It finally happened.
You woke up from a nap, went outside for a smoke break at work, checked your smartphone, your e-mail, got a call from a friend, a neighbor, your Aunt Dorris, but somehow, you heard what has turned Husker Nation into a horde of Tim Gunns – Nebraska’s wearing alternate jerseys next year.
I’d like to take a moment to personally thank Tom Osborne for officially sanctioning UniChat® for the next several months, and that’s just until the things are actually unveiled!
I have yet to find one person that is not firmly on one side or the other on this issue. Personally, I can’t wait. In the most extreme cases opposite mine, a few people even went so far as to suggest Dr. Tom be fired.
You know all of those goofy jokes that we’ve all heard a thousand times in the last calendar year? This is why they’re made.
The pro-alternate crowd’s reasons for embracing the trend are simple: It helps recruiting, generates buzz, it’s fun to see and the bottom line, there’s money to be made.
The anti-alternates stand firm on tradition, mostly. Initially, it was understood that the sacred white shell of Nebraska’s football helmet wouldn’t be touched…and then a potential “slight change” was mentioned. Hellfire and brimstone.
Multiple fans suggested that it’s too late to join the uniform wardrobe trend as if the concept of having alternates somehow has an expiration date.
If Nebraska’s even with Oregon for Johnny Bluechip on nine out of ten points with the final being uniforms, check one up for Scott Frost, because that kid’s going to Eugene. “Good riddance” doesn’t have a 65-percent completion ratio, folks.
Osborne described the uniforms as “futuristic,” but I’m going to guess he meant whatever you’d call Nike Pro Combats.
I honestly doubt Nebraska and Adidas go too crazy. I dug what they did for Michigan/Notre Dame and have enjoyed the Wolverines’ 2011 return to the numbered winged helmets.
Let me address those of you who are firmly against this news for one reason or another. In order to provide the finest product on the field, Nebraska needs to take advantage of every opportunity it can.
This is why millions of dollars is poured into the program on a yearly basis, but I’m not telling you anything you don’t already know.
One point of contention I’ve often heard about Nebraska actually doing this is that Oregon’s uniforms are their tradition, it’s what they do.
Well, other teams began adopting the idea and they never hung their hats on multiple uniforms. Michigan and Notre Dame never have and they don’t have to.
Want to knock the Ducks off the map? Out-design, preach tradition, show off the hardware and voila! Oregon may have been to the grandest stage more recently, but Nebraska’s a brand itself. Adidas needs Nebraska more than the other way around.
I’ve been impressed overall with how Tom Osborne has handled the athletic department his return since 2008.
Cautious optimism seems the way to go here, so that’s how I’ll go. After all, thanks to 2002, the bar’s set pretty low.
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