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More Voices


By Phil Hecken

As we continue to discuss the use of Native American iconography, names and logos on Uni Watch, I’ve attempted to include different voices in the discussion. Last weekend, we were treated to a fantastic piece by Caleb Borchers, who explored the relationship between a New Zealand rugby team and the native peoples, and a second, sub-article, by Anil Adyanthaya, which explored the relationship between the NCAA and schools using native imagery/names (which had been published in The Boston Globe in 2005).

Subsequent to that (and unbeknownst to me as of last weekend), Paul had an outstanding interview with Saginaw Chippewas public relations director Frank Cloutier, which appeared on ESPN, which took a look at the Chippewa tribe’s symbiotic relationship with the CMU Chippewas, a school in Michigan which not only uses native iconography, but does so with the blessing of the tribe from whom they derive their nickname.

The comments’ section from those three days had some really excellent back and forth, with even the most ardent of us on either side of the issue giving pause, and genuinely discussing ways to address the issue of the use of Native American naming and logo use at the college and pro levels. One of those who has commented is Walter Helfer (whom I was privileged to meet at a Uni Watch gathering back in October of 2010, and who has contributed several excellently drawn uni concepts over the years). Since Walter raised some cogent points in his comments, I asked him if he’d like to write an op-ed for Uni Watch on one issue on which he has strong feelings — and one on which he really has some sound thoughts and suggestions.

So without further ado, here’s Walter and his thoughts on …

. . .

Native American Iconography
By Walter Helfer

I’m not an authority figure. Take everything I say with a grain of salt. I’m not one of these guys who says, “Some of my best friends are ______ people.” I don’t even know any Native Americans.

I’ll cop to being sympathetic to American Indians; that wasn’t always the case. As a teenager I thought they were just one more bitchy special-interest group with entitlement issues. But I was taught the realities of General Custer, The Trail of Tears, the smallpox-infested blankets. White men took the swastika from them and made it a symbol of murder, hate and cruelty. They have received the short end of the stick again and again. It must be grotesque and alienating to be used as a sports mascot.

But I’m afraid indigenous Americans are on shakier footing when they want to restrict the use of sacred symbols. This is less an extensively-researched position than an impression created from years of researching Native American art. Indian artifacts such as arrowheads, tribal drums, eagle feathers and tomahawks are dynamic and multi-purposed. I worry it’s somewhat disingenuous to maintain these elegant objects don’t also have more prosaic duties. The very word “symbol” connotes more than one meaning.

The thunderbird, a favorite of mine, anthropomorphizes the power and mystery of violent weather. Ford Motor Company knew this. Ford realized that cars are themselves mythical, promising escape and independence. A chrome-y, finny convertible is more fit to the talismanic qualities suggested by a supernatural, taloned bird than a dowdy station car. Tribal drums have a role in spiritual ceremonies, but also represent communication, urgency and strength. The tomahawk, with its sharpness, balance and craftwork, is an avatar of expediency and athletic prowess.

The influence of Native American lore reaches farther than the people themselves. By dint of disseminating this information through folklore and education, it becomes a human perception, not exclusively an Indian one. An effort to claim the thunderbird, or tomahawk, would be equivalent to Christians trying to copyright the cross. The intellectual argument would be undercut by the pervasiveness of cross images in everyday life.

But I only represent myself. I can’t prove this with facts. It’s a gut feeling that some usage is beyond our control. If the images are used with respect, indigenous Americans would be imposing on the rest of us if they claimed they weren’t ours to use. It’s true they have justification; we’ve earned their mistrust, but an inclusive solution is better than a divisive one.

. . .

Thanks, Walter.

As time has progressed, I have thought about the use by non-Native Peoples of their iconography — particularly when it (at least appears) to be treated either reverentially or at least respectfully. There are numerous examples, but one which has always stood out to me is the use of native imagery by the Seattle Seahawks. From their inception to the present (and even moreso now), the Seahawks have made use of native imagery. According to the Seahawks, Todd Van Horne, who designed the new Seahawks uniforms, got his inspiration from “a totem, in general; and the thunderbird prominently displayed on many Pacific Northwest totems, specifically.” Read the full writeup here.

But the Seahawks had been using Native American totems for their inspiration from their inception. Perhaps the best historical perspective of the original logo was penned by none other than UW stalwart (and original Duck Tracker) Mike Princip. It’s worth a read to see how this original design came about. I certainly can’t think the Seahawks have been anything but respectful in their treatment of this imagery. Do non-native peoples have the right to use these logos and images (at least without some sort of agreement or proper compensation to those from whom they have been ‘borrowed’)? Isn’t their use, so long as it is tastefully and respectfully done, as much a tribute to those cultures as it is an appropriation?




Still More Voices…

…on the Washington Football team.

Earlier this week, UW reader Gregory Koch mentioned that he and a fellow student from the University of Connecticut would be writing opposing view articles for their school paper, The Daily Campus, with Greg taking the view that “Names like ”˜Redskins’ are offsensive to all parties involved,”, while his sparring partner, Anthony Naples, opines that “Politically correct debates have no place with sports teams.” Each of these articles comes with a poll (feel free to vote).

Please give each a read — while they may rehash some of the debates we’ve already had on the issue of renaming the Washington Football team, they still present two more (in this case, opposing) views on the matter.

Thanks to Gregory for his interest in this matter and for sharing the articles.



Patrick Ewing would be proud…

So the Golden State Warriors broke out their new ‘short sleeved uniforms’ against the San Antonio Spurs last evening. I have to admit, I was intrigued, and I ended up watching more than a half of the game the whole game, including the OT. And, unlike the Twitterverse, which I understand was brutal, I liked what I saw.

From a distance, I will admit, the game looked a bit like a college game — but that’s not a bad thing, necessarily. It was impossible to notice the different material that separates (attaches?) the sleeve to the shoulder. It looked, for all intents and purposes, like a one-piece top, or a tee shirt. Actually, it looked more like a warm-up top or shooting shirt than a basketball jersey. But that’s OK. I like the look. I may be the only one.

On the court, the unis looked good, especially from a distance. Up close, I was not a fan of the striped pants (which I hate to begin with, for a basketball uniform) paired with the plain top. And I didn’t particularly like the white-blue-white striping, which appeared to end up at the bottom of the pants in a feather motif (which could have something to do with their past — or not). Up close — they really looked mismatched. However, from the comfort of a full-screen TV shot, they looked great. Here are some game pics (click on each to enlarge):

Screen Shot 2013-02-22 at 11.33.53 PM

Screen Shot 2013-02-22 at 11.33.16 PM

Of course, the uniforms may be short-lived, since the Warriors offense appeared to disappear with the new outfits. Public outcry may demand they never be worn again. But are these the next-new-thing or a one-and-done? If you believe the adidas hype-machine, the uniforms “look similar to the new generation of workout gear, which features a lighter material that helps absorb moisture. The alternate short-sleeved uniform the Warriors will wear is made of a material that is 26% lighter than the current tank-top jerseys.” Uh huh. I happened to like the look (but then again, I love the Warriors gold uni and I’ll admit I’m a sucker for the Copperplate Gothic Bold font). And the GSW logo is one of the best in the NBA.

Now, do I want every team to adopt this new uni look? Hell no, but I liked it on the Warriors, and I’d like to see it again. I have a feeling we will, but I fear other teams will adopt this look to move more merch appease adidas, and it will become just another gimmick. But for now, I like it. You can check out a ton more game pics here.

Readers? What say you?


My Name is Earl…

Just one other bit of uni news came out yesterday — the Orioles have come up with a patch honoring the late Earl Weaver. That article doesn’t mention where on the jersey the patch will be worn (I’m thinking the chest, since most of the space on the sleeves are spoken for). It’s not a bad patch, as patches go:

Earl Weaver Patch

Simple and classic, but I’m not quite sure it needs either the “EARL WEAVER” (like, if you don’t know what the “4” is for, well…) or the “HALL OF FAME.” Sure, Earl’s a HOFer and it’s nice that he’s being recognized as a member, but it seems unnecessary. I’m also wondering if they’ll have an alternate color patch for use on the orange jersey. Seems it will blend, rather than stand out, no?


all sport uni tweaks

Uni Tweaks Concepts

We have another new set of tweaks, er…concepts today. After discussion with a number of readers, it’s probably more apropos to call most of the reader submissions “concepts” rather than tweaks. So that’s that.

So if you’ve concept for any sport, or just a tweak or wholesale revision, send them my way.

Please do try to keep your descriptions to ~50 words (give or take) per image — if you have three uniform concepts in one image, then obviously, you can go a little over, but no novels, OK? OK!. You guys have usually been good with keeping the descriptions pretty short, and I thank you for that.

Like the colorizations, I’m going to run these as inline pics — click on each one to enlarge.

And so, lets begin:


We begin today with Will Sinnott, who has a “fauxback” for the Super Bowl champs:

Will Sinnott - Ravens Fauxbacks


1970 Ravens fauxbacks: Stripes at the shoulders & a white helmet a la the Colts. The socks are a nod to the stripes of the old Orioles stirrups. The commemorative patch is my attempt at trying to be clever & get a horseshoe on the uniform via Memorial Stadium’s overhead look.


Will Sinnott

. . .

Next up is Gary Abbot, who sent in to UW a concept for the Brewers Youniform contest:

brewers-gary abbott

Hey Paul & Phil,

I’m a bit late to a party I wasn’t invited to (a Canadian couldn’t enter the Brewers youniform contest), but I wanted to share my design with you. It’s my first stab at a uniform design, and besides my novice Photoshop skills, I’m pretty pleased with the logos.

Attached is a PNG with the design. It’s also posted on my blog:, where I hope to be putting some more uniform designs in the future. I went for a classic, clean style for the jersey and cap.

The script ‘M’ on the cap is a reference to both the tradition of baseball teams placing the first letter of their team location on the cap and the iconic script logos of the breweries that the team name references.

The ‘B’ keg started as a vertical keg ‘M’, and is another simple way of connecting the team to Milwaukee’s brewing heritage.

As a disclaimer, I have never been to Milwaukee, or Wisconsin for that matter. I did a bit of basic research on the franchise, the city, and the old breweries for this little project.

Would love to hear your thoughts, and keep up the great work with the site! The Cleveland Browns are next… ;)

All the best,
Gary Abbott

. . .

And we close today with Jonah (No Last Name Given) who has some concepts for the two Super Bowl combatants:

2012_SF_1copy - Jonah

2012_SF_2copy - Jonah

2012_BAL_3copy - Jonah 2012_BAL_Acopy - Jonah


Now that we have played this year’s Super Bowl, I decided to tweak both teams uniforms in a way that in my opinion, makes them both nearly perfect. For the 49ers, one of the best dressed teams in the NFL (besides the fact the sleeve stripes get cut off), I decided to change exactly that: the sleeve stripes. Now, the whole stripes are visual, but on the red one, the top and the bottom stripes are gold, instead of white, which makes the stripes the same as the helmets and pants. On the white top, the stripes are a carbon copy of the red jersey, so no more three red stripes, but I think this is better. It’s like the Florida Gators, the stripe on the helmet, jerseys and pants are always the same no matter what.

Now, for the next Harbaugh coached team, the Baltimore Ravens. For them, their jerseys are the best modern jerseys in the league, and this just makes it better. I added a more conventional stripe to both pairs of pants, as well as the helmets. So now, the helmet stripes are the same as the pant stripes, and the black pants are no longer just plain. Well, those are just minor tweaks, but I think they are appropriate. Sorry for the slight sloppiness, but hope you enjoy.


. . .

And that’s it for today. Back with more next time.


Stirrup Friday

Stirrup Fridays…

Because we love the stirrup here at Uni Watch, this section is devoted to those of us who sport the beautiful hose on Fridays — a trend popularized many years ago by Robert P. Marshall, III. For many of us, it’s become a bit of an obsession, but a harmless one — a reflection of our times. Where we once had Friday ties, which has been replaced by Casual Friday — we now have Stirrup Fridays. It’s an endearingly simple concept — no matter where you work (or even if you don’t) — break out a fresh pair of rups to compliment (or clash with) your Friday attire.

The doldrums of winter are still with most of us (at least here in the States), even with Spring Training now underway. But fear not, there are still a dedicated set of ruppers keeping the faith while we await TCK and warmer weather. So, with a smallish set for today … Here we go:

. . . . .

Miles Crowther - Throwback Braves

Miles Crowther:

Hey fellas,

On the road, headed home to Delaware for the weekend. Decided to break out the throwback Braves hose in honor of their first exhibition game today and the start of baseball.

MIles Crowther

. . .

James Poisso - Vintage 1920s

James Poisso:


I might be under the weather, but that won’t stop me from wearing these vintage 1920s era stirrups.

James Poisso

. . .

John Kimmerlein - Orioles

John K:


Back to the top of the order for Stirrup Friday–just in time for pitchers and catchers. Wearing the classic Orioles look–the first pair that I ordered from Comrade Marshall and still my favorites. Folks were talking about the success that the Orioles had last year after going back to the cartoon bird on their caps. To put it over the top they need to start wearing stirrups/socks in this style again!


. . .


(Name withheld):

I was at the doctor’s office, and was wondering if this pertained to the revolution? Just count me as a loyal stirrup enthusiast.

(Name Withheld)

. . .

And that ends today’s look at Stirrup Friday — all of you who participate, send me your pics and a brief (~50 words) description of their relevance, and I’ll run ’em here on Saturday (and sometimes Sunday too!). Be sure to visit Robert’s House of Hose for news on rups.

And now…here’s …


Stirrup Header

Comrade Marshall’s Rupdate:

fellow stirrup comrades

Unfortunately on the front lines of our battle against the pajamist hordes there is nothing but status quo. This is due to production delays as TCK is swamped getting ready for the baseball season. I hope to have some additions by next weekend, but I urge patience leading up to opening day, as much is on the way.

from each, to each,

Robert Marshall


That will do it for this fine Saturday in February. Thanks to Walter (and Gregory) for the opinions on the native imagery/names, and to the concepters and stirruppers. I will catch you guys tomorrow.




One For The Road

.. … ..

“SportsCenter got in a few good words about the sleeved jerseys after showing the highlights. They invoked the White Sox’s shorts, the Flyers’ and Whalers’ long pants, and the Seahawks’ neon green jerseys.”
–Ben Douthett

Comments (133)

    Been a faithful reader of this blog for years now, but only my 2nd or 3rd post. I have to say that I’ve grown reallllly tired of this Native American drum banging being shoved down our throats nearly every day. You don’t agree with it, I get it. But it’s taken over your site to the point of taking away the pleasure of reading it. “Indian fatigue” if you will.

    Hope I don’t get blasted with the inevitable “if you don’t like it, don’t read it!” posts, but I really want to get back to the nexus of what this blog is about…uniforms and logos. Does the subject of Native American imagery in sports belong here? Sure. Does it belong here every day to the point of me thinking I’m going to a Native American-specific blog? No…

    What bothers me the most about this debate on this site is that some people making comments, not all, feel the need to bash others’ opposing views. Instead of talking a open minded approach, some commenters quickly bash the opposing view by calling the other person uneducated or unintelligent.

    Agree as well. This is getting old. I have my own thoughts on this debate and I can see both sides. But can we get back to uniforms instead of twice weekly burning missives on this? I realize this is Paul’s site and its his call what he puts up, but IMO there needs to be a subsite (like the permanent record stuff) for the Native American stuff. And to be entirely truthful I am reading the site less often because I have filter through all the commentary to get what to what I’m really interested in.

    I realize this is Paul’s site and its his call what he puts up…

    I had nothing to do with today’s content. Phil posts what he wants, without clearing it with me.

    there needs to be a subsite (like the permanent record stuff) for the Native American stuff.

    Poor analogy. PermaRec has nothing to do with Uni Watch except that they’re both done by the same guy (i.e., me). The Native American stuff is very much Uni Watch-appropriate content, and will continue to be explored as Phil and I see fit.

    I know for a fact that some people don’t give a shit about Stirrup Fridays, or DIY projects, or any number of other things that show up on the site on a regular basis. But they don’t complain about those things — they just scroll past them. The Native American thing, however, makes people uptight, maybe because it makes them think about things they’d rather not think about. In any case, if you don’t like it, why can’t you just scroll past it? It’s not as though Phil didn’t offer any other content today.

    to be entirely truthful I am reading the site less often because I have filter through all the commentary to get what to what I’m really interested in.

    That is, of course, completely up to you.

    Like I said, its your site and you’re going to do what you want. A little surprised by virulence of the comments though. But I think I’m a victim of what is in your own words “Native American mascot fatigue.” Now let’s get back to what this site is really about…… the proper cook and butchering of various delicious meats ;)

    There’s not a ton of middle ground, either: I find “Redskins” offensive, but “Fighting Sioux” and “Utes” don’t bother me at all, which means I’m either a self-loathing liberal, or a racist.

    I spent a couple of hours the other night, looking up the mascots of high schools with predominately Native populations. Lots and lots and lots of Braves, Warriors, and Chieftains. There was even an Arizona school that called itself the Redskins, which really surprised me. It’s a complicated thing.

    The other thing is, where does it stop? Was it offensive for a football team in Chicago, home to the largest Polish population outside of Poland, to call itself The Blitz? That was 44 years after the Nazis obliterated Warsaw. The Vikings logo is based on totally inaccurate depictions of the Vikings, which were popularized in 19th century England (they were mostly fisherman, traders, and farmers, they wore no horned helmets, and they shaved their heads).

    Americans will practically tear a rotator cuff, patting themselves on the back in congratulations for how Just and True and Equal we are. We hate to see our own failings. Our relations with the Native peoples are on the whole, shameful. That includes their depictions in much sports iconography. I’m not sure if in Claude’s their depictions in ALL sports iconography.

    Did you consider that you might be a racist liberal, and that’s why you’re self-loathing? :)

    I’ve grown reallllly tired of this Native American drum banging being shoved down our throats nearly every day.

    Nothing is being shoved down anyone’s throat. It happens to be a topic that (a) relates to uniforms and logos and (b) is very much in the news right now. It also has a lot of nuances, so we’re trying to explore some of those. If it’s not your cuppa, that’s fine, but inflammatory language like “shoved down our throats” doesn’t move the ball either way and just makes you sound juvenile.

    I really want to get back to the nexus of what this blog is about…

    This site is about whatever Phil and I want it to be about. If you like what we cover, that’s great; if not, that’s fine too. I appreciate that you care about Uni Watch, but you don’t get to define what Uni Watch is.

    “But I was taught the realities of General Custer, The Trail of Tears, the smallpox-infested blankets.”

    The “realities” of “smallpox-infested blankets”?

    Is this what you and Phil want this site to be about now? I guess this is Ward Churchill’s site now too. What a shame.

    “smallpox-infested blankets”? Pray tell what this disproven myth has anything to do with uniforms? I think that this is the kind of thing people are complaining about. It’s propaganda, nothing more.

    Still trying to figure out why there’s an anti-handgun logo on the front page. Since this is a uni site (or used to be), I care about patches on sleeves, not your politics.

    Perhaps you missed the explanation. Paul said it’s actually an advertiser who prefers to remain nameless, not a statement of Paul’s or anyone else’s politics.

    And this is a uni site. Ads (in the sidebar) don’t affect the content.

    If you don’t think that politics and sports don’t mix on occasion — they do; and when they intersect (especially if they relate to the patches on sleeves, or the logos on helmets), they will be addressed.

    You may choose to disagree with those views, and that is absolutely your right, but you don’t get to dictate what Uni Watch covers.

    The ad is jarring, not to mention rude. One has the right and expectation to visit a so-called uni site and not be hit over the head with a controversial political message. It has as much place at a sports site as religion does in a public school classroom. Ads don’t reflect the content? Then I expect to see some pro-gun, pro-life or anti-amnesty ads in the near future. There’s been a fascistic undercurrent to this forum in recent months (i.e. “any references to ‘political correctness’ with be ruthlessly eliminated, peasants!”) and it ain’t pretty. Make up your minds: are you a uni site or a watered down version of Mother Jones?

    “One has the right and expectation to visit a so-called uni site and not be hit over the head with a controversial political message.”


    One has THE RIGHT? Which Constitutional Amendment is that mentioned in?

    Secondly, are you seriously being “hit over the head with a controversial political message” with that tiny ad in the side bar?


    And why would you “expect” to see some “pro-gun, pro-life or anti-amnesety ads” in the future? Since when did you become Paul? Even if I “wanted” certain ads (and I have not one iota of say in anything related to that) in the sidebar, I highly doubt Paul would listen to me. And he’s sure as hell not going to accede to YOUR demands.

    You really need to relax about all this.

    But if you are serious about wanting to see some of those ads, why don’t you offer to buy one from Paul.

    If you don’t like the content (or ads) a free site is bringing you, I think you know what your options are. One of those options, however, is not dictating content.

    I never noticed the ad before. One does have a right to turn down the ads if they choose. I really enjoy reading the site, but I may have to leave if the ad stays up.


    CMU= Central Michigan U. Also the link for the Boston Globe article links back to one of last weekends posts.

    Right. Now fixed.

    As to the second point, the Boston Globe article was behind a paywall, so I reproduced it (with the author’s permission) on UW last weekend. That’s why the link goes back to last Sunday’s post.

    The Warrior tops were designed to be worn skin tight: when they were unveiled, they looked like body paint. The players wore them a lot looser than that, more like t-shirts.

    The shirt is like the 2013 Dodge Dart, or that idiotic hill in Minute Maid Park: it’s supposed to update a nostalgic image in hip, modern ways, but mostly, it’s just silly.

    The photos made me think of some little, private high school, run by an earnest, ultra conservative religious group, that finds exposing the male shoulders a deep offense against God. The uniforms were designed by the coach’s wife: she’s always had an eye for fashion, but she dropped out of design school once Baby Number 3 arrived (that explains the incongruous pinstriped shorts).

    Cort, you nailed it.

    We thought the Warriors looked like a bunch of kids on a schoolyard that just got their shirts from the Y.

    Those were exactly the qualifications the lady had who designed the Chicago White Sox uniforms from the 1970s, and that’s one of my favorite designs!

    It would be nice if they took the sleeves off, I don’t hate the sleeves, but would be a great looking uniform sleeveless.

    Cort, I love the reference to conservative schools. When I was principal of a private school in the ’80s, we would get uniform catalogs from some of these folks. They were very uptight about showing too much of the youth body, of course. Funny, but the long basketball “shorts” looked like nothing so much as what we now see on the court every day!

    As a child I was a big fan of old cowboy movies. All I know is that is whenever the term “redskin” was used it was usually preceded by an unflattering adjective. Come on…in this instance we’re not talking about honoring a tribe. We’re simply repeating a slur. How about the Brooklyn Darkies…? Or maybe the Birmingham Coons, huh…?

    I don’t know: In my eyes, the Earl Weaver patch is all kinds of terrible. I feel badly for the Weaver family. If he’s really famous and beloved enough to feature the number, then all the text is gratuitous and ruins the design with busy-ness. If the text is needed for people to know why the team is wearing a no. 4 patch, then the number needs to be secondary and the text primary. And even accepting the mistake of having all that text, it’s too small, the letterforms too thin, and the serifs too busy. Shoulda stuck with the 4 by itself, or a text “EARL” or something simpler and more direct.

    Yes. Awful and thoughtless.

    Didn’t Earl and the head groundskeeper have an annual tomato growing contest in the Oriole bullpen? That would be an interesting patch, a little chain stitched tomato.

    When I was a kid, Earl was the first guy you thought of when you heard “Baltimore Orioles.” He deserves something better than what they’ve given him.

    Agreed. The 4 by itself set in a black circle probably would have been better. All that text on the patch is unnecessary.

    I would like to think the “HALL OF FAME” text is a tongue in cheek nod to that famous clip of him arguing with the ump, and the ump asking Weaver if he’s ever going to end up in the HOF.

    Maybe. It’s more likely that they just didn’t have enough room to write, “This old dude who used to manage the team died. He used to scream and yell, I guess. It was a long time ago. I think he was Cal Ripken’s dad or something like that. I don’t really know. This is just another gig for me, man – I don’t even like baseball. Anyway, he’s dead, so you should all be sad. Or something.”

    “I would like to think the “HALL OF FAME” text is a tongue in cheek nod to that famous clip of him arguing with the ump…”


    I would like to think if they’re honoring with a memorial patch, the wording wasn’t a tongue-in-cheek reference to anything.

    I’m still not sure why either EARL WEAVER or HALL OF FAME were necessary. Certainly the “4” should suffice, no?

    So the patch is on the right shoulder, at least on the home whites as worn in today’s spring training game. I still think the Orioles could have done better with the tribute.

    I wanted to like the Warriors’ new long-sleeved jerseys, since I’m not opposed to the idea of such, but for me they failed for a few different reasons:

    – The top looks TOO much like a t-shirt, making it seem as if the Dubs showed up for some pick-up basketball in their regular clothes, and the Spurs decided to play them.

    – The chest logo looks too informal, with layered elements appearing to be screen-printed on, further reinforcing the whole t-shirt look.

    – Different material on the shorts and top even further drive home that this is not one cohesive uni, but two different parts. And a solid-colored shirt with striped shorts combination sounds like something out of the 1920s.

    I applaud the State of Golden for trying something new, and I wouldn’t mind them tinkering with it and trying again, but this first draft needs some serious revisions.

    Get rid of the sleeves & the pinstripes and make the shorts & jersey the same colour and you’d have a top-5 NBA uni. As it is, it just didn’t work for me.

    “- The chest logo looks too informal, with layered elements appearing to be screen-printed on, further reinforcing the whole t-shirt look.

    – Different material on the shorts and top even further drive home that this is not one cohesive uni, but two different parts. And a solid-colored shirt with striped shorts combination sounds like something out of the 1920s.”


    Great points. I’m not sure why they made the logo screen-printed other than to “reduce the weight by 27%” or some such. Because, IMO, this looks much better.

    And I get where they’re going with the pinstripes on the shorts — it’s a riff on their normal pants’ design … but those pants are meant to mimic the suspension cables of the new Bay Bridge, not to be a design element in and of themselves.

    The O’s should put the patch on one of the sleeves, the OPaCY patch was a commemorative patch to celebrate 20 years. This is the first time the O’s have ever added words to a memorial patch, not sure if I like it.

    The Seahawks “appropriating” Indian art or needing to “compensate” an Indian tribe (or multiple) for being inspired by their designs is akin to compensating Paul Rand for every beautifully simplistic logo that features wonderful use of reverse whitespace.

    How about we all lift our thought processes and take in what’s GOOD about the Seahawks’ work … without requiring credit to be doled out?

    Art begets art.

    Methinks there’s a tipping point in the over-analysis of Indian misappropriation in sport. This might be it. And, in some ways, it’s offensive in that it treats this culture as “less than.” Let’s not assume Indians have low self-worth and yearn for approval.

    This might sound harsh, but it feels like a bunch of privileged white folks debating the plight of another race/culture … out of guilt.

    Thanks for mentioning my article. And the head really did say offsensive not offensive. I don’t write my own heads though.

    Not a fan of the Warriors new unis. I think the sleeves look to high school/college and no like a pro team’s. My question, though, is htey keep them could a player cut off the sleeves or would that be against uni protocall? I hate sleeves and have cut them off planty of t-shirts to play ball in. Just like a college player adding a t-shirt or maybe even more similar to an NFL player individualizing his jersey sleeves, could a player cut the short sleeves off here without getting fined?

    Nice piece by Walter, but I did want to make sure one thing gets pointed out: swastikas are not a Native American symbol, they’re an Indian (as in India) symbol.

    Swastikas are common to every culture with a written lexicon. While I’ll cop that Hitler did not specifically rip off the Native Americans’ swastika (he took the one found in cave paintings of ancient Aryan tribes), he and the Nazis left the Indians (and everybody) bereft of a common and popular talisman.

    I am very disappointed in the Orioles lack of creativity with the Earl Weaver memorial patch. It’s not like this was a surprise and they had to rush to get something out there like the Ravens’ ART patch. They have had time to think this one over a bit. I literally spent 5 mins coming up with these 2 options and they are worlds more interesting then the awful patch they came up with in a month.


    Norwich City is wearing a charity logo in place of their usual sponsor in their match v Everton today.

    Thanks, george. After everton blew the game, i had no desire to go back and look for norwich kits to post.

    For the Warriors shorts, it’s not a feather motif. I believe they used it to make an image of a spear.

    The white-blue-white striping on the Warriors shorts ends in what looks more like a spear head than an feather motif to me.

    Agree with Bob. Perhaps the debate could be carried to a separate site, similar to the Fire Wayne Hagan situation.

    Fascinating how people would rather see content removed to another site, when they can simply scroll right past it.

    You don’t have to agree with what’s on this site, or like it, or even give a shit. But I’m afraid you do have to accept the reality that you don’t get to decide what does and doesn’t appear here.

    Maybe because someone went through to trouble of reading a hed, realizing it was something they had no interest in, presumably reading that section, became angry(offended, irate, uncomfortable…etc), then went through the trouble of filling out a comment when all that needed to be done was skip the stuff you don’t wanna read. For instance I don’t really read CC because I don’t like 70s posters, stickers or gumball helmets so I skip to the next part without typing a missive on how that needs to be on a separate site due to me not liking it.

    TL;DR: If you don’t like something skip it and move on to the parts you enjoy

    That’s “fascinating”? Paul used the word later in the comments too. The post hardly inspired awe or great interest, so the usage was just another condescending slap to one of us that support and contribute to Paul’s site by either providing some content or by giving Paul money in merchandise or membership. Today alone, contributors have been referred to as “sounding juvenile” and another person’s opinion a “non-starter” and “not relevant”. And, now I’m told by Paul that the “American Indian thing” makes me feel up tight. How dare you? I’m interested in the “American Indian thing” so I read it. I’m not interested in soccer kits so I “scroll” past it (but, logically read it in order to scroll past it).

    But, two things bothered me today. First the garbage about infested blankets that I failed to scroll past,(I guess the blanket debate is just one of Paul’s uni “nuances”) and secondly the more frequent insults pointed toward readers that Paul sometimes says he appreciates.

    It wont happen because nobody would read it. The page hits are here — where we like uniforms.

    Incorrect. It won’t happen because there’s no reason for it to happen. It’s a perfectly legit Uni Watch topic.

    As for page hits, I honestly couldn’t care less. As I’ve said many times, if my goal were to maximize page hits, this site would have way more photos of nekkid gurlz and way fewer photos of guys wearing stirrups. I truly don’t care if the site has 10 readers or 10,000. I only care about posting material that makes sense to me. The rest is up to you.

    As evidence a piece of writing is never finished (only surrendered), I now remember I do know an indigenous American; a very nice man named Lee, who I met twenty-odd years ago at the old Big Cup coffeehouse on 6th Avenue. A shout-out to Lee Twelvenames, if you’re reading this!

    I call for a separate website for the anti Redskins logo people. I come here for lighthearted commentary & pictures on logos, uniforms, etc.

    I come here for lighthearted commentary & pictures on logos, uniforms, etc.

    That’s fascinating, but it isn’t particularly relevant. Lots of people come here for lots of different things. Phil and I couldn’t please everyone even if we wanted to, so instead we follow our instincts and let everyone else get on board or not, as they see fit.

    I appreciate that you care about Uni Watch, but saying ,”I come here for [x]” is a non-starter.

    So MLB has released old video highlights and I watched this one link

    Which is Dave Parker throwing to Gary Carter in the 1979 All-Star game. Look at Pete Rose wearing the Red top and baby blue bottoms which was not the style, it was either all baby blue or all red, but Pete mixed it up for the All Star game.

    MLB has been releasing old highlights on its website for quite some time. Not sure why the article is claiming MLB just started doing this.

    The commentators during the 1979 game noticed Rose chose to wear his “warmup” shirt instead of his jersey, though I’m not sure it was every explained why. That shirt Rose was wearing was not the Phillies “Saturday night special.”

    Did anyone know beforehand the Mets were going with their home jerseys instead of their BP jerseys. I thought they usually wore the BP jersey

    For the past several years (at least), the Mets have worn their full home unis for home ST games (like the Tigers and Cards, and perhaps a few others). On the road, they usually break out the softball tops.

    Sorry Steve, if I wasn’t clear. I didn’t mean the Mets only wear their home unis for all home games, I meant that they don’t ONLY wear softball tops in the spring. I’m pretty sure every team, even those who choose to wear regular unis in spring, breaks out the softball tops at some point.

    That is new…didn’t realize game started at noon either…I assumed it was 1:00. I guess the Mets can’t improve their team, so try to change everything else… wonder what new sandwich they will introduce? Even Keith has kept his mustache off.

    Not a huge fan of the ASG patch, but it is about 10,000 times better than the Domino’s pizza patch.

    Unman…wouldn’t the warriors unis be. even lighter without sleeves? Or with fewer graphics? Just saying…it’s not like the sleeves serve a functional purpose.

    I give points for Jonah’s creative treatment of the 49ers’ sleeve and sock stripes, but three matching stripes still looks best to me.

    I’ve appreciated the recent posts on sports and Native Americans.The Native American culture is so intertwined with ours it’s a topic that could go on for weeks w/o coming close to being exhausted.

    I’m in the camp that considers usage of “Redskins” offensive but think there’s all kinds of acceptable middle ground. “Warriors,” for example, are OK in my mind. Same for “Chiefs,” “Braves” and other similar nicknames as long as they steer clear of blatant stereotypes such as the tomahawk chops. The Warriors have done that in San Francisco. As far as their T-shirt concept, meh.

    Either stick w/ solid color or pinstripes. Don’t mix ’em. I like the feather treatment. Nice touch.

    Beyond that, I agree with Tim. If weight is the holy grail, dispensing with the sleeves help. One of these days, these manufacturers will go full-on and try body paint. After all, if it’s OK for SI swimsuit models …

    Nice write up by Walter, very honest and reasoned. However this sentence referring to Native Americans: As a teenager I thought they were just one more bitchy special-interest group with entitlement issues. now Idk how old you are Walter but when I read this my mind went to one place and it, quite frankly, wasn’t good.

    Thank you, Uni Watch, for keeping this conversation going. Thank you, Walter, for your thoughtful contribution today. Socioogy, culture, design, sports, art, debate–it’s all here, all relevant.

    Those Warriors uniforms are, perhaps, the worst things to hit the court in the history of contemporary basketball. (And I include the ’90’s debacles in Atlanta, Milwaukee, Detroit, Vancouver, Utah, Seattle, Toronto.)

    Sleeves are pointless, add weight.
    Logo is limp. More like a hotel letterhead.
    Copperplate? I see it everywhere I look now–the new Papyrus. (See hotel letterhead.)
    Pinstripes on basketball uniforms just look bad.

    I don’t give Golden State points for trying something different, out of the box. I detract points for allowing their restlessness and lack of inspiration to get the best of them.

    Shout out to Gregory Koch on his article in the UCONN student paper, it was a good read. His fellow student Anthony however, needs to maybe do 5 minutes of research before he puts fingers to keyboard. This piece of text had me shaking my head: The point I am trying to make is that I am not even sure this was an issue before somebody mentioned it. When the Redskins first named themselves 60 years ago, there is no way they would have chosen an overtly racist term. It is simply not logical to name your team, which is a commercial enterprise, using a term that most people found blatantly derogatory.. Typing “first owner Washington redskins” into a search engine and going to the first link let’s you know that the team is 70 years old, not 60, and that GPM was a virulent racist POS who clearly meant the name of his franchise to be offensive but didn’t care because those ppl weren’t buying tickets.

    It bothers me to hear phrases like “shoved down our throats” when discussing native heraldry. I personaly think that if any other race had a name based on their skin colour or a cartoon figure there would be an uproar.

    Well as a CPA, I’m a math wizard, and I don’t create an uproar over the Cookie Crisp wizard mascot.

    The swastika aka hakenkreus has been apart of all cultures. Finland had it as their air force roundel based on a pilot that used it on his plane during the first world war. When they got their independance from Russia it went on all the planes from 1918 to 1945. Unfortunatly a failed artist hijacked the logo and most of Europe and after WWII the victors politely asked Finland to change their insignia. You see when someone finds an image offencive it is usualy in good taste to change it. Hint, hint Washington & Cleveland!

    The progressives have been winning for a while now, and I don’t see that trend reversing itself anytime soon.


    Tells you all you need to know.

    Poor baby. Did it hit a little too close to home? Face it: Northeastern white liberals who willingly succumb to groupthink care much more about this issue than Native Americans do. In fact, this whole controversy sounds like a blog entry at “Stuff White People Like.”

    As the author of that article, let me assure you I’m no fan of Sarah Palin. Taking a one-line quote out of a 4,000-word article is probably a mistake if the goal is to try to ascribe some particular political philosophy to the author.

    To clarify: The quote was a statement of my opinion of which way the political winds are blowing in the United States at this moment in history. I’m not using “progressives” as a pejorative.

    As a white liberal, I am sick and tired of the constant bashing of myself and my fellow white liberals. Even though we are white liberals, we have feelings. Feelings just like you… if you indeed have them. Do you have feelings? If you do, I am confident that black conservatives like yourself can get along with white liberals like me. The next time you decide to bash a white liberal, please take into consideration that white liberals can be hurt by your remarks even though they are white liberals. White liberals have a place in this colorfully conservative world. In fact, our white liberalness adds quite a bit of white liberal flavor. Thank you for taking the time to listen to a humble white liberal. If you don’t mind me saying, it’s very white liberal of you.

    “Taking a one-line quote out of a 4,000-word article is probably a mistake if the goal is to try to ascribe some particular political philosophy to the author.”


    I might disagree with you there, but that actually wasn’t my point. The mere fact that you ascribe “winning” and “losing” to issues such as this speaks volumes. Unfortunately, (and this is not meant as a shot at you but the state of the nation in general), we are becoming an extremely divided nation, politically, socially, economically, morally, and whichever side one is “on” no longer wants to work together with the “other” side to find common ground, solutions, betterment for all. It’s a “my side” versus “your side” and any compromise is seen as weakness and failure. One need only look at Congress as proof of this.

    Today’s article, and the two from last weekend, were actually meant to try to find some common ground, to give voice to all sides of a tricky issue, and I barely editorialized in my sections.

    Yet the mere mention of “Native American” anything now sets people, who have dug in their heels on one side of an issue, and refuse to even discuss it rationally, off.

    I read your entire 4,000 word article, and while I found myself disagreeing more than agreeing with you, you made some excellent points. But the “winning” versus “losing” and the fact that one side (in this case the non-pejorative ‘progressives’) is winning implies that there can be only one outcome and there must be “losers.” If progressives are indeed “winning” then who is “losing”?

    I can’t reply to the other comment, so I’ll reply here. If the objection is to my terminology – that’s fair enough. I was using “winning” as a shorthand for a broader concept of “more people are ascribing to that view and finding it persuasive.”

    I think it’s fair to say that one part of the modern progressive philosophy is the idea that, when notions of free speech clash with concerns over offensiveness, the latter often trumps. I think the classic liberal view would be the reverse. I’m sorry if I didn’t make that clear in my ramblings (being concise when I’m talking politics and philosophy is admittedly not a strong suit of mine).

    Having said that, I absolutely agree with you on how divisive our discourse has become. I linked to an article in this comment (my name) that is also very windy, but points out that that divisiveness is not only unnecessary, but very harmful to intelligent discourse. Here’s the URL also: link

    (BTW – I swear most of the stuff I write isn’t this long. And it’s usually about something dumb / more fun like sitcoms or pro wrestling)

    Our truth is “the dissemination of good ideas”; their truth is “succumbing to groupthink”. Paraphrasing what I put in my piece, when is divisiveness ever better than inclusiveness?

    I wish I could take credit for that, but the term “word salad” is not original. In fact, I’ve always heard it associated with the half-term governor.

    You don’t think it’s inappropriate? Looks like something Goebbels commissioned a drawing for. Just saying somebody might object to seeing that overt racism out in public.

    “the uniforms may be short-lived, since the Warriors offense appeared to disappear with the new outfits.”

    That’s a pretty bizarre thing to say about a game in which they took down the NBA’s best team in a thrilling overtime victory. I can hardly imagine a more exciting or “good vibes” way to debut this look.

    Yeah, I wrote that line in the first half. I didn’t think I would stick around to watch the whole game but I did. And I’ll be completely honest — I haven’t watched more than a few minutes of ANY NBA game this year (some college however), so I really don’t know how good either team is (other than looking at the records).

    I did actually enjoy the second half and the OT was great. Probably should have taken out that line — but I think even you would admit the first half didn’t produce much O for either team.

    I think the problem is that Uni Watch is really three sites:

    1. The Obsessive Study Of Athletic Aesthetics

    2. Creative User-Submitted Variations on Current Athletic Aesthetics

    3. Progressive Social Commentary Related To Today’s Athletic Aesthetics

    The problem is that there is disagreement on whether or not all three fit under number one. Some feel those should be three separate websites, and would prefer to only visit a site that is just ‘The Obsessive Study Of Athletic Aesthetics’ and not have to sift through the rest of it. But it is Paul’s site, and it is solely his opinion that matters on what he wants his site to be.

    This is a lose-lose-lose for everybody involved

    It is a shame for them that there isn’t a site that they could go to that is just The Obsessive Study Of Athletic Aesthetics, without the social commentary. It is a shame for the rest of us that we have to continually read the “I Hate Your Site”/”It’s My Site, Leave If You Don’t Like It” back and forth repartee day-after-day-after-day. And it is a shame for Paul that he continually has to defend his site being what he wants it to be.

    All the same, the constant and repetitive bickering about what this site is and/or should be is getting old. It is what it is. Paul isn’t going to change it, I imagine.

    If everybody that disagreed with what this site is would just leave, and let the rest of us enjoy the parts we enjoy and ignore the parts we don’t like, everybody’d be a lot happier. Or stay and STFU, whatever, but you don’t go to restaurant and complain about the food they serve, but then keep coming back every day and keep complaining about it.

    I like the hamburgers. I’ve tried the quiche, I didn’t like it, so I quit ordering it. Now when I see it on the menu I just skip right over it.

    I don’t see what the big deal is if Uni Watch goes off on tangents or if it serves as a backdrop for discussions on subjects other than uniforms. In fact, why would you want to divorce a discussion on uniforms from the culture from which they derive?

    That’s my point – go off on whatever tangents you want – Native Americans, gay rights, offensive slogans, politics, whatever, those that don’t like it should just ignore what they don’t like. But these incessant complaints from people who are getting tired of the Native American drum banging being shoved down (their) throats, I’m more tired of the (“I Hate Your Site”/”It’s My Site, Leave If You Don’t Like It”) back-and-forth that the comments have become.

    “these incessant complaints from people who are getting tired of the Native American drum banging being shoved down (their) throats, I’m more tired of the (“I Hate Your Site”/”It’s My Site, Leave If You Don’t Like It”) back-and-forth that the comments have become.”


    If you don’t like those comments, Rob, just skip over them ;)

    I was watching CNN last weekend and Don Lemon did a piece on the Redskins (sorry fellas, didn’t bother posting a comment, and I didn’t notice anybody else saw it either).

    I think it is a safe assumption that Uni Watch IS the reason this topic is getting mainstream attention (even if other sources sparked the discussion).

    This topic will keep popping up until change happens. Sometimes it lasts for a day or two, or a couple of weeks. They are still the Redskins, which means the people who want a change should keep talking.

    Whatever your opinion is, the cool part is that a blog like Uni Watch can reach/influence authority figures, like the Atlanta Braves, the Mayor of D.C., CNN, etc.

    Forcing changes, or just having others at least discuss changes is a good thing for Uni Obsessives like all of us. Perhaps if the G.S. Warriors would have consulted us first, this sleeved debacle wouldn’t have happened (just kidding, but maybe I’m on to something?). Spreading out topics to sub-sites dilutes “our” voice; one day it may be a topic dear to YOUR heart.

    If anybody important is reading this, tell Jeffrey Lurie I want Kelly Green back.

    I’ve been wondering where Ricko and Jim Vilk have been for awhile–or am I just not seeing their comments?

    I’m not sure what has happened with Ricko. I speak with him very sparingly these days, and I’m guessing he may be *done* with Benchies, which is too bad, since I really enjoyed it.

    Senor Vilk has issues with the *popunders* so he posts sparingly these days (sometimes under a pseudonym).

    I’m another one who’s noticed Ricko’s lack of comments lately. I always enjoy his observations from the 60s and 70s. Hope things are OK with im.

    Golden State might be the first NBA team to don short sleeve jerseys but I recall the Evansville Purple Aces had a tradition of short sleeves. They might not have gone tank top until the 90’s?
    I kind of like the Golden State new look. Thumbs down on the pin stripe shorts. Let baseball have the pin stripes, preferably in small doses.

    Like it or not, there has been some wonderful discussion recently. This is a “community”, and I find the interactions “fascinating.”

    The Red Wings are wearing their white jerseys for a home game tonight. Did I miss a memo somewhere about NHL teams suddenly having a choice in home colors? Does it change on Saturday? I am confused!

    My understanding is that any team can wear white at home in the NHL for a game or two a season so long as they run it past the league office (which usually rubber stamps it) and the opposing club. And the practice isn’t that new. Back in the glory days of wearing white at home, I recall the Capitals having one game each season in Landover, MD where they wore their road reds.

    When I get bored with the Native American debate, do you know what I do? I scroll down until I come across something I like and go from there. There are days where nothing on this site catches my eye. So what? That’s how it goes.

    Some people on here need to stop sounding so spoiled and stop telling Paul what not to put on here. It’s ridiculous…it’s like complaining to a grocery store manager because you don’t always like the free samples. If you don’t like the content, then start your own uni site and do your own thing. This is a pretty damn awesome site, but c’mon y’all, let’s take a step back and chill out a little.

    Keep up the good work, Paul and Phil.

    The Warriors unis with those striped shorts look like something I would have worn to a 5th grade lock-in, trying to look cool while getting wired up on Doritos and Mountain Dew. In 1992. I guess the early 90’s pre-teen kid look is a hit with Adidas. All they are missing is Ray Charles singing, “You’ve got the right thing,baby…”

    I remember when I was a child, my grandfather would sit me up on his knee and tell me stories of how in his day, uni-watch was a website dedicated to the study of athletics aesthetics.

    I typically read all of the Native American topics. I do not mind them being here. I do believe all have been directly related to athletics or uniforms, to some extent.

    I had a particularly interesting experience for two years when I lived in South Dakota. I had the opportunity to coach a young Native American male for those two years too. I am so glad I got to experience it. I needed it. I didn’t realize how terrible it is to say things like “sit Indian style” or “Indian run time.” I think it was the first time I ever used “criss cross applesauce,” and I hope the last!

    More people need to see the plight and culture of Native Americans.

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