the official store wants people to talk about them and be excited to order them when they are released.

    Josh, I feel like Nike is moving away from Pro Combat and pushing ‘rivalry’ now. All the t-shirts and hoodies are branded with the ‘rivalry’ name now.

    Shit these are all just horrible. At some point, fans should worry less about ads on NBA team uniforms and more about not being able to READ THE FUCKING PLAYERS NUMBERS!

    Thanks to every one who has ever served. That includes tables. And for many of you who don’t know or give a shit, most of the men who started the USA were not ex-military. For better or worse, war & warriors are a necessary evil. Never forget them. But never forget war IS an evil. Not every one who serves wears a uniform.

    Yeah: I’m adopting “candy up” as my description for any uniform change I don’t like, particularly one-off deals like AmPac unis and the like. Hey, football, stop candying it up and wear your real uniforms!

    It would never occur to me to wear a military uniform. I did not serve. The uniform is an honor to wear, not a fashion statement–even if that statement is of thanks or support. Not only that, but the United States Flag Code states, “the flag should not be used as “wearing apparel, bedding, or drapery”, so most of the stars and stripes uniforms violate that code. If you’re truly patriotic, you should respect the flag code, not make it part of your wardrobe.

    This comes up a lot and I’m not sure why I’m asking to your response but whatever.

    When they say “The flag should not be used as apparel…” could that mean an actual flag vs. a depiction of the flag? Meaning taking the flag apart and constructing boxer shorts out of it.

    I’m just asking the question. I’ve more read it as you shouldn’t take a flag and make clothes out of it vs. using stars and stripes as a element in a design. Thoughts?

    Nope. Under the U.S. Flag Code, if it looks like the flag, it is the flag. Doesn’t matter the number of stripes or stars, either. A depiction of the flag is the flag, since all a flag is, is a depiction. It’s a symbol. Debating whether a particular instance of the flag is the actual flag or just a depiction of the flag is like debating whether this T is the letter T, or just an electronic depiction of the letter T.

    ^ Tend to agree here. I believe the intent is both to ensure the flag itself isn’t misused, but also its likeness isn’t to be used. If a team is putting stars and stripes for their helmet stripe, they’re misappropriating the flag.

    My favorite parts of the Florida Tech article:

    “‘Breaking down the color scheme, obviously we knew we wanted crimson and gray, because those are our school colors,’ Englehart says.”

    And two paragraphs later…

    “‘We decided the dark uniforms would be black and the trim would be crimson and gray,’ Englehart says.”

    Honorable mention goes to this gem:

    “Away uniforms are white with gray pants, which was a strategic decision by the coaches. ‘Gray covers up dirt a little more than white,’ Englehart says.”

    Regarding the NFL military stickers used for Veteran’s Day…I think those plus some of the pregame celebrations were just about the right amount.
    Now if they could show this restraint with the pink October breast cancer month.

    Paul, I first found access to your site through a little more mainstream site than that jabroni The site. (I’ll give you a hint: It’s owned by Donald Duck.) I doubt you really get a lot of traffic from that other site.

    I don’t know if I would call the Ohio State uniforms Pro Combat, seems they’re just making minor tweaks ala USC and Florida State. Is Nike even running the Pro combat campaign anymore?

    Perhaps this can provide some contrast.

    The NFL camo captaincy patches turned up the week of November 4th. That was little over a week after Sandy smashed into the East Coast. By the time of kickoff the death toll was already over a hundred Americans. Here was a great opportunity to honor the first responders. Not just military specifically, but Coast Guard, Police, Fire Department, Red Cross volunteers, doctors, nurses, heck even Occupy Wall Street helped out.

    Seven years ago we saw this:

    Last week, we got this:

    I think what is at the heart of what Paul is on to is that there are so many folks out there who sacrifice for others who don’t get recognition on a sports uniform. They may get recognition in the press or a moment of silence but somehow, today, a sports uniform is reserved for honoring military personnel (or a breast cancer charity) to exclusion of everything else.

    what is at the heart of what Paul is on to is that there are so many folks out there who sacrifice for others who don’t get recognition on a sports uniform

    Which is exactly why they shouldn’t do it at all in the first place on a sports uniform. I think the very most sports teams should do is do a temporary (and tasteful) US flag patch but even then, since when do we turn weather disasters into a rally cry? We’ve had many, many natural disasters before that didn’t get a single mention on the sports uniform, and where is the cut-off if a disaster is deemed worthy enough?

    Things like NYFD & NYPD caps, pink & blue ribbons, MLB 4-ALS patches & Red Cross batting helmet stickers which is like saying these things are more important or better than others, that and camo unis & tacky US Flag incorporated graphics is going too far. Boston College should be ashamed of themselves for doing that to their uniforms.

    Yes I love sports, but I don’t need everything that’s going on outside of it integrated into it.

    Slight disagreement: The MLB thing with the Red Cross emblem, that works for me. Because it’s not about “awareness” or “honoring,” but rather it’s a specific call to action. Donate to the Red Cross. Money, blood, certain kinds of goods. In my book, it’s akin to the WWII-era baseball patches that promoted the sale of war bonds and participation in national health campaigns. Both directly supporting the war effort. A sports team “honoring” or “paying tribute” to anyone is, at its heart, bullshit. An empty gesture. Well-intentioned, perhaps, and most likely appreciated, but fundamentally worthless. Whereas a specific call to action – donate to the USO, give blood to the Red Cross, buy government bonds – leverages sport’s visibility and popularity to accomplish real and material good.

    Um, yes it is about awareness. Like I said, we’ve had weather disasters & hurricanes since MLB existed and yet a Red Cross patch never adorned the cap or batting helmet. Which is why I found it perplexing when they showed up in September 2005. Collect donations at the ballpark, but advertising on the uniform/gear? No.

    Honestly I’m not cool with the old WWII patches on the uniform sleeves either. Let’s keep this stuff separated from the sports world.

    The kids entering college and the pros right now were between 8 and 12 years old when 9/11 happened. They were at the most impressionable age when every member of the household had at least one flag t-shirt, or car sticker, or FDNY hat. They love flyovers. They see the possession of those objects as proof of patriotism. You want to show support a cause? Buy a ribbon, so people can see you support it.

    I think the next generation of kids will have views of military influence more akin to the post-Vietnam/80’s kids. The camo and flag business will fizzle with them, as their parents were part of a more dis-enchanted group.

    In the meantime, we don’t have to dislike camouflage because it represents a greater good/evil, we can dislike it because it’s hideous

    I’ve said this before, but sports teams wearing camouflage is crossing a line that should not be crossed. It’s like say, a cashier at a supermarket wearing a camo or a policeman’s uniform to show their support – the latter which I’m pretty sure is a finable offense – impersonating a police officer.

    When it comes down to it, it’s dressing up in a costume, which apparently is acceptable for everyday use in our society now. What makes UVA coach Mike London even more of a jackass is that he mixed & matched different military branches, which you’re not supposed to do. So it was wrong on an aesthetic level & he ironically made a mockery of the very thing he was ballyhooing.

    Civilians shouldn’t wear camouflage on any level. Period.

    I think Lego has begun partnering with every brandable entity in the universe for a money grab. If you put on Cartoon Network on the weekend, you’ll likely see a bastardized version of any of the Star Wars movies, played out with Lego figurines. It doesn’t take itself too seriously, and has literally made me laugh out loud, so I can’t complain too much, but the layers of marketing involved in making it all happen makes me sad.

    My son gave me one of those Oyo minifigs for Father’s Day. It’s of Stephen Strasburg. Unfortunately I had to put it back in its package on September 9.

    When I was a high school skate rat puke, I often wore a dress blue military jacket with shiny gold buttons that I got from a second hand store. i thought it was cool. Not because I was thought I was represnting the military–in either a good or bad way. But just because. After a while I realized it seemed like a slam to the military for some snotty spiked hair punk to be parading around in their garb. I purposefully stopped wearing it and haven’t worn anything military or even camo ever since. It’s not my world.

    I have much respect for the armed forces as both my father and grandfather were 20+ year Marines. Other people can wear it if they want. I’d prefer they didn’t. That’s about how I feel about this stuff.

    It’s fashion crossing into military garb. Some might say John Lennon link is blasphemy. Apparently there is a link.

    Where is the line drawn? Apparently anything and everything is wearable these days. But it doesn’t mean it should be.

    When does it end though? A couple of years ago during winter my company got a delivery of some large desks and other furniture and for some reason there was only the driver to get this stuff inside. A few of us coming back from lunch helped him out and I was wearing a shorter, black pea-coat from a retail store. After helping him move all the furniture into the building the driver asked me if I had earned it or if I had bought it and I felt awkward the rest of the day. It’s to the point that I’ve stopped myself from buying Eisenhower-like Jackets or Commando Sweaters from retail stores just because I’ve wondered how people are going to take it.

    It almost makes me feel weird for wearing my Dad’s olive drab hat that he wore in Vietnam with the S.Sgt. pin on the front when I was younger.

    I imagine they’d have been awkward as all heck on the ice, but am I the only one to think the design of that Captain America hockey jersey is actually pretty awesome?

    I had the same thought. I actually think it could be pulled off on the ice. If the Washington Capitals had been wearing these since their inception, might they now be considered “classics”?

    “In a development that doesn’t really qualify as much of a surprise, most players on the Browns would like to have new uniforms…”

    Why is it that my first thought after seeing this was: Preferably another franchise’s.


    first i hate, as usual, wearing something that isn’t our uniform against michigan. it is just plain stupid. the uniform manufacturers continue to ruin big games aesthetically across college football.

    that being said, if they wanted to just chrome their dome like the trend, i could live with that. unfortunately, that is not what they are doing, and i would be willing to bet that is not just a fat helmet stripe, but one that tapers and ends about halfway down the back, which is just foolish like the black facemask. i am going to hold out hope that these uniforms do not see the field, but i have a feeling i will just be disappointed.

    Well, I for one relish the controversy surrounding – the look of NFL gridirons.

    I vividly remember not only the 70s look of War Memorial in Buffalo, but of many other fields throughout the league. Back then, you were often able to identify where a game was being played just by a glance at the field.. They had character, they had their own unique look. Nowadays it’s all so uniform – the same size yard number in (usually) the same 70s font at the same point on the field. Anyone remember the diamond shapes that San Diego used to use for yard numbers (they also used them at the Rose Bowl a couple of times) or the shield shape used by the Raiders? Or how some teams used to color the goal line and the midfield stripe in colors other than white?

    There’s some variety in college fields, but still – why, I suppose, should we be surprised that a league which demands uniformity in so many other areas would demand it in the field design as well? But at least they haven’t started to paint the end zones in camo – yet…

    Some people say every single field should be exactly the same – which is very boring. Establish minimums yes, but there on out is open to interpretation.

    Similarly, it used to be cool how different many of the nhl arenas were from each other.

    Now, cookie cutter like 1970s multi-purpose stadiums.

    What I don’t like about the NFL is they’ll fine players for wearing the wrong type of shoe even if it is in team colors, yet they allow all that pink shit which is nobody’s team color. Stupid petty hypocrisy shit.

    ” Back then, you were often able to identify where a game was being played just by a glance at the field”


    i remember a time not so long ago when you could do identify which two teams were playing by just a glance at the action and the unis they were wearing

    (see NFL owners thoughts on brand recognition and use of alternate uniforms)

    Unfortunately, the NCAA does the same come tournament time instead of properly recognizing the host arena with their own court…but that can wait a few months.

    Am I the only one who sees Michael’s point? He may have chosen a poor way to present it, but his point still stands, IMO. Can we see the rest of the correspondence, Paul?

    Why can’t we have endzones like the one shown from that 70s vid of Dallas v Buffalo? That was BEAUTIFUL! Those little buffaloes in the endzone reminds me of the checker pattern of Tennessee’s endzone! The NFL, today, needs more fire baton twirling!

    Get on that Goodell!

    Also, the socks Dallas were wearing looked incredibly tasty! And Buffalo looked sweet, too!

    The best thing about that clip…..?

    The LOW fives. I guess really Low TENS.

    The High Five is so passe (like the wave, and pink or camo football uni accents).

    Right after the Columbine massacre, the Wall Street Journal ran a brilliant op-ed piece about the emotional and spiritual inarticulateness of modern America, where the only appropriate expression of sorrow and empathy is a teddy bear propped against a chain-link fence and a ribbon sticker on your minivan: we don’t know how to express empathy, how to mourn, how to remember anymore.

    A football coach playing soldier on the sidelines might be completely sincere. That doesn’t make it right. (You wan to support veterans? Very quietly spend an afternoon volunteering at a VA Hospital. Don’t dress up like Sgt. Slaughter.)

    And there is a gulf between that sort of individualized, cementheaded display, and the gimlet-eyed, cynical, cold-blooded AmPac stuff, which is solely and exclusively a means of exploiting jingoistic emotions to generate profits. It’s sickening.

    You have to admit, discussions about this sort of stuff are engaging. They get the blood pumping. They force you to reassess your own positions.

    Would you really rather talk about whether the third stripe on the University of Idaho’s road uniforms collar is 1/17th of an inch wider than it was last season?

    Who’s to say he didn’t spend an afternoon at the VA, or doesn’t quietly volunteer in other ways? I find it very hard to believe he dressed in camo for any reason other than he thought he was showing support.

    Who says it’s not the “right” way? Is there a set of rules we are all supposed to follow?

    It seems to me that the people who do spend their Saturday afternoons volunteering at the local VA aren’t inclined to spend their Saturday mornings dressed up as soldiers.

    Unless they are soldiers, of course.

    Does anyone remember when Tim Johnson got fired as the Blue Jays manager, because he lied about having fought in Viet Nam? So how is it evil to lie about being a soldier, but it’s noble to put on a military uniform and act all Rambo, because your dad was in the service?

    I like the camouflage addition to some uniforms. I think the stars & stripes additions are cool, and I think it’s almost always done out of respect for the troops/country/etc.

    I think Paul has over-analyzed this to death, but then again, that’s what this site is about.

    I can’t get on board with his arguments regarding the “G.I. Joe” uniforms like I did with the native American imagery. It just seems too nit-picky to me.

    You bash any team that chooses to wear anything that has to do with the military or red white and blue. Though, it seems many military personnel do not have a porblem with it, thus confronting you. You seem to be sticking up for people who do not need, or want you to come to their defense. Your site has become incredibly political as of late, perhaps between the election and veterans day there is some reason behind it. Maybe it is just because people seem to respond to the political critique of unifroms, an incentive to keep talking about it. However, it seems pedantic to me. Players and fans seem to like military uni’s, and military personnel seem to not mind them. I understand you don’t like them, but it seems silly to dislike them for political reasons, or because you find them disrespectful.

    Paul can defend himself, but the problem with highlighting a cause is the causes you don’t highlight. It’s great the NFL wears pink every October. Does that mean that breast cancer is more important than–oh, say testicular cancer? Should they have a month for that? What about mental illness?

    I know in years past I did some fundraising for a disease and was told multiple times all of money went to the pink.

    We’re thankful for the military’s service, of course. Are we not thankful for police and firefighters? What about the clergy, who wades into the worst life has to offer?

    Paul is more about blatantly exploitive revenue producing events disguised as patriotism or awareness–I’m about how we’ve somehow decided some causes and people are more worthy than others. That’s a big deal to me as I remembered reading somewhere, “All men are created equal”.

    And since this is a uniform site, did anybody click on that YouTube link with the Cowboys-Bills? God I loved it when the Cowboys’ pants were charcoal instead of sage green like now. There’s also another link to an Eagles-Cowboys with the Eagles in ALL WHITE! Makes me want to ask my dad to run out and get me a McDonald’s hamburger after church.

    Growing up (late 60s, early 70s), we got to go to McDonalds once a month–the first Sunday of the month (my dad, as a teacher, got paid on the last day of each month). I’d always get a double cheeseburger…

    These tributes are a sop by NFL, MLB, etc. to whatever cause or group they are “supposed” to support. The tributes, from MLB retiring number 42 to this weekend’s end zone lettering, are purely insincere (and probably insignificant) gestures to make the teams and league look and feel better about themselves – and gain some attention for themselves at the same time.

    I’m happier if I’m less cynical, so please someone convince me I’m wrong, that the major sports leagues are sincere in recognizing the military, African Americans, breast cancer, prostate cancer, Memorial Day, Independence Day, September 11, Veterans Day (did I miss any?).

    Looking at those NBA Xmasploitation jerseys again, I realize that my biggest problem with them – and it’s not their general suckiness, since I expect crappy unis from the NBA, and am rarely disappointed – is that they amount to camouflage uniforms. As in, like military or hunter camo, they are designed expressly to be difficult to see. Only instead of hiding a soldier from his enemy, or a hunter from his prey, or a sailor from whatever the heck it is that sailors are hiding from with their new blue camo shipboard uniforms, the NBA is hiding team names and player numbers from fans. Which sucks. If these are acceptable NBA uniforms, then teams should ditch logos and numbers entirely and just wear plain solid-color shirts and shorts.

    New rule for sports designers, team execs, and league officials: If a uniform change makes any part of a team’s or a player’s identity harder for fans to discern, it is Bad Design. Team colors + high contrast = good unis.

    Speaking of camouflage uniforms, I think many of these uniforms will get lost in the paint if it is the same color as the uniform (e.g., Knicks orange).

    Huh. Never heard of I’m guessing it’s not related to the company that bought Dunder Mifflin when The Office jumped the shark?

    Asside (see what I did there?) from the fact that this fellow should consider waxing/laser therapy….We have an apostrophe catASStrophe…..

    (cracking myself up – long day)


    Truly sad that the Browns uniforms will be changed. Every fake concept I’ve seen, I’ve hated. If they were winning the people would love the uniforms.

    To each their own; I just don’t believe you can make a better uniform than what they have now. This, coming from a suffering Eagles fan, hoping since 1996 that midnight green would disappear.

    If Browns apparel isn’t selling well it doesn’t mean the colours/logo are wrong. The problem is the cookie cutter templates from the manufacturers. Have someone with talent design exclusively for the Browns, then tell me it can’t be done. Sorry Cleveland.

    Paul, not once have you ever thanked me for the web traffic I’ve brought or my comments. By the way, I’m not asking for it now and I would never ask for it. (Someone needed to post that)

    Or a more serious note, I’m sorry to hear about your friend and hope that things are able to go her way.

    (Twilight Zone music………Rod Serling narration….)

    Imagine….if you will…after the terrorist attacks on New York City, The Pentagon and the crash in Shanksville, Pennsylvania on 09/11/2001….

    Showing their support for the police, fire, and other emergency service personnel that perished that day, and those that serve their communities every day…..

    The Atlanta Braves and the New York Mets don police uniforms and fire bunker gear to play the first major sporting even after the attacks…..
    Now doesn’t that just sound silly…but equally as preposterous as the current military garb sideshow?

    BTW….I am a retired police officer of 25+ years.

    I never asked for somebody to recognize my service to my community, I just took it as doing my job and doing what was expected of me.

    Perhaps this won’t be read, but thank Mr. Lukas for clarifying that your problem is not with the military, but with the shameless marketing involved in sports today, and thereby preventing the conversation from dwindling into the “troop bashing” tunnel it was plummeting into.

    The gross oversimplification of the reasons we all joined (not qualified to go to college, or get a job in the civilian world) is not only absurd, but offensive.

    The guy who emailed Mr. Lukas is a moron who served years ago and is a REMF who is riding on the coat tails of those that fought and died. Personally, I can’t wait for the Wars to be over for reasons beyond not wanting to update my memorial tattoo with the names of lost friends, but so that morons like him can get over himself. Mr. Lukas writes a blog about uniforms, I carry a pack and a rifle for a living. Why? We’re both good at it, and we enjoy it.

    Implying we are all arrogant, country-music listening, red neck hicks or scumbag psychopaths that are unqualified for a civilian career is honestly akin to crossing the street rather than walk by the Black guy coming your way, and assuming he has a criminal record, or can’t swim.

    The military is a microcosm of the country we serve, and that means there are a lot of fucking morons in our ranks (see the email), just like the civilian world (see the 5 o’clock news). Conversely, there are a lot of brilliant, awesome individuals that serve with me, just like there are some awesome individuals in the civilian sector.

    Chances are, you would never know my occupation if we met, because while my career is my life, I don’t wear it on my sleeve to get a free-meal.

    Lot of arguing today.

    Gives me a headache.

    BTW, my birthday is Friday if anyone wants to send me a present. Anything related to SF Giants SGA bobbles or 007 Skyfall is fine.

    Re: the 1971 Dallas Cowboys at the Buffalo Bills, the Boys pants were quite a dark shade of grey back then, looks quite good. To add to what’s already mentioned, I kind of like the cheap “snow fence” in the end zone.

    There are no Pro Combat uniforms anymore. So many teams are wearing the template that there’s no point. If there was a group of Pro Combat uniforms to be worn like in years past, there would have been an unveiling in August or September. This is just a one-off uniform that Ohio State is wearing for the Michigan game. It’s not a Pro Combat uniform because there are no Pro Combat uniforms anymore.

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