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Change is the Only Constant

Matt Glaude just stole my thunder by breaking this first.
I for once admit that I was unaware that they were going to, yet again, change the uniforms. I was caught. I am usually very well versed in what is going on at Syracuse when it comes to football, basketball, and lacrosse. I try to be in the know so that you are in the know. So I was stunned with a friend sent me the link to the SU Athletics web page and I saw the new helmets above. It has been a while since I penned an angry note here so let us get at it.

First off, these helmets are kind of ugly. I am all for having uniformity in the colors that the university uses. But really, this dark navy blue looks like ass on these helmets. It almost looks black. With all of our modern technology they can not actually make it look like it is the right color?

From the years 1977 until 2005 Syracuse had no logo or number on their helmets. The helmets and uniforms had subtle changes over the seasons, but no major differences. Then for the 2005 season the university decided to go with a retro, throwback look ala the Ernie Davis/Jim Brown era. Among the calamity of about five different logos for the university in as many years, the goal was to be uniform in the university’s application of the college nickname and logo. Changing from Orangemen to Orange was supposed to show unity and it has ended up being a mash of logos and heartbreak. As many Orange faithful have ascertained; how can we build traditions if we keep changing them every year?

If you go to the link and look at the view from the back, you will notice an NY on the helmet. This is to further connect Syracuse as New York State’s team, and more importantly New York (City)’s team. While the “Orange in the Apple” marketing campaign is a worthy endeavor, putting an NY on our helmet is wrong. Syracuse is not New York. Syracuse is Syracuse. The uniforms are supposed to represent Syracuse and nothing more. The helmets should not be part of a marketing scheme. The uniform should be a sacred thing, and outside of a small Nike swooshes I have no tolerance for anything other than something that represents Syracuse. NY does not represent Syracuse even if Syracuse represents NY.

Just when we get used to something DOCTOR Gross changes it. I am getting a little sick of this guy. At least with Jake Crouthamel we had many years of consistency. About 25 to be exact. Although he would not fire Coach P, and I disliked several decisions he made over the years, I certainly did not realize how good we all had it. That era was certainly better than the mash up of logos, nicknames, colors, and changes. Consistency in excellence is something every program strives for. We have the flashes of excellence, but have failed to achieve the consistency in the past few years.

Additionally, I am not sure if Nike has anything to do with this decision or not, but commenting on Nike in total is never bad. Nike should never, under any circumstances, have control over what uniforms this or any other team wears. That should be the decision of the school’s athletic department and hopefully booster club as well. The biggest killer of consistency is impulsiveness, and Syracuse has had a big fit of impulsiveness since 2005. Hopefully this will change soon.

You can judge for yourself about the new helmets. They certainly are not the worst change the team has had in the past few seasons. But really, at this point, other than a change in the number of wins the team earns, it is sort of a moot point.
Unrelated to Syracuse, I sadly learned that George (Skip) Prosser, coach of the Wake Forrest basketball team passed away recently. He was known as a gentleman and a scholar, among being one of the best coaches in a top notch league. The college basketball landscape will miss him, but more importantly the world as a whole. Men like Prosser that exudes excellence are few and far between. Orange:44 sends its best wishes to Wake Forrest and his family.


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