““Free at last. Free at last.” - Martin Luther King, Jr.” - Stephen Murphey
“Mine eyes have seen the glory...” - Christopher Paschal
“I once was lost, but now I’m found. From Russell I’m now free.“ - Conner Knapp
On July 1st, Georgia Tech officially became part of the #ThreeStripeLife. But yesterday, 33 days later, it finally got the threads to prove it. At an invitation-only event in downtown Atlanta, WWE megastar and Georgia Tech football alum Joe Anoa’i (aka Roman Reigns) stepped on the stage to help Georgia Tech Athletics officially reveal its first set of football uniforms produced as part of its six-year partnership with apparel partner adidas. Take a look for yourself:
Here are some stills (via RamblinWreck.com):
You can find more stills here. I’ll let you take a minute to head over there and soak all of that in.
Back now? Great. Let’s talk threads.
To steal a lyric from Grammy-winning recording artist Gwen Stefani, “these (uniforms) are bananas - B-A-N-A-N-A-S”. Let’s talk about each uniform combination individually:
2018 Home Uniform
Expect to see this uniform combination for the majority of the season. This whole dang thing is a beautiful piece of sports apparel — there’s just so much to like here: the “stinger stripes” on the top and sides of the shoulders of the jersey and the sides of the pants, the “swarm pattern” hidden inside the numbers, and the gold numerals that harken back to the days of Joe Hamilton slinging the ol’ pigskin all over Grant Field.
Let’s take a closer look at those numerals.
The font used for these numbers looks like a custom design, likely a variation of the font used for the new wordmark. This font seems timeless, yet modern — a phrase that could also be used as an effective description of the Institute. In the picture above, you also get a closer look at the “swarm pattern” inside the numbers and the very clean-looking navy border. All in all, some really solid stuff for the uniform combination we will (probably) see most often this season. Grade: A+
2018 “Whiteout” Uniform
According to Georgia Tech Athletics, we’ll see this combination at our “Whiteout” home game vs Miami on November 10th, as well as at road games. This looks more like the GT jerseys of years past with its navy numerals (again with the “swarm pattern” embedded inside) with gold borders and gold and navy “stinger stripes” on the shoulders. The key difference is in the helmet:
Tech has swapped out the honeycomb pattern on its white helmets for a single “stinger stripe”. Eagle-eyed readers will notice that this stripe doesn’t go all the way down the back of the helmet. While this choice is a bit eyebrow-raising, the uniform still captures the traditional Tech look and modernizes/de-Russellifies it. Grade: A
Yesterday’s event did not showcase any other alternative jerseys, not even a ‘clash kit’ (as it’s referred to in soccer) in case a opponent prevents Tech from wearing white on the road. But adidas promised there was more to come, explaining that other uniform designs will be based on the input of the Tech community and be throwbacks to famed teams of the past (Calvin Johnson era gold, anyone?). It is important to note that this is only year one of a six-year partnership between Georgia Tech and adidas; athletic director Todd Stansbury noted that as the duo’s relationship evolves, fans will see different looks: “Part of tradition is innovation so it doesn’t mean we need to stick with a specific look...we need to look forward and be progressive...You’re going to see a lot of new looks.“ adidas representatives doubled down on the innovation angle, emphasizing that Athletics’ work with adidas “goes beyond a transactional relationship on the field“ and that Tech is an “elite” school that the company wants to work with. Stansbury added that there are other facets of this partnership being discussed, such as “sustainability projects and student opportunities”.
But for now, Tech fans and student-athletes can bask in the fact that they now have two amazing uniform combinations (that don’t have the dreaded ‘R’ on them) to wear to represent their Institute. In the immortal words of Atlanta legend Deion Sanders, “If you look good, you feel good. If you feel good, you play good.” Georgia Tech football now looks good; we have less than a month until we get to see if they’ll play good.
Read the official press release from Georgia Tech Athletics here.
Read more about the uniform designs here.
h/t to intrepid FTRS reporter Danny Duncanson for his live coverage of the Georgia Tech + adidas launch party. Miss any of his live tweets? Catch up on Twitter.