The UMass football team’s past year can be easily summed up in one all-encompassing word.
The Minutemen changed leagues, coaches and, perhaps most importantly, subdivisions. They changed where they played, where they marketed and where they saw themselves in the overall scheme of the collegiate athletics landscape.
Today, they finally changed their clothes.
After an awkwardly shrouded runway walk that saw UMass conduct a piecemeal release of its new threads via an alumni magazine and letters to prospective recruits, the Maroon and White finally unveiled its football uniforms to a fan base that already had a decent idea as to what it was looking for. The new look, so to speak, is a new logo, a new style of jersey and a sleek pair of sleeves bearing the UMass name and logo.
The newness of it all has fans divided. Some like the old, some like the new, and some want a redesign that allows UMass to stand apart without venturing into the cliche waters of Oregon, Rutgers, Maryland and other schools that put tradition in the attic while unleashing the “bling.”
For me, the new logo and new look deliver exactly what UMass fans – as a whole – where looking for. It brings something different to the table, it still emphasizes the “Mass,” and it makes a not-too-awkward deviation from the proud tradition that the University of Massachusetts has earned on the gridiron.
Fans have argued that the new logo doesn’t scream “recognition” like Michigan, USC or Florida State, but at what point did UMass catch the national eye at that level? The Minutemen have changed their helmets numerous times since the early days of Aggie football. There has been the cursive “U,” the odd drawing of the state of Massachusetts, a picture of a Minuteman, and most recently the Aquafresh stripes. Change is not new for UMass, but with the upgrade to FBS, change was of the essence.
Twitter was booming today after UMass launched its new look. 2013 commits were cheering the wardrobe change, potential signees were excited to hear the news, and, from the golden saddle of their highest horses, Boston College fans were poo-pooing the non-traditional look.
It sounds like UMass’ most recent change is reaching all the right people.
Check out some examples of the new threads:
UMass wide receiver Marken Michel, shows off the new uniform at McGuirk (via:
UMass quarterback Mike Wegzyn strikes a similar pose while showing off his new uniform (via:
Not to be outdone, UMass quarterback Kellen Pagel shows off the new uniform, mid-flex, with the new helmet on (via:
No quarterback photo shoot would be complete without true freshman A.J. Doyle (via:
Freshman Jovan Santos-Knox shows off the new uniform as well, and guess what, he’s flexing (via:
UMass freshman D’Metrius Williams was excited to show off how his name looked on the back of his jersey (via: ?