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Does Your Favorite NFL Team’s Coach Lean Right or Left?

Just when you thought you’d analyzed every conceivable visual aspect of the NFL, along comes reader Omar Jalife, who’s identified a fascinating detail that’s more interesting than you might initially assume.

Here’s what Omar’s noticed: Of the 32 NFL head coaches, only 11 of them — about one-third — wear their headset microphones on the right side. Those coaches are John Harbaugh (Ravens), Ken Wisenhunt (Titans), Marvin Lewis (Bengals), Mike Smith (Falcons), Jim Caldwell (Lions), Ron Rivera (Panthers), Lovie Smith (Bucs), Bill O’Brien (Texans), Mike McCarthy (Packers), Andy Reid (Chiefs), and Chip Kelly (Eagles).

The other 21 coaches wear their mics on the left side: Jason Garrett (Cowboys), Gus Bradley (Jags), Jay Gruden (Washington), Doug Marrone (Bills), Joe Philbin (Dolphins), Mike Tomlin (Steelers), Bruce Arians (Cards), Tom Coughlin (Giants), Bill Belichick (Pats), Mike Zimmer (Vikes), Sean Payton (Saints), Mike Pettine (Browns), Jeff Fisher (Rams), Mike McCoy (Chargers), Pete Carroll (Seahawks), Dennis Allen (Raiders), Rex Ryan (Jets), John Fox (Broncos), Jim Harbaugh (49ers), Marc Trestman (Bears), and Chuck Pagano (Colts).

This got me thinking. I’ve never worn a headset with a microphone (I know some people use one for phone conversations, but I never have), so I asked myself which side I would use if I had to wear one. And I’m pretty sure I’d put the mic on the left side, because that’s also the side on which I hold a telephone.

And why do I hold a telephone that way? Well, when I was growing up, the land-line phone in our house was set located/positioned in a way that made it much easier to hold the receiver on the left.

And why did my parents locate and position that phone in that way? Probably because the cord connecting the receiver to that phone was on the left side. In fact, the cord connecting the receiver to any land-line phone is almost always on the left side. If the cords on payphones have typically been anchored on the left side.

And why have phones historically been designed like that? Presumably because most people are right-handed, so the phone manufacturers figured it made sense to design a phone that made it easy to hold the receiver with your left hand so you can dial with your right hand.

Now, I happen to be left-handed. But, like most people, I hold the receiver in my left hand and dial with my right, because that’s what I learned to do with that phone in my parents’ house when I was growing up. Even when using my iPhone, I hold the phone with left hand and tap with my right. And I don’t mind any of that one bit — feels natural to me (although I usually prefer to do most things with my left hand).

Granted, I’ve now gotten a bit off the track from our original look at NFL coaches’ headsets. But I truly believe there’s a connection between telephone design and the 2:1 ratio of coaches wearing their microphones on the left side. Thoughts?

Finally, you may have noted in those photos that three coaches — Tom Coughlin, Bruce Arians, and Lovie Smith — wear headsets with two speakers, not just one. Hmmmmm.

(Big thanks to Omar Jalife for coming up with this topic.)

•  •  •  •  •

Charting a uni designer’s progression: Got a note yesterday from reader Joey Artigue, as follows:

I grew up in an artistic basketball family and thus have been designing uniforms since the early age of four. My dad worked for the Phoenix Suns and Arizona Diamondbacks for 16 years and I really loved to draw, so those teams were featured in a lot of my early designs. I rebranded my high school at 16 and interned with Sun Devil athletics through school, helping with the design of the pitchfork/Sparky rebrand.

Here’s a fun video I put together showing the evolution of my work over the years. The pictures toward the end are the intramural jerseys I did for my fraternity. Oh, and the picture is not a leak (I wish it were) — it’s a concept court I created to help me get my new job with the NBA’s creative services department.

As many of you know, I love childhood uniform artwork, so I was excited to see Joey’s early drawings. We may feature a full entry on his designs at some point down the road, but for now enjoy his video — it’s fun:

• • • • •

PermaRec update: The postcard shown at right was mailed and postmarked in 1948 but wasn’t delivered until a few weeks ago. The woman who now lives at the address where it was delivered then set off in search of the original intended recipient. Learn more on Permanent Record.

Car light reminder: In case you missed it yesterday, I’ve written a piece about some odd details of car headlight and taillight design. Want to know which inconspicuous car lighting detail I’ve become obsessed with? Want to know which car’s taillight reminds me so much of a Jolly Rancher that I want to lick it? Find out here. (And my thanks to everyone who gave nice feedback on this article yesterday.)

Anniversary merch reminder: Get yer Uni Watch 15th-anniversary stickers, patches, and T-shirts right here.

• • • • •

’Skins Watch: Powerful and entertaining ’Skins segment, featuring pro-’Skins fans and anti-’Skins Native Americans, on last night’s segment of The Daily Show. Highly recommended viewing. … Two Native Americans are suing the city of San Francisco for being ejected from a ballgame earlier this year. The pair was apparently displeased with another fan who was wearing a headdress on American Heritage Night (from Patrick O’Neill). … The Washington City Council is considering a ban on Native American high school team names (thanks, Phil). … A DC law professor who helped get cigarette commercials banned from TV and radio back in 1970 now wants the FCC to restrict broadcast use of the ’Skins name because it violates FCC standards against indecency, profanity, and hate speech. Before you yell, “Censorship!,” keep in mind that courts have consistently ruled that the electromagnetic broadcast spectrum is a finite public resource that can be regulated. That’s why you can say “shit” and “fuck” on cable but not on broadcast, why you need a license to have a radio station but not for a podcast, why cigarette commercials aren’t allowed on TV or radio, etc. Also, even if the FCC did ban the team’s name from the public airwaves (which seems unlikely), the team could still keep the name. Broadcasters would just have to call them “Washington,” which is what an increasing number of media outlets are already doing anyway. ”¦ I was out and about last night, so I didn’t see the Giants/’Skins game, but Phil Simms was reportedly going to avoid saying the ’Skins name (thanks, Phil). ”¦ A ’Skins fan has created a site for fans to submit and vote on new team names/logos (from Yusuke Toyoda). ”¦ Excellent article on Navajo Nation activist Amanda Blackhorse, who’s been leading the legal challenge to the ’Skins trademark status (thanks, Phil).

Baseball News: Several readers noticed that Derek Jeter’s cap last night had a white sweatband. ”¦ Here’s a Jeter collectible of a different sort: a baseball that Jeter signed when he was an eight-year-old Little Leaguer (from Jonathan Daniel). … With Jeter’s No. 2 about to go out of circulation, here’s a good article on retired numbers. … The single-A South Bend Silver Hawks are now the South Bend Cubs. … Here’s a 1923 ad for the brand-new Yankee Stadium (from Jonathan Daniel). ”¦ Great article + photos on Nats clubhouse/travel kingpin Rob McDonald (from Yusuke Toyoda). ”¦ There’s a new college summer team called the Holly Springs Salamanders (from Rodney Walker). … New York-o-rama: A Mets player wore a Knicks cap to a Yankees game. … While Jeter merchandises and sells everything in sight, let’s hear it for Twins pitcher Phil Hughes, who’s leaving an easy 500 grand on the table because, in his words, he “didn’t think it was right.” Bravo.

NFL News: A Pittsburgh-area cow born with a “7”-like stripe on its head has been named Baby Ben (from Eric Wright). … The Saints will wear solid black this Sunday (thanks Phil). ”¦ Some fun old NFL TV graphics here (from Duncan Wilson).

College Football News: Big uni surprise last night in Stillwater, as Texas Tech wore a new white costume with a new helmet and Oklahoma State wore new metallic orange helmets — at least one of which, unfortunately, suffered badly chipped exterior finishes. None of this had been promoted beforehand — good for the schools for keeping a secret under wraps. ”¦ Tennessee coach Butch Jones says any rumors about the Vols having an alternate helmet are false (thanks, Phil). ”¦ Also from Phil: Old Dominion wanted to wear white at home as part of a white-out promotion, but their opponent, Middle Tennessee State, said no. … A Nebraska teacher wants the Cornhuskers to stop the longstanding ritual of releasing thousands of red balloons after the Cornhuskers’ first touchdown because it amounts to mass littering. He’s right. … Houston will mark the 25th anniversary of Andre Ware’s Heisman trophy season by wearing 1989 throwbacks on Nov. 8 (thanks, Phil). … Cincinnati is adding an Ohio-shaped helmet decal for this weekend’s game against Ohio State. … Here’s the navy uni and chrome helmet that Fresno State will be wearing on Oct. 3 against San Diego State. … Throwbacks tomorrow for Virginia. … Tennessee fans will try to checkerboard the stadium for the Oct. 4 game against Florida (from Chris Flinn). … Purdue players have been wearing Iowa helmet logos this week during practice. Explanation here (from Jack Coyler). ”¦ Speaking of Purdue, here’s what they’ll be wearing tomorrow. … 1984 throwbacks this weekend for Montana State (Phil, of course).

NBA News: German soccer star Mesut Özil was visiting the Denver Nuggets, so they gave him a jersey, complete with the umlauts on his NOB (from Graham Bakay).

College Hoops News: Boston College is bringing back NOBs. … Louisville’s new unis have a very odd color-blocking on the shorts. Is this going to be a new thing for Adidas teams? ”¦ Retro unis on tap for Kansas.

Soccer News: Bolton Wanderers launched a “military green” kit to mark the 100th anniversary of WWI and to raise money for wounded veterans. “The shirt has the words ‘Lest we forget’ embroidered on it and Laurence Binyon’s poem ‘For the Fallen’ printed on the inside label,” says Yusuke Toyoda.

Grab Bag: The big problem with the new iPhone: pocket bulge. ”¦ New logo for the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Foundation. ”¦ “Australian Rules football’s version of the Super Bowl, known as the AFL Grand Final, is this weekend,” says Leo Strawn Jr. “The halftime show for 2014 will feature Sir Tom Jones and Ed Sheeran, each shown here holding the other’s Grand Final gift. Jones got a half-Swans/half-Hawks jumper with the year and his name sublimated on the back, while Sheeran was given a ‘Sherrin’ footy with the spelling changed to reflect his name.” … Faaaaascinating article on how to tell if a letter is handwritten or robot-written. Strongly recommended (from The New Girl). … The Qatari women’s basketball team, having forfeited one game due to FIBA’s ban on hijabs, has now pulled out of the Asian Games altogether (thanks, Phil). ”¦ Adidas has poached three designers from Nike for a new studio in Brooklyn (from Tommy Turner).

• • • • •

What Paul did last night: Even at the advanced age of 50, I’m still very much a fanboy. So I was excited last night to go see the latest installment of the live storytelling/interview series Ask Roulette, because the special guest this time around was David Rees, the guy behind such endeavors as the totally genius comic strip Get Your War On, the brilliant is-he-serious-or-is-it-an-act Artisianal Pencil Sharpening project, and the National Geographic TV show Going Deep With David Rees. Basically, he’s a super-smart guy who makes cool shit happen. I was looking forward to seeing him up close and hoped I’d get a chance to tell him how much I like and respect what he’s accomplished.

During the intermission, I went up to Rees and said, in true fanboy fashion, “My name’s Paul, and I’m a big fan of your work.” He thanked me, shook my hand, and that was going to be the end of it — I would have just gone back to my seat — but Ask Roulette host Jody Avirgan, who’s a friend of mine, was standing nearby and said, “Oh, you two guys don’t know each other? David, this is Paul Lukas — he does Uni Watch.”

I was sort of mortified by this, and I started to say, “Jody, there’s no reason David would be familiar with Uni Watch”¦” But before I could finish the sentence, Rees looked at me and said, “Wait — you’re the guy who did Beer Frame?”

Beer Frame was my zine back in the 1990s. Turns out Rees was reading my stuff back then, plus he was reading Uni Watch way back in the Village Voice days. He appeared to be kinda geeked out to meet me. In short: He’s a fanboy.

I don’t mind admitting that this encounter left me with a big smile on my face for the rest of the night.

127 comments to Does Your Favorite NFL Team’s Coach Lean Right or Left?

  • James Comfort | September 26, 2014 at 7:16 am |

    Marvin Jones? The head coach of the Bengals is Marvin Lewis…

    • Matt | September 26, 2014 at 7:22 am |

      Marvin Jones plays WR for the Bengals…

      • Swede | September 26, 2014 at 10:23 am |

        I only remember Marvin Jones the LB…for the Jets.

        • Robby Z | September 26, 2014 at 12:06 pm |

          “Shade Tree”

    • Paul Lukas | September 26, 2014 at 7:22 am |

      Brain cramp on my part. Fixed.

  • Mark Lockwood | September 26, 2014 at 7:23 am |

    The NFL headset thing has always fascinated me, because presumably there has to be an alteration to the mic in order for the Bose logo to be right-side up. In other words — someone is asking the coaches every season: “Coach, on which side do you want your boom mic on your headset?” and then changing the mic capsule (or affixing a logo) appropriately.

    • Dumb Guy | September 26, 2014 at 8:28 am |
    • Brinke | September 26, 2014 at 11:49 am |

      Great topic. I am ambidextrous- but I try to orient everything on my desk to the left. I would swear I have -never-ever- reached for a door knob or a phone with my right hand- yet I would never think to brush my teeth left handed, either. Yet I shoot hoops and throw a football and baseball left handed-can’t throw a ball right handed to save my life- but I play tennis right handed. I can use a mouse either hand. Strange, eh?

  • DenverGregg | September 26, 2014 at 7:46 am |

    Okie State would have looked fantastic if they had chosen non-black pants. That helmet – except the one that lost the finish – was surprisingly spiffy. The less said about that Texas Tech get-up, the better.

    • TIm | September 26, 2014 at 11:47 am |

      I really like those OSU helmets, and since I am universally against the color over same color look, I agree a different pant would have looked better (orange pants matching the helmet would have been best IMHO). Texas Tech on the other hand? The issue I have is that you couldn’t tell what the hell the logo was. I see from the photos today it is a horse coming toward the viewer, but from a far it looked like a Rorschach ink blot. The pants looked like someone simply spilled a bottle of black ink on them.

  • BSmile | September 26, 2014 at 7:56 am |

    That 1923 Yankees Ad for the Safety Of Asbestos Roofing is amazing!!!

  • terriblehuman | September 26, 2014 at 8:13 am |

    Paul and David Rees being in the same place at the same time brings serious warmth to my cockles. GYWO is one of the most influential Internet things to come out this century.

  • Dumb Guy | September 26, 2014 at 8:25 am |

    In case anyone cares, I’m a lefty.

    http://slydogmusic.com/images/Jon9.jpg

    • walter | September 26, 2014 at 9:38 am |

      As am I, but I set my drums up righty since I was accustomed to practicing on my friends’ kits.

      • Dumb Guy | September 26, 2014 at 9:45 am |

        I am a lefty mic singer, but am still a righty for everything else in my life. Yes, everything.

      • Thresh8 | September 26, 2014 at 9:46 am |

        Like our host, I’m left-handed.

        And a guitarist of some enthusiasm and grace (but not much talent).

        The pissah is that when I started, I picked up an old guitar and reversed the strings to make it left-hand-strung. There was nobody to teach me otherwise or tell me not to.

        So now if someone wants me to take a turn and join in the impromptu fun, all I can say is “Thanks, but I can’t play that.”
        The best part is that it hasn’t held back my musical ambitions.

        But let that be a lesson to us lefties: Sometimes it’s good to fit in.

        • Dumb Guy | September 26, 2014 at 10:57 am |

          My band was out watching a show of some of our buddies a while back, and they asked us to come on stage and sit in. The drummer was a lefty. I limped through with a sad left foot kick performance!!

        • Thresh8 | September 27, 2014 at 7:27 am |

          Hey, at least you got asked to sit in!

  • DJ | September 26, 2014 at 8:34 am |

    I don’t mind admitting that this encounter left me with a big smile on my face for the rest of the night.

    Great to hear. Sometimes it IS good to meet the objects of your fandom…

  • LI Matt | September 26, 2014 at 8:41 am |

    I was taught to hold the phone in my non-dominant hand, so if I needed to write something down my writing hand would be free.

    To this day my iPhone belt clip goes on that side.

    • terriblehuman | September 26, 2014 at 8:59 am |

      And I always put my phone in my left pocket. Even with wireless phones, old habits die hard.

      • Dumb Guy | September 26, 2014 at 9:12 am |

        “Even with wireless phones,…”

        You put wired/corded phones in your pocket too?

        • terriblehuman | September 26, 2014 at 9:16 am |

          Until that one time I put it my back pocket and I sat on it for a long time and IT BENT!!!!!

      • Seth | September 26, 2014 at 11:53 am |

        My phone has always been in the left hand and left pocket. I think this has more to do with wanting the right hand free for other things but a very nice observation that’s got me thinking today. Feels completely unnatural the other way…

    • Kek | September 26, 2014 at 9:39 am |

      Couple of thoughts:

      I don’t know how women do that phone in back pocket thing. It just looks uncomfortable, bulky, etc, etc.

      Also don’t know how anyone can belt clip an iphone or any of the newer, bigger smartphones. I honestly haven’t worn a belt clip since the days of flip phones. It was more comfortable back then, mainly because in the flipped close state, the phone was really the size of a beeper.

      I cannot wait to see someone try a belt clip with the 6 plus!!!

      As for me, I mainly put the phone in the pocket opposite the keys so I don’t scratch it up.

  • Dumb Guy | September 26, 2014 at 8:41 am |

    I love me some old TV graphics. :^)
    Sometime they’re the best part of watching stuff on YouTube.

  • Dumb Guy | September 26, 2014 at 8:43 am |

    “Houston will mark the 25th anniversary of Andre Ware’s Heisman trophy season…”

    Do you think Detroit will be marking the anniversary of his draft next year?

    • Rob S | September 26, 2014 at 9:13 am |

      Only if they bring back Rodney Peete and Erik Kramer and make Ware stand behind them.

  • Coach Batt | September 26, 2014 at 8:45 am |

    Great topic on the use of coaches headphones! As a HS Varsity football coach I am “in the crow’s nest” at games. I am the special teams coordinator but also spot for the head coach who calls the defense. Personally I am a “left ear” guy, primarily so I can speak to the other assistant coach up in the nest with me who is almost always to my right.

    Occasionally, he “lines up” to my left and it is a pain in the ass to keep turning so I can converse with him!

    The head coach has a dual-ear headset. I tried that once and hated it due to the fact it literally blocks out all other noise/conversation. This is why you see most double-ear coaches usually keeping one off-the-ear.

  • The Jeff | September 26, 2014 at 8:53 am |

    Also, even if the FCC did ban the team’s name from the public airwaves (which seems unlikely), the team could still keep the name. Broadcasters would just have to call them “Washington,” which is what an increasing number of media outlets are already doing anyway

    Wouldn’t that also require TV networks to blur out the word in the endzone, on the jerseys, etc?

    • Paul Lukas | September 26, 2014 at 8:58 am |

      Or the team would have to make those changes if it wanted its games to be televised on broadcast networks (although games on ESPN would not be affected, because that’s not under the FCC’s jurisdiction).

      But the team could still call itself whatever it wanted.

      • Thresh8 | September 26, 2014 at 9:49 am |

        All I can think of is a long-ago Tank McNamara where one college hoops team’s players were blacked out in a broadcast because of a uniform sponsorship lawsuit. I’ll try to dig up a link.

      • Graf Zeppelin | September 26, 2014 at 11:15 am |

        Cable is regulated by the FCC, but not under the same Title of the Telecommunications Act as broadcast TV.

        • Paul Lukas | September 26, 2014 at 11:30 am |

          Right — sorry, my bad.

    • duncan | September 26, 2014 at 9:43 am |

      Simms tried his best to not say it last night.

      • Paul Lukas | September 26, 2014 at 10:22 am |

        When you say “tried his best,” do you mean he sometimes slipped up and said it? Or you could hear him sort of awkwardly going out of his way not to say it? Something else?

        • Robert S | September 26, 2014 at 11:21 am |

          Reports from what I have read are he let one slip midway through 4th.
          http://www.si.com/nfl/2014/09/25/phil-simms-washington-redskins-name-boycott-cbs

        • Robert S | September 26, 2014 at 11:21 am |

          I swear Nantz was trying for a record saying the Redskins in a broadcast too.

        • Phil Hecken | September 26, 2014 at 1:34 pm |

          “Nantz was trying for a record saying the Redskins in a broadcast…”

          ~~~

          Douchebag

        • Robert S | September 26, 2014 at 3:19 pm |

          Phil, is that directed at me?

        • Phil Hecken | September 26, 2014 at 3:45 pm |

          “Phil, is that directed at me?”

          ~~~~

          Not at all. That’s toward Nantz

        • KT | September 26, 2014 at 4:02 pm |

          In Nantz’s defense, he IS a douchebag.

        • Robert S | September 26, 2014 at 4:42 pm |

          HA! Am I wrong? It sure seemed as though he was trying to get Simms to say it.

        • Jim Y. | September 26, 2014 at 4:51 pm |

          That makes him a douchebag, because he used their actual name? With all these smokescreens clouding the issue, it’s getting hard to tell the difference between who the actual douchebags are and who are the grandstanding assholes that are trying to cajole teams into changing their team nicknames by not using them.

          Nantz is a broadcast professional. Simms is a football player who happened to win a Super Bowl and so now he gets to interject his opinion on things like this every Sunday and gets to interject. Stick to telling us the difference between a 3-4 and a 4-3 defense and leave the social activism to the other assholes, Simms.

        • walter | September 26, 2014 at 5:13 pm |

          Maybe they’re both douchebags for trying to upstage one another instead of doing their job.

        • Jim Y. | September 26, 2014 at 5:25 pm |

          I saw no evidence that Nantz was trying to use their name more than usual. He called them the Redskins. That’s their name. End of story.

  • terriblehuman | September 26, 2014 at 8:57 am |

    The nickname controversy segment from the Daily Show episode are here.

    The idea that these fans only agreed to appear if they didn’t have to interact with Native American activist says a lot, I think. One of the guys is quoted as saying he wouldn’t have worn his ‘Skins jacket if he had known – so he gets it! And the whole yelling thing that apparently left a panelist traumatized looked like it was entirely for comic effect.

    Finally, it seems biologically and mathematically impossible to be 1/12 Cherokee.

    • walter | September 26, 2014 at 9:55 am |

      It’s possible to dictate how people should behave; it’s impossible to dictate what should make people comfortable. Nowadays, fans of a few teams are comfortable with their Indian iconography. It’s likely they will be less so if they have Indian acquaintances. In time, it will be harder to dismiss Indians as troublemakers and malcontents. Someday Indians won’t need to speak out as Indians. Look forward to that day.

    • Rob S | September 26, 2014 at 12:38 pm |

      It is technically possible to have 1/12th of some ancestry… if there is some common parentage involved in the lineage.

      • terriblehuman | September 26, 2014 at 1:35 pm |

        I asked the same question on Deadspin and it was pointed out that 5/64 is reasonably close to 1/12 (5 great-great-great-great-grandparents out 64). That’s a less awkward situation than common parentage.

        • Rob S | September 26, 2014 at 1:50 pm |

          Actually, I was doing the math earlier, and I was going back several generational levels to figure out a closer fraction (11/128, 21/256, 43/512 and so on and so on). And then, when I realized that I was making the assumption of no common parentage when figures started getting in the thousands, I started approaching it from a different assumption.

          Not that any of this has anything to do with uniforms, so I’ll stop now.

        • Todd | September 26, 2014 at 2:20 pm |

          I love this conversation. it’s like reading the “what if?” blog over at xkcd.com

  • The Jeff | September 26, 2014 at 9:26 am |

    I really have to wonder how much of that was real vs scripted. I mean, I support leaving the name alone, but that one guy saying that “changing the name would be like losing a family member”? Give me fucking break, dude.

    • terriblehuman | September 26, 2014 at 9:42 am |

      If you read some of the tweets under #HTTR and #RedskinsPride hashtags, you’ll see plenty of folks who take the name change business really personally.

      Granted, I’m sure producers encouraged strong expressions and picked people who were super duper passionate, but you drive an hour south of D.C., that level of feelings towards the name isn’t out of the norm (though it’s really an offshoot of the larger politics of resentment and distrust).

      • DenverGregg | September 26, 2014 at 10:22 am |

        About twenty years ago a high school in the Denver suburb of Arvada changed from Redskins to Reds and I was astounded at how resistant folks were to that change. Folks in general don’t like being coerced and with so much other coercion in society these days, these little areas generate much more pushback than they otherwise would.

        • walter | September 26, 2014 at 2:26 pm |

          If somebody told me to change the name of my club, I’d be defiant, too. Rebel Pride is stronger than Crazy Glue.

        • KT | September 26, 2014 at 4:05 pm |

          Especially white people.

          Let’s be honest, here.

    • Swede | September 26, 2014 at 10:27 am |

      While not exactly the same, I always wonder if those same people who think changing the football team name is a huge loss felt the same way about the Bullets. I highly doubt it.

      • DenverGregg | September 26, 2014 at 10:59 am |

        Not really a fair comparison as there are lots of folks who are passionate about football who don’t give a rat’s ass about basketball – and vice versa.

        • terriblehuman | September 26, 2014 at 11:17 am |

          Also, NFL has a much bigger place in mainstream culture than NBA does. It’s gotten to the point where it’s replaced baseball as the go-to “What we talk about when we want to talk about things in America” sport.

          And I’m guessing the ‘Skins’ fanbase is bigger than the Wizards’ (the former has strong following in the exurbs, the latter is popular in DC proper).

      • scottrj | September 26, 2014 at 11:27 am |

        Geographical proximity aside, there’s hardly any similarity between the two situations. The Bullets’ name change was a top-down decision imposed by a highly-esteemed, philanthropic owner, the push for the Redskins’ name a grass-roots movement resisted at every turn by an owner who’s, let’s just say, not even remotely any of those things. While a fairly large contingent thought Abe Pollin’s rationale for changing the team’s name was kind of silly, no one doubted his sincerity for a moment (i.e., perceived it as a cover for selling jerseys, etc.) – unlike Snyder, Pollin was not a greedy man, quite the opposite, in fact, and often to his team’s detriment.

        Nor were (or are) the Bullets/Wizards an institution in the D.C.-area on anywhere near the scale that Redskins are and have been for decades (ever since, quite frankly, Vince Lombardi came to town). People realized too that the “Bullets” name was picked in the first place because it was an alliterative one (and a pretty good one, at that) from when the team played in Baltimore.

        Those are just a few of the reasons why the situations aren’t really analogous, but as a long-time area resident the most significant ones IMO.

      • Dan B | September 26, 2014 at 2:15 pm |

        Although, I think a fans may be worried about the same type of change that the Bullets went through. They completely remade the team colors, logo and brand to the point they looked like a terrible expansion team. I think if they can find a new name that still keeps the colors and some of the positives of the team heritage (team heritage not the same as Mr Snyder’s interpretations) fans would be OK. I think people are also worried they are going to be called the Washington Flash or “Pride” or some over done marketing name/logo

    • Paul Lukas | September 26, 2014 at 12:04 pm |

      Jeff, I agree that saying your favorite team is “like a family member” is absurd. But I assure you that wasn’t scripted. You should see some of the email I receive about this issue….

      • Jim Y. | September 26, 2014 at 5:05 pm |

        If you think it’s absurd that people might think of their favorite team as a “family member”, then you are underestimating the depths of “fandom” that some people go to. I grew up in a family of diehard Buccaneer fans and if a group of people tried to start a campaign to change the team’s nickname, I know we’d feel like it was an attack on a dear family member. And the Bucs nickname doesn’t have near the history and roots of the Redskins’ name. As it is, having the creamsicle colors ripped from us in 1997 felt like having a limb of a dear family amputated. It’s still sore. Maybe not a direct relative, but a great uncle or something, but still it stings and it stings good.

        Now Bucaneers isn’t an “alleged racial slur”, but on the slippey slope we’re on now, who knows what will be offensive to somebody in the future? Just wait until they come for your family member.

        Like the man said… they came for the Jews, I said nothing, for I wasn’t a Jew, etc. In the end they came for me and no one was left to speak up for me.

        • terriblehuman | September 26, 2014 at 8:19 pm |

          Like the man said… they came for the Jews, I said nothing, for I wasn’t a Jew, etc. In the end they came for me and no one was left to speak up for me.

          And that’s why I speak out against the Washington team’s nickname. It’s not a slur directed at me, but as a minority, I’m aware of my place in society and the privilege I don’t get to use despite my relatively comfortable place on the socioeconomic ladder.

        • Paul Lukas | September 26, 2014 at 9:31 pm |

          If you think it’s absurd that people might think of their favorite team as a “family member”, then you are underestimating the depths of “fandom” that some people go to.

          On the contrary, I’m not underestimating it at all — I’m all too familiar with it, based on emails I receive.

          But that doesn’t change the fact that it’s absurd. Not surprising, perhaps, but nonetheless absurd.

        • Jim Y. | September 26, 2014 at 10:36 pm |

          And that’s why I speak out against the Washington team’s nickname.

          No, I mean that someday they’re gonna come for your team’s nickname, and there’ll be no one left to speak up for you.

  • Newton | September 26, 2014 at 9:28 am |

    I just want to post that I first heard of the Redskins name controversy from this website- 3 to 5 years ago. I cant believe its pop culture/current event now (well I can believe because it’s offensive to some people but its cool to see this movement progress)

  • Richard Stover | September 26, 2014 at 9:47 am |

    Thanks Paul for the automobile light reminder. Turned out it was a rare day that I missed ‘watch.

    So, if I may add, a day late, there’s this:
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/NASCAR-Ford-Taurus-Headlights-Graphics-Decal-Stickers-2-Tall-X-10-DD1-/191114546584

  • terriblehuman | September 26, 2014 at 9:47 am |

    Speaking of headsets, when I see photographs of nightclub DJs, they seem to favor the left ear too. More often than not, they’re using their left hands or shoulders to pull the cup closer to the ear.

    • Dumb Guy | September 26, 2014 at 11:04 am |

      That’s cuz they’re busy scratchin’ and fadin’ and droppin’ the bass with their right hands.

      (schwikky schwikky schwikky. yeeee-aa booooyyyyyy!)

  • Dan B | September 26, 2014 at 9:48 am |

    I’m at the point where, I’ll happily call them whatever. I’m a fan of the Washington, but I’m fine with change, because it’s obviously offending people and I’d rather the team get in front of this over being forced because it just looks worse.

    Also quick question (if anyone knows the answer) does South Park have to pay royalties to the NFLPA for the use of Kirk Cousins (or other episodes that feature athletes like the baseball steriod one)? I mean they clearly put Kirk Cousins in the episode after they previewed the episode with a “Robert Griffin” look a like. It feels like it falls into the same realm of NCAA Football video game where you clearly the players on each team despite names not on the back of Jerseys.

    Happy Friday everyone

    • walter | September 26, 2014 at 10:01 am |

      Some players rise to a level of exposure (Peyton Manning, Tom Brady) that the general public can be expected to be familiar with them, and their images could fall into the public domain. Less globally-recognized players (Robert Griffin, Kirk Cousins) would be more likely to be protected by a royalty agreement.

    • terriblehuman | September 26, 2014 at 10:11 am |

      Use of celebrities for parody is considered fair use, and they are not owed royalties (otherwise, Kim Jong-il’s estate would be entitled to residual payments every time Team America: World Police aired).

      Use of likeness in video games require permission, because it’s for commercial purposes and implies endorsement. South Park’s use of Kirk Cousins and Dan Snyder is for commentary.

    • Dan B | September 26, 2014 at 2:09 pm |

      Cool, thanks guys. I was curious since South Park always does parody celebs, but I know usually the NFL is protective of it’s royalties (you know, the “Big Game” Sunday) so I was wondering with the uses of players, logos, etc how that works.

      #HTTWFC

  • KT | September 26, 2014 at 9:50 am |

    Wow. That Times article about Jeter’s #2 is such a love letter, Harvey Araton should have gotten a gift basket full of memorabilia on the limo ride home.

    • walter | September 26, 2014 at 10:05 am |

      Met fan here. I say, give the devil his due. Jeter is going to Cooperstown. The guy seems to be blessed with an immaculate sense of timing, and he’s the first sports superstar to have played his whole career within the internet age. God bless him. That said, I wept dry tears over his goddamned Gatorade commercial.

      • KT | September 26, 2014 at 12:51 pm |

        And it’s absolutely fine for you to believe that and say that.

        It’s slightly inappropriate for someone who writes for the New York Times to gush about a player like that.

        • Name redacted | September 26, 2014 at 1:59 pm |

          Does that mean it would be more. acceptable for a Daily News or Newsday writer than someeone from the NYT, due to the real/perceived journalistic standards of thr latter?

        • KT | September 26, 2014 at 4:08 pm |

          Not for me. I teach journalism ethics at a university j-school.

          I use the Times because the writer in question writes for the Times.

          I would be just as inappropriate for someone from the Daily News or Newsday or the Post to write it, though it wouldn’t be as out of character on those three (especially the latter) as it would be at the times.

          It wouldn’t be “acceptable” by anyone who fancies themselves a journalist, and probably not even a columnist. Have we reached the point where it’s “accepted” by a lot of folks? Probably. Do those of us who care about little things like not fawning over the people you cover maybe care a little too much? Probably.

          It’s just unseemly to gush that much in print.

  • Rob Ullman | September 26, 2014 at 9:52 am |

    Love the David Rees story…though it really doesn’t surprise me at all. My friend Jessica and I were lamenting just yesterday how easy it is to keep on top of things these days…you don’t really have to work at it anymore like you did 20 years ago. We both worked on a ‘zine together, so Beer Frame is a perfect example…you’d read about it in Factsheet 5 or Bunnyhop or something, send out a few dollars whenever you got around to it, and then read it when it showed up in the mail three weeks later. Arduous (at least compared to being able to look it up on your phone instantaneously), yes… but well worth it. Not surprised to hear of David Rees making the same effort.

  • Dumb Guy | September 26, 2014 at 9:52 am |

    Only saw a little bit of the ‘Skins/Giants game. I only heard Simms say “Washington”, but the other guy (forget him name–too lazy to look it up) said “Redskins” many times.

    • duncan | September 26, 2014 at 10:11 am |

      Jim Nantz is who you’re thinking of.

      I heard Simms say Redskins a few times. Each time it was obvious he tried to catch himself, and would stumble his words for a bit.

      A lifetime of saying it can’t be undone that easily.

    • BvK1126 | September 26, 2014 at 12:48 pm |

      Simms did a feature during the broadcast in which he ranked his top five favorite NFL stadiums of all time. Old RFK Stadium topped his list. I don’t doubt his sincerity. He described the history and atmosphere in glowing terms, from the perspective of someone who was there and knew what he was talking about. But it also felt a little like Simms was throwing a bone to Washington fans, like it was his way of saying, “I may not support your team’s name, but I have nothing against you as fans.”

      • Kek | September 26, 2014 at 1:45 pm |

        but I thought Simms made a point to say he WASN’T taking a stance, just that he wished to not offend people that didn’t support the name.

        • BvK1126 | September 26, 2014 at 4:00 pm |

          If that’s the case, that would probably provide an even better explanation for why he was so laudatory of Washington fans while discussing how highly he thought of the gameday experience at old RFK Stadium. “Hey, I might not be using your team’s name to avoid offending someone, but you fans are the best!”

  • Joe | September 26, 2014 at 9:56 am |

    Looks like Gus Bradley is in the 2 speakers club as well

  • Ray Barrington | September 26, 2014 at 9:57 am |

    I work in a call center (all my calls may be recorded for quality and training purposes), and it depends where I sit for the day – I get moved around now and then. If the phone is on my left side, the headset and mike go on the left, and if the phone is on the right, they go on the right. Just makes it easier not to have the cord drag across you.

  • AMR | September 26, 2014 at 9:57 am |

    Anyone else disappointed in the colors of the Salamanders?
    (Baseball ticker.) Baby Blue and Old Gold? Of all the teams that could be black with a bright accent color, and some bold pattern, they’d have the excuse. But they don’t. And the logo is mostly a baseball with a salamander (or just a lizard) in front of it.

    • BvK1126 | September 26, 2014 at 12:51 pm |

      Great name. Disappointing aesthetic execution. I don’t hate the color scheme or the logo, but I agree that they missed an opportunity for something much more creative and memorable.

  • Thomas J | September 26, 2014 at 10:04 am |

    Annual Halfway-to-St.-Patricks’s-Day promotion for the White Sox last night. Which means green uniforms. They did a nice job on getting green belts and sleeves, even if the latter is a little too dark.

    http://espn.go.com/mlb/photos?gameId=340925104&photoId=4193213#photo_4193314

    Still wore black batting helments which is a bummer.

    http://espn.go.com/mlb/photos?gameId=340925104&photoId=4193575

  • kyle | September 26, 2014 at 10:22 am |

    To add onto today’s main entry, I also find it interesting, both in college and the NFL, when coaches decide to wear one ear vs two ear models.

  • Coach Batt | September 26, 2014 at 10:22 am |

    A quick thought on the Jeter memorabilia orgy…

    The NY Post covered the absurdity of Steiner Sports selling “game worn Jeter tube socks”. I couldn’t help but wonder… since Jeter has been a long-pantsed player his entire career how would anyone know he was actually wearing navy blue tube socks??

    For the record, I realize Jeter wore stirrups and sanitaries in ’95 and ’96, but still had pant length near the ankle.

    It’s also interesting to note that over his entire career Jeter only wore his pants high-cuffed TWICE… The Yankee Negro League game at Detroit (’96 I believe) and the Fenway 100th anniversary game in 2012.

  • Deric | September 26, 2014 at 10:38 am |

    I am orginially from South Bend and my first job was working for the Silver Hawks. Even though I am a Cubs fan I am going to miss the more original name with an actual tie in to South Bend. The Silver Hawk was a model of Studebaker which were manufactured in South Bend. RIP Silver Hawks, you will be missed.

    • walter | September 26, 2014 at 1:30 pm |

      Who’s up for renaming the Washington NFL team “The Washington Studebakers”?

  • terriblehuman | September 26, 2014 at 10:40 am |

    Great photos from the Asian Games.

    I don’t know what Wushu is, but I really like the uniform.

  • Graf Zeppelin | September 26, 2014 at 10:46 am |

    As a broadcast engineer, I have the mic on the left side of the headset. The main reason why is that I have the return feed from the station isolated on the right stereo bus (the left stereo bus feeds the game audio to the station) and want to hear it/am accustomed to hearing it in my right ear. Stereo headset mics have the mic boom attached to the left earpiece. I also typically set up the announcers’ headsets with the mic boom on the left, although some of them flip it over on their own.

  • Kyle | September 26, 2014 at 10:47 am |

    Enjoyed the car lighting article. Found it odd the Ford employee brought up the Edge design. The 2015 Edge has nothing more than tweaked Fusion headlamps, grille, and taillamps. Looks like a tall Fusion. The 2015 Mustang is a much better example of unique design.

  • SWC Susan | September 26, 2014 at 10:56 am |

    The whole time I was reading the lead story I was expecting it to culminate with whether said coaches were left or right handed. Really surprised when that was left out. Would like to see that comparison.

    I would imagine, as someone said, it depends greatly on freeing up the writing hand. Especially if you don’t sit at a desk all day which may dictate how you hold the receiver w.r.t. where the phone sits on the desk. That said, I am right handed, and typically hold my cell in the right hand when listening – but swap sides often to accommodate whatever else is going on.

    • Paul Lukas | September 26, 2014 at 11:09 am |

      The whole time I was reading the lead story I was expecting it to culminate with whether said coaches were left or right handed. Really surprised when that was left out. Would like to see that comparison.

      Good point. I think it would be hard to determine the various coaches’ handedness, though, unless we can find photos of each of them writing something.

      Susan, would you like to undertake this research project?

  • Gusto4044 | September 26, 2014 at 10:57 am |

    Very interesting takeaways from the Amanda Blackhorse story, I assumed she had more support locally than what was revealed. She’s failed in finding local support in changing the nickname of the nearby Red Mesa High School Redskins, the principal of that school won’t ever allow her to talk to their students. The author also points out other Native Americans contacted for the story aren’t stepping forward to support her, which is very strange. People use fake names all the time to avoid the limelight, so a reasonable person would have to ask why the local support isn’t stronger.

    Blackhorse has also targeted the Kansas City Chiefs, but she doesn’t have a case in that situation. The Chiefs weren’t named after Native Americans, and even the arrowhead wasn’t invented by Native Americans, either. In recent years, the Chiefs have been dialing back the gameday imagery as well.

  • Perry | September 26, 2014 at 10:59 am |

    Mesut Ozil visiting the Nuggets?? Wait, what? Don’t Arsenal have a game in London tomorrow?

    Turns out he visited team USA last month in Vegas and met Kenneth Faried, who arranged to have the Nuggets send him a jersey. Makes sense, Stan Kroenke owns both teams.

  • terriblehuman | September 26, 2014 at 11:27 am |

    I enjoyed the Nationals clubhouse/travel guy article a lot, but I’m wondering what the carbon footprint of a typical MLB roadtrip is, and how it compares to NFL and NBA.

    Baseball teams carry a lot of equipment, but they also stay in cities for multiple games. And a team like the Nats can take the train for a lot of the division games (Philly and NY are quicker by Acela than air).

  • KC | September 26, 2014 at 12:06 pm |

    Let me ditto: “Wait – you’re the guy who did Beer Frame?”

    • Paul Lukas | September 26, 2014 at 12:15 pm |

      Yes. It’s now been almost 14 years since the most “recent” issue of BF, so I’m always amazed/pleased when someone remembers it. Thank you!

      If you were a BF reader, hopefully you can see the connection between that project and Uni Watch.

  • Brendan Burke | September 26, 2014 at 12:58 pm |

    Typo: “Louiville”

    • Paul Lukas | September 26, 2014 at 2:37 pm |

      Fixed.

  • Mike Cline Jr. | September 26, 2014 at 1:12 pm |

    Not sure if this has been pointed out, but has anyone noticed that Bills coach Doug Marone had switched to wearing hats this year instead of a visor, that I believe he wore all last year?

  • Chris | September 26, 2014 at 1:15 pm |

    Nets media day is today, and a croatian player named Bojan Bogdanovic that they signed has an accent over the “c” on his NOB. However another european player, Mirza Teletovic, didnt have that accent last year, and the “vic” is pronounced the same way.

    Bogdanovic: https://pbs.twimg.com/media/ByeHjaFIAAAc6Lm.jpg

    Teletovic:http://sports.cbsimg.net/u/photos/basketball/nba/img24419685.jpg

  • ScottyM | September 26, 2014 at 1:39 pm |

    I like the Louisville uniform shorts. They’re unique. Hopefully, they aren’t a template that everybody repeats. Kansas’ new-old duds are cool, too. adidas seems to do a nice job for them.

    • CEB | September 26, 2014 at 3:32 pm |

      The Kansas faux back alternates were used extensively last season. The real news is the new primary away short shown here: https://twitter.com/jocksnitchku/status/514907671536099328 . Per @jocksnitchku, Kansas will have new home and away unis this season and it appears they’ll be more classically styled, as was mentioned by Bill Self last season.

  • BvK1126 | September 26, 2014 at 3:35 pm |

    Interesting graphic on the relative popularity of college football teams’ color combinations:

    http://614analytics.com/color-college-football-combos/

  • Jedi54 | September 26, 2014 at 3:41 pm |

    The Saints will look great!!!

    • walter | September 26, 2014 at 4:27 pm |

      Gold sock tops would help.

  • mike 2 | September 26, 2014 at 4:21 pm |

    How stupid do you have to be to agree to be interviewed on the Daily Show?

    I think Jason Jones is hilarious. But with literally five seconds of research, you would find out that if Jason Jones interviews you, he’s going to make you look stupid.

    What exactly did they think was going to happen?

  • Seth | September 26, 2014 at 4:58 pm |

    Good to see Mike Williams fined for his sock shenanigans the other day.

  • Brett Alan | September 26, 2014 at 6:07 pm |

    I’m amazed that that rename-the-Washington-NFL-team site has a couple of people suggesting “Washington Generals”. It’s just, well, that name has a long history of losing virtually all of its games. Don’t know whether Red Klotz would be touched or call his lawyer. B^)

  • Hodges14 | September 26, 2014 at 7:19 pm |

    Chamernik’s QOTW next week should be about fanboy moments.

  • Lee Wilds | September 26, 2014 at 8:37 pm |

    When did the University of Nevada Lobos join the United Football League?

  • Name redacted | September 27, 2014 at 1:46 am |

    Buster Olney did a feature on the MLB logo on Olbermann’s show.

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