Monday Morning Uni Watch (and the NBA Season Preview!)

Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images; for all photos, click to enlarge

A feast for the eyes yesterday in Chicago, as the Bears wore their 1930s throwbacks against the Packers (additional photos here and here). You know I can’t get enough of those striped socks:

Here’s how it looked in action:

Fun facts: This was the first time the Packers have worn a color other than white in Chicago since 1956, when they wore navy (while Chicago wore their dark navy — a game that must’ve been very visually challenging!). And the last time Green Bay wore green in Chicago was way back in 1936!

Since Chicago was wearing the 1936 design yesterday, it would’ve been so great if Green Bay had created their own ’36 throwback — or even if they’d worn their new 1950s throwbacks. But I understand why they want to debut those at home (which they’re due to do next week, in fact), not on the road.

In one additional note from yesterday’s game, Green Bay players were playing with a Packer soccer ball during pregame activities. Not sure I’ve ever seen that before:

In other news from around the league yesterday:

• Washington wore their throwbacks:

• Also from that Washington game, Washington tried to deflect attention from the Gruden/email scandal honored former defensive back Sean Taylor by retiring his No. 21 — only the the third number retirement in franchise history, after Sammy Baugh’s No. 33 and Bobby Mitchell’s No. 49 (although the team has lots of other numbers that aren’t officially retired but have effectively been taken out of circulation; Taylor’s number was in that category until yesterday):

• In that same game, Washington defensive lineman Chase Young honored Taylor by mimicking Taylor’s signature facemask tape (as others have done over the years):

Young wore the tape job only for the first half; he was tape-free for the second half.

• The Broncos wore their navy alternates:

• The Giants celebrated the 10th anniversary of their 2011 championship season by wearing white jerseys at home with throwback grey pants (the same uni combo they wore in Super Bowl XLVI):

• During halftime of that Giants game, members of the 2011 team wore jerseys with memorial patches for strength and conditioning coach Markus Paul (MP), offensive lineman Mitch Petrus (62), and defensive back Tyler Sash (39), all of whom have died in the past 10 years. The ceremony also included a logo for the 10th anniversary of the championship:

• The Jags went mono-black:

• During the Sunday-night game, NBC showed an amateurish-looking graphic that inexplicably showed Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger wearing a helmet visor (which I don’t believe he’s worn since 2010) and a Saints logo on his hip (???):

• The aforementioned Bears and Giants were the only two teams that wore white at home.

(My thanks to all contributors, including Dave Chojnacki, Edward Connolly, Matt Dunn, Dan Pfeifer, John Okray, @ianb78, and our own Phil Hecken.)

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ITEM! NBA Season Preview now available: The NBA regular season tips off tomorrow, which means we’ll be in that brief sweet spot where all four Big Four pro leagues are in action. It also means it’s time for the annual Uni Watch NBA Season Preview, which has all of the uni and logo news for the coming season. It’s available for your reading pleasure over at InsideHook. Enjoy!

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Bulletin reminder: In case you missed it on Friday, my latest article on Bulletin is an interview with football uniform historian Bill Schaefer, who creates all of the uniform mock-ups that appear on the amazing Gridiron Uniform Database website. We talked about how the GUD got started, he research methods, his “white whale,” his goals for the site’s future, and a lot more. I hope you’ll check it out on my Bulletin page.

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Click to enlarge

Yo-ho-ho and giant cephalopod: Did you know that there’s a brand of spiced rum called Kraken? Yeah, you probably did, but I didn’t until a bottle of the stuff showed up at Uni Watch HQ on Friday. Turns out that Kraken (the rum) is the official rum of the Kraken (the NHL team), so they sent me a bottle, along with a Kraken/Kraken co-branded ski cap. The ski cap will end up in the 2021 year-end raffle; the bottle will be put to good use.

Since the best-known spiced rum is probably Captain Morgan, shouldn’t there be some sort of nautical Morgan-vs.-Kraken smackdown? It’d be sorta like Alien vs. Predator, but on the high seas. And with booze.

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The Ticker
By Jamie Rathjen

Baseball News: Gigantes de Carolina, one of the teams in Puerto Rico’s Liga de Béisbol Profesional Roberto Clemente, have a new logo and jerseys (thanks, Phil).
 

Football News: Left over from Saturday: FCS Campbell’s colors are black and orange, so of course they wore mono-black for their last pre-Halloween home game (from Paula Parker). … If you’re not aware, Tennessee enters the field through a giant T formed by the band, and on Saturday the stadium lights were turned down and just the T was lit up (thanks, Phil). … FCS school Dartmouth revealed a new helmet yesterday (from Ben Whitehead). … Oklahoma apparently has a drum where it displays logo decals of defeated opponents (from @PaytonGlen). … Reader Wade Heidt has Canadian college uni tracking in yesterday’s comments.

Hockey News: The WHL’s Everett Silvertips wore pink accents on Saturday (from Wade Heidt). … Also from Wade: The Junior A British Columbia Hockey League’s Cowichan Capitals were the first BCHL team to wear “retro-inspired throwbacks” for the league’s 60th anniversary.

Basketball News: One or both of George Washington’s teams appears to be getting new uniforms today (from Matt Eliot). … Here is one writer’s ranking of every Jazz uniform (thanks, Phil).

Soccer News: Italian club Napoli, who like to participate in trends like wearing black and camouflage and unusually, for soccer, wear those at home, wore a black Halloween-themed shirt in Serie A yesterday — of course for a home game (also from Trevor Williams). … The NWSL’s Portland Thorns have been taping over the ad on their warm-up shirts recently for several reasons. … College teams that wore pink socks or other items included Duquesne and Florida Atlantic. … Australia’s men’s A-League already has a ad in its name and at least on social media is back to being “A-League” plus the advertiser, while the women’s A-League doesn’t have one. The leagues were renamed to “A-League Men” and “A-League Women” a few weeks ago, but that lasted maybe a few days. … Reader Michael Rich got a survey from Atlanta United focused on its shirt ad asking, among other things, for agreement or disagreement with several statements about the ad.

Grab Bag: College field hockey teams that wore pink included American, Bucknell, and Georgetown. … Australian cricket’s men’s Big Bash League has the leading run-scorer and wicket-taker wear golden caps. For some reason the women’s Big Bash League didn’t have that until now. The leagues also look to have a new number font. … Watkins Glen, N.Y., home of the auto race track of the same name, has checkered flag-themed crosswalks and apparently has for about two years (from @maybeifollowyou). … Thanks to James Gilbert, we have a thread on oddly shaped high school running tracks. … Here’s an article on a campaign for an Indiana school to change its “Rebels” team name (from Stephen Langdon). … Vermont prisoners were once tasked with making car decals for the state police and hid a pig in the design that went undiscovered for several years (from Lee Wilds). … Here’s a gallery of Winter Olympics torch designs from 1964 through 2018 (from Jeremy Brahm).

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Our latest raffle winner is Jason Tirotta, who’s won himself a bobbleball from the Mascot Hall of Fame. Congrats to him, and thanks to the Hall for sponsoring this one. — Paul

36 comments to Monday Morning Uni Watch (and the NBA Season Preview!)

  • R. Scott Rogers | October 18, 2021 at 8:23 am |

    Captain Morgan dark spiced rum is the better dark spiced rum, but I usually opt for Kraken when I need to replenish my bar supplies based on the name alone. I’m a sucker for cephalopods. Anyway, my favorite use for dark spiced rum is as a float atop a Mai Tai. While tiki purists will object that an original Mai Tai does not have a float of any kind, modern Mai Tais typically do have a float of dark overproof rum. Which doesn’t add much to the drink other than a visual accent and heightened booziness. Whereas a float of dark spiced rum keeps the visual impact and adds a nice flavor accent without pointlessly upping the ethanol.

  • Sean Robbins | October 18, 2021 at 9:07 am |

    I am a fan of Kraken dark rum for hot buttered rum when it finally gets cold enough in Texas to have one. Kraken is tasty and inexpensive.

  • Daniel E | October 18, 2021 at 9:22 am |

    Big Ben with a Saints logo on his pants is one of the more inscrutable things I’ve seen on the internet in a while.

    • Paul Lukas | October 18, 2021 at 9:31 am |

      It really is a bizarre thing for them to have put on TV!

      • Greg | October 18, 2021 at 10:30 am |

        Paul, have you reached out to any contacts within their graphics department? This isn’t the first of their obvious blunders. It feels almost as if the graphics are a complete afterthought, and someone is hastily assigned them at the last minute to mash up something from whatever is already on file.

        • Paul Lukas | October 18, 2021 at 10:38 am |

          I have not, but that’s not a bad idea.

        • PaulS | October 18, 2021 at 12:56 pm |

          And the ironic thing is, they add nothing to the broadcast. Enhanced graphics, stat cast…. when do they ever actually show the GAME?

          Oh, and get off my lawn….

  • AJ Kane | October 18, 2021 at 9:39 am |

    Hey Paul–one clarification on the NBA preview. You noted that the All Star Game didn’t happen last year, when in fact the game did happen in early March in Atlanta.

    • Paul Lukas | October 18, 2021 at 10:08 am |

      Yup, I know. Brain cramp on my part. ALready asked my editor to change it!

  • Greg | October 18, 2021 at 10:33 am |

    Paul, what are your thoughts on covering the NBA uniforms as of late? Do you enjoy it more as the number of sets provide more to cover and critique, or do you dislike it for that reason? Or perhaps do you like it from an added content perspective but dislike it from a uniform aficionado perspective?

    • Paul Lukas | October 18, 2021 at 10:38 am |

      Quality always matters to me more than quantity. I’d rather have one good uniform to assess (or none at all, for that matter) than 10 bad ones.

      I’m not saying every new NBA design is bad; I’m just saying that “added content” doesn’t mean much to me unless the content is good.

  • B.J. Olejnik | October 18, 2021 at 10:49 am |

    As someone who used to run track, those odd-shaped tracks likely can’t be used for any kind official meet since they aren’t regulation dimensions. Although since they’re high school tracks, they may have some kind of grandfather clause for some of them, as long as they’re 400m.

  • RICKAZ | October 18, 2021 at 10:58 am |

    In your NBA preview, with Memphis retiring Zach Randolph’s No. 50 and Tony Allen’s No. 9, and the Lakers retiring Pau Gasol’s No. 16, it got me thinking about what teams consider for this honor. I used to like how the Lakers only had truly all time players numbers retired, but they relaxed that with a few others. I mean I love Gail Goodrich, Jamaal Wilkes, and James Worthy, but they don’t quite fit in that all time list. It would be like USC Football relaxing it’s Heisman only retired numbers. I think it’s safe to say the Lakers won’t retire a player’s number who didn’t win a title, a luxury most teams don’t have for their criteria.

  • Block "O Canada" | October 18, 2021 at 11:11 am |

    “It also means it’s time for the annual Uni Watch NBA Season Preview, which has all of the uni and logo news for the coming season. It’s available for your reading pleasure over at InisdeHook.”

    I’m not bilingual (unless you count profanity.) Is Inis de Hook the Spanish-language version of Inside Hook? ;)

    • Paul Lukas | October 18, 2021 at 11:40 am |

      Fixed.

  • mike 2 | October 18, 2021 at 11:22 am |

    I mentioned this on Twitter – Captain Morgan is good, but Kraken is the perfect spiced rum for a Dark and Stormy.

    Sailor Jerry is perfect if you just want a shot of rum, no mix.

    • Tyler Moody | October 18, 2021 at 12:44 pm |

      Sailor Jerry and Kraken are just all around better than Captain Morgan, IMO. Even if you just want a rum & coke (or a rum & Squirt in my case, try it if you haven’t), it’s much better.

  • ChrisH | October 18, 2021 at 11:30 am |

    I’m a little surprised that the Joe Gibbs Racing stable didn’t have some type of Sean Taylor tribute/decal yesterday.

  • John H. | October 18, 2021 at 11:39 am |

    Sailor Jerry, Captain Morgan and Kraken in that order.

    • RICKAZ | October 18, 2021 at 12:18 pm |

      I don’t always want the higher alcohol content of Sailor Jerry.

    • Tim | October 18, 2021 at 12:25 pm |

      There is only one good, true, rum.

      Don Q

  • Jeff Ash | October 18, 2021 at 11:40 am |

    The NBA insists this is its 75th anniversary. Basketball historian Curtis Harris says no, it’s only 72 years old. Details, details, details. He explains here: https://prohoopshistory.substack.com/p/happy-birthday-nba

    • Jerry | October 18, 2021 at 12:15 pm |

      It’s Avery interesting article, BUT – how can each team play 10 home games and 6 away games?

  • walter | October 18, 2021 at 12:00 pm |

    I’m willing to give the Cowichan Capitals a pass for the “Blue Collar” reference, since they’re repping British Columbia, and that happens to be one of my favorite B.T.O. songs!

  • walter | October 18, 2021 at 12:13 pm |

    Left over from Saturday: FCS Campbell’s colors are black and orange, so of course they wore mono-black for their last pre-Halloween home game (from Paula Parker)

    The beauty of a team called the Camels is getting to cheer, “Go Humps!!”

  • CoachBatt | October 18, 2021 at 12:21 pm |

    What a shame that the Giants couldn’t have issued black cleats for yesterday’s game instead of the white ‘ballet’ shoes they currently wear… In 2011 the Giants were still a designated “black cleat” dominant team (with quite a bit of red as well).

    ALSO, it appears that the jerseys worn by the 2011 players in the halftime tribute were not tackle-twill.. they look to be press-ons!

  • ChrisH | October 18, 2021 at 12:36 pm |

    “And the last time Green Bay wore green in Chicago was way back in 1936!”

    GUD states that the Packers wore dark green for their game against the Bears in Chicago in 1939:

    https://www.gridiron-uniforms.com/GUD/controller/controller.php?action=single-weekly&game_id=1939_GB-CHI^9

    Before looking that up, I had read the Packers of the 1930’s only wore green for 2 season …’35-’36 (hat-tip, Chance Michaels!):

    http://packersuniforms.blogspot.com/2014/11/what-will-replace-acme-packers.html

  • Kek | October 18, 2021 at 1:36 pm |

    I was more triggered by the usage of block numbers in that Ben graphic (because I want them to return so bad), that I completely missed the Saints’ logo and visor!

    • Paul Lukas | October 18, 2021 at 1:46 pm |

      ANd I was the exact opposite — I missed the block numeral!

  • Brian | October 18, 2021 at 2:32 pm |

    Is it just me, or did the Rams pants, horns and numbers yesterday look more beige/gold than normal? Rather than yellow. Lighting?

  • Jim | October 18, 2021 at 3:40 pm |

    Question on the Jazz ad patch: Is Qualtrics paying the Jazz for the ad space and just putting the “5 For The Fight” name on the jersey in lieu of their company name to try and raise money and awareness? If so, are the Jazz donating the fee that Qualtrics pays them to the cause as well? I just went all the way back to Paul’s original posts from 3 years ago and it wasn’t clear there either. I assume there’s some arrangement there, because otherwise the Jazz wouldn’t really deserve as much credit for the initiative if they’re still profiting off the sale of the ad space.

    • Paul Lukas | October 18, 2021 at 3:45 pm |

      I believe it’s donated. At this point, it doesn’t matter as much because the owner/founder of Qualtrics is now also the owner of the Jazz.

      • Jim | October 18, 2021 at 4:30 pm |

        Good to know. Thanks for the info, Paul. I wasn’t aware of that.

  • MattyJGood | October 22, 2021 at 3:47 pm |

    I love those Bears unis! I believe some teams such as New Orleans(someone please post a photo of both black and white tops please), should consider returning to the throwbacks permanently. I also have a question about a rumor that FSU football is secretly planning to return to a more traditional uniform this weekend against UMass. I know the overwhelming majority of fans and alumni have been none too pleased with the 2014 ignition tradition, and most refer to it as the curse in the recent decline since winning NC in 2013. Any insight would be greatly appreciated, I can only find a mention of it on internet. But I’m terrible with technology, thank you for providing this wonderful site!