Column: Line Drives — Jerseys need team’s colors

[This is my column in the June 25 issue of The Commercial Review.]

I need to rant.

It seems as if teams have gotten away from wearing uniforms that have their team colors.
Case in point, the University of Oregon.

I will admit some of its schemes look really good — the all-white and all-black uniforms are slick.

Those, however, are not the official Oregon Ducks colors of “Lightning Yellow” and “Thunder Green.”

Another example is the San Diego Chargers’ Powder blue uniforms.

While the Powder blues are technically not part of the Chargers’ colors, they are the best uniforms in the NFL. As is almost anything Oregon wears.

The “Wolf Grey” alternate uniforms for the Seattle Seahawks are indeed a little odd, but according to the team’s website it is one of their three team colors — College Navy and Action Green.

So they will get a pass.

The Atlanta Hawks, however, do not.

On Wednesday the Hawks unveiled new uniforms. A white scheme for home and a black road uniform that have “Atlanta” across the chest, and a red alternate with “ATL” emblazoned on the front.

All three of them include a few startling characteristics.

The first of which is a triangle pattern sublimated — a design below the surface of the fabric, unlike a screen print or embroidery — on each of the three uniforms. The pattern is most prevalent on the black jerseys, and it is not on any of the accompanying shorts.

It looks bad. Think of a gradient pattern.

The second is the inclusion of a fluorescent green that Nike fell in love with a few years ago, but doesn’t go with anything.

The “volt green,” as it is aptly named, isn’t just a trim on the neck or piping down the side of the shorts. The numbers on the uniforms are in this obnoxious color with either red or black trim. The “Atlanta” and “ATL” insignia are also outlined with the color that most resembles a highlighter.

But why?

Who in the marketing department in Atlanta thought the inclusion of this color would go well with white, black and red? Not just that, but others thought it was a worthy color combination to put on professional athletes.

The Hawks’ new uniforms are more suitable for a youth travel team.

Monday I watched the U.S. women’s soccer team play Colombia in the World Cup Round of 16, and midway through the second half it dawned on me the American kits included the same bright green as the Hawks uniforms.

Last time I checked, the colors of the United States are red, white and blue. Where does green fit into that equation?

At what point did teams get away from wearing uniforms that had their colors on them?

Which brings me to one of the latest uniform crazes, with which the Jay County baseball team is aware of my disdain.

Digital camouflage.

When did this become a thing, and when can it stop?

There was once a time when a camo uniform was OK, back when its occurrence was few and far between.

Now it seems like every team has a camo alternate uniform, which has since led me to change my stance on the pattern.

The only place camouflage is acceptable is on soldiers and hunters.

It doesn’t belong in sports.

Call me old fashioned.

I like classic uniforms.

Basic and to the point, with the team’s colors too.

Everything else needs to go away.


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