Coming Soon: SB Nation United & a New Look for One Foot Down

A sneak peak at a cover layout with the new SB Nation United.

Coming some time very soon things are going to look quite different around the SB Nation network, which means things will also look much different here at One Foot Down.

We already gave you a sneak peak at our new logo and you may have noticed that crest is already being used on our Twitter and Facebook pages.

Soon, this whole site will change.

The purpose of this article today is to give you the readers a head's up to these changes so that you're not caught completely off guard when you log-in one morning and see that everything is different. Plus, this is a good opportunity to explain some new features and get you comfortable with some of the changes.

More info coming after the jump.

Now, you make be asking yourself, "why change?"

Well, for starters SB Nation United will make the site load faster, it will run seamlessly on all platforms (PC, iPhone, tablet, etc.), it will foster more coordination and visibility with other SBN sites, it will be easier to feature stories (including your FanPosts and FanShots), and it will allow us to both discuss and break news better than ever before.

At this point it's important to remember that your ability to read and participate in our discussions will not be drastically different. You'll still be able to write FanPosts and FanShots just like on the site now, and the comment section will be exactly the same. Basically, some things will just be in different areas, but your overall experience should remain the same---yet hopefully greatly enhanced.

For example, let's say you write a FanPost and it is getting a ton of attention and comments over 3 or 4 days.

With our site now, we can bump that FanPost to the front page (and if it gets enough recs it will stay in the 'Recommended FanPosts' for a number of days) but as soon as other content is published it will get pushed down and off the front page, as well as off the FanPost widget.

With SB Nation United, we'll have the ability to Pin that FanPost (and any other content) to our front page for as long as need be. Anything else that gets posted will move around that pinned FanPost as it stays right where it is on the main page.

You dig?

Good, now let's take a look at some more screen shots. In the main picture to this article you'll see the SBN blog for the San Francisco 49ers "Niners Nation." That's basically the overall new look of our sites, and you'll notice that there are three stories featured at the top of their main page.

That's what we call the Cover and it is on the top of our soon-to-be main page.

However, we'll soon have the ability to change the Cover as you'll see with these screen shots:Land-grant_cover_tryptic_medium

Cover_five_up_house_of_sparky_medium
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We'll have the ability to feature 5 stories, 4 stories, 3 stories, 2 stories, or when there's really huge news, just 1 story. Keep in mind these Covers don't just apply to our main page either. There will be a Sections tab below the Cover where you'll be able to navigate to any number of different hubs, be it Recent News, Recruiting, Basketball, Five Wide Fullbacks, etc.

You can click on those Sections and you will be taken to a new page with its own Cover and all the material for that topic contained therein.

Here's a screen shot of a Story Stream, which allows us to break news and provide updates in one central location. You may be familiar with these on some other larger regional and sport SBN sites:

Storystream_full_page_cfb_medium

So let's say Brian Kelly is fired---we can create an article with that news and instead of adding updates manually into the story or mentioning them in the comment section, we'll turn the article into a Story Stream with updates flowing underneath in the article.

That way you'll come to the site, see "Brian Kelly is Fired" on our Cover and also that there are 6 (or however many) updates. Click on that article and you get all of the updates, plus the original story, together in one page.

Here's a look at the new FanShot page:

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And a couple shots from mobile devices:

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And lastly, here's a screen shot of a full front page:

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Sure change can be scary---after all we're Notre Dame fans and we can sometimes fight change with the best of 'em. But we hope you enjoy this new look and I am positive that you'll love the way the site navigates and how much more modern and smooth everything will be.

I've been able to spend some time working with it and I am telling you it's nothing short of awesome.

If you have any questions right now let me know and I'll do my best to answer them.

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