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Field of Jeans®

Field of Jeans hed

By Phil Hecken

I have a very special guest post today from Mr. Collector’s Corner — Brinke Guthrie — who received a very special tour while attending the official “Grand Opening” celebration of the new stadium for the 49ers, Levi’s Stadium. There’s a lot to get to, and Brinke has covered it all with a unique (and “uni-centric”) view, so let’s get started.

Here’s Brinke:

. . . . . .

Field of Jeans ®
By Brinke Guthrie

At the end of last season, California’s three NFL teams occupied three of the older and outdated stadiums in the league. San Diego Chargers/Qualcomm (1967,) the Oakland Raiders (Your Name Here Coliseum, 1966) and the San Francisco 49ers/Candlestick Park, 1960 (1971 for football.) Between the three, a total of 12 names — four for each. (Little known fact: Qualcomm was called “Snapdragon Stadium” for 10 days in 2011.)

As far as Bay Area sports go, the Raiders (and A’s) are mired deep in divisive Oakland political turmoil. If you can believe it, the Rayduhz want to tear down the Coliseum and build on the same site, at the same time the A’s are trying to redo their Coliseum lease.) Honest.


The Gold Rush and some dweeb,  Levi's Stadium ®.

No such inertia exists in the South Bay. Twenty-seven months after its April 2012 groundbreaking, the 49ers gleaming new Levi’s Stadium ® is now online, following its official ribbon-cutting ceremony on Thursday morning. I’ve watched the stadium webcam ever since they started digging — here’s a time-lapse movie — showing about half the build. It’s about as far away from the rusty old ‘Stick that $1.2 billion dollars can take you, right in the heart of Silicon Valley. (The 49ers HQ and practice field is literally steps from the stadium and has been here for several years.The locker room will move from the practice facility to the stadium.)

Initially, I couldn’t decide if the impressive 68,500 seat stadium is sleek, or plush. After taking a lengthy tour, the answer is “both.” (The Bay Area is now blessed with two outstanding stadiums. I deem AT&T Park “cool” because of the retro themed location by the Bay, and Levi’s Stadium ® is “neat” due to the tech influence. I.E., the geek in me approves.) The stadium itself is very much a product of its location — the physical facility reflects the high tech innovation (and key corporate partnerships) that surrounds it in the Silicon Valley area. There’s a lot of cash in the Valley.


“Sustainability” (or, “It can run itself”) was a key word mentioned over and over. To partially expand on that:

Recycled water will account for around 85 percent of all water used at the stadium.

• The turf is a variety that will require up to 50 percent less water than the average turf variety in the Bay Area. If you’ve followed the news, lack of water is a big deal here. (Note in that photo: the three stripes were prominent on the side boards, and in the stadium “Inaugural Season” logo. A tie to the jersey sleeve stripes, perhaps?)

• The first stadium in North America designed to be net neutral to the grid- the ten Niners home games will be powered by the sun, from the stadium’s year-round collection of solar power. The three bridges to the stadium are solar panel covered, for example.

• The “green roof” saves energy and the need to heat/cool the tower- the “NRG Solar Terrace” is 18,000 square feet featuring 16 native plants. And one devious small utility box in the corner I tripped on and crashed. The first face plant at Levi’s Stadium belongs to me.

• It’s one giant Hot Spot. Plug into internet bandwidth 40x greater than any U.S. stadium. More than 12,00 WiFi access points dot the stadium, so if you want to order food from your seat and have it delivered, no problem. (Flat $5 dollar delivery charge for that, BTW.)

• The stadium is book-ended by two massive 200×48 HD video boards…which can allegedly been seen at night from 100 miles away. (Conversation on the 101 up in SF: “Look, honey- Gore scored again!”)

• Levi’s Stadium ® also features things such as an art collection, education center, team store (which wasn’t open- and I had money to spend) and team museum. (Didn’t get to see that. Maybe on the next trip.) There was a reception following the ribbon cutting ceremony- let’s just say the food is pretty good. (Another gourmet ice cream sundae? Well, if you insist.)

• The lower bowl’s 45,000 seats (two-thirds of capacity) is one of the league’s largest, and the suite tower is supposed to reflect sound back at the field- to make for a noisy atmosphere for all your rowdy friends.

Levis logo

Among Thursday’s speakers were 49ers CEO Jed York and The Commish, Roger Goodell, and Levi’s ® CEO Chip Bergh, a genial fellow who was nattily attired, and doesn’t wash his jeans. (Jacket available for purchase soon! NFL licensed!)

And yes, Coach Harbaugh was wearing the black sweatshirt in the hot sunshine. I was -this- close to The Sweatshirt! This was the Nike model as opposed to the Reebok model or the Stanford DIY model.

My pal Todd L. in Denver wrote me to say, “It’s not really named Levi’s Stadium ®, is it?” This coming from someone whose team plays at “Sports Authority Field at Mile High,” its second name. You’ll notice the the  ® symbol throughout this story. Believe me, that little  ® is EVERYWHERE at the stadium.

It’s been a long haul. We’ve got our new toy, and now it’s time to play with it. Sunday night, September 14th is Game On.

(Extra special thanks to Roger Hacker at the 49ers. PS: he Gets Itâ„¢.)

. . . . .

Thanks, Brinke! Nice job — and I’m sure that stadium tour/grand opening (and everything in between) was awesome.


colorize this

Colorize This!

Occasionally, I will be featuring wonderful, high-quality black and white photographs that are just begging to be colorized.

Just one today — and it’s from (drumroll) George Chilvers, but brace yourselves — it’s NOT soccer (football) related!

Click either image to enlarge:

. . .

Walter Johnson - colourized - George Chilvers

Walter Johnson

Hi Phil

After saying you would be getting football pictures from me, the first one I send is not football. I trust I don’t need to say who it is to you experts :)

The big relevance to me is that over last weekend someone (Steve D, I think) asked if there had been breakthroughs or was I just refining. My answer was that I am constantly refining, and one area I have been concentrating on over the last month or so is trying to get skin tones more natural looking – the most difficult part of colourising, particularly in portraits.

I’d be interested to know if readers think I’m getting there.


. . .

Clearly, the famous large choo-choo is the inspiration for a certain fireballing righthander from the Rays. Don’t hate.

Thanks George. Tremendous stuff, as always. Please keep them coming!


2014 Logo

U.W.F.F.L. Spring League

UWFFL Developmental League – Week 18
by Rob Holecko

We have finally made it to the eighteenth and final week of the 2014 UWFFL Spring Developmental League. The six group winners and two wild cards will qualify for the D-League postseason, while the top three teams in each group will advance to Division II in the Fall, and the fourth through sixth place finishing teams in each group will go into Division III.

Most of the spots for promotion and playoff spots have been decided, although there are still a few things left to decide. All of these crucial games will be decided with your votes today.

. . .

The Providence Steamroller (4-2-1) needs a win against Buffalo to get into a tie for third with the Rhode Island Hot Rods (5-2-1) in Group A:

Week 18 - PRV BUF


Providence at Buffalo free polls 

. . .

The Jacksonville Rhinos (4-3) host the Delaware Union (5-2), a Jacksonville win will mean these two teams will face each other again next week in a tiebreaker game to decide who goes into Division II:

Week 18 - DEL JAX


Delaware at Jacksonville free polls 

. . .

It’s a big game for the Angle North Stars (5-1-1), they are in third place, only a half-game ahead of the Pontiac Prowlers (5-1-2). If they can beat the (7-0) Cheyenne Shock who have already clinched first place in the group, they will make it into Division II, but a tie will set up a tiebreaker game with Pontiac next week, while a loss will send Pontiac to Division II, and the North Stars will have to settle for Division III. BOth Angle and Cheyenne are wearing alts for this season finale, Angle their white and blue road alts, while Cheyenne is debuting a dynamic all-black set:

Week 18 - ANS CHE


Angle at Cheyenne free polls 

. . .

Finally the Missouri Magnetic (6-1) play their season finale at the Houston Energy (1-6). It’s been a disappointing season for the Energy, but they can play spoiler today as the Magnetic needs a win to try to grab one of the Wild Card spots and get into the D-League playoffs:

Week 18 - MO HOU


Missouri at Houston free polls 

. . .

There are still a few Division III promotion spots yet to be decided among the teams playing in the eight other games this weekend, so head on over to to vote on those games as well. We will see you next week with any tiebreaker games that may be necessary, and possibly a contest for you to vote on as well.


Uni Watch News Ticker:

Baseball News: Check out this beautiful 1889 baseball medal issued by Jos. Schoeneman, Philadelphia, found by MLB Historian John Thorn (thanks to Jonathan Daniel). … Also from Jonathan, look at this Phillies licensed cigarette pack holder from the 50’s, which features the Whiz Kids cigarettes (via the twitter account @19802008CHAMPS). … Still more from Jonathan: Interesting information on the 1914 Boston Braves and “I love that Braves photo.” … The University of Northwestern Ohio has “denigrated the beautiful green span of the baseball field and turned its infield into cardinal astroturf with a vegas gold astroturf basepath,” says Dustin Semore. … Should softball players wear masks on the field? At least one state says “Yes” (from Tommy Turner). … Even though Fox didn’t pay tribute to Tony Gwynn or any other baseball great who passed away recently, this video pays respect to the Hall of Famers, All Stars and other baseball stars who have died since the last All Star Game (nice find from Richard Paloma). … “The nameplates on the Charlotte Knights jerseys look like just a piece of white tape,” says David Berger. “Looks especially awful in the pinstripes.” … “The A’s (obviously Steve Vucinich) getting things right with the jerseys worn by the WS Champs for the 89 reunion,” notes Rich Paloma, who’s behind the scenes at last evening’s 1989 reunion.”Note there’s no serif (tail) on the A of the script “Athletics” as they have now. The A’s made that change in 1993 when they also added gold outline to the green NOB. (In this flickr album) is folded jersey, Dennis Eckersley, Dave Stewart, and pics from this year jersey front.”

NFL News & College Football News: WMU students are working on new helmet technology to increase concussion awareness (thanks, Paul). … The NFL Players Association has now been sued over handling of concussions. … The Southern University Jaguars will wear this “spotted” jersey in their season opener against the Ragin’ Cajuns (thanks, I think, to Gil Neumann). … A local work crew found this 1909 football jersey at Temple HS library (great find by Beau Stahnke). … “Has FSU made a change to number color since the reveal?” asks Preston Coyle. “Or is this a misprint?” Good question, since the jerseys being sold have gold numbers (h/t Jeff aka @saintwarrick).

NBA & College Hoops News: Following the Chicago Bulls presser, “Looks like the United Center had left over water from the Kane and Toews press conference,” writes Adam Grad (look closely at the label). … Looks like The Chosen One is still undecided on his uni number with the Cavs, so he’s asking fans which one they think he should wear. … Dayton has new hoops uniforms. Says submitter Andrew Consentino “Not too bad.” Here’s a look at the white and blue versions. … Dayton also has a new court design. … Ooooohhhh — check out his really neat ‘scooter’ that Hugo the Hornet will be using this year in Charlotte (nice pics by Duncan Wilson). … Loren Lirely saw this set of NBA jerseys and asks if the black Bucks jersey is legit. To which Conrad Burry replied, fashion jersey? don’t know why they’d feature that in the graphic though.. Hmmm. … Check out the new floor at the Gates Center for IPFW hoops (h/t Jared Law). … The Bulls introduced Mirotic and Gasol with now-outdated jerseys that have Bulls logo on back instead of NBA logo (thanks Paul). … Check out this beautiful 1972-1975 ABA Memphis Tams game used equipment bag (big thanks to Bruce Menard).

Soccer News: Here is the new 2014-15 Tottenham Hotspur home & away kits (h/t Mike Diodati). … New away kit for Huddersfield Town F.C. (via @TheLupineOne). … New Hull City home kit (thanks to Ben Karnish). … New Atletico Madrid away kits for the 2014-15 season. … “To go along with (yester)day’s Soccer link to portrait style illustrations is this interesting collection of soccer posters from Form and Glory Sport & Design out of the UK (,” writes Ted Arnold. “Here is a link to the Arsenal posters. Also some interesting posters of interpretations of baseball team logos/nicknames in their collection.” … From UW Stalwart Chance Michaels: Here’s a look at the tweaks West Ham made after fan feedback. … Chivas Guadalajara have unveiled new kits.

Grab Bag: Yesterday, at the British Open (or just “The Open”), John Daly was doing John Daly things (I do love those pants tho). … Here’s a really good U of Dayton interactive site, with tremendous logo information (thanks to Jeff Brandon). … Also, Dayton athletics has a new logo (thanks, Patrick O’Neill). … Russell Westbrook has released a clothing line with Barneys and it is just as garish as you’d imagine (thanks to Tommy Turner). … Wow — check out these Apollo 11-inspired sneakers from GE (thanks, Brinke). … The AFL has decided to remain on the side of tradition and NOT use NOBs as a permanent feature on jumpers after a one round experiment earlier this season (from Leo Strawn, Jr.). … This weekend, teams in the Geelong Football League and Bellarine Football League will wear heritage/throwbacks jumpers (thanks to Graham Clayton). … “This band called Philbilly played at the bar I work at in Jersey and used the Phillies style for their band name,” says Pat Costello. “Pretty cool.”


And that’s going to do it for today.

Small(ish) announcement: As you guys are probably aware, Paul takes a well-deserved sabbatical from UW in the summer, and this year we’re still working out the details — but it looks like you’ll be stuck with me doing the weekdays beginning in August. As such, I’m going (again) put out the call to all readers out there — if you have an idea (and/or would like to work with me) on/for a feature article, please shoot me an E-mail. If you don’t want to do any writing/researching, but there’s a topic or three you’d like to see covered, either shoot me an e-mail or list your suggestions down in the comments below. I don’t usually have problems covering Paul’s absence when you guys are always so generous in your offers to help or make suggestions. Anything uni-related will be considered (and possibly some things that aren’t uni-specific, but are germane to the board). OK? OK! I’d like to start lining up some columns ahead of time so there will always be new, fresh content during Paul’s uni-vaycay.

Thanks to Brinke for the look-back at the Levi’s Stadium opening, George for his colorization, and Rob for the UWFFL stuff. I’ll be back tomorrow with a very special “wrap” of something with which all weekend readers should be aware. So make sure to check back then.

Also…Jim Vilk wants everyone to know that it’s time for the semi-annual MLB Extra Innings free preview (check your local satellite/cable/whatever provider) — so if you want to watch a shit-ton of free baseball for the next several days (and see teams you might not ever get to see, because ESPN only ever shows the Yankees and Red Sox), well, you’re in heaven now. Thanks for the reminder, Jimmer.

Follow me on Twitter @PhilHecken.


.. … ..

“People in the southwest know the contextual difference between ‘coyote’ the trafficker and ‘coyote’ the yelping quadriped, just like people understand that the ‘bear’ in Chicago is ursine, not a ‘large, hairy man, projecting an image of rugged masculinity’.”

–Cort McMurray


Comments (52)

    Reply to Cort McMurray’s ‘Comment of the day’: If “contextual difference” still had any currency, then ‘redskin’ used as a salutation would be slur, but “Redskin” as in football player still would be alright.

    Perhaps. But the swastika was a motif in both Buddhist and American Indian art; probably not since the 40s. The infamous association has overwhelmed the previous benign ones.

    I’m pretty sure that swastikas are still relatively common in India & China. I suppose it helps that the Buddhist version of the symbol typically faces the other direction.

    Symbols (and words) can be reclaimed or redefined. Just because something was once used negatively, it doesn’t mean that it must always be that way. We’re meant to learn from the past, not dwell on it.

    Plenty of examples of symbols being reclaimed – the pink triangle isa great example.

    However, in each case, in order for it to be reclaimed, it first needs to be acknowledged as a negative symbol, and old attitudes and behaviours renounced. If people refuse to acknowledge there are negative connotations around it, the reclamation project for that symbol is stuck in neutral.


    You cannot have a “Conversation on the 101 up in SF”. You can have a “Conversation on the 101 down in LA” or a “Conversation on 101 up in SF” but that’s it.

    I’m sure that Americans have made plenty more gaffes about English football names, but note that the “interesting posters of interpretations of baseball team logos/nicknames” from the UK firm Form and Glory refers to the “New York Metropolis”, rather than “Metropolitans”.

    (And how often do we use the long form, rather than “Mets” anyway?)

    Plus only one Chicago poster? As a White Sox fan, I found it amusing. As someone who appreciates completeness, it’s disappointing.

    I’m having some trouble with the OneDrive pictures of Levi’s Stadium, can only see (mid-size) thumbnails. Not sure if there is a slideshow option. Can anyone assist?

    are they still not working for you? I’ve checked on two different PCs and browsers, and they launch fullsize.

    Call me a cynic…

    Nike makes an all-white shirt for a La Liga club that usually wears Red/White stripes.

    As it turns out, there are ELEVEN clubs that wear a colour/white stripe (or hooped, or sashed) kit:

    5 Red/White

    2 Green/White

    3 Blue/White

    1 Purple / White.

    This does not include the two Red/Blue kit wearing clubs.

    For over half their away matches, both Red/White and plain white offer insufficient contrast, which means Nike will inevitably make (and sell) a their kit for Atletico Madrid.


    For George

    Yes, the skin tone is always the challenge in most colourizing projects. One method that can help create a natural looking skin (Caucasian) skin tone is to add a touch of magenta in the shadow areas in the ears, eyes, nose and so on. I do this on a separate layer with a soft brush and opacity set to less than 10 percent. Just experiment with settings, including layer blending type, until the desired tone is achieved.

    Also consider adding a bit of pink to lips and increase overall saturation a tad.

    Nice work on Mr Johnson.

    Hi Gary

    That’s exactly what I have done, with another low opacity layer towards the yellow end in the highlights, and a very very low opacity blue-grey layer around the beard area.

    Four layers!

    There is extra pink in the lips, and I have made the whole overall quite saturated, but the Web seems to bleed some of the colour away that is there when I view the raw image on my PC.

    Look closely at George Chilvers……………….I’m thinking he might be a relative of Robin Williams.

    Arsenal playing their first friendly of the season wearing the Puma away kits. Red numbers on the back, and they have currently have NNOB


    Teams tend not to have NOBs in friendlies. Wigan didn’t when I watched them on Tuesday.

    It’s def a preseason thing. I’d be willing to wager they’ll be NOB for the friendly in NY next week.

    An infelicitous juxtaposition in the “key corporate partnerships” link. Look inside the pants? No thanks!

    UWFFL news update:

    1. The Goldsmith Gulch Alchemists have folded. After practice on Wednesday the players, confused by news reports of problems at the US border, unanimously decided to illegally emigrate to Mexico. Some are already working as bouncers in the Zona Roja.

    2. The Brisbane Flying Dutchmen have also folded due to a dispute with their prime sponsor, the Australian Philosophical Society. The APS insists that there be no rule six. The team wanted rule six to recapitulate rule five.

    Will new franchises be replacing them? The schedule is kinda already in the works.

    As to 1: I thought it was only illegal to go in the other direction.

    As to 2: What about rule 7?

    #0. Looks like the developmental leagues get a couple more bites at the apple! (Sorry for short notice though.)

    #1. I think that’s a very common misconception.

    #2. Rule seven does recapitulate rule five, but it is a very important rule, Bruce.

    I’ve been thinking this for quite some time, but NFL stadium design of the last 20-30 years is so aesthetically unpleasant, it’s embarrassing. Compare this new “sleek” and “plush” Levi’s Stadium abomination to newer European soccer stadiums and it looks like a zeppelin hangar that got torn up in a hurricane. It’s lopsided, has angles where there should be smooth curves, and lacks any kind of forward-thinking inspiration. I say this as a Chicagoan who experienced the mind-numbing renovation to Soldier Field they did 10 years ago.

    Someone the other day asked why the ribbon cutting was so early. Here’s why…they’re opening the stadium with a futbol game:

    And that futbol match is already creating issues with ticket prices (in fact, the usually strong-traveling Seattle supporter group is staying home rather than paying what the Earthquakes/49ers are asking for that match): link

    It’s kind of understood that the match isn’t actually priced for soccer fans, but for 49ers fans wanting to see the new stadium for the first time.

    Levi’s stadium is high-tech. But they forgot one thing–to make it look appealing. That thing is butt ugly. Looks more like a MAC Stadium than an NFL Stadium

    Bank of America Stadium (Panthers) and M&T Bank Stadium (Ravens) are aesthetically pleasing. Their names are cringe-inducing.

    Sorry, brinke, but my first reaction was also “Texas high school stadium on steroids.”

    By “corporate named stadium” you mean “stadium” – will there ever be another new stadium that isn’t corporate named?

    Sorry to see those new Dayton uniforms. No longer are they the plucky little school with the cool unique look, the bright colors and the retro-ish logo…now they’ve been assimilated into the Nike collective.

    the general response i’ve seen from the Dayton alumni is that the new logo is awful. is an upgrade a good idea? sure! but what Dayton just changed to… not so much an upgrade.

    The mention of the Gates Center is inaccurate. That’s “IPFW” (aka, Indiana-Purdue Fort Wayne).

    Thanks — now fixed (Jim Vilk also shot me that correction in an e-mail, just getting to it now).

    Levi’s jeans are my favorite, the 501, 511, and 514’s to be specific. Same goes for outdoor grass stadiums, a gorgeous feel, get better with age and cut to perfection.
    Levi’s Stadium a perfect match made in my heaven..another reason to visit San Francisco.

    That FSU schedule poster includes a “Winston” NOB. Which once again raises the point – if the schools can advertise names and likenesses, why can’t the players profit off them?

    On the Bucks black jerseys- they had gray jerseys with black lettering in the Vegas league. I don’t know if it is meaningless, or if they’re starting to go in a different direction

    Thanks for all the info Brinke. I’ve got to ask, what did you think of the suggestion that the Raiders share the facility?

    @Mild bill:

    Goodell seemed to hem and haw and toss that out offhanded. A politically safe, neutral statement- which is what a politician should say. There’s no doubt that the league has no great love for the Raiders- it’s not Al in charge but it’s his son, so same DNA.

    They’re a headache, and IMO I think Roger would love to see the Raiders in LA in a new stadium there. Two problems solved. Three, actually. Then the A’s build on the same parking lot.

    Having said that, there is absolutely NO chance the Raiders will play at Levi’s. The entire thing is red. Why is that significant? Mark Davis will be reminded that he is no more than a border, a tenant. And his ego will never permit that, not in a million years. And Niner fans don’t want Raider fans in their stadium, believe it.

    During the Angels/Mariners game tonight, Seattle reliever Yeonis Medina appeared to write something in the dirt on the back of the mound. Any idea what that’s about?

    It’s surely one of lifes true pleasures, when it’s a “stay indoors” kind of day and you’ve got a wonderful book open and you’re in world of dreams, challenge and adventure.

    Just as a heads up, my last name is “Cosentino.” It’s always misspelled/mispronounced, so no worries! Just thought I’d bother you to fix it. Thanks!

    As a Dayton alumni I have found my facebook feed flooded with the logo change. It is almost entirely bad responses from alumni. I Personally wasn’t a fan of the old logo, but the new one is too edgy and too Nike for a school like Dayton. A big complaint from many, the change to navy from royal blue, and the exclusion of powder blue.

Comments are closed.