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Notre Dame Football: Putting the Irish Opponent Uniforms on Blast

Back on uni watch

NCAA Football: Fiesta Bowl-Oklahoma State at Notre Dame Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

I’m returning to my petty ways and throwing out my definitive ranking of the uniforms of each Notre Dame opponent for the 2022 schedule.

USC Trojans

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: APR 23 USC Spring Game Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Let’s get this out of the way. There is a timelessness to the USC Trojans’ uniform that earns points every time. The gold doesn’t attack the eyes in the way that Michigan maize does so painfully. The shoulder detail adds personality, but is just subtle enough to stay stylish through the years.

Ohio State

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: APR 16 Ohio State Spring Game Photo by Jason Mowry/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Gray can easily say “blah.” The Buckeyes take the second spot on this list by doing their own thing with a difficult color. Scarlet packs the right punch to balance it out. While it’s not always easy to be an Irish fan in Buckeye country, I’ve always had a thing for those helmet stickers...

North Carolina Tar Heels


That argyle, though... It was tough to round out the top three, but a timeless trademark detail, and a colorful jolt earn this combo its spot on the list.

Navy Midshipmen

This one pains me. While this one parallels what we know and love about the Irish aesthetic, it doesn't do much to command its own attention. I geek out about the Army/Navy alternates every year, and love the significance of the Eagle, Globe, and Anchor on the pants and shoulder: a recognition of the United States Marine Corps, into which about a quarter of the Naval Academy’s graduates will commission.

Clemson Tigers

Syndication: The Greenville News Ken Ruinard / staff / USA TODAY NETWORK

Maybe this is my Cleveland Browns fandom talking, but I love the orange, here. However, there is a proportion issue that dinged it a few points. It is a LOT of orange. Some more white details at the shoulder could add a bit more balance.

Cal Golden Bears

NCAA Football: Southern California at California John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports

Cal can overdo the Navy blue, but I can get behind this color combination. I just wish they had a little more fun with the helmet logo, here. I’m a Cleveland fan who’s getting a little bored of block Cs. What can I say?

UNLV Rebels

Just a little too much red, here...

BYU Cougars

Radiance Technologies Independence Bowl - UAB v Brigham Young Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

I’ve always liked the less-is-more look of BYU’s Y logo, but the minimalism of these unis just falls short. Nothing to write home about. While an overload of any color subtracts points, too much navy in any uniform dulls any potential statement.

Syracuse Orange

NCAA Football: Pittsburgh at Syracuse Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports


Stanford Cardinal

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: APR 09 Stanford Spring Game Photo by Bob Kupbens/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

While I applaud minimalism in the age of highlighter hues and digital camo, Stanford’s unis just deliver more of a letdown than a statement. The block S and the tree, in particular, neither add personality nor make up for the lack of detail on the jersey and pants.

Boston College Eagles

I’ve discussed the difficulty of pulling off metallic gold several times on this blog. Many have tried and failed from the collegiate level, to the big leagues. From the Purdue Boilermakers to the Washington Wizards, what teams intend to evoke exclusivity just often says “blah,” especially in BC’s unis.

Marshall Thundering Herd

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: DEC 18 R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl - Louisiana v Marshall Photo by Chris McDill/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

While I am an advocate for Kelly green, I cannot condone the script at the chest.