There were no gimmicks for this season opener- no fan vote for which uniform to wear, no introduction of a Crimson Chrome monstrosity a week before the season to distract us from football. Nope. David Beaty has promised us football, and while there will likely be plenty of losing football ahead if this result is any measure, Beaty has at least assured us that the Hawks will look good doing it.
This is the Kansas Jayhawks that we’re talking about here. A team, that for a vast amount of its history, wore blue at home and white on the road. If the first week of the season is any indication (it isn’t), then Beaty will continue with the Clint Bowen theme of wearing (semi-) traditional home uniforms.
For one, KU wore blue helmets. They didn’t break out their traditional blue lids until the sixth game of the season last year. So, if KU had worn a t-shirt and jeans under their blue helmets, I would have been pretty satisfied. But this helmet is a tad bit different than the blue lid that KU wore last season. For one, the grey facemask is exchanged for a chromeone this season. And two, the center stripe is different. This one has the red stripe flanked by smaller white stripes. Last year, the only stripe was red. The third change is the most notable. The Jayhawk on the helmet is now shiny and chrome-like.
But Kansas didn’t stop at the blue lids. Nope, they wore blue jerseys as well. And as noted in the article speculating what surprises were in store for KU football this season, the numbers on the uniforms have switched from standard white to an at times, eye piecing chrome. And that sublimated pattern in the jersey isn’t as noticeable as I feared that it might be when a player began to perspire. In more subtle uniform news, KU also switched the sides where the Jayhawk and Big 12 patch go.
The blue pants completed the look, and to me, this is as close to the best that a KU team can currently look….from a uniform perspective. Sure, Clint Bowen tried to emulate those Mangino/Talib/Reesing glory years by having the team wear grey pants, but that shade was just too dark. Those Orange Bowl winners were a lighter shade, almost silver, so in comparison to last season, I think the mono-blue is a nice upgrade. My first preference is white pants, and I’m sure they’ll break those out sometime in the near future.
If the team is going to lose games (and they surely will), at least they won’t be an eyesore doing it if they trot out there each week looking like this. To play poorly is one thing, but to be paraded around in a clown suit while getting beaten to a pulp is another. We don’t need another reason for the haters to lob insults at this football program, and eliminating all the ridiculous combinations (thanks Coach Bowen for starting it, and thanks Coach Beaty for continuing it) is a nice start.