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2011 Pro Combats


drdougfresh

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I'm sure there will be a huge influx of these type of threads on the forums, but I was wondering if anyone else felt 100% let down by this year's sets? Last year, there were a lot of little things that made the unis unique, like WV's numbers with the coal pattern, VT's numbers, the new PITT insignia, BSU's "off-balance" look, the matte black helmet, OSU's sleeve stripes (though those didn't work, still inventive), Bama's houndstooth, adding red traces to TCU, etc. You get the idea. This year, everything feels 100% safe and, frankly, a little bit boring.

BSU was just a repeat of last year, MSU? Just don't get me started. OSU looks like a 5 year old designed it. Georgia and the bleeding facemask (which was the only inventive thing on the uniform, sadly), and honestly, even the service academies bummed me out. Navy's reminds me of Pitt's from last year, and Army barely looks different from normal. Probably the only set that I really like from this year was Oregon's-- and even that was a repeat.

So what are everyone's thoughts on this? Did Nike just drop the ball, or is this a sign of the times-- the Pro Combat uniforms is getting 'tired'? I personally think that for whatever reason, Nike fell flat this year. In future years, it would be beneficial to select 9 unique schools every year. Besides, we're all tired of OSU getting one every year. :cursing:

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i pretty much feel the same way as you Doug. the 2010 series was so excellent. they were showing off the best that Nike has to offer. a new uniform and their most creative designs for some of their biggest schools. the 2010s were branding excellence with great craftsmanship (the majority) and a ton of good ideas specific to each school.

this year, they got completely lazy and just did some random recoloring. their newest ideas i dont mind exploring, but should have been thrown out by the first view of the creative director (Georgia's helmet stripe). Army and Navy being the exception and i guess we'll give Oregon a pass because everyone knows what they're about, changing the colors and textures. it seems they ignored the uniforms almost completely and focused heavily on the shoes/cleats. just look at how many promo shots they have of those. if that is the case, why even do the PC uniforms? i mean besides, the money and promotion, you'd hope Nike would go into each project with the mindset that they are doing something special. thats what makes coming to work worth it every day and working with people who care about what they do.

i hate to be harsh on the people who worked on this project (Nike and the schools) because im not there to see it through and dont know how it was done exactly, but it needs to be said. this series is so disappointing because it looks like no one here knows what the hell they're doing, had no clear direction, was in a hurry to complete so they just recolored the uniforms, and were relying on their past success to support these lazy, uninspired, terrible designs. i dont lean to either traditional or modern design, i just like things that are done well and have good ideas behind them. thats no where to be found this year with Nike PC (again the exception with Oregon, Army, Navy)

edit - looks like Ohio St is another throwback, but they still didnt have to do much work did they?

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I'm sure there will be a huge influx of these type of threads on the forums, but I was wondering if anyone else felt 100% let down by this year's sets? Last year, there were a lot of little things that made the unis unique, like WV's numbers with the coal pattern, VT's numbers, the new PITT insignia, BSU's "off-balance" look, the matte black helmet, OSU's sleeve stripes (though those didn't work, still inventive), Bama's houndstooth, adding red traces to TCU, etc. You get the idea. This year, everything feels 100% safe and, frankly, a little bit boring.

BSU was just a repeat of last year, MSU? Just don't get me started. OSU looks like a 5 year old designed it. Georgia and the bleeding facemask (which was the only inventive thing on the uniform, sadly), and honestly, even the service academies bummed me out. Navy's reminds me of Pitt's from last year, and Army barely looks different from normal. Probably the only set that I really like from this year was Oregon's-- and even that was a repeat.

So what are everyone's thoughts on this? Did Nike just drop the ball, or is this a sign of the times-- the Pro Combat uniforms is getting 'tired'? I personally think that for whatever reason, Nike fell flat this year. In future years, it would be beneficial to select 9 unique schools every year. Besides, we're all tired of OSU getting one every year. :cursing:

Being a Buckeye fan I love seeing them getting them year after year, but i get everyones frustration. An FYI though Ohio State signed a contract and they will have them again next year but then they are done with them for awhile, if ever again.

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This year's ProCombat line was a letdown, to be honest. It seems like for some teams, the designers came up with one semi-creative idea and then just went on autopilot for the rest. Then, even worse, for other teams, they just lazily recolored last year's ProCombats. I mean, I thought BSU looked nice against Georgia but I couldn't help but feel a bit gypped that they looked almost the exact same as what they wore in the VT game. And additionally, I've seen far more creative, well-thought-out, and aesthetically-pleasing ProCombat concepts in the Concepts forum here than what Nike actually came up with this year. It just seems like Nike was scared of stepping too far out of the box for fear of angering more traditional fans of the teams, without realizing that the younger generation seems to prefer more modern looks.

That being said, the service academies look excellent... both teams should consider making their full-time sets look like those. LSU's purple/old gold color scheme once again looks fantastic, but I can't stand the underarm blobs. And Ohio State's uniform (dare I say it?) looks better than what they usually wear, thick helmet stripe and all. I wish they would have used the same number font as last year, though. That could be an ownable, unique part of Ohio State's identity. But overall, this year's ProCombat line just seems holistically disappointing.

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I just showed these to my friend that goes to West Point. He said Army's were pretty ugly and would have much preferred a return to the digital camo uniforms. He said Navy's were really good though.

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Maybe it's the last year of the Pro Combat Series for college football and they are just throwing them on templates to concentrate on the NFL. Of course maybe they heard the displeasure of the fans in the markets they were in and decided to go "conservative" with them for this year. I just think this might be the end of the special Pro Combat uniforms for college teams.

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Maybe it's the last year of the Pro Combat Series for college football and they are just throwing them on templates to concentrate on the NFL. Of course maybe they heard the displeasure of the fans in the markets they were in and decided to go "conservative" with them for this year. I just think this might be the end of the special Pro Combat uniforms for college teams.

i dont think this is the last year, this seems to be the apex of the trends, but maybe we're not too far from the end. i would look for them next year to do something more like the 2010 series.

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It just seems like Nike was scared of stepping too far out of the box for fear of angering more traditional fans of the teams, without realizing that the younger generation seems to prefer more modern looks.

I think everyone knows the younger generation prefers more risqué uniforms. Both Nike and the schools want money, and the older people have the money. Easy decision there, although I still think these are too 'out there' for many alumni.

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it seems they ignored the uniforms almost completely and focused heavily on the shoes/cleats. just look at how many promo shots they have of those. if that is the case, why even do the PC uniforms? i mean besides the money and promotion, you'd hope Nike would go into each project with the mindset that they are doing something special. that's what makes coming to work worth it every day and working with people who care about what they do.

Wouldn't it be nice if everyone who worked for Nike cared as much about uniform design and identity as we all do and went to work with the mindset that they are doing something special? Well, that's dreamland. There might be a few enthusiasts, but I guarantee you there's also some people working on these who don't know very much about college football. There are people working on these who don't care about college football or the teams' histories. Believe it or not, there are people who work on these that only see it as a paycheck, and that's just how it is.

But, back to your point about ignoring the uniforms completely and focusing on the footwear: Nike is a footwear company. Anything they do to draw attention to their schools (e.g. developing special uniforms) isn't done primarily so they can sell more jerseys or a sell a boatload of licensed merch. That's basically a perk. That's how they recoup the money they pay to the schools for the outfitting contract. The primary reason for any and all of their campaignage is so they can sell more shoes and equipment, because that's what they do, and that's their bread and butter (also the best opportunity to make profit). The schools buy into it on the grounds that the Pro Combat promotion is a cooperative effort to also help the school with recruiting. Don't know whether that's true or not, but I suppose better recruiting equals more winning, equals higher profile for the school, equals higher profile for Nike, so it's really just anadvertising circle (if you want to help your institution, you have to help Nike first).

Participating in the Pro Combat program is basically like wearing a Nike advertisement on your jersey, because everything that the program entails aims to help out Nike in the long run, whether or not it helps out the school along the way. The Pro Combat schools are really just vehicles for showcasing Nike's new stuff at this point. It just so happens that the young people love it and Nike can make the claim that participating in it could make a school more desirable for recruits, which, in turn, can make a grumpy AD or coach say, "Well, if helps us to compete, I guess we'll dress like clowns for a weekend."

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it seems they ignored the uniforms almost completely and focused heavily on the shoes/cleats. just look at how many promo shots they have of those. if that is the case, why even do the PC uniforms? i mean besides the money and promotion, you'd hope Nike would go into each project with the mindset that they are doing something special. that's what makes coming to work worth it every day and working with people who care about what they do.

Wouldn't it be nice if everyone who worked for Nike cared as much about uniform design and identity as we all do and went to work with the mindset that they are doing something special? Well, that's dreamland. There might be a few enthusiasts, but I guarantee you there's also some people working on these who don't know very much about college football. There are people working on these who don't care about college football or the teams' histories. Believe it or not, there are people who work on these that only see it as a paycheck, and that's just how it is.

But, back to your point about ignoring the uniforms completely and focusing on the footwear: Nike is a footwear company. Anything they do to draw attention to their schools (e.g. developing special uniforms) isn't done primarily so they can sell more jerseys or a sell a boatload of licensed merch. That's basically a perk. That's how they recoup the money they pay to the schools for the outfitting contract. The primary reason for any and all of their campaignage is so they can sell more shoes and equipment, because that's what they do, and that's their bread and butter (also the best opportunity to make profit). The schools buy into it on the grounds that the Pro Combat promotion is a cooperative effort to also help the school with recruiting. Don't know whether that's true or not, but I suppose better recruiting equals more winning, equals higher profile for the school, equals higher profile for Nike, so it's really just anadvertising circle (if you want to help your institution, you have to help Nike first).

Participating in the Pro Combat program is basically like wearing a Nike advertisement on your jersey, because everything that the program entails aims to help out Nike in the long run, whether or not it helps out the school along the way. The Pro Combat schools are really just vehicles for showcasing Nike's new stuff at this point. It just so happens that the young people love it and Nike can make the claim that participating in it could make a school more desirable for recruits, which, in turn, can make a grumpy AD or coach say, "Well, if helps us to compete, I guess we'll dress like clowns for a weekend."

it shows. i dont think its quite dreamland though. i mean designers are a dime a dozen now, even good ones. i dont think itd be hard to find a decent team to lead a project like this. and there are very large creative teams/studios that churn out excellent work, so i dont think its an impossibility. think Google or Pixar. but keeping the number of people as low as possible could benifit by avoiding that dreaded "design by committee" thing. any idea how large Nike's creative team currently is?

i know Nike wants to move shoes ultimately, but this years series is just odd to me. they had such a great focus and direction last year on the uniforms, and it feels like it took a backseat to cleats this year. which reminds me, they outsourced some motion/video work to Royale (LA) for the new cleats. i wonder how much design Nike actually does in house?

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it seems they ignored the uniforms almost completely and focused heavily on the shoes/cleats. just look at how many promo shots they have of those. if that is the case, why even do the PC uniforms? i mean besides the money and promotion, you'd hope Nike would go into each project with the mindset that they are doing something special. that's what makes coming to work worth it every day and working with people who care about what they do.

Wouldn't it be nice if everyone who worked for Nike cared as much about uniform design and identity as we all do and went to work with the mindset that they are doing something special? Well, that's dreamland. There might be a few enthusiasts, but I guarantee you there's also some people working on these who don't know very much about college football. There are people working on these who don't care about college football or the teams' histories. Believe it or not, there are people who work on these that only see it as a paycheck, and that's just how it is.

But, back to your point about ignoring the uniforms completely and focusing on the footwear: Nike is a footwear company. Anything they do to draw attention to their schools (e.g. developing special uniforms) isn't done primarily so they can sell more jerseys or a sell a boatload of licensed merch. That's basically a perk. That's how they recoup the money they pay to the schools for the outfitting contract. The primary reason for any and all of their campaignage is so they can sell more shoes and equipment, because that's what they do, and that's their bread and butter (also the best opportunity to make profit). The schools buy into it on the grounds that the Pro Combat promotion is a cooperative effort to also help the school with recruiting. Don't know whether that's true or not, but I suppose better recruiting equals more winning, equals higher profile for the school, equals higher profile for Nike, so it's really just anadvertising circle (if you want to help your institution, you have to help Nike first).

Participating in the Pro Combat program is basically like wearing a Nike advertisement on your jersey, because everything that the program entails aims to help out Nike in the long run, whether or not it helps out the school along the way. The Pro Combat schools are really just vehicles for showcasing Nike's new stuff at this point. It just so happens that the young people love it and Nike can make the claim that participating in it could make a school more desirable for recruits, which, in turn, can make a grumpy AD or coach say, "Well, if helps us to compete, I guess we'll dress like clowns for a weekend."

it shows. i dont think its quite dreamland though. i mean designers are a dime a dozen now, even good ones. i dont think itd be hard to find a decent team to lead a project like this. and there are very large creative teams/studios that churn out excellent work, so i dont think its an impossibility. think Google or Pixar. but keeping the number of people as low as possible could benifit by avoiding that dreaded "design by committee" thing. any idea how large Nike's creative team currently is?

i know Nike wants to move shoes ultimately, but this years series is just odd to me. they had such a great focus and direction last year on the uniforms, and it feels like it took a backseat to cleats this year. which reminds me, they outsourced some motion/video work to Royale (LA) for the new cleats. i wonder how much design Nike actually does in house?

I think the difference in putting together a great team to design a movie or a search engine and putting together a team to design a set of uniforms is this: There aren't very many designers out there looking specifically to get into the sports industry, unlike the programming or animation industries, which are rich with talent and short on jobs. The sports design industry has more jobs than there are talented uniform enthusiasts, so it has to fill with 'regular' designers who just see it as a job, not a passion.

Sportswear companies generally design their product in house, but a lot of their media (commercials, website, ad campaigns, etc.) is designed out of house.

There are probably many different creative departments and many people designing various things at Nike. Certain things may even go through multiple departments, or at least have multiple departments working together. I mean, with a pro combat uniform, you have footwear design, uniform design, equipment and licensed apparel all working together to create a whole, for example.

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