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Syracuse Football Fauxs Back and Gets It Right

By Phil Hecken

Last evening, the Syracuse Orange football team unveiled a new set of uniforms for the 2019 season (and beyond). And, unlike the past three or four uniform iterations, they got this one right.

The uniforms are definitely fauxbacks, drawing inspiration from past uniforms but with a definite Nike newer flavor. And it’s delicious. Obviously, especially with their most recent set, there was no where to go but up, but this time, they actually did a very nice job (note to the Cleveland Browns: THIS!).

Specifically, the team unveiled three new jerseys, three pairs of pants, and two helmets, and it looks like they will mix and match these throughout the season. The colors are blue, orange and white (Syracuse colors) with NO GRAY in the mix (at least not yet). They stripped the unis of all the Nike storytelling bullshit fonts and doo-dads, and went for a straightforward football uniform.

Let’s take a look at each of the parts (for all images below you can click to enlarge).

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Classic Syracuse orange and also white. The orange helmet now has blue/white/blue striping, while the white goes blue/orange/blue. The classic “S” has returned to the sides of the helmet. The orange helmet has a blue facemask and the white hat has a white grill (whether the facemasks stay those colors remains to be seen, but that’s what was shown). It’s a great looking helmet (at least the orange one) and will look great on the field.

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As mentioned, the team will have three jerseys (at least to start). Whether or not a one-off or special uni is added down the line is another story: orange, blue and white.

As you can see from the Nike-supplied graphic above, the jersey is definitely new, but it borrows heavily from past uniforms. The sleeve caps each contain contrasting stripes, depending on the color. The numbers look like a semi-block font (undoubtedly a “custom” job) and each is outlined in a contrasting color as well. That’s the perfect parts. Unfortunately, the team has a fairly large “ORANGE” wordmark above the numbers and a giant contrasting collar (with an “S” at the midpoint) . Not awful by any means, and certainly not a dealbreaker, but it would have been nice if the team/Nike showed a bit more restraint in these two areas. But overall, a great look:

Here the models are shown wearing monochrome looks:

In this grouping, we get a bit of a mix/match (including the CLASSIC orange/blue/orange set):

Of course, what unveil wouldn’t be complete without the corporate-speak:

Interesting: this is the first time I’ve ever seen addressed the issue of the “sweatbox,” which plagued both college and professional teams Nike outfitted in the past. Also note the “better big guy fit” in the description. It’s almost like their copywriters were having fun with this one!

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Like the jerseys, there are three sets of pant colors: orange, white and blue. Each features full length contrasting color stripes in alternating colors. A retro feature that should be pretty much mandatory on all pants. After years of creating amorphous shapes and various shading/truncation, or putting the TNDL, Nike/Syracuse have returned to the classic football pant. They’re real and they’re spectacular!

All the colors look great, and they’ll pair well with any of the jerseys:

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I spared you (mostly) the corporate-speak, but I can’t resist. First, Nike and Syracuse are especially proud of the fact they’ve returned to wearing actual stripes:

The press release is just so typically press release-y. It’s not quite boilerplate that could apply to every team (but it’s close):

Featuring custom design elements and Nike’s Vapor Untouchable technology, the uniforms merge the Orange’s historic past with the latest in uniform innovation.

Design elements unique to the uniform system include:

• Bold sleeve stripes that harken back to those displayed on the jerseys worn by Orange legends like Jim Brown, Floyd Little and Larry Csonka during the 1950s and ‘60s.

• Syracuse’s familiar block-S patch on the front of the neck, which features a raised texture resembling the hard edges of the Dome’s architecture.

• The words “For the Glory” on the inside of the neckline. The phrase is a reference to the last line of Syracuse University’s fight song – “Down the Field.” The song culminates with the rallying cry: “For we’ll fight, yes we’ll fight, and with all our might, for the glory of old Syracuse.”

• The return of pant stripes that were staples of previous Syracuse uniform iterations worn prior to 2014.

The Nike Vapor Untouchable chassis will give the Orange improved fit and functionally, reduced seams and grab points, shaped inseams, seamless fronts and shoulders to help leverage speed, improved moisture absorption and better all-around comfort with a high-tech, lightweight design.

And of course, what unveiling would be complete without the hype video?

After a good five (in their current set) years of looking like complete clowns, and several years prior to that with less-than-great unis, SU has returned to its roots with a beautiful new set — one that will look good in 25 years (even though you know they’ll be 4 new iterations away by then).

Well done, ‘cuse. No more S’cuses. The unis are for real now.

Kreindler’s Korner

I had the distinct pleasure of featuring the wonderful artwork of artist Graig Kriendler on two occasions over the summer and fall of 2017, and more recently, in August of 2018.

For those who don’t wish to click the links, Graig paints baseball heroes (and regular guys) from the past, and is an immense talent.

Occasionally, I will be featuring his work on Uni Watch.

Here’s today’s offering (click to enlarge):

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Title: “Rube Foster, 1902” (color study)
Subject: Rube Foster, 1902
Medium: Oil on linen mounted to board
Size: 5” x 7”

When a lot of baseball fans hear the name Andrew “Rube” Foster, they think of the large, impeccably dressed magnate who founded and piloted the Negro National League in 1920. And rightly so. For his vision, the great man often became referred to as the “Father of Negro Baseball”.

But what those same people might be surprised to hear is that Foster was also widely considered to be one of the best pitchers in the white OR black leagues. Honus Wagner called him one of the greatest of all-time. There are a myriad of stories describing his prowess against the likes of Three-Finger Brown, Cy Young, and Rube Waddell (he is said to have earned his nickname after besting the latter). Apocryphal or not, Frank Chance was impressed enough to call him “the most complete product” he’d ever seen on the mound.

Here’s Rube in 1902 with the Chicago Union Giants, considered one of the best black ballclubs in the Midwest. Though his first year in professional baseball was an unimpressive one, the next season, Foster would become the ace pitcher for the Cuban X-Giants.

This small portrait is one of 200+ such paintings of mine that will be on display at the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in the spring of 2020.

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Thanks, Graig! You can (and should!) follow Graig on Twitter.

Uni Concepts & Tweaks

After being dormant for a while, the Uni Tweaks/Concepts have returned!

I hope you guys like this feature and will want to continue to submit your concepts and tweaks to me. If you do, Shoot me an E-mail (Phil (dot) Hecken (at) gmail (dot) com).

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I received the following e-mail from John J. Woods, who has a great “crossover” concept:

The Sun vs. the Suns

One of the greatest color combinations in sports was from the WFL’s Southern California Sun: magenta and orange.

The nickname is close to the NBA’s Suns, who had similar colors in purple and orange.


Johnny Woods

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Thanks John. OK readers (and concepters). If you have some tweaks or concepts, shoot ’em my way with a brief description of your creation and I’ll run ’em here.

Guess The Game…

from the scoreboard

The game has returned! At least for a trial basis, but I got a lot of positive response to its return, so we’ll see how long we keep this one going.

Today’s scoreboard comes from “ojai67”.

The premise of the game (GTGFTS) is simple: I’ll post a scoreboard and you guys simply identify the game depicted. In the past, I don’t know if I’ve ever completely stumped you (some are easier than others).

This one probably rates a 2 out of 10 on the difficulty scale. Not only is the game almost complete, the teams playing limits the years — still, a fun one!

Here’s the Scoreboard. In the comments below, try to identify the game (date & location, as well as final score). If anything noteworthy occurred during the game, please add that in (and if you were AT the game, well bonus points for you!):

If you guys like this, and want to continue this as a weekly feature, let me know in the comments below. You’re welcome to send me any scoreboard photos (with answers please), and I’ll keep running them.

The Ticker
By Anthony Emerson

Baseball News: The Royals wore ‘Los Reales’ unis to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Night (from @DrSoup_MD). … Cubs IF Javy Báez went to Starbucks in full uniform before yesterday’s game (from Mike Chamernik). … The Phillies wore Chase Utley patches last night (from @CarsonFentz). … Speaking of the Phils and also posted in the NBA section, IF César Hernández wore a Sixers ‘Philadelphia Unite’ playoff T-shirt under his jersey (from @phillyphran). … More Phillies news, with IF Derek Dietrich wearing low-cut pink socks underneath his pajama pants. It was only a matter of time, I guess (from Trevor Wilson Patton). … We might have covered this before, but just in case: the Reds have different 150th anniversary patches for their home and road unis. … Angels 1B/DH and future Hall of Famer Albert Pujols gave his jersey to a young fan with Down’s syndrome yesterday (thanks, Paul). … The Toledo Mud Hens are rebranding as the Toledo Mud Crawlers on the weekend of Aug. 9-11 to promote, get this, Jeeps. My eyes are rolling out of my skull as I type this (blame goes to Mark Kunz and @Jackie_Moon_UT). … My hometown Portland Sea Dogs are rebranding as the Maine Whoopie Pies this weekend, and you can read my thoughts on this promotion here. … Here are the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers taking the field as the Udder Tuggers in front of a sellout crowd (from Brian Kerhin). … Last night was Military Appreciation Night for the Dayton Dragons. … It was also Military Appreciation Night for the Northwest Arkansas Travellers (from @00obstructedview). … The American Association’s Gary SouthShore RailCats will wear fireworks unis next Saturday (from David M. Kerr). … The Schaumberg Boomers of the Frontier League are having Looney Tunes Night tonight (from Steve Johnston). … Congressional Republicans will be wearing red jerseys for the Congressional Baseball Game, rather than letting players pick their own jerseys (from Gregory Zitelli).

College/High School Football News: Rutgets has added the CFB150 patch (from @RutgersRivals). … It’s also made its way to Pitt’s unis (from @Pittsburgh Nerd and @ACCTracker). … The Patriots are in Israel to promote American football abroad, and one Israeli team has recycled Tennessee Vols unis (from Joey Ellis). …

NBA News: Philadelphia 77ers? 67ers? Ran Isaac noticed some logo glitches on the NBA Draft tracker on his Android tablet. … Here are some rookie uni numbers, all from Etienne Catalan unless otherwise noted: Pelicans F Zion Williamson will wear no. 1, Heat G Tyler Herro will wear no. 14, Hornets SF Cody Martin and PF P.J. Washington will wear nos. 11 and 25 respectively, Blazers F Nassir Little will wear no. 9 and the previous wearer Gary Trent Jr will switch to no. 2, Magic F Chuma Okeke will wear no. 3 (from Carter Michaels), Knicks G/F R.J. Barrett and F Iggy Brazdeikis will wear nos. 9 and 17 respectively, Wizards F Rui Hachimura will wear no. 9, Pistons F Sekou Doumbouya will wear no. 45 and finally, Cavaliers G Darius Garland and G/F Dylan Windler will wear nos. 10 and 9 respectively, … In an odd move, Forbes photoshopped out the Timberwolves wordmark on Luol Deng’s jersey, but left the Nike and Fitbit logos (from Michael Brighton). … Cross-posted from the baseball section, Phillies IF César Hernández wore a Sixers ‘Philadelphia Unite’ playoff T-shirt under his jersey (from @phillyphran).

Soccer News: Let’s start with Josh Hinton: Real Sociedad home and away kits have been released. … Granada CF has signed a kit deal with Nike, becoming the Nazaríes third manufacturer in as many seasons. … New home kits for Fortuna Düsseldorf. The crest glows in the dark (also from @clash_kit and Drew Gentry). … RB Leipzig have had their home kit leaked. … River Plate’s third kit has been released. … Charlton Athletic have had their new home kit leaked. … Coventry City have signed a kit deal with Hummel. … German third division side SV Meppen revealed their new kits (also from @clash_kit). … Kenya’s African Cup of Nations kits have been released. … El Salvador’s Gold Cup kits have been released. … The England national team’s Twitter account used the old Romania crest in this thread. The current Romania crest is viewable here. … Phoenix Rising FC have a Coyotes-inspired kachina training top. … The following are all from @clash_kit: New kits for Olympique Marseille. … Lots of Scottish kits were released today, with Falkirk revealing their new kits (also from Ed Żelaski), Hibernian releasing their new kits and Dunfermline Athletic also releasing their new kits.

Grab Bag: Tampa Pride organizers have criticized the organizers of St. Petersburg Pride for adopting a corporate title sponsor for their parade and festival (from Timothy Burke). … Speaking of, Jamie sends along this Washington Post op-ed series on the corporatization of Pride Month. … Seattle news outlets are running two separate “redesign the city flag” contests, but only one has prize money (from @ManzellBeezy). … Here’s a breakdown of the Commonwealth Coast Conference’s new logo (from Cole McNanna).

Comments (30)

    César Hernández has been wearing that shirt for months…and speaking of the Phillies, Derek Dietrich plays for the Reds.

    GTGFTS: KC Athletics @ NY Yankees, Yankee Stadium, May 22, 1963
    Bill Fischer pitching to Mickey Mantle

    Mantle’s homer in the bottom of the 11th is the one that hit the facade (frieze) and is what is thought to have been is longest homer had it not done so.

    What a weird game; Yanks get seven runs in the 2nd, A’s get six in the 8th and one in the 9th to tie!

    May 22, 1963 vs Kansas City (!) A’s
    Yes the homer was the first thing I thought of when I saw Mickey at bat
    I actually thought this was the pitch he clobbered for the famous homer, but you are correct that he hit it in the 11th, and this picture occurred in the 9th

    An interesting clue is the scoreboard noting an upcoming game against the Mets on Monday, June 3rd, 1963, which would have been the first Mayor’s Trophy Game, a series of games between the Mets and Yankees that continued until early 80s. The interesting this about this first game was that it was rained out on June 3rd and wound up being played on June 20th, and the Yankees had to play a day night doubleheader, with a regularly scheduled game against the Senators (now the Texas Rangers) at 100pm in the afternoon, and the exhibition against the Mets at 800pm on June 20th. The Mets won the game

    Although the scoreboard shows Mets & Houston (ie ’62 or later), the A’s are wearing gold unis, so it had to be 1963 or later

    May 22 1963 Yankees vs Kansas City (!) A’s
    Yes the famous homer was the first thing I thought of when I saw the picture (i’m a semi-old timer). I actually thought this picture depicted the homer, but you are correct, the homer was hit in the 11th, and this is a picture of Mickey batting in the 9th

    More Clues: Houston and Mets are on the scoreboard, so it has to be ’62 or later, but the A’s gold unis on the road means its no earlier than 1963

    Also, he scoreboard notes an upcoming game against the Mets on June 3rd.. That would be the first ever Mayor’s Trophy Game, a series of games that were played between the Mets and Yankees that continued until 1983. The June 3rd game was rained out and it was eventually played on June 20th. The Mets won that first game. The game was in such demand that the Yankees were forced to play the game at night after playing the Senators in a day game earlier that day.

    After much research and learning of the Ballantine Beer Scoreboard and the A’s first year of the Green and Gold. You guys are correct. Man I love the Scoreboard challenge

    I love today’s scoreboard. One thing that I THINK we’re seeing here is an Athletics pitcher wearing the green undershirt without the white tv numbers on his sleeves. If I remember correctly, the league insisted that the A’s pitchers not have white sleeve numbers that could confuse the batter’s view of the white oncoming ball.

    When I searched the photo I couldn’t find it paired with any others from that game. I’d love to see if the rest of the A’s (except other pitchers) DO have white tv numbers on the sleeves of their relatively new, at the time, ostentatious gold uniforms.

    As far as Syracuse new jerseys go, it’s amazing what a proper block number font will do.

    The graphic showing the pantS bothers me. It just says pant. No one says that. Unless you’re talking about what a dog does when it’s hot.

    Not uni-related, but nickname nonetheless:

    England’s Lionesses will face Cameroon’s Indomitable Lionesses in the WWC round of 16.

    Don’t know how long these names have been there, but I just get a kick (no pun intended) out of how non-studied, non-corporate, non-focus-grouped this is.

    Alas, Nigeria’s Super Falcons advanced from group play, but don’t have any Falcon team to play.

    My money’s on the Indomitable Lionesses.

    Just a thought: the Atlanta Super Falcons would not have choked away that Super Bowl.

    Heehee. I was hoping someone would come up with a good Falcon / Super Falcon joke!

    “Super Falcons” is an interesting one, as it is not simply a female version of the men’s team nickname. Nigeria’s men are the “Super Eagles”.

    Jeeps have been built in Toledo since the 1940s. It’s a big deal there and a source of local pride.

    Yep … and that weekend is the Toledo Jeep Fest downtown. Festival, parade, 5k(ish) race, etc. Still corporate, but at least makes sense for the city and timing.

    Congressional Republicans will be wearing red jerseys for the Congressional Baseball Game, rather than letting players pick their own jerseys
    I’m just glad they’re still playing baseball…given the current climate I assumed both sides switched to Rollerball instead…

    Another reason to endorse the multiple party system: they could stretch this out to a tournament.

    Missed yesterday’s post until now. I actually don’t mind the addition of black to the Rockets as long as they keep that gorgeous throwback in the rotation. While of course I’d rather it be the only uniform, I appreciate the effort of the current set, to use a Phil phrase.

    Although the link provided only goes to their ticket page. The Northwest Arkansas baseball team is known as the Naturals. They play in Springdale, Arkansas. Not to be confused w/ the Arkansas Travelers, that play in North Little Rock

    I love the magenta and orange Suns jersey concept. I’ve been a suns fan for 15+ years and unfortunately the team does not deserve jerseys that look that nice right now. Until ownership changes the front office and on court product will continue to be horrible and the jerseys they wear deserve to reflect that. Sad day :(

    Take all the blue elements of the Syracuse unis change it to brown and then how Cleveland should look

    Agreed that the new Syracuse look is an upgrade, but I wish they had returned to the Donovan McNabb-era helmets with no logo.

    It takes a certain amount of confidence to have a plain helmet, while just slapping a block “S” on the side looks generic.

    I will also add that while the corporate/marketing speak that accompanies these uniform reveals doesn’t bother me nearly as much as it does Paul and others…Nike claiming that its jerseys are built around a “chassis” kind of makes me want to vomit.

    Love the new Syracuse uniforms, can’t wait to see them in action. I wish we kept a blue helmet too, but we still could see one in special uniforms.

    Rui isn’t wearing #9. That’s for the 9th pick, which he was chosen with. The team made a point of emphasizing this during his presser.

    I suspect he wants #21, which is currently being wasted on Dwight Howard. Howard used to wear 12 but Kelly Oubre (since traded) had it.

    This’ll all work itself out in training camp I’m sure.

Comments are closed.