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A very good Sunday morning to you all. I hope everyone had a good Saturday.
There was a lot of uni-action and shenanigans on the gridiron this week, so I’ll keep today’s intro short. Yesterday, the Oregon Ducks (after teasing them a couple weeks back but initially not announcing a date for their wearing) broke out their “Rose Bowl Throwbacks,” or, more appropriately, their 1996-1998 uniforms. My Duck Tracker, Dennis Bolt, did an excellent piece on the throwbacks, which includes looks at other times they’ve worn this throwback, as well as the originals. I’d heartily recommend reading that to bring you up to speed on the 2023 throwbacks.
Oregon has, over the years, worn a lot of different uniforms, but I think these are my favorite. The kelly green and athletic gold are such a classic color scheme — much better than the various shades of green and yellow (and black and gray and silver) the team has worn since. The interlocking “UO” helmet logo is as good or better than the groundbreaking “O” helmet and logo introduced shortly after, and certainly looks better than any wings ever have.
The Ducks opponent — Wazzu — unfortunately went mono-white, but because of the overcast sky in Eugene yesterday, the contrast was welcome and the game actually looked pretty good. Probably not good enough to crack Jimmer’s 5 & 1 (on the good side), but quite pleasing to the eye.
And now, let’s get this show started! Here’s Terry with the rest of your…
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Sunday Morning Uni Watch by Terry Duroncelet, Jr.
After last week’s humble offerings, this week decided to go full-throttle and then cut the brakes. Perfect for Homecoming Week (Part 1, at least), which a lot of schools had over the weekend. I’m MORE THAN SURE that I missed some things, but nevertheless, Here’s Week 8…
• Marshall/James Madison: I spotted this dude during Thursday night’s game (how’s that shirt workin’ for ya, my guy?), just before the camera operator realized their criminal mistake and gave us the JawsRainbow of Life before panning back to the field. Thanks to my occasional appreciation for juvenile humor and the existence of DVRs however, the damage has already been done.
• Tulane/North Texas: Throwback bacon decals for Tulane. There’s a Green Eggs and Ham joke here somewhere.
• Iowa/Minnesota: Rare gold tops for the Hawkeyes.
• LSU/Army: Even MORE rare gold/white/white combo for the Tigers. The flag patches probably coincide with this game being only the second time that these two squads have played each other, and the first time in 92 years.
• UAB/Memphis: UAB broke out the Children’s Harbor uniforms earlier in the season, but what I didn’t know was that they had a second children’s health uni in the wings: their black and lime Smile-a-Mile alts (here’s the website). These are slightly different from their CH unis (Smile-a-Mile on the left, Children’s Harbor on the right).
• Illinois/Wisconsin: Not quite the quintessential Cheesehead/Ursine matchup we’re all thinking of, but this one’s plenty easy on the eyes.
• Pitt/Wake Forest: Pitt wore white helmets for the first time in almost 80 years against the Demon Deacons. Keep these in the rotation, PLEASE! (but like, add a blue or even a gold facemask)
• San José State/Utah State: I’d like to personally thank the Spartans for re-embracing gold in their uniforms.
Week 8 is in the books! Next Saturday is effectively the Halloween week, so expect teams to come out in their Saturday Worst (which is what I want). Hope you all have a fantastic day, and I’l see you next week.
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Thanks, TJ! One hell of a wrap today — stellar coverage.
And now, onto the rest of your SMUW…
Canadian University Uni Watch
Returning for 2023 is Canadian University Uni Watcher Wade Heidt, who will bring us some looks at three-down, 110-yard Canadian university football from up north. That’s Wade to the right side of your screen (you can even click to enlarge). The shirt Wade is wearing was created by the one and only Wafflebored! Wade’s rundown will appear every week on SMUW until the season ends.
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Canadian University Uni Watch by Wade Heidt
You know what time it is. Time for university football uniform watching Canadian rules style! It’s time for the CUUW!
Another great fall weekend for some Canadian football. The Ontario conference finished their regular season this weekend. The other three conferences will wrap up their regular seasons next weekend.
The CUUW will cross the country from east to west to look at some games.
• We start in the Atlantic conference (AUS) with a game in Sackville, NB. The Mount Allison Mounties wearing an unusual combo of garnet over black at home. The use of the black pants with both home and road uniforms for Mount A has increased. It’s not bad but the gold pants are the best with the garnet jerseys. The visiting Saint Mary’s Huskies wearing full white from head to toe.
• Over to the Quebec conference (RSEQ) we go. The McGill Redbirds wore their red over white combo at home in Montreal. Their best home combo. The visiting Concordia Stingers went with their yellow over maroon combo. Every week we have been seeing colour vs. colour games in U Sports football and I love that.
We will look at a couple of games in the Ontario conference (OUA).
• A really big game in London. The winner would finish first and get the bye into the OUA Yates Cup Semifinals. It was guaranteed the first place team would be a team that wears purple. The Western Mustangs wore purple over purple at home. The Laurier Golden Hawks brought their full white combo on the road. A huge comeback in second half by Laurier in this game for a close finish but it wasn’t enough. Western remained undefeated.
• The Toronto Varsity Blues finished off their season wearing navy over navy at home. The visiting Waterloo Warriors always have multiple uniform combos to choose from. It was white over yellow for Waterloo on Saturday.
Go west we will! Moving on to the Canada West conference for two games.
• The Manitoba Bisons made the unusual move of wearing white at home in Winnipeg. They wore white over brown. These are new brown pants this season for the Bisons. Love this combo mixed in with their gold helmet. The visiting Alberta Golden Bears of course did not let us down. Another different uniform combo. Alberta went yellow/yellow/white.
• Moving on to Vancouver and Thunderbird Stadium. The funky stadium nestled on the coast of the Point Grey campus. The UBC Thunderbirds wore navy over navy at home. The Regina Rams packed the gold (beige?) uniforms for the road trip. Gold over gold. We hadn’t seen the full khakis from Regina this season and it usually shows up at home. I write this with some disappointment. Aesthetically, both schools have looked better than this in the past.
I know most readers must be amazed. No snow games by late October! This is Canadian football darn it! I am no weatherman but good chance of a snow game before the end of the playoffs.
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Thanks, Wade! Great stuff — looking forward to some snow games! Hopefully soon.
Five and One
Jimmer Vilk’s 5 & 1
Welcome to the Five and One for 2023!
Once again, Jim “Jimmer” Vilk (the original “5 & 1” decider) has returned.
The original concept of the 5 & 1 was simple: Jim picked five good matchups and one awful matchup. He’s still calling the project “5 & 1” but with a new twist.
You may agree and you may disagree — these are, after all, just opinions and everyone has one. Feel free to let him know what you think in the comments section.
If you have a game you feel is “worthy” of consideration for the 5 & 1, please either post it in the comments below or tweet Mr. Vilk @JVfromOhio.
Did you leave it blank? If so, at least 18 schools might want to hire you to be in charge of picking their uniforms. That’s how many teams went mono-white this weekend. Now, not all of them chose the minimalist long underwear look, but too many of them did. I hope this boring blinding-in-the-sun fad fades quickly. Anyway, let’s experience the full spectrum* of colors in this week’s Top Five.
*Green is the only color not represented, unless you count the grass or turf.
5. The “Icy Is Out, Sandy Is In” Game:
I hope the Owls make these sand-colored unis their full time road look.
4. The “Hot Dog, I Love Ketchup And Mustard!” Matchup:
Strikingly Exceptional Colors.
3. The “Mono That’s Not Monotonous” Game:
SMU at Temple
I would’ve preferred a red horsey on SMU but this matchup still deserves a high five.
2. The “Understated Is Not A Dirty Word” Game:
In a world of over-the-top-ness vs. minimalism, this simple, classy and just-right tribute to the first game in Memorial Stadium was a breath of fresh air.
1. Simply The Best:
Oklahoma State/West Virginia
Phil always says the Cowboys are Predictably Gorgeous, and this Color Palette Special made him correct. [I also love it when West Virginia looks like West Virginia — PH]
&1. The “Tiny Numbers Vs. Shiny Numbers” Matchup:
For those who thought I should’ve dinged the Huskies last week, I hope this even worse look was worth the wait.
See you next week!
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Thanks, Jim! OK readers? What say you? Agree or disagree with Jimmer’s selections? Let him know in the comments below.
Power Five Uni Tracking
Uni Watch will again track the uniform combinations worn by college football conferences. New this year is Zachary Wooldridge, who is tracking the SEC. And joining the SMUW crew to track the Big XII is Matt Tomelleri, so we again have all Power Five conferences tracked this season.
Long-time trackers Rex Henry (tracking the ACC and the B1G this year), and Dennis Bolt (tracking the PAC-12) are returning for another season. Following the tracking, Dennis again returns with his Duck Tracking (which is the longest continuously-running feature on SMUW!).
Welcome to the 2023 Oregon Ducks Uni Tracker. This little project was originally begun way back in 2008-09 by Michael Princip, who retired after several seasons, whereupon the project was continued by Tim E. O’Brien. He, too, retired from the tracking, but the project has been ably kept up by the man who also tracks the Pac12, Dennis Bolt.
Longtime readers know our longtime MLB Playoff jersey tracker Alex Rocklein has been covering all the jerseys worn by each and every Major League Baseball playoff team/game for the past several seasons, and I’m pleased to announce Alex is again returning for the 2023 MLB Playoffs. With the expansion of the Wild Card (to six teams — three in each league) in 2022, his graphics have gotten more complicated, but they’re still great.
Just one game on the docket yesterday, and the Phillies stuck to their uniform protocol, wearing their red jerseys for away game “getaway” day attire. It worked. They won convincingly and now return to Philly for game six and with a 3-2 series lead over Arizona.
One game tonight: Astros (who I will bet dollars to dounts will wear their “lucky” orange tops) look to close things out against Texas.
Here’s the tracking so far:
League Championship Series:
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Thanks Alex! When next we hear from you, we’ll be deep into World Series!
Guess the Game from the Uniform
Based on the suggestion of long-time reader/contributor Jimmy Corcoran, we’ve introduced a new “game” on Uni Watch, which is similar to the popular “Guess the Game from the Scoreboard” (GTGFTS), only this one asked readers to identify the game based on the uniforms worn by teams.
Like GTGFTS, readers will be asked to guess the date, location and final score of the game from the clues provided in the photo. Sometimes the game should be somewhat easy to ascertain, while in other instances, it might be quite difficult. There will usually be a visual clue (something odd or unique to one or both of the uniforms) that will make a positive identification of one and only one game possible. Other times, there may be something significant about the game in question, like the last time a particular uniform was ever worn (one of Jimmy’s original suggestions). It’s up to YOU to figure out the game and date.
Today’s GTGFTU comes from Bill Dexhart.
Good luck and please post your guess/answer in the comments below.
Uniform Tweaks and Concepts
Uni Concepts and Tweaks
Time for more Uni Tweaks from the UW readership.
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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With the Patriots primed to wear their gray pants today, these concepts come from John Agre.
I really don’t like the inconsistency of the Patriots stripes on their blue jersey and silver/gray pants – seems to me that stripes on a Patriotic uniform would always be red and white like the flag, so the uni combo should look like this:
I’d like to see that same red and white striping pattern on the white jersey, so all combinations would look coordinated:
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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.
And piggybacking on John’s idea, since the one shell rule is no more, and the Patriots have brought back Pat Patriot, I’d love to see them use their white shell with the current unis, and pair them with the white pants they used for their CR uniform a couple years back. Just take Pat off the hat and replace him with Elvis (these concepts are NOT mine, but examples found on the Interwebs):
The white helmet (with Elvis) could also work with their current blue pants:
Threads of the Game
Threads of our Game…
Got an e-mail yesterday from the great Craig Brown, who runs the fantastic Threads Of Our Game website. If you’re not familiar with it, the primary focus is on pre-1900 baseball uniforms and related ephemera.
Swinging for the fences — a deep dive on the Page Fence Giants
Hello baseball historians,
As team pictures go, the “fence” photo of the Page Fence Giants remains one of the more unusual images baseball has ever produced. Though widely published, the year in which the image was made remains in question. The same could be said about Hall of Famer Sol White. Was he in this photo, or not? And where exactly was this photo taken?
In studying this intriguing image we found a few answers, made a few discoveries – and even came across a black bear.
…that’s going to do it for today and for me for this week. As always, a big huge thanks to the entire SMUW crew: Terry Duroncelet, Wade Heidt, Jimmer Vilk, Rex Henry, Dennis Bolt, Zach Wooldridge and Matt Tomelleri, and also to Alex Rocklein for the MLB playoff jersey tracking. Fantastic stuff all!
Everyone have a great Sunday and a better week, and I’ll catch you back here next Saturday.