Oh! Maryland, Why?

On Monday night as most of the country was settling down for an evening of College football that would be the cherry on top of the College football sundae that Labor Day weekend had been. While the players were out for warm ups and preparing for the game, nothing looked out of the ordinary, it just seemed that Maryland would wear some of their new uniforms that they had unveiled earlier this summer for the first time in a game. But once the team returned to the locker room, all bets were off.

Once the teams returned to the field and everyone could see that Maryland had pulled the ole switch-a-roo and changed into different, more extreme uniforms. At first glance, you weren’t quite sure what the new uniforms were, they looked like a half and half combination that some kindergarten student, or blind person created. Then upon closer inspection, you realized the half and half was the two different parts of the state flag. But the fact that they combined this on a helmet and on the shoulder section of their jerseys went above and beyond crazy.

I think once Maryland walked out on the field in these atrocious uniforms, they had the game won, because if the players from Miami had to look at up close what I had to from afar, I am sure it was worse. This uniform was nothing but an assault on the eyes and I am sure ESPN lost a lot of ratings once people got a look at these uniforms. I can only hope that this is the last that we will see of this hideous and disastrous looking combination.

The Maryland and Miami game will not be remembered for a quality game between two conference foes, but it will be remembered for the unveiling of what has to be the absolute worst uniforms ever created. Oregon better get back to the drawing board and figure out a way to top this one, because after seeing these things, they are no longer the rulers of the worst uniforms in College Football.

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Uniform Madness, a problem in college football

Over the last few years there has been an alarming trend in college football. Teams have gone crazy in the tricking up of their uniforms they wear each Saturday. The trend seemed to start with throw back uniforms that were worn one game a year. Then teams decided to go with an alternate uniform to wear once or twice a year. This was cool, and spiced up the game just a little bit. Then the University of Oregon decided to blow the doors off and make uniform selection harder than advanced calculus. While some of the things Oregon has worn over the last few years would make even a blind man scream in horror at the sight, now it seems other schools are starting to follow along and come up with more uniform combinations than Madonna has lovers. Three schools this off season have followed suit and joined the idiotic trend. Washington State, Arizona State and now Maryland are now in the club of multiple uniforms.

While Washington State has changed their uniforms up, they really didn’t change the look all too much. In terms of change I would give Washington State a thumbs up for the change, because they updated their look and didn’t radically change the look from what was a nice looking uniform.  Other than adding two new helments and making color combinations, it is relatively the same uniform that they have had as long as I can remember. One of the more drastic changes had to happen to one of my all time favorite uniforms. Arizona State decided to overhaul their uniforms completely this off season and do away with one of my favorite helmet logos of all time. Getting rid of Sparky on the helmet for a pitchfork was one of the biggest mistakes in my opinion. But much like Pac-12 foe Oregon, ASU decided to come up with multiple combinations that at a glance almost look endless as well as ridiculous. It is crazy to think that every school now wants to go and copy cap Oregon with uniforms that can only be called Hideous, but it seems like this is the new frontier in College Football.

 This week one of the more surprising teams to join the uniform idiocracy announced and debuted their new uniforms. Maryland had a big ordeal this week to show off their new uniforms and these things can only be the 2nd ugliest uniforms in all of college football behind Oregon. Once again I am all for updating your look and trying to have something that is catchy and eye grabbing to potential recruits. Needless to say these uniforms are the butt of jokes all across the Internet and even in college football circles. I have always liked the black and red of Maryland’s uniforms and the yellow outline has always added a little pop. But in no way is a Yellow uniform ever a good idea. I will say these are hideous and I think this is something Under Armour concocted to try and keep up with Nike. But there were better ways to keep up with them than unveil this travesty on uniforms. The only cool looking thing to come out of these uniform combinations is the white turtle shell helmet, that is one thing I think would be cool to see on the field. But the other things have been a major mistake. It is these kind of things that makes me thing College football as a whole will end up regretting this trend in the near future.

As I mentioned above, this is becoming a war of who can create the most extreme look between Nike and Under Armour. Nike has a major foothold on the sports with most teams going to wear their “Pro Combat” uniforms at least one time each of the last three seasons and there will be teams doing it again this year. A common team to do this has been Boise State and they will be wearing something special in their season opening game against Georgia. But in a surprise, Georgia went along with it and decided to join the fray. While I am sure it seems like a good idea on paper, taking a school like Georgia who has one of the classic all time uniforms and changing it even in the smallest way is going to back fire and create a fire storm. So Georgia is going to wear this in the Georgia dome agianst Boise St.

While these aren’t horrible, it is once again an assault on something that is classing and old school. The list has become to large to keep a count on teams who have participated in this idiocracy and attack on everything that is sacred when it comes to uniforms. Even two of the oldest and most storied schools are in the fray, Yes, Michigan and Notre Dame both are going to wear “throwback” uniforms in a night game in the big house. While these two uniforms are not horrible, and could actually pass as a cool gimmick, it is becoming old and annoying and I wish teams would just stick to what has worked for years.

Call me old school, call me behind the times, but I grew up where each team wore one jersey at home, and one jersey on the road. Usually each team had white, or team color pants and only one helmet that had the schools logo or something associated to the school on it. It is the way football uniforms are meant to be made and worn. Jerseys were not meant to have wings on them, and pants are not meant to have psychedelic stripes down the leg. Uniforms are meant to be simple and classic. Nike and Under Armour are ruining uniforms across the board by having a pissing match with each other over who could create the wildest look. Because so many teams have gone to this new fad in the sport, it is almost impossible to tell who is playing on the field. Maybe I am the minority here, but I don’t want to have to understand advanced calculus to be able to understand that Oregon and Maryland are playing. I miss the days when you could know before the graphic popped up on the screen. Maybe athletic directors will smarten up and squash this travesty on a sport that has so much history and allure that it doesn’t need to result to gimmicks to be popular.

Maryland’s Gary Williams calling it a career

Maryland Head Coach Gary Williams

Since I have been a kid there have been very few constants in the world of sports. People I grew up watching and idolizing have now since retired, and new people have taken their place. But throughout the years there has been once constant in College Basketball. Maryland Terrapins Head Coach Gary Williams has been at his Alma mater for the last 22 years and has had Maryland Basketball in the minds of people across the country for most of those 22 years. Even for a boy growing up in football crazy Texas, I have known and watched Maryland basketball every time it comes on television.

He made a name for himself and built a winning program while having to play the likes of Duke and North Carolina every year. Williams has a hall of fame resume from his time at Maryland and has also won a National Championship. Williams won 668 games, 461 at Maryland. He went to 14 NCAA tournaments, won three ACC regular-season titles and had seven Sweet 16 appearances, two Elite Eights and two Final Fours. Williams was the national coach of the year in 2002 and the ACC coach of the year in 2002 and 2010.

That is not too shabby for a guy who had to cut his teeth against the likes of Dean Smith and Mike Krzyzewski. He has said that at age 66, it is time to do something else with his time. That only leaves Jim Calhoun and Jim Boeheim as long term coaches over the age of 60 in College Basketball. Sadly, most people won’t know Williams for his on the court success, he is more well known for the on going battle with former Athletic Director Debbie Yow.

So, enjoy your retirement Gary, just know that College Basketball fans around the country will miss seeing you stalk the sidelines at arena’s during the winter. Happy trails.

[box]Kody’s Sports Korner is on Twitter: @kodysportskornr[/box]

Kody’s Sports Korner Bowl Preview; Part 2

Time for the 2nd preview, too much to break down in one post and will continue it here. Be sure to check out Part 1.

Little Caesars Bowl:
Florida International vs Toledo
While this isn’t going to be a marquis matchup that everone will be wanting to watch, this game has some potential to be close. Ok, I couldn’t finish that sentence with a straight face. This game will be ugly and will probably be boring all at the same time. I am not really going to bore you with any more thoughts on this game. But at least it is football.
Prediction: Toledo 38 – Florida Int. 21

Advo Care V100 Independence Bowl:
Air Force vs Georgia Tech

Don’t bllink, this game could be over as quick as it starts. This will be a very fast game because there will be very few clock stoppages. Both of these teams run an option heavy offense and will run the ball with purpose. This is a game for the old school throwback fans like myself. Football is running the ball and punching you in the mouth. This game is very evenly matched in terms of offensive powers. Josh Nesbit for Ga Tech is questionable for this game, so if he does play, that will make the game closer. Otherwise I expect Air Force to be the better team and win this one.
Prediction: Airforce 24 – Ga Tech 17

Champs Sports Bowl:
West Virginia vs NC State –
This game could be a very interesting game, but I don’t expect it to be a close game by any stretch. West Virginia looks to be the better team with the better weapons and that may just be too much for NC State to over come. NC State keeps it close early, but falls to the side late.
Prediction: West Virginia 35 – NC State 14

Insight Bowl:
Missouri vs Iowa –
This game is interesting, but I really think that will be an embarrasment by the time this game ends. I see a Missouri team that is good, but right now Iowa is stinging after the scandal and will have more focus on this game than they have had all season long. That’s why I think this game will get ugly and Iowa will just run away with it.
Prediction: Iowa 42 – Missouri 24

Military Bowl:
East Carolina vs Maryland –
This could potentially be Ralph Freidgens final game as the head coach at Maryland, but East Carolina isn’t a push over team. I don’t see this one being a great game for Maryland.
Prediction: East Carolina 24 – Maryland 17

Texas Bowl:
Illinois vs Baylor-
Baylor is playing in it’s first bowl game in over a decade, and they have the privilege of playing a Ron Zook led Illinois team. This will almost be like a home game for Baylor, since it will be played in Houston. I figure Baylor will have a lot to play for in this game and should be able to win this game.
Prediction: Baylor 35 – Illinois 14

Valero Alamo Bowl:
Oklahoma St vs Arizona
Oklahoma State will be dealing with the disappointment of letting a chance at a bigger and better bowl have slipped through their hands, while Arizona will feel lucky to have made it to a bowl. I think Gundy realizes there is a Stoops on the other side again and locks up. Arizona wins this in an impressive fashion.
Prediction: Arizona 28 – Oklahoma State 10

Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl:
Army vs SMU
SMU gets to play in their second consecutive bowl game under June Jones, and they get to play this one on their own home field. Army meanwhile is coming off their best season in a while and a tough game against rival Navy. While this game will be a battle to the finish, I think the quick turn around and the fact SMU is at home will to much to over come.
Prediction: SMU 35 – Army 24

New Era Penstripe Bowl:
Kansas St vs Syracuse
This is going to be a battle of two programs who are under a resurgence, but with the location of this game and the fact that Syracuse looks to be a little bit better, I don’t see this game being very good for the K-State wildcats. Syracuse with an almost home field advantage should spell doom for the wildcats.
Prediction: Syracuse 28 – Kansas St. 10

Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl:
North Carolina vs Tennessee –
This is a match up of two teams who are polar opposites. North Carolina started the season with hope and talk of winning the ACC and Tennessee was in a rebuilding mode and only dreamed of a Bowl game. But with a few bad breaks and some luck both teams are bowling. North Carolina had their team picked apart due to an NCAA investigation and Tennessee had to find the right combination to hit a winning chord. This could be a very tight game and be very entertaining. I look for this one to be decided on the last possession.
Prediction: North Carolina 24 – Tennessee 21

Bridgepoint Education Holiday Bowl:
Nebraska vs Washington –
This game is just an absolute joke, there is nothing really more to say here than the Nebraska Corhnhuskers just embarrass Washington.
Prediction: Nebraska 42 – Washington 10

Meineke car care Bowl:
South Florida vs Clemson
This game is more evenly matched than you would realize, both of these teams are good, but have had some tough luck and bad bounces along the way. While most experts would have you thinking that Clemson will win this one hands down, I see South Florida pulling out a victory in surprise fashion.
Prediction: South Florida 35 – Clemson 28

Hyundai Sun Bowl:
Notre Dame vs Miami
The rematch of the “Catholics vs. Convicts” has come earlier than expected. This should be an exciting game in the fact that these are two very prideful teams playing with a big amount of hurt pride this season. This time around though, I think it will be all Notre Dame.
Prediction: Notre Dame 38 – Miami 17

AutoZone Liberty Bowl:
Georgia vs Central Florida  –
This match up would lead you to believe that Georgia would win this game hands down, but this is a quality Central Florida team and I think they have something to prove in this game.
Central Florida 28 – Georgia 21

Chick Fil-A Bowl:
South Carolina vs Florida St
Another quality match up to end the year in Atlanta. This game has all of the makings of a great match up. But I think Spurrier pulls out some tricks that will help the Gamecocks win.
Prediction: South Carolina 35 – Florida State 21