Can’t Russell Athletic Do Anything Right?



The good news is that Georgia Tech wore really nice throwbacks last night. The bad news, as you can see above, is that there were serious inconsistencies in the sleeve striping. (My thanks to reader Oscar Cullom and Phil for pointing this out.)

In that same game, Virginia Tech wore their much-discussed “Hokie Stone” helmets, which didn’t really look like much from a distance. You may have noticed a “430” decal on the back of each helmet. That is explained — along with a lot of pretentious nonsense — here. (Thanks to Andrew Cosentino for that.)

New ESPN column today — the annual NHL season preview. Here you go. (The separate goalie column will run next Monday or Tuesday.)

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Yesterday’s post about the Hale America program and its assorted patches prompted some good follow-up from a coupla different sources. Let me walk you through some of the discussion (I realize it looks like a lot to read, but work with me here — it’s good stuff):

• First, in yesterday’s post I mentioned that I thought the “Health” patch would have been better if it had said “Fitness” instead. Reader R. Scott Rogers responded to that with an interesting post in our comments section:

There’s deeper context to the Hale America thing that makes “Health” more sensible than “Fitness.” You have to look at the history of 20th century conscription. In WWI, the national draft revealed widespread regional disparities in health and IQ that meant many young men from large parts of the country weren’t fit for military service. This led to two developments important to the WWII context of the Health patch: 1) advances in understanding micronutrients and the adoption of iodized salt to solve the iodine deficiencies at the root of the WWI draft issues; and 2) a public perception that regional disparities in health constituted a threat not only to national military readiness but also to the basic equality and liberty of the people. (For further details, look here.)

When the draft was reinstated in 1940, both of these issues would have regained currency. In WWI, it wasn’t that Midwestern boys weren’t physically fit ”“- it was still an agrarian region and, as in the Civil War era, Midwesterners were the most muscularly robust people in the nation. It was about health — systematic malnutrition had rendered many of the brawniest young men in America unfit for military service. And the 22-year gap between the end of WWI and the restart of conscription meant that it was the WWI generation that was running the country when WWII came around. So it’s understandable that “health,” writ large, rather than the narrower “fitness,” would have been the slogan of the Hale America campaign. …

• As Scott was typing that comment, Baseball Hall of Fame curator Tom Shieber was sending me an old New York Times article from Oct. 11, 1940, which gives some key background on the Hale America program (including the amusing news that other names being considered for the initiative included “America Fit for Anything.” “Put America on Its Feet,” “Don’t Be a Softy,” and “It’s Unpatriotic to Be Unhealthy”). The article doesn’t really say anything about the draft, or even about military preparedness in general. And of course the attack on Pearl Harbor was still more than a year away at this point. So I responded to Scott’s post by saying, “Military/draft readiness does not appear to have been the point of the Hale America initiative, at least based on this article.”

• Scott read the article and then responded with the following (I’ve edited this one a bit for clarity):

Pearl Harbor may not have been bombed until December 1941, but the European war began in 1939 and U.S. military preparation for war had been a dominant domestic political issue since at least 1938. The draft was instated with the Selective Training and Service Act in September, 1940, with conscription beginning the following month.

If you read the article you link to more closely, it’s plainly, and overtly, all about military readiness. “[Europe] will force us to our knees if we ever come to grips” is not a metaphor for economic competitiveness in this context. When someone refers to the European Theater of WWII, during WWII, and talks about who’s going to win a fight, he’s actually talking about fighting. Even the emphasis on being a voluntary program, rather than a government mandate, is revealing, coming as it does just weeks after the end of the highly contentious national debate that led to instituting the first-ever peacetime draft. Note the dateline of the article: October 10, just six days before the draft began.

Scott’s arguments are convincing. All the more surprising, then, that MLB teams didn’t start wearing the Hale America patch the following year — 1941 — instead of waiting until 1942.

• Tom Shieber also sent me some additional articles relating to Hale America. This one, about a physical training initiative for women, ran in the Boston Globe on Sept. 22, 1941. Here’s the key passage:

The badge to be worn by the hoped-for army of Amazons is a small shield on a blue circle featuring the word “health.” The uniform is an attractive spectator sports dress in national blue. The style should look good on tall, short, stout or then females. Watchword for the organization is “Hale America.”

• A few months later, in early 1942, the Chicago Tribune teamed up with the pro bowler Andy Varipapa to offer free bowling instruction to Chicago residents. The newspaper announced the program in this article on Feb. 18, 1942. Key passage:

The entire program will be linked with the Hale America program in the civilian defense physical fitness drive. This program, as explained yesterday by Jack M. Willem, national coordinator of bowling, seeks to emphasize relaxation and recreation for the individual. It will encourage insruction as an essential part of the program. As evidence of the tie-up, Varipapa will wear the Hale America shield and in his lectures will stress the need of a healthier and thus better prepared America.

• The Tribune provided an update on the bowling instruction program on March 9, 1942. Key passage:

Varipapa is eager to help, as a contribution to the Hale America program, whose emblem he wears. The Hale America sponsors are urging bowling not only as a means of keeping fit, but also to get defense workers’ minds off the grim job in which they are playing a part.

That last sentence, of course, directly ties Hale America to the war effort.

• Finally, here’s something I didn’t know (or maybe just forgot): The “Health” patch was also worn by Negro Leagues teams, as seen in these pics of the Chicago American Giants and the Philadelphia Stars.

Big thanks to Scott and Tom for all of this enlightening information. It’s fun to put these pieces of the puzzle together.

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’Skins Watch: Former ’Skins coach Joe Gibbs doesn’t think the team’s name should be changed (from William Yurasko). ”¦ Schools in Wisconsin had been ordered to stop using Native-based team names, but a new bill introduced in the state legislature would change that policy (from Jared Heintz).

Baseball News: Reprinted from yesterday’s comments: The Rockies saluted Todd Helton’s final game at Coors Field by putting his uni number all over the field, on the back of the mound, and on first base. … It doesn’t get much better than this: Tom Terrific and Broadway Joe tossing a football with both of them in uniform (big thanks to Alan Kreit). …

NFL News: The Chargers will be wearing white at home this Sunday, which means the Cowboys will have to wear blue. ”¦ Speaking of the Chargers, they’re selling a jersey with last year’s neck roll and this year’s yellow NOB lettering — two elements that have never appeared together. Even better, they’ve personalized it with the name of Junior Seau, who never wore either of those elements (from Jared Buccola). ”¦ I put this in the MLB section, but it deserves to be here too: Tom Terrific and Broadway Joe tossing a football with both of them in uniform (big thanks to Alan Kreit). … Jerry Kulig spotted this nice Browns/Brownie varsity jacket in an Ohio antiques mall. … And speaking of football jackets, look at this amazing Colts/AAFC beauty. Click on the thumbnails — it’s worth it (from Bruce Menard). … Looks like someone on eBay has used my recent ESPN column about Stevens Wright as the basis for a Proto-Elvis Pats helmet (from Vincent Collier). ”¦ There are soooo many things wrong with the throwback jersey Eric Dickerson was wearing last night (from Brian Wulff). ”¦ I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: The most unheralded change to the game of football over the past generation is the use of super-sticky gloves. And now it turns out that some of the gloves have webbing! That’s 49ers tight end Garrett Celek, from last night’s game against the Rams (screen shot by Chris Perrenot). ”¦ Also from last night’s game: Rams LB Alec Ogletree wore plain white socks, instead of the official blue-topped hose (from Josh Claywell).

College Football News: This is pretty wild: Western Michigan will wear a Cincy Bearcats logo decal tomorrow as a tribute to Ben Flick, a Cincinnati redshirt who died in a car crash last weekend. “As far as I know there’s no connection between the dead player and Western Michigan, and they’re not playing against Cincinnati at all this season, so I’m a bit confused as to why,” says Ben Cox. ”¦ West Virginia will be wearing solid gold tomorrow. ”¦ Missouri will wear solid black (from Paulie Sumner). ”¦ If you have any doubt about the extent to which Nike and other company’s have infiltrated various football programs, take a look at UGA’s Twitter avatar (from Keith Myers). ”¦ Here’s a slideshow on the evolution of Georgia Tech’s uniforms (from Jay Jones). … Looking for a Florida Gators Jell-O mold kit? Sure you are! (From Jason Hillyer.) … Colorado State will wear orange tomorrow, and Texas A&M will wear red/white/red (thanks, Phil). ”¦ Southern Illinois will be doing the blackout thing, as an anti-cancer promotion (Phil yet again). ”¦ Blackout on tap next Thursday for Utah. ”¦ New uni combo in the works this weekend for Boise State (from Cale Guthmiller).

Soccer News: MLS will be doing the pink thing in October. … Footy Headlines says the U.S. Men’s National Team jerseys that were leaked last week were not legit (from Trevor Williams).

Basketball News: Longtime reader Brian Erni has written an article and set up a poll about the Nets’ primary and secondary logos. … New black uni for Cincinnati hoops.

Grab Bag: This is really interesting: Father Ryan High School in Tennessee is protesting the terrible labor practices of athletic apparel companies by covering up the manufacturers’ logos on all of their teams’ uniforms. Good for them (from Lee David Wilds). ”¦ New college hockey uniforms for UMass. ”¦ Here’s a good primer on cycling’s rainbow jerseys (from Sean Clancy). ”¦ Here’s a slideshow of unusual airplane liveries (from David Firestone). … While poking around on eBay, I came across a shirt with a Sam Santo Sport Store label — and what a label it was! ”¦ Some very cool non-sports logo mash-ups here (thanks, Brinke).

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What Paul did last night: The long version is that yesterday was the last Thursday of the month, which means I made my monthly pilgrimage to Otto’s Shrunken Head in the East Village, where I saw the mighty Susquehanna Industrial Tool & Die Co. Even better, I had donated blood earlier in the day, which gave the night’s libations a bit more bang for the buck.

The short version is this photograph, which nicely captures how much more fun it is to go out instead of staying home and watching the game (click to enlarge):


91 comments to Can’t Russell Athletic Do Anything Right?

  • Oakville Endive | September 27, 2013 at 8:23 am |

    Seeing the Green/White Baltimore Colts jackets – I’m reminded of a certain football quiz.

    • Valjean | September 27, 2013 at 12:29 pm |

      “The wedding … is off.”

    • Ted Mark | September 27, 2013 at 8:47 pm |

      Did I miss what size it was?

  • Adam | September 27, 2013 at 8:34 am |

    Love the shout out to Father Ryan High School. I played for their (now) head coach Bruce Lussier when he was at Oak Ridge (TN) from 2001-2004. He’s a class act.

  • JimWa | September 27, 2013 at 8:37 am |

    Two thoughts:

    The HUGE beloved #17 in the outfield: Isn’t that WAY off-center? If you draw a line from 2nd base to the foot marker in dead center, you’d have a line that is half way between the 1 and the 7. Could you imagine what his jersey would look like if numbers were adorned the same way?

    While watching the 49ers play football last night (not sure what game the Rams were playing, but it sure wasn’t football), late in the game, while my mind was busy on something much more critical (I think it was What’s The Phrase?), the NFL Network had a close-up of Sam Bradford barking out plays at the line, and I’m 95% sure I heard him call out. “Reebok! Reebok!”. Did anyone else witness this, or is my 7 a.m. brain making it all up?

    • terriblehuman | September 27, 2013 at 9:19 am |

      Could you imagine what his jersey would look like if numbers were adorned the same way?

      It would look like this, just awful. This is how you do it.

  • Jason M (DC) | September 27, 2013 at 8:42 am |

    Maybe this has already been discussed. If so, I apologize.

    But I just find it interesting that baseball was wearing the Health patches in the 40s encouraging people to be more active. 70 years later, the NFL has Play 60 and there are lots of other initiatives to encourage people, especially kids, to get out and be active.

  • Hank-SJ | September 27, 2013 at 8:48 am |

    Re: airplane liveries. Interesting article on the newer generation of paints being used by airlines which actually increases fuel efficiency.

  • Fight | September 27, 2013 at 8:52 am |

    About Western Michigan wearing the Cincinnati decal – there was an article that noted Western Michigan recruited Flick (the deceased player) as the connection.

    • Joe O | September 27, 2013 at 11:23 am |

      Does WMU realize that the kid died in a drunk driving related incident? Why are they celebrating that? It’s not like he died of cancer or something. 100% preventable death.

  • Dumb Guy | September 27, 2013 at 8:52 am |

    I notice the “O” in the browns jacket isn’t cut out in the center. The other leters/numbers aren’t either, but the big non-hole in the “O” bugs me.

  • Dumb Guy | September 27, 2013 at 8:54 am |

    The proto-Elvis helmet guy has had that one up on rbay before (or still). He is also the guy with the reversed Massachusetts “throwback”/prototype.

  • ScottyM | September 27, 2013 at 8:54 am |

    That headline’s a bit harsh, don’t you think?

    Shipping errors happen. Where’s the equipment manager in all this? Easy to remedy before an incorrect jersey ever sees the field.

    Wonder where the hate for Russell stems? Sweatpant memories from ’88, or something? Lol

    • Terry Proctor | September 27, 2013 at 10:12 am |

      I’ve been a Russell fan for over 50 years. Unfortunately today’s Russell is not my Russell. And like most all manufacturers Russell is in the same boat. Look at some of the egregious errors on other maker’s pro or college garments.

      • Brinke | September 27, 2013 at 12:12 pm |

        Yeah me too, love Russell. But their quality control ain’t what it used to be. Tho I did just score some T-shirt pants @ Sears on sale. w00t!

        • Terry Proctor | September 27, 2013 at 3:10 pm |

          The current owners of the Russell brand is Berkshire Hathaway, Fruit Of The Loom’s parent. Russell still makes great Tees, sweats and golf shirts under their Jerzees brand. Jerzees garments are cut much fuller than Fruit Of The Loom’s. Russell is now hq’d in Atlanta and as far as I know the Alexander City, Ala. plant is completely gone. Sad.

      • Mark in Shiga | September 27, 2013 at 12:20 pm |

        In Russell’s defense: back when they made major league baseball jerseys, unlike today’s Majestic they sized their jerseys correctly. A size 44 jersey really was 44 inches around the chest. Today a Majestic 44 is 46 inches around, making the size less meaningful. As someone who fits perfectly into a Russell 44, but not quite in a Majestic 44, this is annoying. (I’d be a Majestic 42, but size 42 jerseys are hard to find.)

        • Terry Proctor | September 27, 2013 at 3:13 pm |

          Russell currently makes the uniforms for the Buffalo Bisons and the Pawtucket Red Sox of the International League.

      • ScottyM | September 27, 2013 at 12:48 pm |

        Me, too. Worked in sporting goods (local shop that did all the schools’ letter jackets) from ’88 to ’91.

        Russell had great quality cotton sweats, including a really high-end quality line. Bazillions of colors, too. Much superior to the popular Champion in terms of fit. Nike wasn’t even in the same league as those two in terms of clothing products.

    • arrScott | September 27, 2013 at 2:31 pm |

      I think this points to the next frontier of college football uniforms: In-game uni changes. I mean, once you’ve gone all the way to wearing an entirely different uni for each game of the season, what’s next? First-half and second-half uniforms, that’s what.

  • Dumb Guy | September 27, 2013 at 8:56 am |

    This week’s Buccaneers tickets feature Josh Freeman in the Bucs’ throwback uniform.

    Neither one of which will see the field on Sunday!!–nfl.html

  • terriblehuman | September 27, 2013 at 9:06 am |

    The thing about Major League Soccer’ s pink-out – it doesn’t seem to be affiliated with Susan G. Komen for the Cure, which seemingly has a monopoly on all things pink and cancer, and has in the past been territorial about this kind of stuff.

  • Gregg G. | September 27, 2013 at 9:08 am |

    “Even better, I had donated blood earlier in the day, which gave the night’s libations a bit more bang for the buck.”

    Paul–That’s classic.

    • Dumb Guy | September 27, 2013 at 9:26 am |

      Why do think anyone gives blood in college??

  • Jonathan Sluss | September 27, 2013 at 9:08 am |

    You may call it pretentious, but to Virginia Tech Alumni like me, it’s not. Each of the pillars of the
    War Memorial on campus represent just what the letter says and is a great central theme around which the university is built. I agree with your usual sentiment that not all military members are heros and not all heros are in the military, but I think you missed the mark on this one. The 430 honors fallen students and alumni which Virginia Tech honors and I like that our football team takes strides to show it is part the University, not just a representative. The author and intended audience of the letter knew exactly what it meant and it wasn’t just chest puffing–just a reminder of the university and community they represent.

    • Paul Lukas | September 27, 2013 at 9:17 am |

      That’s fair, Jonathan. When I called the note “pretentious,” I was referring to some of the language and the tone, which to me seems a bit over the top.

      • Kyle Allebach | September 27, 2013 at 9:55 am |

        The exclamation point at the end of each sentence was what did it for me.

        • Jonathan Sluss | September 27, 2013 at 12:07 pm |

          Well we do send out offer letters with comic sans font so…

  • Terry Proctor | September 27, 2013 at 9:09 am |

    That “prototype” Patriots helmet brought back some memories for me. The helmet used in this case was made by Gladiator Athletic of Leesburg, Florida.

    We became the Rochester-area Gladiator dealer in 1967. The original school price of it was $14.95 with the two-bar mask attached. The plain helmet cost $12.95. These prices are from an era where enormous liability insurance premiums weren’t tacked on to the end cost of helmets.

    The helmet business changed forever following the landmark case against Riddell back in the late-’70s or early-’80s. A helmet reconditioner had used a Riddell nose snubber on another manufacturer’s helmet that had no other identifying marks or labels on it. A player was seriuosly injured and because the helmet carried the Riddell snubber the courts ruled that it was therefore a Riddell helmet, resulting in a large judgement against Riddell.

    The fallout was that several smaller manufacturers stopped offering helmets altogether. Companies like Spalding and Nokona only sold youth helmets. And every company’s prices went through the roof.

    $389.99 for a $14.95 helmet? Nice mark-up if you can get it.

  • Tom V. | September 27, 2013 at 9:10 am |

    Not a Gator fan but I love oddly (yet appropriately) named units of measurement. That package of Jello makes 40 “jigglers”.

    • Adam | September 27, 2013 at 10:49 am |

      Yeah, I usually just call them “Jell-O Shots,” or sometimes “J-Shots” if I’m channeling Jean Ralphio.

  • teenchy | September 27, 2013 at 9:20 am |

    Re UG(h)A: I’m sure I’ve made this comment before, but my diploma was not issued by The Nike University of Georgia. I’m also not too crazy about the oval “G” branding extended to all the sports teams, though I’m sure it helps with the branding. Football is the tail that wags the Georgia dawg, and the tail that wags Georgia football is shaped like a swoosh.

    • Phil Hecken | September 27, 2013 at 9:53 am |
  • Jeramie Robinson | September 27, 2013 at 9:35 am |

    I dont know if this has been shown or not, but last night Portland state wore some sort of white camo uni

    • Dumb Guy | September 27, 2013 at 9:55 am |

      I’ve heard of putting Vick’s on your chest, but not VIKS.


      • Adam | September 27, 2013 at 10:50 am |

        Seriously. They need an ‘E’ on the end if they want it to read as a abrv for “Vikings.”

        • Adam | September 27, 2013 at 10:51 am |

          *an. I hate making grammatical errors when I’m criticizing grammar.

    • jamesBN3 | September 27, 2013 at 3:25 pm |

      Early front-runner for this weeks’s &1?

  • John Livewell | September 27, 2013 at 9:51 am |

    Wonderful insight from R. Scott Rogers and great stuff from Tom Schrieber.

    I am so very happy to be associated with all of you on this page!

  • Bernard | September 27, 2013 at 9:58 am |

    The “What Paul Did Last Night” series of posts and accompanying “GET OUT MORE” graphic are nice reminders that there is a world beyond our keyboards and couches. For someone who works primarily from home (like me, and you) it is absolutely critical to get out for some fresh air. For someone who actually has to put on pants to go to work, sitting at home watching the game might be exactly the kind of R&R they need on a work night, so I might caution against running the tone of the segment too far into “get off your lazy asses” territory in the future. (For the record, I don’t think you’re there yet.)

    • Paul Lukas | September 27, 2013 at 10:02 am |

      For the record, there is exactly zero “fresh air” at Otto’s Shrunken Head. But I like going there anyway.

      • Bernard | September 27, 2013 at 10:06 am |

        The air at my local is a noxious blend of smoke, wing sauce and overfried vegetable oil, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

    • James A | September 27, 2013 at 2:50 pm |

      “Get Out More”? Who are you to tell me…oh, wait…I went to a concert this week….and I’m going out for a walk later…scratch that.

  • Bernard | September 27, 2013 at 10:07 am |

    Check out this rugby clip:

    Do rugby teams not have change strips?

    Can you believe the hot pink ref?

    • jamesBN3 | September 27, 2013 at 3:37 pm |

      If Bay of Plenty (the team in the blue shorts) has a change jersey, they never wear it.

      As for the pink referee, it is a corporate tie-in. NZ referees are sponsored by Pink Batts who make and sell insulation.

  • Jay Lite | September 27, 2013 at 10:07 am |

    I don’t believe the inconsistent sleve striping on GT Russell jerseys from last night were a mistake; it seems to me it was just poor execution of a concept: I believe only linemen had jerseys with 3 sleve stripes, while the other posistions had jerseys with 2. Typically in football today, linemen have the shortest sleeves and more times than not will have the cuff of their sleeve tucked under their shoulder pads. I think Russell planned for this and gave them 3 stripes, while the other positions got jerseys with 2 stripes with the navy blue cuff (presumably more visible on non-linemen) creating the third stripe. In theory this idea sounds like it could have worked, but on the field it did not come off this way.

  • Guero | September 27, 2013 at 10:09 am |

    Regarding Dickerson’s throwback Rams jersey, does Nike even care about the inaccuracies? You’d think some intern would spend like 10 minutes on Google Images to make sure the jersey was close! Here’s what I noticed:

    – Wrong hue of blue (seems like it should be darker)
    – Yellow, seriously? (Should be athletic gold)
    – Chest numbers too close together (unless its a fabric fold)
    – Sleeves are missing TV numbers
    – Yellow toilet seat collar
    – Ram horns are anemically thin and don’t extend around the front

  • BringBackTheVet | September 27, 2013 at 10:10 am |

    Paul – saw the segment with KO. I noticed at the end that he said the site was “” not “uni dash” or “uni hyphen”. Did you catch that? Did you correct him?

    • Paul Lukas | September 27, 2013 at 10:12 am |

      Not worried about it. If/when I go back on the show, I’ll mention it to them in advance.

  • Bill Schaefer | September 27, 2013 at 10:26 am |

    In the Eric Dickerson photo, is that Jim Everett a couple of guys to Eric’s right? Hope no one called him Chris!

    • JTH | September 27, 2013 at 11:24 am |

      Yes. He, Orlando Pace and I think one other ex-player were wearing the oh-so-wrong fauxbacks last night.

  • Newt | September 27, 2013 at 10:35 am |

    those GT unis are awesome.

    no idea why they want to wear weird patterns when they got the cool-traditional look

    • J.R. Clark | September 27, 2013 at 11:34 pm |

      Georgia Tech unis were AWESOME!!! Get rid of the Klown Kostumes and make these the unis for eternity.

  • Newt | September 27, 2013 at 10:59 am |

    Paul said on the KO show that the NFL should try to follow the trend in college football of a different uniform each week.

    How is that going to happen if the NFL wont even let teams wear throwbacks because of the helmets?

    Maybe they should insert a rule that a team can use a new helmet if they have been using it to practice the week before. So if the Jets want to wear their all green 80s helmet…they can practice in that helmet all week and it’ll be certified for game use on Sunday.

    • Newt | September 27, 2013 at 11:00 am |

      my bad. paul didnt say “try to follow” i forgot what he said but he brought it up

  • Chance Michaels | September 27, 2013 at 11:16 am |

    Paul, this Hale America stuff is gold. Thanks!

    • BSmile | September 27, 2013 at 11:58 am |

      Ditto on that. Did you really only pay two bucks for all those patches? That’s an amazing score!

      • Mark in Shiga | September 27, 2013 at 12:22 pm |

        It sure is. I’d pay 20 times that price for such a great patch collection!

        • Connie DC | September 27, 2013 at 12:52 pm |

          Love the whole thing, and good on R Scott for his educated contributions…

  • Steve D | September 27, 2013 at 11:30 am |

    Isn’t Broadway Joe out of uniform due to the all white socks? Looks like other Jets had the customary green on the socks.

    • mild bill | September 27, 2013 at 12:10 pm |

      Probably…but that is what kind of made him “Broadway Joe.”

  • JTH | September 27, 2013 at 11:43 am |

    Speaking of giving blood, I just found out that mine is no good until April because I went to the Dominican Republic in the spring.

    • Paul Lukas | September 27, 2013 at 11:49 am |

      A friend of mine was told the same thing here in NYC.

      Fortunately, I rarely travel anywhere besides Wisconsin (going there again in three weeks)….

    • Mark in Shiga | September 27, 2013 at 12:21 pm |

      Same thing used to happen if you’ve been to Great Britain. Back in 2009, in Tokyo, I was refused the chance to donate blood because I’d spent two days in England in 2005.

      • Paul Lukas | September 27, 2013 at 12:22 pm |

        I spent eight days in Scotland in the spring of 2010 and had to declare that for the next three years, but it didn’t DQ me from donating.

        • arrScott | September 27, 2013 at 1:48 pm |

          The relevant rule is, “You are not eligible to donate if: From January 1, 1980, through December 31, 1996, you spent (visited or lived) a cumulative time of 3 months or more, in the United Kingdom (UK), or From January 1, 1980, to present, you had a blood transfusion in any country(ies) in the (UK) or France.”

          I’ve spent a lot of time in the UK and other European countries mentioned elsewhere in this long eligibility rule, but all after 1996, and I’ve never had a blood transfusion, so I’m still eligible.

          But that’s in the US – I’m not surprised that there are stricter rules in Japan.

  • Joseph Gerard | September 27, 2013 at 11:54 am |

    If you go to’s home page right now, they have an artist rendering of MLB players up for awards. Everyone is in their standard home white uniform except for Andrew McCutchen, who is in the Pirates black jersey.

    I guess the Buccos are now a little TOO well-known with it. lol

  • Paul Lukas | September 27, 2013 at 12:06 pm |
    • Joseph Gerard | September 27, 2013 at 12:16 pm |

      Well, the NFL did eliminate the Tuck Rule altogether this past offseason, so I would imagine the NHL is the only one with a Tuck Rule this year.

    • Oakville Endive | September 27, 2013 at 12:34 pm |

      The new Los Angeles Kings centre ice logo is an awfully large swath of “black” ice, something that was recently made fun of – when a English league ice rink did something similar with one of it’s on ice advertisements. I guess it’s location is better.

      I think the last heritage game was two seasons ago, although on a calendar basis it might have been winter of 2012.

  • Brinke | September 27, 2013 at 12:14 pm |

    Just read a great article on GQ on the worst franchises of all time. (Note to F Bitzer: no Bengals?) (Before anyone starts thinking of me as an upscale Armani snob, the link to the story was in my daily mail.) Here’s a joke that was in the article:

    Q: What does a Cubs fan do after his team wins the World Series? A: He turns off his PlayStation 3.

    Read More

    • terriblehuman | September 27, 2013 at 1:33 pm |

      The whole state of Ohio could’ve been rolled into one – Bengals, Browns, Cavs, Indians, Reds and Blue Jackets.

      • mainspark | September 27, 2013 at 1:43 pm |

        The Reds have 5 World Championships.

        • terriblehuman | September 27, 2013 at 1:47 pm |

          But none since 1990, and just one in 38 years.

          You’ll notice Pirates and Phillies were mentioned too.

      • Joseph Gerard | September 27, 2013 at 2:27 pm |

        Well what about Ohio State?

        And the Reds have had more successful periods long-term than the Phillies. Granted, they’ve also had bad times, too, but doesn’t everybody? Their history is about the same as the Pirates, but the Buccos having that 20-year non-winning season streak kinda wins out.

        • terriblehuman | September 27, 2013 at 4:00 pm |

          We don’t count Ohio State because some of their players got free tattoos and drove cars, which makes them Everything That’s Wrong About Sportsâ„¢.

  • Ben D | September 27, 2013 at 12:44 pm |

    Not only did Junior Seau not wear either of those uniform elements, he was no longer a Charger when they went to the current design.

    • terriblehuman | September 27, 2013 at 1:44 pm |

      Also, he wasn’t even alive to see those elements on the field (though Nike launched the NFL line last April, a month before his death).

  • jared | September 27, 2013 at 12:45 pm |

    RE Chargers jerseys; NIke is doing a “rolling change” with the jerseys. As retailers we are unable to order the fully correct game jersey due to the amount of blank stock remaining with Nike and Outerstuff. In some cases, we still receive the single color name/neck roll if we order a player that Nike still has pre-made stock of.

  • Connie DC | September 27, 2013 at 12:53 pm |

    “… New college hockey uniforms for UMass. … ”

    Hey, they’re very nice.

  • Rad | September 27, 2013 at 1:35 pm |

    Regarding the Rams & Chargers retail jerseys: If you aren’t a “uni-watcher”, you’d never know how inaccurate these things are, since NFLShop deleted all of last year’s product reviews. If that doesn’t tell you what the paying customer thought of them…

    I give the “game” model a pass, since it is the lowest tier (like the Seau & Dickerson jersey). Imagine spending $250-$299 for a complete piece of inaccurate “Elite” crap?

    Watching Russell trip over their own laces doesn’t exactly keep Nike on their toes…

  • arrScott | September 27, 2013 at 1:59 pm |

    Finally had a chance to read the other articles sent by Tom Shieber. Great stuff! The Hale America movement and what it says about WWII-era America clearly deserves book-length treatment, or at least a long magazine feature. There be unplumbed depths here!

    Also, love the reminder of the Negro Leagues use of the patch. Kind of amazing how over just a few years we had basically every organized baseball league in the nation, black, white, minor, major, wearing the Baseball Centennial patch, then seemingly every sports team wearing the Hale America and then baseball teams at all levels wearing the 1943-1945 stars & stripes patch. Different times.

  • Tom Mulgrew | September 27, 2013 at 2:05 pm |
  • terriblehuman | September 27, 2013 at 2:30 pm |

    More perspective on the ‘Skins controversy

    It’s a quick, but worthwhile read.

  • James A | September 27, 2013 at 2:54 pm |

    Isn’t that Texas A&M helmet white with a huge red stripe on it instead of the red listed?

  • Kevin Allen | September 27, 2013 at 3:27 pm |
  • Ben D | September 27, 2013 at 3:37 pm |

    I enjoyed seeing the Clemson “sweatback” jersey posted in yesterday’s ticker. I went to college with the father of the player whose jersey is pictured. He played basketball at Central Wesleyan College(now Southern Wesleyan University), a small NAIA school located just 6 miles from Clemson University in the early 90’s. Our sports teams were (and are) known as the Warriors. They recently petitioned to join the NCAA and in doing so kept the nickname, but removed all Native American imagery associated with it to comply with NCAA regulations. They ran a poll with alumni asking if they should keep the name and change the logos, or rebrand with an entirely new name.

  • Jedi54 | September 27, 2013 at 3:40 pm |

    Boise State is going to look awesome this weekend!!!

  • Federalist78 | September 28, 2013 at 7:28 am |

    While the language describing the Virginia Tech Stone Helmets was quite passionate, I think the tribute was far more appropriate (and less pretentious) than the camouflage helmet or the flag desecration helmets methods of “honoring” our military and veterans. I frankly would prefer schools and programs to honor veterans in more subtle ways rather than the crass commercialized desecration of all things patriotic that has sprung up all over.