This week I continue my 10 part piece on things I would like to see changed in college football. For reference, here are the previous articles:
For this installment, I am going to tackle uniforms.
College football uniform designs have exploded over the past 15+ years, thanks in large part to the unstoppable Nike-Oregon connection. Other manufactures have followed suit, often providing more uniform combinations than can be worn before the next set of designs hits the field.
Our own Eric Murtaugh could probably provide a few thousand words on the overall history of football uniforms, as he has already captured the definitive Notre Dame uniform history. He has even dabbled in both traditional and non-traditional uniform design in his spare time.
While I am sure that Eric will disagree with my assessment on multiple levels, I think uniforms have gotten out of control. With all the variations that teams utilize throughout the season, it is nearly impossible to keep track of them all. It has gotten to the point where it isn't even readily apparent who is even playing at first glance.
While there is nothing specific in the current NCAA rulebook about uniform combinations, I would like to see the NCAA restrict the number of different uniforms a team can wear during any given season. I propose that there be a limit of three total uniforms that can be used-one for home games, one for road games and one alternative combination for rivalry or neutral site games. In addition, in honor of today being the 4th of July, each uniform should be required to have an American flag patch on it.
While I am at it, I would like to see the NCAA decide upon one or two (at maximum) models of football that are acceptable for play. Currently, the home team provides the game balls but the visiting team is allowed to use their own if they deem that the "balls provided by the home team are not acceptable." The fact that officials have to spend time during the game keeping track of which ball is being used for which team just so schools can keep their shoe company happy seems like a bit of a waste of time and effort to me.