[Editor’s Note: Paul is on his annual August break from site (although he’s still writing his weekly Bulletin column and may pop up here on the blog occasionally). Deputy editor Phil Hecken is in charge from now through the end of the month.]
A good Thursday morning to you today, Uni Watchers. I hope everyone is having a good week.
Yesterday was another slow uni-news day, but things will pick up later today when the Wizards are expected to release the white version of their inaugural “Wizards” uniform, for the “Classic” (throwback) edition of their 2022-23 unis. Depending on when it’s released, I’ll try to have coverage of the release today. And of course, tonight the Reds and Cubs hook up in the second edition of the “Field of Dreams” Game, and if the on-field unis look as good as the unis they unveiled earlier this week, it should be a stellar looking game.
I’ll be on the road for a good chunk of the afternoon, so please play nice in the comments!
Now then — today I’m joined by Colin MacIntyre, a Canadian CFL fan, who will be ranking the uniforms of the Canadian Football League. Prior to becoming a dad of two kids, Colin ran this offbeat website, which he describes as “a ‘not-scientific-whatsoever’ method of measuring when, and if, one should be wearing a pair of thermal long underwear.” That might not be of major interest for an article running in the middle of one of the hottest summers in the Northern Hemisphere, but check it oot nonetheless.
Here’s Colin with his…
2022 CFL Uniform Rankings
by Colin MacIntyre
While 99.98% of Uni-Watch readers are no doubt very excited for the start of NFL and College Football (and all the various Uni Combos which fill the tickers), I thought it might be fun to do a ranking of on-field uniforms of the Canadian Football League (CFL). Overall the CFL is slightly above average when it comes to uniforms, though there are some snoozers, and the majority of teams have a black or navy helmet (5 out of 9 in fact!). In any case, here is a not scientific whatsoever ranking of all 9 CFL uniforms (home and away, no alternates).
9. B.C. Lions
I’m no uni-scientist, but I feel like a pretty standard rule of thumb for a sports uniform is a) have a primary color and b) a secondary color is used as a highlight. The problem with the Lions current look, is that both the Orange and Black are battling for supremacy, within our eyeballs. This makes the whole thing look a bit of a mess. The Logo, while clever, is also a bit dated, and needs a bit of a refresh.
8. Ottawa Redblacks
I guess when your team name is literally REDBLACK (and yes, officially, the team name is in uppercase letters), you somewhat limit your palette. The main problem with Ottawa is the uniform set comes off as looking very high school football. The one bright spot here is a plaid pattern that they use on the side panels, which adds to a Lumberjack theme (Logo is a buzz saw blade, and they cut off pieces of a tree with a chainsaw during home games. Hey, it’s Canada!). They could use plaid look more, or, they should do what the Ottawa Senators won’t, and go full barberpole baby!
7. Toronto Argonauts
Toronto’s oldest professional sports franchise has a great colors (navy and sky blue), a great looking modernized retro logo. All the ingredients to look prestigious for Toronto’s oldest sports franchise. However, the lack of any stripes on the jersey, helmet or pants, make the Argos the most boring looking uniform in the CFL. I’d lean into the white here (white helmet, white pants) to make the blues pop.
6. Calgary Stampeders
What do you get when you cross a fantastic home field look with an uninspired road look? The Stamps. The Home look is great: look at those shoulder stripes! Two stripes on the pants too? Bonus! However, the Stampeders seem to be unwilling or unable to ditch BFBS (as evidenced in the face mask), and then the road uniform looks almost identical to the REDBLACKS (Calgary vs Ottawa games look very much like intersquad games). If the Stamps would double down on white and red, they’d be top 3 easy, plus you can let the REDBLACKS keep Red and Black!
5. Montreal Alouettes
Fun fact: when I started thinking about this topic, the Als were actually last! While their look isn’t exactly whiz bang exciting, I came to appreciate it’s very clean, and more polished than the above 4 teams. The dark colors could use some white or silver to make them pop. The newish logo also isn’t great, and while one could argue they needed a logo refresh from this, I yearn for the return of the 2000’s era unis, which were instantly recognizable.
4. Edmonton Elks
You can forgive the Elks a bit as they’ve been going through a re-branding exercise over the last couple years, trying to find their way after transitioning from their old name to a new one (Eskimos to Elks). The 2022 version sees the return of the ‘Double E’ (though no longer restrained by an oval), on the helmet, replacing the one season and done ‘Antlers’. Also, stripes on the sleeves! However 2 major flaws keep this from being a top 3 uniform: Single color numbers, new to the Elks Era (the team always had gorgeous drop shadow numbering). The second is the ‘antlers’ on the leg stripes which comes across as being a lobster claw.
3. Hamilton Tiger-Cats
Do you know what is to love about the Tabbies? Pretty much all of it. Everything about this look screams’ intimidating: from the Black and Gold, the modernized legacy logo, the helmet and jersey stripes. The Ti-Cats (yes their nickname has two nicknames) could use a some stripes on the pants the gold pants though (and forget the black pants exist) and dare I say a contrasting color on the numbers. All in all though, a great look. Oski Wee Wee!
2. Saskatchewan Roughriders
I’ll admit my bias here as someone who is born in raised in Saskatchewan, so green blood wants me to put the Riders in first, and the The ‘Green and White’ actually have a great onfield look! Surprisingly, looks modern but not boring! The side panel stripes and the leg stripes come across as a seamless look, and helmet logo is oversized. If you aren’t going to have a classic football look, then look to Saskatchewan for inspiration. But if you want the BEST look CFL Uniform football look, then you need to look to (takes deep breath) east to the…
1. Winnipeg Blue Bombers
As much as it pains me to say it, the Winnipeg Blue Bombers the best dressed team in the CFL, and I would argue, top 5 in all Football, period. The blue and gold colors are unique to the club, the jersey, pants and socks have all the right stripes in the all the right places, and a block letter logo on the helmet. If you look up ‘football uniform’ in the dictionary, you should see a picture of the Bombers. The defending back to back Grey Cup champs are winners and dress like it too.
Well there you have it. No doubt you will all agree 100% and leave no comments whatsoever.
Enjoy the American football seasons! Remember to tune into the Grey Cup in late November!
Thanks, Colin. Interesting set of rankings. I’m sure the readers will want to weigh in!