BEAVERTON, Ore. (September 1, 2010) — Today, Nike unveiled high performance Nike Pro Combat uniforms in new designs for 10 elite college programs that reflect the teams’ traditions, character and culture.
Nike convened distinguished representatives associated with each university to deliver the uniforms’ unique stories:
Marty Lyons, Alabama: Crimson Tide All-America defensive tackle who played for Paul “Bear” Bryant’s 1978 National Champion team and went on to an 11-year career with the New York Jets. Jerard Rabb, Boise State: Broncos wide receiver on the historic hook and ladder play that propelled Boise State to victory in the 2007 Fiesta Bowl. Errict Rhett, Florida: Led Florida in rushing yards all four seasons of his college career and played seven seasons in the NFL. Michael Irvin, Miami: NFL Hall of Famer and three-time Super Bowl champion who led the Hurricanes to a National Championship in 1987. Charles Csuri, Ohio State: Decorated WWII veteran and the father of digital art and animation, Csuri first made history as part of the 1942 Buckeyes National Championship team. Steve Preece, Oregon State: A key member of Oregon State’s 1967 team known as the “Giant Killers,” Preece went on to a successful career as defensive back with the Los Angeles Rams. Ruben Brown, Pittsburgh: A mainstay on Pitt’s offensive line for four years, Brown played for the Buffalo Bills and Chicago Bears, starting in 181 games. Matt Lewis, TCU: Equipment Manager for the Horned Frogs who received the game ball after last year’s 55-28 victory over Utah, when TCU debuted their ’09 Nike Pro Combat uniforms. Col. Rock Roszak, Virginia Tech: Alum of Virginia Tech and the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets, Roszak received numerous decorations during 27 years of active duty service in the U.S. Air Force. Bob Huggins, West Virginia University: Mountaineer alum and current head basketball coach, Huggins has one of the highest winning percentages in Division I basketball.
The Nike Pro Combat System of Dress Each team will benefit from the lightweight innovation and flexible protection of the Nike Pro Combat System of Dress, but the similarities end there. Rendered in vivid color palettes and rich in cultural and historical motifs specific to the individual programs, each custom design tells a different story.
“The Nike Pro Combat System of Dress merges innovation and inspiration to deliver the lightest and most innovative uniform in the industry,” said Kris Aman, Global VP and GM of Nike Athletic Training and Field Sports. “The designs incorporate cultural cues emblematic of each team’s identity and heritage. They’re more than uniforms, they’re expressions of pride.”
Nike designers studied each team’s past, present and vision for the future. They immersed themselves in the community and culture of the universities. As a result, the special-edition uniforms capture the soul and spirit of each program.
Key design details from the uniforms include: Alabama: Houndstooth check pattern incorporated into the uniform in tribute to legendary coach Paul “Bear” Bryant. Boise State: Reflective, Game Royal Bronco head on the uniform echoes the famed blue turf of Bronco stadium. Florida: Alligator-skin motif used in the jersey numbers, pant, gloves and footwear inspired by menacing Gator mascot. Miami: Tonal Fir palm-frond print emblematic of South Florida incorporated into the jersey numbers, pant and footwear. Ohio State: Stylized script numbers, a replica U.S. flag on the jersey sleeve and the camouflage-print base layer honor the WWII-bound Buckeyes, National Champions of 1942. Oregon State: Retro design revives a look worn by the victorious 1967 “Giant Killers.” Pittsburgh: Notched Team Gold jersey numbers and stencil stripe on the helmet evoke steel I-beams in reference to Pittsburgh’s steel industry. TCU: Icy lizard-skin pattern used throughout the uniform inspired by the scaly body armor of TCU’s horned frog mascot and a memorable quote from celebrated coach Leo “Dutch” Meyer. Virginia Tech: All-black uniform references the cadet gray-and-black regalia worn by Virginia Tech’s original football team and honors the school’s current Corps of Cadets. West Virginia: A headlamp-like line running front-to-back on the helmet and smudged Black pattern on the uniform pay respect to the region’s coal mining industry.
The participating schools all rank in the preseason top 25. The teams plan to wear the uniquely designed uniforms for the games listed below and any other games they may determine at a later date: the University of Alabama (Nov. 13), Boise State University (Sept. 6), University of Florida (Oct. 30), University of Miami (Nov. 20), The Ohio State University (Nov. 27), Oregon State University (Dec. 4), University of Pittsburgh (Nov. 26), TCU (Sept. 4), Virginia Tech (Sept. 6) and West Virginia University (Nov. 26).
Ultra lightweight, fully protective In addition to the uniforms’ striking visuals, the Nike Pro Combat System of Dress offers the ultimate in lightweight protection. The uniforms were designed from the inside out, beginning with the padded base layer. The Nike Pro Combat base layer allows for specific pad placement to suit every position, providing a highly customized solution. The base layer also delivers critical protection and greater mobility than traditional pads for unencumbered speed.
With padding integrated into the base layer, the outer uniform becomes a lightweight, breathable sheath with a fitted, superhero look. The sleek jersey and pant are constructed from a four-way stretch twill that rapidly sheds sweat and water, ensuring that even when wet, these uniforms are lighter than their standard-issue counterparts when completely dry. Overall, the uniform is 37 percent lighter than current designs.
The Nike Pro Combat System of Dress addresses the sport’s evolution, providing unmatched lightweight protection for players who are stronger, faster and more powerful than ever before.
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