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Clearing the decks.

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New Miami unis. As far as *new* uniforms go, these are as subtle as it gets. (While still fitting in some chrome, of course.)

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Tarted-up uniforms done right, done wrong, and John Greco.

UPDATE 7/26, MUST READ:  Training Camp Dispatch from @zachluby via Reboot.

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Miami’s new uniforms, very prodesse quam conspici.

Miami University (my alma mater) is out with new football uniforms.  Ever since Miami dropped the Redskins nickname in favor of Redhawks (1997), there’s been a struggle -in my opinion- to hit the mark for Miami’s sports teams’ uniforms.  After all Miami is a school heavy on tradition.  Kissing under the Upham Arch.  Beta, Sigma Chi, Phi Delt alpha chapters.  Miami was a school before Florida was a state.  Et cetera.

200px-Seal_of_Miami_University

Prodesse quam conspici.

So do you capture the tradition of a school founded in 1809 when your new nickname sounds like a NY-Penn short season Class A minor baseball team?

Welp they did good with this iteration.  And, it seems, they did it by using their seal as the main design element.  Prodesse quam conspici translates roughly to “Progress without being all proud and showy about it.”

That’s what this uniform does.  It brings in new design elements like the shiny helmet and a new approach to the shoulder treatment.  But it stops short of glitzing it up with lots of stripes or piping or fluorescent color tones.

I’m thinking of Michigan as a case study in doing it wrong.  Don’t know the latin for “Conspicuous regression” but Michigan represents it in a football uniform.  Michigan’s contract with adidas is worth $80m.  Maybe they should have taken $60m from Russell and kept their soul.  Or maybe they should have just kept control over what their jersey should look like.  Whatever the case:  Michigan, take a cue from Miami and get back to your best-in-the-country uniforms that you used to have.

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Great uniforms with great tradition are not to be screwed with.

Well done Miami; Adidas, you surprised me in a good way.

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John Greco’s pedigree.

UT-s-linemen-making-strides-Offensive-unit-key-in-victory

Greco in the Glass Bowl.

It was nice to see John Greco extended Tuesday.  Also nice to see the terms are pretty team-friendly:  “worth about $13 million if he’s a starter and includes just under $3 million in guaranteed money… He’ll make a little over $2 million in 2013.” per MKC.

Greco is an interesting cat.  We always like to see Ohio guys and, even better, northeast Ohio guys on the Browns and Greco is that.  Greco is Boardman High and U. Toledo.

But I was struck by his pedigree at Toledo.  No magic research, this is straight from his wiki page:

He was a three-time All-MAC honoree at left tackle.  As a freshman, in 2004, he started at right tackle.  He started 36 games and recorded 275 knockdowns and 34 touchdown-resulting blocks during his three seasons at left tackle.  In 2007 he started all 12 games for Toledo and earned First-team All-MAC for the third consecutive season and was a Third-team All-America by Rivals.com.  As a junior in 2006 he was the team co-captain started all 13 games at left tackle.  He took over left tackle position after graduation of Nick Kaczur.  He opened holes for an offense that ranked 13th in the nation in rushing (216.8 yards per game) and 10th in scoring (25.8 points per game).  As a freshman in 2004 he started all 13 games at right tackle and earned the team’s top freshman award. He redshirted as a true freshman in 2003.

Not the best written wiki entry, but you get the point.  He was impressive at Toledo.   His combine/pro-day stats were also solid.

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From there, it’s a mystery.  The Rams were not stacked on the line when they drafted him 3rd round 2008.  You can tell this because after Greco, they took Jason Smith #2 overall in 2009 and Rodger Saffold #33 overall in 2010.

We really don’t know why Greco couldn’t find the field on a weak Rams line.  But it turns out Greco had at least one fan in Pat Shurmur.  Apparently it was Shurmur who pushed for the ‘trade’ to bring Greco to Cleveland.  What a trade.  The deal was Greco to the Browns for a conditional 7th round pick.  The condition was that Greco had to start a game in 2011.  He didn’t.  So the Browns got him for nothing.

And now he’s a starting right guard.

This is great.  Now we have one hole on the line.  We’ll be watching closely to see if Pinkston is recovered.  If he is, we could be all set.  If he’s not, I sure hope the Browns keep a close eye on the waiver wires.  Would very much like to avoid another year of sixteen Sean Lauvao starts.

PS:  here’s hoping this fast and inexpensive signing is not a shot over the bow of Alex Mack.  But.  I think it might could be.

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Allie Clifton clearly going easy on her fiance.
Not shown: fall away swish two seconds after.

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FSO’s Allie Clifton engaged.

I forgot to include this in the original post, sorry.  We did a piece on the trials of being a female reporter in the sports world.  In that piece there were a couple paragraphs on Van Wert’s own Allie Clifton.  Just wanted to note that she’s announced her engagement and in so doing, updated her twitter avi with one of the best profile photos you’ll find.  That’s her and her fiance playing a little hoop.

You wish you had an engagement pic that good.

You don’t congratulate the bride so congratulations soon-to-be Mr. Clifton.  Much happiness to you both.
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14 Comments

  1. Petefranklin says:

    Double thumb up for your pick of the Marching 110 now. I had forgotten that you were an ex redskin. Their (Miami) uni’s, as were OU’s were pretty dated once the 2000’s hit. And I may be the only one who likes the Terps unis. My parents are from Maryland and both went to UM. My dad actually walked on to the football team. Marylanders are very proud of their unique flag and the uniforms represent it well I think, although true UM colors are red and white I believe. My dad is no longer around to get his opinion, so maybe he would have hated them too.

    • jimkanicki says:

      i’m a big fan of all the russell athletic schools. i believe that’s OU, WKU, GaTech.,, not sure who else. i just like to pull for the underdog and russell is surely that. i also like schools that show loyalty even in business. i can imagine the sports outfitting contracting process to be hugely cut-throat; good on the schools who stay with a supplier who’s taken good care of them for decades.

      if i ever do the “Top Fight Songs” post, my Miami will come out. Love and Honor will make the top 20. but there’s another MAC fight song in my 20 too.. it’s very under the radar but i think deserving. (you won’t guess it.)

  2. Max says:

    I hate Uniformz but apparently the kids love them, so you gotta do what you gotta do to attract recruits.

    Thankfully Michigan’s Bumblebee getups were a one off, and the “alternate” uniforms last year weren’t so garish.
    Even if Michigan had stayed with Nike and not gone to adidas, they probably still would have fallen victim to Clowniforms with Nike’s “Pro Combat” line.

    You see, when the athletic directors make these deals, they’re basically squatting down to pick up every last nickel they can, and while picking up their nickels they are in perfect position to poop all over tradition.

    • jimkanicki says:

      michigan tweaked their color across the board. even the band has the high-lighter yellow going on. and i promise, i thought michigan had the best uniforms and part of that was because michigan had the best colors. why screw with that.. i know not.

      i didnt hate the pro-combat *that* much.. but i truly liked the throwbacks. they can pull these two out as much as they as far as im concerned.

      • Henry Brown says:

        Not only are those terrible, they’re not really even throwbacks.

        • jimkanicki says:

          :-/ they’re not exact replicas but they are throwback no? like, the hop cassidy bucks in 54 didnt have numbers on the helmet sides, but warfield’s buck did. the horvath bucks had stripes on long sleeves but they dont make jerseys like that; otherwise the numbers were like pryor’s above.

          nah, i say ‘are’ throwbacks and not terrible.. good in fact.

          but truthfully, i’m not a fan of OSU unis in the first place. the really big numbers always have seemed goofy to me. (no i’m not suggesting they be changed.)

  3. NeedsFoodBadly says:

    Sorry Jim, those Miami unis are hideous. The helmet is a mess and the Miami across the shoulders is dumb as all hell (cool for the linemen though, I guess). Not as bad as Maryland, but since that’s the worst uniform possibly ever, that’s not saying much.

    But I could be wrong. In other news, I was once preaching a “wait and see” approach to the Browns free-agency but the salary cap stuff is extremely troubling and now that I have waited and saw, I’m closer to hopping on your bandwagon.

    • jimkanicki says:

      you jogged my thinking on a point i’d totally missed: the speed with which greco’s deal got done as well as the small dollars (guaranteed and overall) smells like a potential tactic to hardball mack.

      i didnt want to get busy with all the new unis out there but it seems clear that so many teams are trying to separate themselves from the pack through glitzy unis, they’re becoming the pack. maryland is bad; i think michigan is worse because of what they had before. but you’ve got boise and unc and rutgers leading the parade and every mid-major there is is hopping on board.

      UNC
      boise
      rutgers

      they’re not all bad, tho. asu needed to improve over the old sundevil and did a good job. and i dont hate northwestern’s work. this might need to be revisited with a longer post.


      nu

      • NeedsFoodBadly says:

        The Mack issue is making me nervous.

        I love the NU uniforms, but that could be homerism. The evil horse on the Boise pants is awesomely terrible. Chromefoot helmet might be the worst. I don’t hate ASU… but the fading color on the number is not great.

        • mgbode says:

          Northwestern’s uni’s are the best “new” uniform in a long time. Under-stated but they still manage to pop-out at you as different. Great look that will be copied.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Plain dealer picked up on your exposing SI’s comments about gordon loafing in spring!!!

    good catch !!!

    • jimkanicki says:

      ahh.. she might have gotten it straight from bedard. but it would be fascinating to be in the room while MKC or Grossi or Banner read some of my pieces.

  5. tmoore94 says:

    Those Miami uniforms are … something, all right.

    Even though I’m far outside the target market, I’m not opposed to shiny helmets (I actually want the Browns to trot one out once a year) and college teams playing around with uniforms because it appeals to the kids. Just not sure Miami got this one right.

    I think what I don’t like is the contrast with the shoulder part of the jersey. Make your jersey all red or all white, not a fan of the two-tone look.

    Will be interesting to see these in game action.

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