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Jungle Jim

"I don't care what they wear as long as they win."

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My apologies if this is the wrong forum for this...

I've seen the statement in the thread title posted on other sports message boards when the subject of a particular team's uniforms comes up, and it annoys me every time. I realize that those of us who scrutinize, recognize, identify, appreciate, ponder, discuss, and debate the finer points of logo and uniform design are very much in the minority, but when people root for a team, what are they really rooting for?

Most of the players on a given team were not members of that team five or six years ago and most won't be members of that team five or six years from now. We know little about the private lives, actions, and beliefs of the players and coaches, except for perhaps the biggest of stars. When those same players trade the uniform of our favorite team for that of another team, we usually no longer root for that player. So in the big picture of a lifetime of being a fan, the players that make up the team really shouldn't be the primary reason for rooting for a team.

I think Jerry Seinfeld said it well when he said that we basically root for laundry. If that's the case, shouldn't this one single most-identifying element of our favorite team's identity be of importance to all fans? I suppose civic pride (i.e. rooting for the hometown team) is one reason that might trump the look of the uniform, but when people say they don't care at all about what the team wears, I don't get it.

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I understand the sentiment in the wider realm of sports discussion. I really don't get it when people bring it up here though.

Do some people just not realize what site they're on?

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I've seen it brought up other places and I think it's pretty dumb when people say "Why worry about what they're wearing, they should be worried that we haven't won a conference game in 3 years." It's not like coaches are taking out time from their gameplanning and practices to decide what uniform combination they're going to wear each week.

For the people that just don't care about what the uniforms look like, that's fine. It's something that I like that other people don't. Just don't act like a team caring about their uniforms is going to somehow affect how they play.

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My Jayhawks stink in football, but I wish the team looked better when we lose each week.

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The Mariners can't seem to win these days, but at least they look damn good while losing.

Despite their World Series woes, the Rangers have done well the past several years up until their tiebreaker loss this year, but they look terrible (unpopular opinion)?

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The Mariners can't seem to win these days, but at least they look damn good while losing.

Despite their World Series woes, the Rangers have done well the past several years up until their tiebreaker loss this year, but they look terrible (unpopular opinion)?

I don't think it's unpopular with people that care, but there are people around here that are part of the "Hell Yeah it's TEXAS" crowd. I wish the team would go back to what they were wearing back in the 80's, but there are people who just don't care as long as they wear red white and blue.

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I think it is "tribe mentality". Our favorite teams usually represent something about us. Where we went to college. Where we grew up. Or maybe the team our dads rooted for. There is a personal connection there somewhere and when we find others who share that same connection we feel part of something larger. The same can even be said for this community. The identity is just a visual representation of this deeper emotional connection which Seinfelds statement misses. Its never just about aesthetics

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I've seen it brought up other places and I think it's pretty dumb when people say "Why worry about what they're wearing, they should be worried that we haven't won a conference game in 3 years." It's not like coaches are taking out time from their gameplanning and practices to decide what uniform combination they're going to wear each week.

For the people that just don't care about what the uniforms look like, that's fine. It's something that I like that other people don't. Just don't act like a team caring about their uniforms is going to somehow affect how they play.

Sums up exactly how I feel.

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Pretty sure most fans of teams like the Packers or Raiders who claim to not care about uniforms would raise hell if either team tried to make more than an evolutionary change to theirs.

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My favourite teams are all terrible, but they at least look great while losing, but I'm not a normal fan, I'm one of the uniform crazies.

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Some people care about which players are on the team. Some people don't care who is on the roster as long as the team wins.

Some people care about the 4-3 vs. the 3-4 defense. Some people don't know what a weak-side linebacker is.

Some people care about the uniforms the teams wear. Some people couldn't care less.

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I've seen the comment often and some message boards use offseason to muse endlessly about uniform/identity issues, desires and philosophies.

But, those dull gray fans who profess not to care about what their team wears are faking a concern of substance over style. In fact, if their teams emerge from the locker room without some treasured logo or some aspect of design or, worse yet, if they adopt some farcical clown costume, you'll hear them squeal like stuck hogs.

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when i was part of the media scrum at the unveiling for the new stars uniforms (thanks to my blogging duties, i got to hang out with legit media people the whole night), they kept saying they didn't understand why some fans cared so much about the uniforms or logos.

"they can wear pink and brown for all i care as long as they win." was said in many forms by many people that night...

i told them that as a fan, the new logo/uniforms will dictate a pretty hefty portion of my casual attire that i will wear to games, around the house, buying groceries, etc... hell, i have two pairs of pajama pants and countless stars tshirts that i sleep in on a regular basis. i'm probably not in the minority among sports fans when i say that... so should i care if the logo/colors/uniforms of my team are aesthetically pleasing to me? i mean, i'm going to be wearing the logo more often than most of the players.

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I respect other fans for saying that. The truth is that many sports fans don't care what the team wears just as long as they win. There are others that might not like the uniforms but can get over them, can support them or will forget about them once the game begins or is over.

In fact, I partially agree with them. I don't know about other people on these forums but I personally didn't start following sports because of the uniforms. I do care about what my teams wear and have a great interest in uniform design and logo design, but if I were forced to make a choice I'd rather take my team winning in ugly uniforms than have them lose in nice uniforms. If the other team's fans want to laugh at our team's uniforms, fine. If my team wins though I'll have the last laugh. I have the option of not buying any merchandise if I don't like the logo, colors or design, and I don't need any of that stuff to enjoy sports even if the design is good. The players are the only ones who are really obligated to wear the uniforms.

Again, I'd like to have both good uniforms and good play. I can respect those who care more about one than the other though and it doesn't bother me one bit what they say. We all have different angles and different perspectives on this topic. Just keep in mind that the ones who say they don't care about the uniforms likely don't buy much in merchandise and therefore might not be the ones influencing a change.

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Speaking as a fan of a team currently doing well in a non traditional look, (Southampton are currently 5th in the EPL) the two things are separate. I care the team is doing well, but I care that they look like Southampton as well. It's great that they are 5th, but I'd prefer they were fifth wearing red and white stripes and black shorts.

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Speaking as a fan of a team currently doing well in a non traditional look, (Southampton are currently 5th in the EPL) the two things are separate. I care the team is doing well, but I care that they look like Southampton as well. It's great that they are 5th, but I'd prefer they were fifth wearing red and white stripes and black shorts.

Indeed. In a similar fashion, there's a great deal of angst in our parts over our proposed name change. I've heard a few comments along the lines of 'I don't care what we're called, just as long as we're in the Premier League', and 'The owner can can have us playing in pink for all I care, just as long as we're successful!'. I've also been asked on more than one occasion if I'd rather us be the Hull Tigers and play in the Premier League, or be watching Hull City in League One.

But this misses the point - the two things don't go hand-in-hand, it's not a choice that has to be made at all. It's perfectly possible to have our traditional identity and be doing well for ourselves, as we are at the moment.

So yes, I do care that we do well but I also care greatly about our identity and heritage, be it our colours or our name.

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So it appears that we have to account for a third factor, namely tradition. As far as I see it, one can go wrong with a traditional uniform as well. The first example that comes to my mind are Philadelphia 76ers. Their current set emplyos traditional colours of the franchise yet their unis usually end up at the bottom of NBA jersey rankings and are constantly criticized here for their blandness.

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So it appears that we have to account for a third factor, namely tradition. As far as I see it, one can go wrong with a traditional uniform as well. The first example that comes to my mind are Philadelphia 76ers. Their current set emplyos traditional colours of the franchise yet their unis usually end up at the bottom of NBA jersey rankings and are constantly criticized here for their blandness.

I wouldn't necessarily conflate criticism in these parts as being the same as 'bad'. I think in a lot of ways 'bland' Is often quite good from a sporting point of view. The Celtics have a 'bland' look, but there'd be an outcry if even relatively small changes to the set were made. I don't think most fans would give a thought to the qualitative aesthetic appeal of their teams uniforms, providing they are are recognisably the uniform of that team. Indeed fans of some teams for an attachment to what most people might think of as ugly uniforms, because it's their team.

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