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More NBA Christmas Talk, and Some Exclusive All-Star News

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We already broke the story of the NBA’s Christmas Day uniforms last week, and now the NBA has finally acknowledged the jerseys’ existence. Yesterday they released the photos you see above (a couple of which had already been floated a day earlier). The most notable thing about them is that most of the chest logos, which I had believed to predominately gray, are actually silver — an improvement. I graded all of them yesterday in this ESPN piece, although it would be fair to say they were all graded on a fairly steep curve.

The league also released two videos. This one, which was Ticker-linked yesterday, is called “Jingle Hoops,” and is actually pretty clever:

And then there’s this “behind the scenes” video about the making of “Jingle Hoops” (yes, a commercial for a commercial):

There’s also this press release, which includes a listing of all the Christmas Day games and times.

A few thoughts about all this:

The NBA’s original plan, before we broke the story last week, was to unveil the jerseys on Good Morning America. Given GMA’s demographics, that tells me the main point of these jerseys is to generate sales to women. Phil tells me his interactions on Twitter confirm that women tend to like these jerseys while men do not. The NBA tells me this information is incorrect.

• Last year’s Christmas Day jersey program was called Big Color; this year’s is Big Logo. What do you think they’re planning for next season — Big Advertising? Biggie Smalls? Big Fucking Deal? Bigamy?

• Does anyone else think it’s weird that 10 NBA teams — that’s a third of the league — will be playing on Christmas Day? What does it say about the players’ union when a third of their members will be forced to work and be away from their families on the biggest holiday of the year? Yes, I know some NFL teams play on Thanksgiving, but not as many. And yes, all MLB teams play on Independence Day, but that’s not the same kind of holiday. Just doesn’t seem right somehow.)

Finally, here’s an exclusive tidbit: As I mentioned last week, the uniforms for this season’s All-Star Game, which is being played in New Orleans, will follow this same template — logo on the chest, uni number on the left sleeve. I’m not at liberty to show you the official artwork of those designs, but there’s nothing preventing me from describing them. So:

• The East jersey will be blue with a teal V-neck collar. It will have a teal fleur-de-lis, outlined in silver, with a blue “E” at the center and the word “East” in blue at the base. The uniform number, in teal, is on the left sleeve. On the back, the NOB lettering is in white, with the uni number in teal. The NBA All-Star logo appears above the NOB, and the player’s team logo, rendered in silver, appears below the uni number.

• The West jersey will be red with a purple V-neck collar. It will have a purple fleur-de-lis, outlined in gold, with a red “W” at the center and the word “West” in red at the base. The uniform number, in purple, is on the left sleeve. On the back, the NOB lettering is in white, with the uni number in purple outlined in gold. The NBA All-Star logo appears above the NOB, and the player’s team logo, rendered in gold, appears below the uni number.

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Membership update: Half a dozen new membership card designs have been added to the card gallery (including Brian Dautch’s early-’80s Canucks treatment, shown at right). We currently have two slots open in the current batch of cards, which means the next two people to sign up will receive their cards with little or no waiting.

As always, you can sign up here, you can purchase a gift membership here, and you can see how we make the cards here.

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PermaRec update: An amazing ledger filled with the details of a Nashville musician’s 1970s session work — including what he was paid! — is the focus of the the latest entry on the Permenant Record Blog.

Gift Guide reminder: I’m currently working on my annual Uni Watch Holiday Gift Guide column, which will run on ESPN shortly after Thanksgiving. If you have suggestions for cool uni- or logo-related products or services, don’t be shy. Thanks.

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’Skins Watch: In case you haven’t seen it yet, here’s the study showing that the ’Skins name has harmful psychological effect on Native American children. … A DC political consultant has made a market-based argument that the ’Skins name should be kept as is (from Tommy Turner).

Baseball News: Another great historical find by Todd Radom, who’s discovered that the White Sox briefly — like, very briefly — experimented with a powder blue cap during spring training of 1966. ”¦ Here’s some great color footage from a 1965 Reds/Cubs game. “It’s a great look at the Reds’ sleeveless jersey with the NOBs underneath the uni numbers,” says Jon Helfenstein. “It also includes some classic ads for Hamm’s Beer.” ”¦ Several reports indicate that cursive writing is being de-emphasized in American schools, which leads the Hungry Hungry Hipster to a ask: “How are kids going to read the cursive script city names and team nicknames on baseball jerseys? Not only does it affect kids being able to read what’s on the uniforms, but it will also affect baseball uniform design in the future. Obviously if we come to a day when no one knows how to read or write in cursive, many baseball uniforms will have to change their designs, and no new uniforms will feature classic cursive scripts across the chest.”

NFL News: Big news in Tennessee last night, as the Titans wore power blue over white last night for the first time in their history. I like! ”¦ Deadspin has published an absolutely essential piece on why the NFL’s “Salute to Service” program is a crock. Don’t miss. ”¦ The Panthers’ solid-black uni — the “best uni in NFL history” according to that recent poll at, so you know it must be true — will be showcased next Monday night (thanks, Phil). … Looks like the Ravens’ wordmark font has been modified and adopted by Wyoming High School in Michigan (from Andrew Cosentino). … Check out the Lions player’s pants in this 1943 shot. That two-tone effect isn’t shown in the Gridiron Uniform Database (from Brian Graham). … Dawn Epstein is selling a ton of 3-5/8 NFL mini-helmets. … Yesterday’s Ticker linked to a photo showing the 1953 Lions wearing a mix of silver and gold helmets. Now Gene Sanny has found a link suggesting that the gold helmets may actually have been silver helmets that oxidized.

College Football News: Apparently there had been some call for Rutgers to scrap their uniforms, but that ain’t happening (thanks, Phil). ”¦ Here’s how Marshall’s “75” helmets looked last night. ”¦ Meanwhile, Marshall QB Rakeem Cato wore a dark green base-layer hood, instead of Marshall’s standard shade of green, during last night’s game. “You’d think that Marshall would have equipment that matched its team colors,” says JJ Sledge. … Maryland will be wearing solid white this weekend. ”¦ GI Joe move from USF, which is “honoring” the military by wearing military unit logo patches this weekend. ”¦ In a related item, many folks, including some in the military, think all the GI Joe gestures are getting out of hand (thanks, Phil).

Hockey News: New throwback alts for the Wisconsin women’s team. “Notable that they’re using the academic mark on the front, rather than the athletic mark,” says Joe Reimers. “According to a friend (a loyal Badger), this is the only Wisconsin uniform to incorporate the academic mark.” … Do you want to see each NHL team rendered as a Mega Man sprite? Sure you do (from Kyle Beaudoin). … Fun fact: Peter Stastny used to have a captain’s “C” made out of tape (from Chris Mizzoni).

Soccer News: Sergio Aguero is a Puma-sponsored player, but he’s shown wearing Adidas shoes in the promo shots for Argentina’s (Adidas-made) World Cup uniforms. You can see him second from the right in this shot and farthest in the background in this shot. “Has to be Photoshopped,” says Pat West. “Here’s what his Puma boots normally look like.” … This is pretty awesome: Soccer jerseys made from cigarette boxes! Check out the links at the bottom of the page for more info (thanks, Kirsten).

NBA News: Look at the shorts on this 1957 Cincinnati Royals card! ” Those shorts must have been holdovers from the Rochester days (no doubt a photo from the previous season), because I don’t think I’ve ever seen Cincy players in those,” says Leo Strawn Jr. “They moved to Ohio after the 1956-57 season.” I showed the photo to Rochester sports historian Terry Proctor, who said, “Yes, I know about those. That picture was from the 1956-57 season, the last in Rochester. The ‘Globetrotter-style’ uniforms were also used for the 1955-56 season and were made by Sand-Knit. The Sand rep that sold them to the Royals just passed away last year at age 90 — I knew him. The Harrison brothers, Lester and Jack, still owned the team in Cincinnati then. They got completely new uniforms from MacGregor that first year in Cincy.” … Check out this shot of a mid-1980s Warriors/Sonics game with both teams wearing their home unis. “I’m thinking this might be a preseason game, but that’s just a guess,” says Matt Beahan). … The Nuggets aren’t playing on Xmas, but that hasn’t kept them from having an Xmas jersey (from Phil). ”¦ Here’s the schedule for when the Lakers will be going BFBS (Phil again). ”¦ When the Heat wear nickNOBs on Jan. 10, Shane Battier will wear “Battle” — which is his family’s original surname (big thanks to Mike McLaughlin).

Grab Bag: Ford, the car company, has asked crack-smoking Toronto Mayor Rob Ford to stop using the company’s logo, and the CFL’s Toronto Argonauts aren’t too thrilled about him wearing their jersey (from Sean Kane). … This is a coupla weeks late, but window washers in Detroit dressed up in local sports attire (from Chris Flinn). … Three items from Kirsten: Colleges are now selling their own school-branded colognes; world-class athletes sure do have wildly differing body types; and there’s actually a spray-on fabric out there. How long before we see it being used for uniforms? … New logo for the city of Carrboro, North Carolina (from Tom Arnel). … Canyon Springs High in California has a two-tone helmet treatment similar to the Jags’. “We have a lot of these two-tone helmet treatments in this area, but black and white is kind of an unusual combination.”

Comments (126)

    When the average age of a World Series viewer being nearly 55, I don’t think baseball cares whether or not kids are able to read cursive scripts on jerseys.

    Also, it’s been centuries since kids learned to write in Germanic script, yet Old English type is more popular than ever. But the main thing is that just because kids aren’t learning to write Palmer Method cursive, it doesn’t mean they won’t be able to read script letters. Also, some of the better non-cursive writing systems being taught are actually closer to traditional baseball jersey scripts in letter form than Palmer Method cursive is. So jersey scripts might be more familiar to rising generations than less!

    I’d be a little more concerned if the Cubs were still wearing that “cuba” jersey from the 1990s, but for the most part, I don’t think there’s going to be a script issue. Still, if there is, we could go back to the old Civil Rights game unis:


    I didn’t realize the cursive de-emphasis was still a big deal. I learned cursive in 2nd grade, and remember hearing in 5th grade about how the 6th grade English teacher required everything to be written in cursive (up ’til that point, it was just practiced every year, if I recall correctly). Then, when school started that next fall, the English teacher surprised everyone by announcing that we could choose whichever method with which we felt more comfortable.

    To me when it comes to hoops on Christmas, it isn’t so much the NBA players that elicit sympathy, but the hot-dog vendors, parking attendants, etc. The players will have lots more opportunities for holidays with their families. The support staff, having set this precedent, may not.

    Right. But most of those folks aren’t unionized (and at least they work near where they live, so they can go home to their families after the game). My question was really about the effectiveness of the NBA players’ union.

    The players are making millions, I think they’ll be ok. Is it really *that* important to spend time with your family on December 25th rather than the 24th or 26th? As a kid, it wasn’t that uncommon for my family to do the whole gift giving and big dinner thing a day early or a day late due to my father’s work schedule or travel issues with certain relatives.

    The players are making millions, I think they’ll be ok.

    The notion that money automatically renders everything else moot is false. So is the notion that well-compensated workers don’t need or deserve labor representation.

    I don’t see where anyone said highly paid workers don’t deserve labor representation. I was, and I did. It was not uncommon to work every day for 8 plus hours for six months at a time. And I was very well represented by my union.

    The NBPA knows from where its bread is buttered. And that is from TV contracts which rely on people watching when they are home and most likely to watch television.

    I’m wondering, which hot dog vendors and parking lot attendants are unionized?

    I’m gonna go ahead and agree with The Jeff on this one. If I was paid $5 million a year to play a sport, I think I could sacrifice playing on a national holiday. Like “The”, my family never really “celebrated” Christmas on Christmas due to my father’s work schedule. To tell you the truth, Christmas day in my house was rather kind of boring.

    Is money everything? Nope. Does it buy happiness? It sure can. Would I trade positions with any NBA player in a heartbeat? Yup. In conclusion, I don’t think that playing on Christmas day is a big deal at all to these athletes.

    As a humanist, I feel bad for the players not celebrating Christmas on Christmas Day with their family (but 5 teams are playing at home so at least those players will get to be home before and after the game) but as a fan- 5 games on Christmas Day? Woowhee! Pour the egg nog and bring on the games!

    I don’t know how common it is, but here in DC, the vendors/staff at RFK, Verizon Center, and Nationals Park are all unionized. Not sure about FedEx Field.

    Perhaps the NBA union didn’t consider the matter important enough that they didn’t insist on it. Or they consider the money to be made more important than family. All we pretty much know is the NHL/NHLPA cares.

    Imagine my surprise when the school-branded cologne link led immediately to the fragrance of my alma mater. I would have expected the scent to contain notes of Poss’ Barbecue, privet hedge from Sanford Stadium, grease off the grill at the late Weaver D’s, and bodily fluids from the 40 Watt Club’s bathroom (including, possibly, a drop of Michael Stipe’s sweat).

    On another note: I appreciate the Lions gold helmet link. Sometimes we forget that materials in the past were not as colorfast or durable as what’s available today. Part of the lore behind Clemson’s purple and orange school colors holds that the colors were chosen because the navy and gold (or purple and gold) unis faded too quickly in the South Carolina sun. I’ll stop here as I’m sure there are Clemson UW’ers who know the story better than I and will share.

    “Phil tells me his interactions on Twitter confirm that women tend to like these jerseys while men do not.”

    oh so phil took some time away from manual retweets of everyone he follows and did some market research? ill take him at his word.

    also i never would have guessed in a thousand years that the titans had never worn powder blue over white. pretty funny that in their previous iteration that was their exclusive home uni.

    I think the Titans were trying to forge their own new identity, rather than looking like an Oilers knockoff. They didn’t even have a light blue jersey until their 5th season using the name.

    “oh so phil took some time away from manual retweets of everyone he follows and did some market research? ill take him at his word.”


    What the fuck is that crack for? And believe it or not, I rarely “follow” twitter, but much of what I tweet is sent to me. I do plenty of “research” to find what I post that aren’t “manual retweets”.

    Have a good day.

    I keep hearing the sleeved NBA jerseys look like soccer jerseys and I’m thinking “Eh.”

    If polyester+sleeves=soccer, I guess so, but between the super big logos on the front and the TV numbers and the sleeve length, I get it, but I’m not seeing it.

    Unless you went to school at Evansville or Louisiana Tech until the 90s, of course.

    Mostly pointless anecdote: at my K-12 alma mater, the varsity basketball team got brand new uniforms every few years, and the JV got the old varsity unis, and the 9th grade team got the old JV unis (I imagine this was the case at a lot of schools), and the 8th grade team got the old 9th grade unis and so on.

    At one point, the 8th grade team was wearing sleeved jerseys, so I always thought of sleeved jerseys as old fashioned, so it’s interesting to see them characterized as newfangled.

    In the 1950s, when — believe it or not — the NIT was a bigger tournament than the NCAA, perennial powerhouses Providence and St Bonaventure wore sleeved jerseys, as did about half the NY-area parochial school cagers. Your correspondent was a mighty force for the (sleeveless) St Augustine’s team, averaging 2.7 points per game.

    BTW, “cager” to describe basketball players is my favorite old-timey sports phrase. It evokes a rougher, blood-thirstier brand of hoops, sort of like Parick Swayze’s ‘Road House’ stage with drunk yokels throwing bottles at the performers.

    Didn’t all those sleeved jerseys have numbers (and at the college level, school names) on the front, rather than a two-color logo that looks like a knockoff hockey sweater?

    Sure, scholastic hoops uniforms have generally maintained the “school name in arched letter+big numbers” structure, but the pros have been more free-form (thinking about the Nuggets in 80s/90s, mid-90s 76ers and Cavs, though I’m sure there are more).

    And speaking of soccer jerseys (and picking up where we left off the other day), just got an email from Subside showing Argentina in there new World Cup jersey, and wearing white shorts, so another classic kit shot to hell by Adidas and/or FIFA.

    this is ridiculous.

    Warriors vs. Sonics game definitely looks like it was played in Portland. The AVIA shoe ad and the color of the paint on the floor indicates this along with the beginnings of the Memorial Coliseum sign on the front of the scorer’s table.

    Sounds plausible, but why would Sonics/Warriors be playing an exhibition game in Portland, which had the Blazers? I don’t remember preseason games in PDX.

    You’d be correct. You can actually get the Getty Images image number on the photo and type it in at and link:
    PORTLAND, OR – 1986: Xavier McDaniel #34 of the Seattle Supersonics passes against the Golden State Warriors circa 1986 at the Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Portland, Oregon. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 1986 NBAE (Photo by Brian Drake/NBAE via Getty Images)

    Unfortunately, it doesn’t explain why a Seattle vs Golden State game was in Portland, but I’m guessing it has to do with the link.

    Yes, but by the sounds of that story, the leak was fixed by the next day. Besides, the Sonics didn’t play the Warriors around that time – they hosted them on 27 Dec ’85, but didn’t host them again until March 20 ’86.

    Only other image I can find is also on Getty, but all it shows is X-Man dunking with a bunch of Warriors on the bench in the background.

    I’ll continue researching…

    Here’s the weird part – Xavier McDaniel joined the league in 1985. But the Warriors stopped wearing gold home jerseys a full season before that, link.

    Was the gold available as an alternate in the 80s?

    Creamer’s site is wrong on this – I’ve mentioned errors like this to the guys working there, but getting them fixed is a slow process. Warriors definately wore gold home unis in 85-85.

    The Warriors wore yellow unis at home until the 1985-86 season. That year they also introduced a white alternate which would become their home uni through the 1987-88 season, before they switched to the Run TMC era unis. That yellow uni shown in the Getty image was worn for two seasons, beginning with the 1983-84 season. Starting in the 1985-86 season, the numerals had thicker font and had color outline.

    #15 for the Warriors in the Getty image is Lester Conner. The Warriors media guide yearly team photos show him wearing #15 for 1983-84 then #32 for 1984-85 and 1985-86.

    Careful — Getty captions are notoriously unreliable, esp. for photos dated “Jan 1” of any year. That’s their default date for “We don’t know when this really happened,” which means everything in the caption is suspect.

    The best we can narrow it down to is sometime in 85-86 – Xavier McDaniel’s rookie season, and also the last year that there were no NBA logos on the unis.

    Dates aside, I usually find the captions on Getty pretty accurate.

    Glancing at the Titans game last night, they almost looked teal in the long shots. Similar to Miami. Or I could’ve been super tired!

    RE: Cubs/Reds game. The first thing I noticed was how LOW the home plate umpire got! Awesome.

    The Panthers article specifically said that they would be wearing Black Jerseys and SILVER Pants, not the strangely popular Black on Black combo (I strongly prefer the Blue Jerseys, not that anybody asked). Also, Carolina will have the Purple Heart designation label on the back of their Helmets.

    My only gripe about the NBA unis is that the Lakers should be purple or yellow.

    When did “white” become an official Lakers color? Golden State should have the white uni.

    but on second thought maybe the white uni is supposed to be exotic…like how all the kids wanted the white power ranger when he came out

    Better that decal than the flag. Also, NFL players could totally serve in the National Guard. They’d only miss one weekend a month, and could probably get waivers during the season anyway. Maybe the decal will inspire some of these physically gifted, well-educated young men in their primes to think about joining the National Guard and serving. [Yeah, right – ed]

    PL, is it that bad if it’s a small decal? Sometimes I wonder if you have a little Sheldon Cooper in you. I can understand if the buffalo on the helmet was camo or S&S, but a small decal isn’t going to hurt anyone.

    I don’t know who Sheldon Cooper is, so that part of your comment means nothing to me.

    But tell me this: In your application to be a Uni Watch intern, you said, “Trust me, sports and politics don’t mix.” So why would you defend the obviously political gesture of repeatedly glorifying the military to the near-exclusion of all other sectors of society on sports uniforms?

    Or is it that you only have a problem with politics you don’t agree with?

    Right, I forgot that you’re too old to enjoy sitcoms, otherwise you would get the Big Bang Theory reference. I’ll just let that one gloss over.

    I don’t particularly care for politics, but I do support the armed forces, mainly because I have friends who serve, but also because without them we wouldn’t be the country we are today. That being said, I feel that what the NFL does in their salute to service program is a heck of a lot more tolerable then what the college football and basketball programs do when they roll out their “GI Joe Glamoflague” uniforms. To me, the decal is fine because it subtly and accurately represents the branch of service that the team chooses to honor, but these universities who choose to outfit these kids in glamoflauge so that they can pretend to be soldiers is dumb. Sure, wear it, but don’t call yourself a soldier unless you have actually seen a war zone, then rethink your statement. I guarantee that these kids, once they see a war zone, would never want to touch their first person shooter games after seeing a war zone first hand.

    In regards to my “sports and politics do not mix” quote, yes, there are some things that I feel make more sense than others. I personally think that this Redskins thing is stupid, and that the white guilters and lawsuit chasers (Oneida Indian tribe) should shut up and leave well enough alone, but with the exception to that one article I wrote for my blog, you don’t hear me complaining about Skins watch every day. In addition, when you complain about “flag desecration and GI Joe”, it does set my teeth on edge, not because I feel a flag or a camo pattern is an acceptable element for a uniform, but I feel like I hear this every freakin’ week. Do I complain about it in the comments? No, because I don’t have an undeniable urge to vent my frustrations at the public.

    Earlier this week, there was a discussion in the comments about minor league uniforms which in effect went back to the good days of the site, when you weren’t complaining about the use of indian names and logos, and the politicization of sports, as you put it. You even contributed to it.

    “I’m surprised/impressed/etc. that so many people are weighing in on the logos of a single-A minor league team that most of us will never see on the field.

    I don’t mean that as a critique – on the contrary, I think it’s awesome. Just didn’t expect so many people to care.”

    That was followed with this comment:

    “It’s kind of refreshing to see the primary focus of today’s comments be about the pure aesthetics of athletics.”

    When Uni Watch drops the soapboxing, I find it to be refreshing. It makes my mornings that much more bearable, because I’m not hearing people complain about things that I know are going to be forced down my throat when I enter the working world. Believe me, with the amount of politics that has been forced down my throat lately, I am glad to have a retreat that for the most part is untouched by politics. But if I feel that sports is getting politicized, or becoming more like a sociology class, there are times that I honestly want to kill myself.

    Listen to us, PL, make Uni Watch the way it was before, a site devoted to the aesthetics of athletics, and not a sociological or political soapbox.

    when you complain about “flag desecration and GI Joe”, it does set my teeth on edge, not because I feel a flag or a camo pattern is an acceptable element for a uniform, but I feel like I hear this every freakin’ week.

    You know what happens “every freakin’ week”? Camo- and flag-based uniform designs being foisted on the uni-verse, that’s what. As I explained in some detail a few days ago, if the teams, leagues, and manufacturers would stop with the political messaging (which is exactly what GI Joe-isms and flag-isms are), I wouldn’t have to respond to them. Until they stop, however, I have little choice but to cover and assess what they’re doing. Referring to these designs as “GI Joe” and “flag-desecration” is my way of mocking the obvious bullshit behind these gestures, my way of trying to strip them of the mantle of unearned dignity they’re trying to create for themselves. If you’re tired of hearing those terms, believe when I say I’m even more tired of having to invoke them on a near-daily basis as more and more of this crap keeps showing up on the field/court/ice/etc.

    Listen to us, PL, make Uni Watch the way it was before, a site devoted to the aesthetics of athletics, and not a sociological or political soapbox.

    You’re operating off of a faulty premise. I have not changed Uni Watch; rather, it is the uni-verse that has changed. It is now filled with political messaging. I can’t ignore that any more than I can ignore the NBA’s sleeved jerseys. I’m not “soapboxing” — I’m simply responding to what’s out there.

    If you really don’t want to see political content on Uni Watch, I suggest you tell the teams, leagues, and manufacturers to stop with the political messaging in their designs. Because make no mistake, repeatedly wrapping oneself in the flag is an inherently political act. Repeatedly celebrating the military to the near-exclusion of all other sectors of society is an inherently political act. It is THEY who are “soapboxing.” Me, I’m just responding.

    When the teams, leagues, and manufacturers stop engaging in political messaging, I’ll be able to stop covering same. And I’ll be even happier about that than you’ll be.

    What I am getting from this is that you’re saying that the companies that make the uniform elements are making you into a sociologistical jerk. Yeah, that same logic came up with “The devil made me do it,” “The cake made me fat,” and my personal favorite, “The gun killed the person”. These are all faulty premises. You are the one making the conscious decision to make the commentary that makes you sound like a jerk. It isn’t the companies’ fault, it’s yours. You can make a conscious effort to avoid making polarizing statements by just saying “X university or X team unveiled a flag jersey. Instead, you put in your opinion without asking the readership what they think. We’re not stupid, we can think for ourselves, thank you very much. In fact, if you didn’t want us to express our own opinions, why have the comments section available?

    Just because the uni-verse has changed, doesn’t mean that you have to change with it. You can still go for the classic Uni Watch where your most controversial opinion was on the color purple. I’m not trying to speak for everyone here, but I think that most of us would rather have a discussion on the benefits versus the disadvantages of iron on patches instead of whether or not a team name is offensive, or the, as you put it, “inherently political act” of putting a decal of a branch of the armed forces on a football helmet.

    hodges14, I’m the one whom you quoted as saying, “It’s kind of refreshing to see the primary focus of today’s comments be about the pure aesthetics of athletics.” Since you’re using my words, I feel compelled to put them in context.

    I did find it refreshing that the frequent back-and-forth about some of the more political topics commonly discussed here at Uni Watch had died down for the day. That doesn’t mean I think those discussions should go away. It means that I would prefer to see various sides of these debates express themselves with more civility and less vitriol.

    It’s possible to express one’s disagreement with someone else’s opinion without it turning into an emotionally charged series of ad hominem attacks all the time. Unfortunately, it sometimes seems hard for everyone to “play nice.” Because of that, it was nice that we had a day when the the uni news lent itself to a discussion of some less emotionally charged topics for a spell.

    I think the Jags were wearing Camp Fire Girls Troop 231 decals. Or maybe it was VFW Hall 128 Ladies’ Auxiliary. I didn’t get a good look.


    Just to confirm that the picture of Peter King standing next to the sign “Wyoming High School” is not a high school in Wyoming, it is Wyoming High School in Wyoming, Michigan.

    I’m very scared that the Titans will never wear that combo again. We go white-on-white once in a blue moon, lose, and then swear off the combo as bad luck. Our powder blue-on-navy blue looks awful, because of the white helmet. I love the powder-on-white look. We lose all the goddamn time, so hopefully cooler heads will prevail. Munchak has been doing some weird things with the unis (we’ve reverted to a subpar look on the road, with navy rather than powder pants), but I loved the look last night. Fingers crossed.

    My issue with the powder blue/white combo is that it doesn’t provide enough contrast against a team in all-white, especially since the Colts also wear white helmets and blue hosiery.

    Really, that blue is light enough to use as the road jersey.

    “Does every sporting event these days have to become a mini- Nuremberg rally ?” Norm Linden. From the last story in the CFB section.

    Another great historical find by Todd Radom, who’s discovered that the White Sox briefly – like, very briefly – experimented with a powder blue cap during spring training of 1966

    Todd, you are my hero.

    I don’t understand why people liked the Titans look last night. To me, it was fugly. It didn’t match, it just looked garbage. Imagine if the Jaguars decided to slap their black jerseys with the white pants together. It’s just garbage. I say that the team needs to bring the navy back, because honestly, that blue jersey is so damn awful.

    “I don’t understand why people liked the Titans look last night. To me, it was fugly. It didn’t match, it just looked garbage.”

    Didn’t match??? The white helmet matched the white pants! I thought it looked sharp and was a well-balanced uniform.

    That Cubs-Reds game is great fun for a lot of reasons — the unis, of course, and also how Wrigley looked in ’65 and the faster pace of the game back then. (And 24-year-old Pete Rose playing 2b for the Reds, as well as HOFers Frank Robinson, Ernie Banks and Billy Williams.)

    But if you just watch for the first few minutes to check out all that you might not be aware that the game ended up being a 10-inning no-hitter for the Reds’ Jim Maloney.

    I only had time to watch the first five or six minutes but loved seeing both pitchers in warm up jackets during a mid-August game (conventional wisdom of the day) and the first commercial.

    Who wouldn’t like to join Lloyd Pettit and Jack Brickhouse in the Hamm’s hospitality room?

    Speaking of jackets in that video, at the 1:10 mark the Reds batter who made it to first base calls timeout so the first base coach can help him put on a jacket. Since I’m not much of a baseball fan, this leads me to ask a few questions: why would a base runner want to wear a jacket in mid-August, and how common is it for base runners to call time out so they can put on a jacket? I only recently found out a base runner putting on a jacket was even allowed! Are there any specific rules regulating jackets being worn by base-runners? Like, how baggy it can be and what color it is? I would imagine if your opponent was wearing all white that the jacket couldn’t be mostly white. Is that even in the rulebook? Also, if all your base runners during an entire game wanted to put jackets on they would all have to cal timeout, plus batters get to call timeout, so is baseball the only sport with unlimited timeouts?

    Pitchers wear jackets when running the bases all the time. I think that these days you so rarely see pitchers batting, much less reaching base, that jackets have become a little rarer than they used to be.

    And in that game — I hadn’t known Maloney would get the no-hitter; come on, Perry, stop spoiling — there sure is a lot to like. Classic Cub uniforms with just those big blue numbers on the back; Reds with gray hats and even helmets; those giant quirky Reds under-the-number NOBs (which seem to arch in the wrong direction). And of course a beautiful ad-free Wrigley Field.

    I kind of disagree with Mark on this one — you USED TO see pitchers wearing jackets on the bases all the time, but they don’t do it much any more. Not because they bat or reach base any less (although in the DH league that’s obviously true), it’s just gone out of fashion. Theory used to be that pitchers — who were the only players permitted to wear jackets — needed to keep their arms warm at all times, no matter how hot the weather was.

    I swear the Titans have worn powder blue-over-white before. (At the very least, they have as the Oilers.) I do agree that it’s a nice look.

    And I really like the Reds-Cubs footage from Wrigley, though I don’t have time to watch the hour-long footage. Would be nice to find a young Pete Rose in the footage, though.

    They have never worn that look as the Titans (except in an old commercial). It is (along with white jerseys/light blue pants) BY far their best look. The jersey (and helmets) is still all kinds of wrong, but as far as color combos go, that’s A-1.

    It’s about time that the Titans jettison the blue pants when worn with a colored jersey (sadly, the wore all-navy on Sunday). At least they wore the white pants with the light blue jersey last night, and have worn navy-over-white earlier this season. It’s a start. They have the makings of one of the league’s better unis, but they’ve kept messing it up with strange blue-over-blue combinations, all of which look awful.

    The Titans uni last night made me think of when the Oilers did the white helmet/powder blue jersey/white pants look before they split from Houston. Made me think of Billy White Shoes Johnson, Warren Moon, etc.

    BTW, on an earlier comment here today, someone mentioned “Power Blue” (v. Powder Blue). I recall a story that UCLA’s coach (Red Sanders?) intentionally wanted the palest blue jerseys possible with white numbers so that when opposing teams saw black and white scout film of the Bruins, they would have trouble making out each player’s number and make UCLA harder to scout. Is that true or bullsh*t?

    The repeated misspelling of the Washington Redskins owner’s last name in Raynard Jackson’s piece was quite distracting, but his “market based argument” for keeping the Redskins name was solid. Thanks for including it today!

    That it would take “decades” to rebrand and cost “hundreds of millions” of dollars is laughable. To Raynard Jackson I say, seriously, dude? That’s your argument?

    “It would take Synder decades to rebuild the new name INTO (my emphasis) a brand” is not the same as “it would take “decades” to rebrand”.
    And unless the NFL or Oneida Nation Enterprises is going to ante up for the development, roll-out and marketing campaign costs associated with the Redskins new name and logo, it will cost Snyder a great deal, monetarily speaking.

    …which would likely be MORE than made up for in new merch sales ALONE.

    But even if that weren’t true, the “monetary” cost to Snyder is perhaps the worst justification for keeping the racist monicker.

    I’ve heard umpteen excuses for why the name should not be changed, but the hit to Snyder’s pocket (which after all is said and done is probably a net gain for him anyway) is about the worst of all reasons for keeping the name.

    I’m pretty sure that I read somewhere that the Christmas jerseys were being made for all NBA teams, even though many wouldn’t be wearing them. It may have been in an NBA shop promotional email once they were officially announced. That would explain the Nuggets jersey.

    I emailed the league this morning to ask if the other teams’ jersey are just a retailing thing, or if those teams might end up wearing the Big Logo jerseys on the court (on dates other than Xmas, obviously).

    No response yet. Given that the NBA isn’t thrilled with me for reporting on the Xmas jerseys prior to their official release, I don’t really expect an answer. But we’ll see.

    Does the NBA (or other leagues) ever have a conversation with you about their expectations regarding leaks?
    I mean, I know they don’t want you to leak things of course, and I know your position that if they shared things early with you, that you’d agree to not to leak them yourself…
    But in cases where they don’t share with you, and you find the leaks elsewhere, do they REALLY expect you to not share, I mean given the nature of your blog and all?

    Just curious, as I really don’t understand their thinking sometimes about this sort of thing (as well as a lot of other things frankly).


    They understand that once something’s out there, of course I’m going to report on it. But they’re not happy about it.

    What they don’t like is that Uni Watch has helped to create a climate in which leaks are more prevalent.

    Or at least that’s how they see it. I think a lot of what *they* do (ridiculous retail campaigns, video gaming, etc.) makes leaking more prevalent.

    I was going to say, video games are probably the worst offenders when it comes to premature leaks. Shouldn’t the league’s official licensees have tighter controls on that stuff?

    I checked that email that I received yesterday and it did not mention that all teams are getting “big logo” jerseys. I swear I heard or saw that somewhere though.

    Here’s some great color footage from a 1965 Reds/Cubs game. “It’s a great look at the Reds’ sleeveless jersey with the NOBs underneath the uni numbers,” says Jon Helfenstein. “It also includes some classic ads for Hamm’s Beer.”

    Loved watching this game footage. And the beer commercial at 28:30 is amazingly 60s:


    Now here is a good-looking non-camp non-flag desecrating breath of fresh air on this GI Joe-vember day: The University of Illinois football team. Normal colors, simple subjective symbolism, no gimmicky borrowed toy soldier imagery, just this. This is how you do it.
    Check out Darren Rovell’s Tweet: link

    “Now here is a good-looking non-camp non-flag desecrating breath of fresh air on this GI Joe-vember day: The University of Illinois football team.”

    Wow! Somebody finally got it right! Way to go, Illinois!

    Why exactly is this “good”?

    Is it because it’s connected to Veterans Day? If so, then it’s inappropriate, because that holiday is for living veterans, not those who died in battle.

    Is it because there’s never a bad time to celebrate military service? If so, I disagree.

    I should clarify my comments to explain that I think Illinois got the aesthetic execution right. The design is tasteful and dignified, especially compared to Under Armour’s recent Wounded Warrior efforts.

    As to the question of whom Veterans Day honors, I think there’s a strong case to be made that it’s intended to honor link. In that context, it would seem Illinois’ helmets are appropriate for the holiday, if perhaps a bit exclusiionary.

    Respond to HHH, I’m on a phone here so I’m in mobile mode. I haven’t seen the video, but was the batter a National League pitcher? Last time I checked, only pitchers are allowed to wear jackets while running the bases. Pitchers are obsessed with keeping their pitching arms warm, no matter the temp. But maybe August is just chilly enough. As per rules, the jacket has to be closed, i.e.: buttoned or zipped up.

    NBA just confirmed for me that the only teams wearing the Big Logo jerseys on the court will be the 10 teams playing on Xmas day. So the jerseys for other teams are just for retail, not for game use.

    Serious doubts about the legitimacy of the study listed under the ‘Skins Watch section, especially the study methods used for population sampling. I think it’s important to point out that while correlation may be evident, the causation argument is lacking. There is a correlation between the summer months and higher temperatures, but that doesn’t make summer months the cause. Rather, it’s the axial tilt of earth.

    I know this is a little late but on that site about the spray-on fabric there is a video that is not safe for work. (It’s the instant T-shirt video in the middle of the webpage.)

    From the college football “GI Joe gestures getting out of hand” article:

    “The Black Knights started the rush to camouflage in 2008. Army wore black jerseys with camouflage pants for the Navy game, the first rivalry game of a series started by Nike.”

    Nike started the rivalry between Army and Navy?!?!?! I don’t think the author knows that Army and Navy have been playing a football game against each almost every year since 1890! Nike starting a rivalry series between Army and Navy… what hogwash!!!

    While I’m on the topic did you know instant replay made it’s debut at the 1963 Army-Navy game? I read that in the Wikipedia article on the rivalry:


    Nike is so powerful they’ve developed time travel. That’s why Union troops during the Civil War had swooshes on their forage caps.

    Re that study about the effect of Native names and mascots and how they harm Indian children: As much as I’d like to see the ‘Skins change their name and see Chief Wahoo disappear into the dustbin of history, I doubt it would have the slightest influence over the alcohol abuse, depression and suicide among Indian people. The problems are far more systematic then just a “negstive image”.

    “I doubt it would have the slightest influence over the alcohol abuse, depression and suicide among Indian people. The problems are far more systematic then just a “negstive image”.”


    Sadly, this is true. There are a LOT more pressing issues to Native Peoples than the use of a racial epithet and/or racist logo. I’m sure you’re not suggesting that, because of *other* problems we ignore this injustice, right?

    “Canyon Springs High in California has a two-tone helmet treatment similar to the Jags’.”

    That school also shares much of Jacksonville’s color scheme and pulls off the 2-tone look much better:


    Hodges14, minus the name-calling, I think you pretty much hit the nail on the head. I don’t think there’s any reason to constantly bash anything having to do with the military.

    God help me, but I actually really like some of those Big Logo jerseys, especially Golden State and Brooklyn. But no matter what they do with Houston’s logo, it always looks amateurish to me.

    I was only sort of half-watching the UCLA / Washington game, so I may have imagined this – but I don’t think so. Sometime slightly before the 12:00 mark in the 3rd quarter, they were showing the Washington sideline. There was the coach and to his right was a guy I presume was a back-up QB, both with headsets and both making some kind of hand signal. What caught my eye was the guy to the right of the QB, who was making notes in a book or folder that had the Denver Broncos’ old logo. I tried to go back to verify, but sadly got bested by my remote control – so no screen shot or anything like that.

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