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Monday Morning Uni Watch

Interesting development yesterday in Indianapolis, where Colts safety LaRon Landry (shown at right) put lots of little tape stripes on his facemask. As soon as I saw that, I thought, “Hey, that’s what Sean Taylor used to do!” And sure enough, Landry and Taylor were teammates on the ’Skins in 2007, plus Landry had originally planned to play with Taylor at Miami, plus-plus the Colts were playing Washington yesterday, plus-plus-plus this past Thursday was the anniversary of Taylor’s death. Now if only Landry had also mimicked Taylor’s sock style.

In other news from around the NFL yesterday:

• In St. Louis, several Rams players referenced the unrest in nearby Ferguson by giving the “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot” sign during the player introductions. (Insert obvious joke here about how the refs showed solidarity by making the same sign every time the Rams scored.) One of those players, wide receiver Kenny Britt, wore shooting victim Mike Brown’s name on his right wrist tape. He also had something written on his other wrist, but I can’t make out what it was. After the game, the St. Louis Police Officers Association said they were displeased with the pregame gesture (which is their right, of course) and called for the players to be disciplined and for the Rams and the NFL to apologize (which seems patently ridiculous). Please note: Everyone is welcome to discuss the merits of players making gestures or wearing inscriptions that refer current events, and whether they should or shouldn’t be disciplined for same. But we are not going to have a debate on the Michael Brown case. Thanks.

• The Chiefs saluted sidelined teammate Eric Berry in three ways: (1) They wore these T-shirts for pregame warm-ups. (2) They went mono-red, which is reportedly Berry’s favorite look for the team. Note that they once again went with the red-topped socks, which they had done in their previous mono-red game (this past September) but not the time before that.. (3) The coaching staff wore a patch with Berry’s number. No patch or helmet decal for the players, though.

• The Steelers marked the 40th anniversary of their Super Bowl IX championship season with a jersey patch.

• Instead of wearing his socks black over white, as per NFL rules (but creating the dreaded leotard effect), Saints defensive back Corey White flipped the script and went white over black.

• While watching the Pats/Packers game, I noticed something odd: a green border along the sidelines at Lambeau. I asked about this on Twitter and was told by many, many people that it was to provide better contrast between the field and the white out-of-bounds border, because Lambeau’s grass isn’t very green at this point in the season. Have they done this in the past? They sure didn’t do it for this game, when the field was practically brown, not green.

• The Texans went mono-blue.

• In a move that scales new heights in hubris, Giants wideout Odell Beckham Jr. commemorated his amazing catch from last week by wearing self-celebratory gloves. Someone ought to remind him that his team lost the game when he made that catch. They lost yesterday, too.

• How color-coordinated was Cam Newton yesterday? So color-coordinated that he was chewing Panthers-colored gum. Probably just a coincidence, but it’s still pretty funny.

• I was wondering why Tom Brady was being led around on a leash, so I posted that shot on Twitter, where I learned that it’s a resistance band, which he uses when practicing drop-backs.

• Weird pants yesterday for Bucs coach Lovie Smith: team and league logos on the thighs and tuxedo striping down the sides. And an elastic waistband — ugh.

• No home teams wore white yesterday.

•  Yesterday marked the end of G.I. Joevember. This season’s remaining games will not be promoting any particular cause of agenda — the first such games since late September.

(My thanks to all contributors, including John Alexander, Jon Cooper, and Jerry Peterson.)

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Today’s Uni Watch Birthday

Longtime Uni Watch reader/contributor Douglas Ford has come up with an excellent new project: For each day of December, he’s chosen an athlete who’s celebrating his or her birthday on that date and then found some uni-notable photos of that athlete. Here’s Douglas to kick off the project with today’s installment:

“You knew him as the National League MVP with the Big Red Machine, and perhaps you saw him during his decline with the Mets — but do you recall his start with the Giants or his final games with the White Sox? Happy birthday, George Foster!” [click to enlarge]

Cool, right? Douglas will have a new installment for each day of this month. If the project goes well, maybe we’ll extend it into January and beyond. Feedback welcome.

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Membership update: A new batch of designs has been added to the membership card gallery (including the Charlotte Hornets treatment, shown at right, that we prepared for Trayton R. Miller, one of several enrollees who took advantage of the special Bonus Purple Amnesty Day two weeks ago). The printed/laminated versions of these cards should go out in the mail at some point this week.

Shout-outs to Mike Miller and Gareth Hammond: I received your payments (thank you!) but am still awaiting the details of what you want on your card.

Also: Now that we’re into the holiday season, this is a good time to remind everyone that we offer membership gift vouchers.

As always, you can sign up for your own custom-designed membership card here, you can see all the cards we’ve designed so far (nearly 1600 of them now!) here, and you can see the step-by-step process by which we make the cards here.

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Theoretical shopping reminder: Just hypothetically speaking, wouldn’t it be fun if you could put one of these T-shirts in someone’s stocking (or in your own, for that matter)? If you agree, get in touch and we’ll discuss. Thanks.

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Sticker sighting: Uni Watch — or at least a Uni Watch 15th-anniversary sticker — made the scene yesterday at AT&T Stadium in Texas, thanks to reader Alan Beam’s car, which was parked nearby. Do you have any good photos of your Uni Watch anniversary stickers or patches? Let’s have ’em.

If you don’t yet have any Uni Watch 15th-anniversary stickers (or if you do have some but want more), they’re still available — details here. The 15th-anniverary embroidered patch is currently sold out, but I’ll order a new batch if there’s enough demand. Shoot me an email if you want to get in on that. Thanks.

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Baseball News: The MLB Shop has leaked the Giants’ new black alternate jersey, which I’m 99% sure will be worn next season. If they’ve disabled that link, no worries — here’s a screen shot of it. Yes, it’s basically the Bonds-era design (from Christian Cisneros). … Two days ago I asked about this decal on the back of Pete Rose’s helmet during the 1980 World Series. Now Steve Dodell has gotten a clearer shot of it, showing conclusively that it was the old Mizuno logo, just like the one on Rose’s batting gloves.

College Football News: You know how some teams have been using logo-embossed thigh pads? Michigan state players had two different logo patterns on their pads during Saturday’s game (from Mike Cooper).

Hockey News: The Milwaukee Admirals have worn the Brewers’ ball-in-glove logo on their jerseys for years now, because the Brewers are their jersey sponsor. On Saturday the Admirals played the Charlotte Checkers, who were wearing Charlotte Hornets-themed uniforms, so both teams on the ice were wearing the logos of Big Four teams in other sports. Has that ever happened before? (From Alan Filipczak.)

NBA News: The Pistons wore their sleeved “Motor City” alternates yesterday, and the Nets wore their sleeved gray alternates. Both teams lost, which makes me wonder if anyone has been tracking the results in games when one team wears sleeves and the other team doesn’t. … On one of last week’s episodes of Tosh.0, Tosh dressed up like a ghetto Santa gave a John Stockton jersey to a kid, who promptly said, “Who the fuck is John Stockton?” (From Chris Flynn.)

Soccer News: “New York Red Bulls forward Tim Cahill, an Australian native, wore a black armband on Saturday in tribute to Aussie cricket player Phil Hughes, who died several days ago,” reports Yusuke Toyoda. “English soccer clubs also paid their respects by laying cricket bats on the turf before this weekend’s matches.” … You can vote in a logo contest for a proposed new Milwaukee soccer team (from Chance Michaels).

Grab Bag: Here are some interesting concepts for redesigning U.S. currency (from David Firestone). ”¦ Another cricket death: An umpire for a match in Jerusalem was killed after being struck by a ball. ”¦ You know how the “Flag” graphic on NFL broadcasts is yellow? It’s yellow on TSN’s CFL broadcasts too, which is weird because the flags themselves are red (from Eric Bangeman). … German F1 driver Sebastian Vettel marked his first test drive for Ferrari by wearing a helmet with “My First Day at Ferrari” printed on it.

More on Uni Watch
Comments (147)

    “My Kids Matter” is correct. He has a good pic of both wrists on his Twitter account @kennybritt18

    Saints defensive back Corey White flipped the script and went white over black.

    If only he’d gone gold over black. I wonder how much the NFL is going to fine him.

    Not a fan of the player gesture at the Rams game, but it seems that the “theming” of sports events like GI Joevember, Pinktober, etc. have invited this. Sports event should stand on their own and be a place where people can look past the often artificially exaggerated divisions in society.

    Exactly. Sports exist as entertainment. They’re supposed to be an escape. I’m watching the game to take a break from reality, not to be reminded of it.

    “Supposed to be”? Sounds almost like you’re speaking for the rest of us, I am sure it’s not your intention.

    YOU’RE taking a break from reality perhaps, but for others, sports are part of life, don’t exist in a vacuum, and are populated by fellow humans.


    Though not in the script of the entertainment portion of sports, statements have been made. Would any of us remember anything about Mexico’s 1968 Olympics beyond Bob Beamon’s record long jump if Tommie Smith and Juan Carlos had not raised their black-gloved fists into the air on the medal stand?

    Speaking as someone who didn’t even exist in 1968, the black-gloved fists are pretty much the only thing I know about the Olympic games of that year. I’m not sure if that’s a good thing or not.

    True dat. Google “1968 summer Olympics” and literally EVERYTHING that comes up is about Smith & Carlos. Dick Fosbury revolutionizing the high jump, Kip Keino & Jim Ryun, George Foreman waving a US flag after winning gold, Mark Spitz failing miserably (thus setting the stage for his historic ’72 performance), a 19 y/o Spencer Haywood leading US basketball to gold? Nary a mention.

    Funny thing is, the Czech woman who won the all-around gymnastics gold turned her back when the Soviet anthem was played, an act of considerably more courage. No mention of that either.

    Google “1968 summer Olympics” and literally EVERYTHING that comes up is about Smith & Carlos. Dick Fosbury revolutionizing the high jump, Kip Keino & Jim Ryun, George Foreman waving a US flag after winning gold, Mark Spitz failing miserably (thus setting the stage for his historic ’72 performance), a 19 y/o Spencer Haywood leading US basketball to gold? Nary a mention.

    And yet you know about all those other things. So do I. So do lots of people.

    So maybe this says more about Google than it says about the Olympics. And/or maybe it says something about how history has judged the relative importance of what happened at that Olympiad.

    I think it’s important to understand the context of the Smith & Carlos moment (also important to note that the Australian who won the silver, Peter Norman, wore the same Project for Human Rights badge on the medal stand that Smith & Carlos wore).

    This is admittedly over-simplifying the context, but here goes: Black athletes were angered that the U.S. had no problem having them out there on the international stage to bring home some medals, but at home they were still treated as second-class citizens in some parts of the country and still trying claim basic human rights in other parts. Smith & Carlos on the stand was not an isolated moment, but part of a bigger movement among the athletes. Look at the number of American athletes who wore black socks during competition. It’s certainly not on par with Smith & Carlos, but theirs was not simply a spur-of-the-moment, ‘we’ll-show-them’ statement.

    So the ’68 Olympics in general and the Smith & Carlos statement on the medal stand in particular, are a pretty good snapshot of what was going on in the the world at the time. … Just as the ’36 Berlin & ’72 Munich Games were, and just as the lack of Games in ’40 & ’44 were.

    Not to nick pick, but Olympiad refers to the span of time *between* Olympic games. Not the period of time in which the games are being held.

    “nick pick” or “nitpick?”

    Did you do that on purpose?

    And if someone begins a sentence with “Not to nitpick…,” you know he’s about to nitpick.

    Not to sounds racist….

    And yet you know about all those other things. So do I. So do lots of people.

    My favorite retort to those who complain that “the media” “is not reporting” on this or that thing.

    I agree with thinking that Pinktober and GIJoevember opened the flood gates for trumpeting causes. I also greatly dislike these league-sponsored causes that affect the uniforms. It’s tacky, it looks forced, and it looks like pandering. It’s the worst in the NFL because it lasts for a quarter of the season, instead of 1/162 of a MLB season. And don’t get me started on the militarization of sports.
    But I thought the Ferguson bit by the five Rams was fine. It’s not out of uniform, it’s not a choreographed touchdown or first down celebration…it’s a really quick and harmless First Amendment issue on the national conscience and their backyard. And it was faster than a Ray Lewis entrance dance. You can argue it was more spontaneous than John Carlos and Tommie Smith. Those runners had to wear a black glove during the race and hope to podium to broadcast their message! (OK, at least more spontaneous looking. I’m sure this was discussed in the locker room.)
    Now, once you start writing messages on yourself or your equipment…Rozelle and Tagliabue would have fined for that. I doubt Goodell will. If I were the Commissioner, I’d find the smallest fine available to me in the CBA, fine that pittance against the player, and donate that specific money to a relevant charity. In my NFL, the uniform would be uniform, the rules would be the rules, but we’d still have some social awareness and a bit of a social conscience.

    Most self-indulgent gestures are empty and seldom do any ‘real’ good, even league-sponsored ones which sometimes throw a few sales-dependent dollars a charity’s way.
    I agree that once pro leagues throw ‘support’ to every cause under the sun, they lose the ability to say “We are just a league, we have no interest in this or that, and we’re not qualified to be spokespersons/role models/champions”.
    As for these 5 players, sure they have the right to free speech. That doesn’t mean that, on game day, in NFL-issued uniforms (which are a privilege to wear, right?), they can use the stage built by the NFL and team owners to be heard. The league and the team ownership have rights too, which includes protecting their product by not having employees alienate their customers through questionable actions.

    Smith and Carlos didn’t wear their gloves during the race. They put them on before the medal ceremony, under the stands. Peter Norman, the silver medalist, asked them if he could wear their button as a sign of solidarity. One of them (I forget whether it was Smith or Carlos) had forgotten to bring his gloves form the Olympic Village; Norman suggested they share the one pair of gloves that was there so they could make their protest.

    It feels unreasonable to demand to be shielded from the realities of the world when you’re watching a sporting event, especially when sports depend on huge government subsidies,0 anti-trust exemption and the public airwaves to be what it is, when the very act of playing or following sports are, in a way, political. Modern organized sports was created because of religion, professionalism developed because of class divisions, and people align with city-based sports teams because of their connection to the community at large.

    Sports as an escape from the real world is essentially a privileged view that ignores that your entertainment is dependent on people who can’t escape the real world, like the very real workers making less than minimum wage (link), the very real labor-management relationship, and most pertinently, players who would not have otherwise have any sort of platform for expression.

    Like The Jeff says, the ticket pays for entertainment. It doesn’t pay for escape from the real world. Plus the reason most of us find sports compelling than mere entertainment is because of, not in spite of, stuff that happens outside the arena.

    Or, as no less a personage than Supreme Court Chief Justice Earl Warren said when asked about his daily newspaper reading habits:

    “I always turn to the sports section first. The sports section records people’s accomplishments; the front page nothing but man’s failures.”

    But sports is a zero sum game. For every Mets failure their is an equal and opposite accomplishment.

    I don’t think I would have really noticed GIJoevember had it not been for this site. It really isn’t as obnoxious as the pink gear, which I think was pretty subdued this year. The giant American flags before every game was the only thing that really stood out for me.

    I would have preferred that the Giants went with orange script lettering on the 2015 black alternate, similar to the pullover from 78-82.

    The owner of the Brewers (as well as former Brewers pitcher Ben Sheets) are part of the ownership group of the Admirals, which is why the Brewers are a “jersey sponsor”.

    Yes, but every AHL team has a jersey ad, and it isn’t usually connected to ownership. That just happens to be the situation in the Admirals’ case. It’s just another jersey ad.

    Dan Gilbert owns Quicken Loans and the Cleveland Cavs. The Cavs play in Quicken Loans arena. It is still fair to say that Quicken Loans is the “arena sponsor” of the Cavs.

    I’m a huge fan of the ball-in-glove on the Admirals’ uniforms. (The ad on the Ads, if you will.) If it is standard practice for a league to have ad patches, why not make it interesting? It could be just a plan square box that says “sponsored by Milwaukee Brewers baseball club.” Instead, the entire patch is a defunct logo of another local sports team.

    Anyone else think it was a bit odd that the Checkers used the Hornets logo front and center? Usually when teams do a tribute, they use the colors yet retain their own logo.

    Even better–they should have slapped together some Bucks themed uniforms. I think my mind would explode if I saw a green hockey jersey with Bango front and center and the ball-in-glove for a chest patch. Paint their helmets to look like cheeseheads…

    Instead, the entire patch is a defunct logo of another local sports team.

    Hang on there, my friend. Hardly defunct, it’s an official alternate logo and the centerpiece of their alt uniforms.

    But I am interested that they chose the retro logo for the sponsorship patch. And not only the patch; all link I’ve seen link use it. And as far as I’m aware, all their link and link do as well.

    It’s almost like an acknowledgement that it’s the more popular logo in Milwaukee; freed from whatever merchandising advantage they see in navy, the Brewers put their retro logo out there.

    I don’t think the leash/resistance band being used by Brady is “Sort of like a weighted donut on a baseball bat.” The weighted donut is to add weight and make the bat feel lighter when the weight is removed, thus adding to your swing speed. Also it helps you loosen up. I think the leash is to help mimic the pocket and to keep Brady from dropping too far back after the snap. RG3 should invest in one.

    Interesting note on the CFL flag icon.

    A few other things: it appears that the flags their refs use do not have the weighted end that the flags used in the states have because they simply lay flat on the turf.

    Also I was interested how their “disregard the flag” call is made, I posted a vine video on this when I noticed it while watching the game. While American refs wave the flag in their hands above their head, Canadian refs toss it in front of them on the ground.

    I’d say the flag on the left in that photo looks like it has something tied in the end for weight.

    Also, I notice NFL scores shown in the CFL broadcast. Why doesn’t the NFL reciprocate?

    Just wondering.

    Because, like it or not, the CFL is basically Minor League Football, even in Canada. The NFL doesn’t show CFL scores for the same reason that you don’t see AA or AAA scores during MLB broadcasts.

    Also, I notice NFL scores shown in the CFL broadcast. Why doesn’t the NFL reciprocate?

    I’m guessing that only happened because that was ESPN2 carrying the TSN broadcast, and thus ESPN put their own ticker on the bottom.

    There was a stretch at halftime when ESPN pulled their ticker, and you could see TSN’s ticker (TSN still uses the older ESPN graphics for their ticker). They were scrolling through the NFL scores.

    Re: CFL/TSN graphic for penalty flags in yellow while the flags are red. In the CFL, the coach’s challenge flag is yellow, but TSN’s graphic for the challenge is red.

    “Odell Beckham Jr. commemorated his amazing catch from last week by wearing self-celebratory gloves. ”

    Is there nothing that rookies won’t waste their money on???

    Plus the “three minute warning” and the “two and out” can be a bit disconcerting when one is used to U.S. football terminology. But I do enjoy me some CFL football.

    One other tidbit: For the playoffs, all the CFL teams dropped their normal ad patches and wore CP (railroad) and SunLife (insurance) patches.

    On top of that, not to mention that as recently as the early 70s, the sport maintained some of its rugby football roots: for example, a player going “out of bounds” was referred to as going “into touch,” and that the end of the third quarter, for example, was called “three-quarter time.”

    Well “three minute warning” and the “two and out” isn’t as bad as the Big 12 having 10 teams and the Big Ten having 12.

    Big Ten now has 14 teams since Maryland and Rutgers joined. Hey, they’re only off by 4 now instead of 2. It all adds up…er…no.

    It’s to help college kids learn number sense. The Big 12 is in base eight and the B1G is in base fourteen (but recently base 12 and 11. From 1946-1949 it was base nine.

    No matter how many CFL games I see, I never get used to seeing a guy run across the 50, then get to the line at the middle of the field, and then run across another 50. Throws me every darn time, year after year.

    Chiefs safeties also went with taped fingers instead of gloves, something Berry always does. You can see it in the mono red picture

    Wow — that’s more than a cosmetic change. Seems like it could affect performance (esp. considering how cold it was in KC last night).

    “… Cool, right? Douglas will have a new installment for each day of this month…”

    Very cool.

    I don’t recall seeing the green in Lambeau either and I sat in the South end zone for 40 years

    The green line along the sidelines at Lambeau Field was painted to comply with NFL rules. The rulebook states that the yard markers “are to stop 8 inches short of the 6-foot solid border.” The field crew must have painted the marks so that they were touching the sideline border. The green line was a simple fix.

    If you look closely at the second Lambeau photo, you’ll see there is a gap. Thus, no green line.

    Everything you never wanted to know about the NFL field: link

    “… You can vote in a logo contest for a proposed new Milwaukee soccer team (from Chance Michaels)…”

    I want to know what Chance thinks.

    But as long as Chance put the ball in play, here’s a take. 1. Repeal “Brew City FC” and replace with “Milwaukee FC.” I mean. c’mon. So ridiculously cutesy. 2. Then go with the yellow-and-brown logo, replacing the skyline with some other design element (like the letter M, perhaps?). I mean, some cities have notable and distinctive skylines, but not many, at least not in North America. New York, Chicago, DC, maybe Seattle because of the Space Needle. But Milwaukee?

    I generally agree with Connie, except I’m fine with Brew City FC. It’s cheeky! Milwaukee FC or whatever would feel like just another tired Euro footy wannabe, which has become de rigueur and a sad cliche in American soccer.

    Alternatives to Cream City’s forgettable skyline: The city’s distinctively broken-at-the-river street grid; link, link, or, and this is my real suggestion, a stein with a stylized Germanic M on it.

    Gertie the Duck! Always love a shout-out to link.

    The broken street grid could make for a cool uniform element, like the Kansas/Missouri border on link.

    I don’t love “Brew City FC”, but that’s an argument for another day. I feel like Milwaukee’s skyline link with their own version of the Space Needle, link on the Milwaukee Art Museum, so that could work. The local indoor soccer team is link now too.

    But my favorite is the link. Obviously heavily inspired by link, I like the bold composition. The gear for Milwaukee’s manufacturing background, the barley sprig for brewing. Nicely done.

    “But my favorite is the top middle. Obviously heavily inspired by Pabst Blue Ribbon, I like the bold composition. The gear for Milwaukee’s manufacturing background, the barley sprig for brewing. Nicely done.”

    I like the way the gear outline also doubles as a bottle cap. My only complaint is the dark blue and red color scheme. I realize it’s what makes the reference to PBR stand out, but it’s the most overused color scheme in sports. I’d lean toward the link if for no other reason than to give the Uni-verse a much-needed chromatic change of pace.

    I would love a brown-and-gold badge, no doubt. Shame that nobody in professional sports uses it.

    I understand your concern with the color scheme, but blue has become somewhat traditional in Milwaukee. The Bucks haven’t ever used it, but the Admirals have always used a shade of blue, as have the link (since 1984, “the oldest continuously operating professional soccer team in North America”). The fact that both have relegated blue to a secondary behind black notwithstanding.

    Were it up to me, I’d like to see Brew City FC concentrating on blue and silver with red only in the logo.

    I agree with arrScott that MLS teams with “FC” tacked to their names make them sound like Euro wannabes.

    From what I understand, the “real” FCs are 100 years old. And the FC was to differentiate from umbrella group’s swimming club or rugby club.

    My son just finished his season in U8. His last game was against a bunch of seven-year-olds called “Sporting.” I don’t know if their coach was a fan of Kansas City or Portugal. I didn’t care. But I was annoyed.

    My son’s team? “The tornado-gorillas!” There’s a name picked by the actual players.

    I’m a casual, American soccer fan. Any soccer history I’ve picked up should be taken with a grain of salt, I’m sure.

    I just tried to dig up some examples for you. And it looks like some clubs used FC to distinguish them from other arms of a larger sports club (SC) but other old soccer clubs added FC (as you suggest)just for the clarification/naming convention ala the MN Twins Baseball Club.

    If I can trust what I read online:
    The Scottish team “Hearts” was formed by members of the “Heart of Mid-Lothian Dancing Club.”
    Newcastle FC was mixed up, at times, with a popular cricket club.
    Hull FC is actually a rugby team.
    And some of the Portuguese teams still field teams in other sports (S.L. Benfica).

    So I think I took what I heard about a particular team and applied it to all old-time soccer teams. Sorry.

    Some “FC”s were named to separate themselves from other teams operated by the same club. But just like “United” can mean “created by the merger of two clubs”, it doesn’t have to.

    At some point, the names became traditional and teams chose them because they sounded good/professional/soccer-y as much as for any other reason. Same for “SC” or “FC”, I think either one is fine, depending on whether or not the teams want to tap into the global aesthetic.

    As for your U8 experience, one of my son’s U8 teams named themselves “Brooklyn FC” all on their own. Because they liked the sound of it. So don’t judge that coach too harshly.

    I guess I should’ve written “didn’t care enough to ask. But did care enough to be annoyed by the name of a U8 soccer team.”

    I guess the Browns wearing brown pants is so commonplace now that it’s not worth mentioning in the MMUW. :(

    They’ve been wearing those hideous things for a few years now… so, yeah… it’s about as noteworthy as the Saints wearing black pants.

    Basically, yeah. I considered including it, and then I thought, “Eh, that’s just one of their options now. Not really noteworthy anymore.”

    More depressing still is how the brown and black pants have no decoration. It reminds me of the plain black hockey breezers I complained about last week. With the type of money being thrown around, the least these teams could do is have a proprietary design; a helmet logo on the hip doesn’t count.

    On the one hand, the Browns need to put their helmet stripe pattern on basically everything, reversing the colors where necessary.

    On the other hand, if any team could claim that the lack of adornment is a proprietary design, it’s the Browns.

    Yes, the Browns could drastically improve their look by adding an orange-white-orange stripe to the brown pants and reinstating the traditional striped brown socks to where with the brown jersey. That wouldn’t make the brown trousers acceptable, only palatable.

    Aside from the uniform related things going on at the Rams game, I wonder what it was like in the Rams locker room? Pointing out the obvious, there wasn’t any white Rams players who did the hand gesture. What if another team mate put “Darren Wilson FREE” on his armband? A group of white Rams players went out and did another gesture of attacking a police officer or something?

    You’d then have the NFL deciding which part of the team to fine…and Goddell has such a good track record recently of administering justice in the league…

    Had Michael Sam been on the Rams active roster yesterday, would he have participated in the hands up or declined due to his own controversial situation.

    There is nothing “controversial” about being gay. I also fail to see what Michael Sam’s (or anyone’s) sexuality has to do with Ferguson.

    In any case, the only players who did the hands-up thing were the receiving corps.

    Come on, Paul, don’t you know that being gay is a “distraction”*?

    *which we know is just a catchall term for things that management or coaches don’t like to have around, get in the way of pretending football exists in a vacuum and there aren’t reporters around the team 24/7 anyway

    Well, we had two weeks previously where no home team wore white, but with the link, it’ll be 16-for-16 for the first time this season.

    If you’re going to start condemning players for taking a viewpoint, especially in current local affairs, then let’s not be hypocritical and ban them all. No more Sandy Hook ES decals, no more American flag decals (added for 9/11 dontcha know), no more dead people decals, no more “play 60,” no more “salute to service,” no more pink-outs, no more nothing.

    We had an Arena football team here for a while and, during the national anthem, one of the players used to always give the Black Power salute. I always thought of it as complementary to the anthem – “I am proud to be a black American.” And anyone who says “what if they allowed, all protests, there would be chaos,” I’d say if we have that many reasons for protest… we ALREADY have chaos.

    no more nothing

    I’d actually be okay with that. More than okay with that. Let the uniforms be the uniforms, not a canvas for personal agendas or corporate partners.

    But unless and until that happy day arrives, I don’t see any problem with members of the Rams staging a brief public statement on the issues currently gripping their city (and the country). I’d much rather see those than clutter on the uniforms, be it self-generated or corporate-approved.

    Same here – if they don’t want players expressing stuff, no more post game interviews, no more Russell Wilson in Microsoft Surface ads, no more NFL players bringing toys to kids, no more player introductions, no more open training camps. They can’t have it both ways – either NFL wants players to be humans who interact with the world or they just stay closeted in the locker room until the whistle blows.

    Just to be clear – it isn’t the NFL who wants to crack down on players making statements, is it? I haven’t heard anything about the league stepping in, only one unrelated union official asking them to do so.

    Yeah, my rage was a bit misdirected.

    At this point, the SLPOA is throwing a tone deaf tantrum. I think they can make some reasonably defensible points, but they seem to think they can wash any responsibility over the lack of trust between police forces and minority communities, and just wish away people’s anger.

    Worse yet, they seem to think the way to “wash any responsibility over the lack of trust between police forces and minority communities” is by threatening members of that community.

    It is a tenuous line to cross in controlling free speech even in sports or anything else for that matter. The NFL and Rams shouldn’t fine these players. Rather subdued level of “protest” in my view.

    The most I can expect out of the league(if anything)is a fine for a “coordinated celebration”, which is against the NFL’s rules but I’m not sure if that can be applied to a pre-game action rather than an in-game occurrence.
    Why take this action when they can make their viewpoint known via a press statement or social media (they could still run the risk of fines/negative fallout depending on how they express themselves?)?

    Why take this action when they can make their viewpoint known via a press statement or social medi

    Well, you’re taking about it. I doubt a comment in a post-game presser or on Twitter would have had nearly a fraction of the response.

    Yeah, I’m not sure if there’s anything in the rules about “coordinated celebration” before the game starts.

    As for the “why”, sometimes it’s worth risking potential negative fallout to take a stand on an important issue.

    They were employees…at work, in uniform, on the clock.
    Do they not represent their employer during this time, and does not the team have the right to limit ‘speech’/conduct at the workplace?

    Of course they have the right to limit speech and fine players.

    But just because you can doesn’t mean you should.

    I like the LaRon Landry tribute to Sean Taylor, but what is the difference between this and the Royals pitcher ((Ventura) who honored Oscar Taveras by writing on his cap after he passed? That was viewed as a “look at me” thing. Is this different and more acceptable because it is more subtle and clever?

    I never heard anything about the Royals’ pitcher being a look-at-me thing, so maybe your perception is faulty, in which case walking on eggshells is probably a good idea.

    Personally, I think there’s a huge difference between something that happens before the game and altering the uniform to make a statement during the game itself.

    was the Landry thing just pregame or did he keep the tape on his facemask during play? Your paragraph doesn’t say that. In the Chiefs game you say it was pre-game.

    then I am confused as to which tribute was “something that happens before the game” and which is “altering the uniform to make a statement during the game itself.” Does that mean if Ventura wrote on his hat prior to the game starting, it is more tolerable?


    If, for example, Ventura wrote something on his cap for pregame warmups where he knew it would get attention, but changed into an unaltered cap for the game itself, I wouldn’t have had a problem with it. Conversely, if the Rams’ players had written slogans on their helmets I would be more critical of them.

    My opposition isn’t to the message itself, but to hijacking a uniform to make a personal point. This isn’t Tchotchke’s.

    “Is this different and more acceptable because it is more subtle and clever?”

    Short answer: yes. I don’t recall anyone having a problem with Ventura honoring his fallen friend. The objections centered more on the execution of the tribute.

    Isn’t the reason we’re here on this message board is to discuss the aesthetics of things like Landry’s and Ventura’s visual homages? What’s wrong with expressing a preference for one player’s subtle and clever homage over another player’s somewhat ham-handed one?

    Meh. I love the idea of currency redesign – step one for me, despite my traditionalist inclinations, is to get presidents off the bills. But this particular example just leaves me cold. Nothing about these designs feels like either “America!” or “container of value!” to me, and American currency needs to hit at least one of those message, preferably both, really hard. These feel very Northern European to me – great currency for Sweden maybe, or Holland.

    I’d love to see how the team that redesigned the US passport would handle a currency redesign. They nailed it, creating something that feels very American and very official while still being refreshing and out-of-the-box compared to typical official documents.

    Are you talking about the 2007 design, or the new one coming next year? Never been a huge fan of the current passport, which strikes me as both gaudy and clichéd.

    “… Never been a huge fan of the current passport, which strikes me as both gaudy and clichéd…”


    Does anyone have a link to the new design? I haven’t been able to find it in any Google searches.

    Talking about the current one. I sort of grant the “cliched” critique, though I don’t think that’s really all that valid. I mean, show me one other federal document that looks anything like it, in the history of federal printing. Something without actual precedent can’t be a cliche, no matter how much it sort of makes you think, “well of course it would look like that.” But yeah, it featured sort of grandiose scenes of American land and commerce with inspiring quotes, so that’s gonna strike us as cliche. Except for two things: 1) The previous passport had page backgrounds of the various state seals; and 2) The quotations were by and large not the ones you’d expect. Lyndon Johnson’s Inaugural Address? When have you ever seen that quoted? Ellison Onizuka? A childhood hero of mine that in my experience exactly zero other Americans recall ever having heard of. Even assuming that the form of “American scenery plus quotation” is cliche, the specific content chosen most often transcends that critique.

    Greatest design in the history of things? No. But it’s hard to think of any other federal product that even comes close to its design quality.

    Hate to burst your bubble, but I immediately recognize Ellison Onizuka. May he rest in peace.

    Hearing him described as someone’s boyhood hero makes me feel like a right old fart though.

    The part I haven’t seen reported are what were Kenny Britt’s real motivations here… Britt has multiple arrests and run-ins with the police. Is this really about Ferguson, or his own distaste for being hassled by “the man”.

    Is this really about Ferguson, or his own distaste for being hassled by “the man”.

    You make it sound like those two things are necessarily separate. In fact, for many people (perhaps including Britt, although I don’t know that), they are inextricably linked. That’s the point.

    how much of that do you think is because the NFL doesn’t want another black eye? I feel like this is something they would usually fine players for.

    I don’t understand the question.

    The NFL is always doing what it thinks is best for the NFL, period. (Sometimes that assessment or judgment is wrong, of course.) That’s what drove this decision, just like it drives all the league’s other decisions.

    if it weren’t for Goodell and the NFL looking bad on how the Ray Rice or Adrian Peterson cases were handled, would this event have been handled differently? Would a fine have been issued?

    Who knows? Who cares? If my parents had never met, I never would have been born, but that’s a silly hypothetical, because they DID meet. Your hypothetical is silly too. Let’s deal with what actually happened.

    Goddell isn’t going to do anything because what he decided in the Ray case went against him and it appears the Peterson case is going against him as well.

    Maybe some shirts could be made up…”Fire Goddell” His incompetence seems to know no bounds.

    Absolutely correct. The NFL cares about the NFL. If they thought it would be in the league’s best interests to fine them they would have. They figured out it wasn’t so they didn’t. I don’t think free speech was even a consideration to the league just the image and potential cash.

    I feel like this is something they would usually fine players for

    Serious question – when was the last time the league fined anybody for anything they did during player introductions?

    Well, I don’t know about pregame *intros* specifically, but players have been fined for assorted pregame activities, like RG3 wearing the wrong brand of sweatshirt, or Chad Johnson’s tearaway “Ocho Cinco” nameplate.

    The green stripe alone the sideline was something legendary groundskeeper George Toma came up with. It is referred to as “The Toma Stripe” and has been used in several Super Bowls.

    It is referred to as “The Toma Stripe”

    George Toma might wish that were the case, but Google doesn’t seem to agree. Learned that he painted the field logos for Super Bowl I, though, which was cool.

    At this point, though, it only creates arguments among TV viewers as to whether it’s in or out of bounds.

    Does the NFL require that tape/spat color be the same as the primary shoe color?

    For example could a team designate black as their shoe color and white for spats?

    I knew I had seen the brighter green stripe at Lambeau before, and with some quick searching, I did find a picture from January 15, 2012. Playoff game against the Giants had the stripe. I will look to see if I can find some more.


    RE: AHL Admirals vs. Checkers

    It might not be as dramatic as the Checkers wearing Hornets jerseys, but every time the Milwaukee Admirals play the San Antonio Rampage four professional sports teams get represented. The Admirals are owned by the Brewers ownership and the rampage are owned by Spurs ownership. Both teams were bought by their current ownership in June 2005. I do not know when both teams started their ownership patches. But here are images of the four logos on the ice together:



    Kind of random, but I happened to look at the New York Mets 2015 calendar in a store today, and I noted that none of the players were shown in the pinstripe unis, which are my favorite. What makes it (ever-so-slightly) notable is that half the players are shown in the snow whites, which are being eliminated for the new season (although, granted, the pinstripes will look different from the previous season, too). So not great promotional coordination, although it’s a very minor point.

    You can see the photos here: link

    Slightly different situation, since that referred to a teammate, not to current events in general.

    Not saying that made it better or worse — just different.

    Wonder if SF Giants fans will revolt against these new black jerseys the way some Mets fans hated their black jerseys?

    Giants fan here…. I have no problems with it… Black is one of their team colors (not BFBS)… I have a black jersey with “Giants” on it neatly folded in a clothes drawer. Don’t have to spend money on a new one..since I am now current with at least one jersey. (I bought the black one back in 2004 in a clearance sale).

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