By Phil Hecken
Uni Watch readers will (hopefully) recall that back during Paul’s August sabbatical, when I took over the weekday posts for the month, I kicked off my run by announcing a hockey design contest for the Grand Rapids Griffins (a professional hockey team in the American Hockey League, whose primary affiliate is the Detroit Red Wings). All the deets are in that post, but suffice it to say, after more than EIGHTY reader submissions, and several rounds of voting, reader Dan Kennedy was selected by the Griffins as the Grand Prize Winner and his design, seen in today’s splash, was worn last night by the Griffins (there was also a runner up in that contest whose design was also chosen; that will be worn on March 24th).
Dan was invited by the Griffins to last evenings game where there were lots of festivities. I realized he’d be pressed for time, but I asked if he could have some photos and brief writeups from the evening for me to run for you guys today. I’m hoping to do a much more in-depth profile of Dan (possibly running next weekend), but I wanted to share with you guys today the photos from late last evening. In order to beat the press deadline (*coughmybedtime*), I’ll run Dan’s pics along with some brief writeups.
Please join me in (again) congratulating him for his efforts, and how awesome is it that a reader-designed jersey has made it’s way onto the rink of a professional hockey team? Very awesome, that’s how. You can click on any photos below to enlarge.
OK, here’s Dan:
“This is a nice close-up view of the jersey on ice where you can see both logos complimenting one another. Notice the official Griffins logo on the helmet. It was expected but I was a little sad that it didn’t match the jersey.”
“The jerseys looked very good on ice. The back had plenty of contrast so you could read names and numbers from a good distance.”
“The alternate logo was featured on both shoulders and stood out nicely on the black upper portion of the jersey.”
“The players wore red pants and red socks with similar striping to match the sleeves. I was hoping they’d wear black pants to create the same black/red rhythm that the jersey has from top to bottom, but it still looked pretty sharp.”
“The back of the jersey displayed nice large bold outlined numbers. I selected #16 because it was the year I created this design (2016). Hopefully, when I’m old that will remind me of what year this took place.”
“Even Griff, the mascot, suited up in the new uniform.”
“After the game, an auction of game-worn jerseys took place behind the bench. One of the Griffins staff members told me that this was the largest crowd they’d ever had for a post-game auction. The proceeds go to charity to help underprivileged children. I was also told they will also be putting some of these jerseys up for bid on eBay in a week or two.”
“The logo patch on the front of the jersey was embroidered nicely. However, the word Griffins wasn’t centered properly and hangs slightly to the right. Despite that I was pretty happy with the result.”
“I was allowed to be in the tunnel where the players came out. Here is the new uniform looking quite seamless with the red goalie pads that have a similar wing design.”
“The Griffins presented me with my own personalized jersey down near the ice before pregame warmups.”
“The front of the jersey looked great and was very close to the original design I created.”
“I was approached by several fans who asked me about the jersey and complimented the design. Overall, I heard from Griffins staff members that they received very positive feedback.”
“I didn’t provide artwork for the numbering, but I was very happy to see that they used something similar to what I mocked up in my design.”
Awesome — and thanks for getting the photos to me so quick Dan. What a fantastic experience (which I hope to bring to the readers in greater detail shortly) and congratulations on being named the winner of the contest!
How great was that, readers? Please let Dan know your thoughts and if you have any questions for him, post them below and I’ll be sure to ask him for the follow up!
Our Pets…In Uniform
Last weekend, in a post I co-authored with Megan Brown, I featured lots of photos of pets (well, mostly … OK … ALL … dogs) in uniforms, and asked Uni Watch readers to please send me photos of their own furry friends in uniform.
I was expecting a few pics, but I never expected the pretty large number of photos I received. I’m going to run them here today — along with any comments the owners may have added.
Turns out our best friends sometimes rock jerseys better than we do! (you can click on the photos to enlarge)
Owner: Brian Cronson
Pet: Simba, 7mo Rhodesian Ridgeback.
Owner: T Jewell
Pet: This is our dog Kevin. Love the idea for this post. Looking forward to all the doge pics.
Pet: Wyatt in his new scarf!
Owner: Melissa Renick
Pet: Our Glen of Imaal Terrier, Fiona, is happy to share some of her dog parents’ favorite team unis. Attached are the Kansas City Royals and Denver Broncos. My husband would say we’re both Royals fans but disavow any allegiance to the Broncos (he was, is, and will always be a Steelers fan).
Owner: Elliott Anaya
Pet: Not sure if this counts, but here’s a picture of my dog, Daniel, in a San Jose Sharks uniform sock that we cut into a sort of sweater. If memory serves, this was taken a few years ago before one of their early round playoff games.
Owner: Jeremy Worley
Pet: Here’s Molly, she’s 10 and I love my taco zarape hat. It’s so unique and fun.
Owner: Bob Andrews
Pet: Our late, great rescue mutt Tommy reluctantly donning his Houston Texans bandana. That shot is from about a decade ago.
Owner: Lindsay Resnick
Pet: Here’s Sunny, my Jack Russell Terrier, in an Eagles uni! :D
Owner: Travis Pierpont
Pet: (no name given
Owner: David Firestone
Pet: This is my cat Alejandro wearing a mini Panthers cap I got at the NFL Draft.
Owner: GJ Marmet
Pet: Roary wearing a University of Wisconsin reflective rain coat (Cornish Rex breed cat)
Owner: Vance Barker
Pet: Here’s a couple pics of my buddy and service dog Hailey in jerseys. She I’ll only let me take the one she’s wearing off if I have another one for her to wear.
Owner: William Kramlich
Pet: His name is Buddy.
Pet: My 7 year old Stella getting prepped for the field goal fest @ KC.
Owner: Kurt Vogler
Pet: My dog Little Jerry Seinfeld dressed as a Packer for Halloween two years ago. He loves the Packers and watches all the games with me.
Owner: Patrick Thomas
Pet: My golden collie, Easton repping his Grant Hill jersey.
Owner: Alan Kreit
Pet: Here’s Henry, my McNab Shepard, rooting for the Giants when they played Green Bay 2 weeks ago.
Owner: Daniel O’Connell
Pet: (no name given)
Owner: Brandon Savokinas
Pet: Benji – Shih Tzu – Steelers Fan
Owner: Matt Shevin
Pet: My Pit Bull, Ricky.
Owner: Chris Marcinko
Pet: Here, Scout (a huge Tribe fan and ardent Wahoo supporter) settled in to watch the world series with her dad, wearing her own New Era 5950 authentic cap. (Size 4 1/4).
Owner: Chris Collins’ Girlfriend’s Dad
Pet: This is Elvis, my gf’s dad’s dog. A mini Yorkshire Terrier who loves the Packers. He (Elvis) loves to take long rides on the motorcycle with his gf Priscilla. They have a variety of Packers and Badgers jerseys they wear from time to time, and are a local icon here in Madison.
ACC 2016 Uni Roundup
We’re probably ready to finally put a bow on the 2016 NCAA College Football Season today — I’m joined by my ACC Tracker, Rex Henry, who last week during “roundups” I mentioned would have a more complete uni report this weekend. Today’s that day. So, without further ado, here’s Rex to give you a (very) brief rundown of the uni machinations of the ACC for the 2016 Season.
ACC Uni Roundup, 2016
By Rex Henry
The ACC and college football seems to be on the back end of the outlandish uniforms and combinations. While some teams have new designs, the color combinations for most teams have been kept to a minimum.
We’ll go from bad, to no change, to best improvements (which almost all have pant stripes):
Syracuse are still riding this old trend with four different colors on the same template and have a few terrible combos.
Louisville has the potential to class it up, but the chrome helmet is not a good match. They also used the same Armed Forces template as Texas A&M.
Wake Forest got a redesign last year but still makes use of three of each.
Florida State didn’t introduce anything new.
North Carolina looked pretty damn good this year, but the suspense built up for a blackout turned out to be a bust.
Boston College had a decent transition to the standard Under Armour Template. They kept the Jerseys and Pants to two options each and threw in the Bandana helmet stripe and a Gaelic-style stripe for the season opener in Ireland.
Virginia Tech got a new identity, tweaking the jersey template but lost all stripes on the pants. Battle in Bristol brought back the stone from campus but I think their white NASCAR-looking helmet which would have been appropriate in Bristol. Just noticed that the center stripes used on helmets since 2014 are reversed from Denver Broncos helmets.
Pittsburgh finally got a much-needed upgrade but the numbers are a bit of a stretch. The throwback uniforms, however, seemed to be a big hit and brought back for a second game.
NORTH CAROLINA STATE:
NC State, which with Adidas, is notorious for tweaking their jerseys every year, stayed with last year’s template. They even pulled out a late 90’s throwback combination for the Notre Dame game in the rain, plus the Iron Wolf for military appreciation.
Nothing new for Duke except the two alternate helmets. They honored the 1942 Rose Bowl team with a helmet and patch, then followed it with a reverse color scheme cartoon devil used in last year’s Pinstripe Bowl.
Clemson finally gave in and upgraded their 2010 jerseys and added TV numbers and a patch background of the paw on the pants. Unlike last year, they upgraded to the new jersey template for the playoffs, making it the third template worn in the calendar year.
Georgia Tech brought back the gold-blue-gold on white striped pants for their opener in Dublin with last year’s primary jersey. The remaining games saw striped pants and the same new white jersey until the “Gator” Bowl where they wore a gold version of last year’s template.
Virginia finally got it’s act together by shedding their primary pants and blue jersey. The new coach tried to make it sound like they were getting new uniforms, but the throwback jersey were just bumped up to primaries and white striped pants worn every game. The big change came with the helmets with center stripes and numbers added to the left side.
Miami went through a midseason switcheroo at the hands of former Georgia coach (he cleaned up their look, too). It’s a classic return to glory feel that did away with the green jerseys and went Orange/White and White/Orange until week 11 when they went all white.
…on Friday, Paul announced he was running a new design contest to fix Major League Baseball’s “Hall of Fame” inductee jersey (all the deets are in that post).
In one of those cases where “great minds…” (lol) collide, I had enlisted the aid of a friend a couple years back to do just that — but as Paul says, I think you guys can do even better!
So … you know what to do. Get crackin’!
Uni Watch News Ticker
Baseball News: This 1975 San Diego Padres schedule is everything (from Sports Paper). … From the “could polyester pullovers and sansabelt unis ever be considered beautiful?” department, comes Exhibit A: Catfish Hunter. I don’t know about you (and maybe it’s because I grew up with these), but that uniform is just all kinds of awesome (from Vintage Baseball). … Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Tyler Glasnow will be changing his number for the 2017 season. After wearing number 51 in 2016, Glasnow will wear number 24 in 2017. … Yesterday’s ticker featured a look at the Rockies cap in a new shade of purple. Here’s a good side-by-side comparison of the ’16 and ’17 (on the left and right, respectively) jerseys. From Robert Hayes.
NFL News: The Chargers ill-fated logo was going to be a bigger part of their LA roll-out. Artist renderings of StubHub Center last week and this week (from Arash Markazi). … Some former Miami Dolphins players were signing autographs wearing throwback jerseys featuring a “50 Greatest” patch (good spot by willchitty4). … This past season, more than 150 NFL players switched from their previous helmets to a pair of new helmets from Schutt Sports, the Vengeance Z10 and the Vengeance Pro, which made its debut this past season. … “This funny t-shirt from Israel has a 9 game winning streak heading into today’s game,” writes Robert Brashear. “Lots to like from the use of color, font, missing H on Pittsburgh and ‘Pittsburgh Steelers’ in Hebrew — wearing it to(day) for sure!” … Arizona Cardinals safety Tony Jefferson is gearing up for free agency, only he has done some leg work many would not expect. To get him ready for a potential new team, he has used Madden NFL 17. What? … Reader Nathan Dorton runs “Phenom Elite,” a company that produce football gloves, custom and non custom. He notes “Our glove grip is extraordinary.” I’d say so. Check out the videos here, here and here. Paul notes, how glove stickiness has gotten way out of hand. … Tweeter Scott Nuzum notes that “though it (this Detroit Lions jacket) does have an NFL tag on the sleeve, according to the tag on the side, this is an *NHL* licensed product.”
College Football News: Yesterday’s ticker featured a Colorado Buffaloes cap in colors that *might* not have been the original. Today, Matthew Robbins points us towards this Georgetown Hoyas cap that is “just a SnapBack style from the 90s. American Needle & New Era made ’em.” … Tweeter Robert Hayes was looking over an old Youngstown St., football program from 1970, and says, “look at all of the different logos for each sport back then!” … Austin Hampton notes it’s “weird that in a game that’s meant to showcase players @NFLPABowl their names are absent from the back of their jerseys.” If only there were some other way to identify the players.
Hockey News: ‘MURICA! The Orlando Solar Bears broke out these “Military Appreciation” night jerseys last evening (from Orlando Solar Bears). Here’s another look (from Jeff Tasca). … Yesterday was “Hockey Day in Minnesota,” and one of the games featured color vs color/throwbacks for the Stillwater vs Eden Prarie (from Shane Fennell). Here’s another view (from Cody Wolfe). … Lots of throwbacks yesterday (from Tony Tengwall). … Our own Alex Hider writes, “This article includes a sign from a Women’s March rally with a Florida Panthers-themed protest sign.” … In the AHL, the Wolves & Admirals went color v color. The Wolves were in their Animal Adoption Awareness jerseys (from Aaron Rusnak).
NBA News: Couple NBA items from Friday (from Zachary Loesl) — the game between Charlotte and Toronto was color vs. color. Also, Pacers guard Monta Ellis is now wearing a clear plastic face mask. Apologies if this has been covered already — Ellis had broken his nose earlier this month and wears the facemask as extra protection. … Not satisfied with the NBA’s current All Star Game uni offerings, Conrad Burry has been messing around with 2017 NBA All-Star logos / wordmarks, and came up with this edit of the uniforms. … Just one (more) argument against NBA sleeved jerseys: the Celtics’ Jae Crowder obviously took a pair of scissors to his (from Hit The Glass). … Color vs. color last night for the Nets vs. Hornets (from Zachary Loesl). … Also from Zachary, color vs. color for Memphis v. Houston; San Antonio wore white on the road; and, Boston vs. Portland went
color vs. color gray vs. white.
College/High School Hoops News: Yesterday’s ticker noted that Alexander Julian designed UNC Head Coach Roy Williams’ “strong jacket” and the designer was also instrumental in creating the argyle pattern worn by the hoops team. Tommythecpa lets us know Julian has a whole UNC-themed “Carolina” collection available for your shopping pleasure, if you have $195 lying around for a shirt or $95 for a tie. … The University of Wisconsin and the University of Minnesota went red versus gold yesterday. Says submitter Trevor Johnson, “Beautiful color on color game featuring my Badgers!” … My buddy Jimmer Vilk has a sometimes unnatural aversion to “same color” numbers/letters on a jersey (even if they are perfectly readable because of a thick outline), but even I will admit these jerseys are the worst. But at least they realize it and know they don’t comply with national uniform rules. But how could something that bad even have made it into production? … A nice color (gold) vs. color (dark blue) uni matchup took place yesterday between App State and Georgia Southern (from Luke Parks). … Tweeter Browns Flyer asks, “Iowa State has a warmup that is a sleeveless, zip-up vest. Ever seen this before?” That led Twitter to point out they’ve worn them before yesterday (from Joe Hoyt), and both Michigan State (via Joey Zurek) and Oklahoma (via Kasey Moody) have worn similar warmups. … More color on color yesterday, this time involving the College of Charleston (from Evin Wilson). … Last night the Oregon Ducks wore all white uniforms with Puddles(!) on them for their game vs. Stanford. Some more pics here. … Last night, Illinois State took the court for warmups sporting the Doug Collins throwback Candy Stripe shorts (from Ryan Kraemer). And here is a close up look at the whole throwback set (from Matt Kellam). … WHOA — to quote the late, great Vince Lombardi: WHAT THE HELL is going on here? — that’s South Carolina hoops — looks like a torn jersey was stapled back together (nice grab by Matt Harris). … Nice color vs. color matchup in the Ivy League for Cornell vs. Columbia (from Bandstand). … More color vs. color: San Francisco vs San Diego (from Daniel Vaught). And here is another larger photo (also from Daniel).
Grab Bag: “GI Joe” (as Andrew Cosentino calls it) wrestling uniforms were the order of the day for Virginia Tech wrestling. … Tweeter JeffreyBigMoney noted some color on color in NLL””Bandits vs. Swarm (GA has no white). Also no more gradient for Buffalo (this is from last week).
And that’s it for today. Thanks to Dan, Rex and of course, everyone who submitted photos of their pets in uniform. Enjoy the NFC & AFC Championship games today. Aesthetically, I’m pulling for a green & gold and black & gold Supe. I’m not sure I could even watch the Falcons vs. Pats. Ugh.
For all you winners of Jimmer Vilk’s “Vilkmas Raffle” (announced last weekend), Jim says the “gifts will start going out this week.”
You guys have a great Sunday, a better week, and I’ll catch you next weekend. But until then…
Follow me on Twitter @PhilHecken.
“Wonder if the New Era Cap store inside Staples will be selling Celtics caps.”
— Paul Lee