Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Auburn Athletics Uniforms - Year in Review


The end of the calendar year always brings about articles remembering the last 365 days, in many shapes and forms. Sports seasons, especially the slew of collegiate sports, don't typically fit in nice and neatly with the calendar. So what's a better time than now to look back at the previous 365 days or so of the uniforms worn throughout Auburn's biggest sporting teams!

Baseball

In what turned out to be Sunny Golloway's final season on The Plains, the former head coach brought his old vests to Auburn. While at Oklahoma, Golloway outfitted his Sooners in the classic vests look, as well as plenty of camouflage. The camo trend unfortunately hit Auburn once before, with Coach John Palowski, but those were shelved Golloway's first season. Last year, Auburn debuted a new navy-camo hat against Alabama in the Capital City Classic in Montgomery, and wore them a few times throughout the season, pairing it with a few different uniform combinations. 


This season sees former Mississippi State associate head coach and pitching coach Butch Thompson take over the reigns. Hard to expect much from a first time head coach of a division one program, but Mississippi State did enjoy their massive rotation of uniforms (17 combinations last year!) when Thompson was on the bench. 

Softball

The Auburn Softball team had a historic season, breaking a multitude of records on their way to the program's first SEC Championship and trip to the Women's College World Series in Oklahoma City. Their trip to OKC saw a few new things in the uniform department. An early season game against UAB saw the debut of a brand new orange uniform, the first the team had worn since the 2010-11 season. The new jerseys feature blue areas on the sleeves and collar that showcase a sublimated tiger stripe pattern, reminiscent of the basketball team's 1999 uniforms, as well as one of the craziest uniforms worn by the softball team in 2001.


The orange tops were only worn with the blue pants, but for one game against Tennessee, the team mixed it up going with orange belts and socks. A loss in that game derailed the mix and matched combination.

Through people associated with the program, Auburn softball will be replacing the previous white and blue uniform sets with new ones based off the new orange jersey design. Here's a guess as to what the new uniforms may look like.


In addition to those, the Tigers will be sporting a new grey uniform, one that was described as "charcoal" in color - guessing something similar to Nike's anthracite color used across their different sports. One more uniform is possible to be added to the arsenal after this upcoming season - a pinstripe set, similar to the one worn by the baseball team. A photo surfaced last season of this design.

Basketball

The basketball team typically switches uniform designs every three years or so. This past season saw the Tigers jump that trend by half a season, introducing new alternate uniforms for the conference schedule. The new uniforms were to test Under Armour's new tailoring method, so many teams under the UA banner broke out similar uniforms. Auburn's new unis featured sublimated tiger stripes at the bottom of the jersey (below where they would be tucked in) and all across the shorts. The Tigers wore these uniforms for the entire conference season, except for one game against Ole Miss where the previous old uniforms made an appearance.


The end of the season saw the team facing some adversity, with a losing record, a tough conference tournament on the horizon, and the loss of Antoine Mason for a game or two as he was with family as his father was in the hospital and eventually passed away. The night of Anthony Mason's passing, Auburn traveled to Texas A&M for one the last games of the season. The Aggie equipment managers were gracious enough to make and apply memorial ribbons for the Tigers to wear. Auburn wore the ribbons the rest of the season and throughout the team's miraculous run in Nashville in the SEC Tournament.

The 2015-16 season saw the true replacement of the last uniform set, as Auburn revealed new throwback uniforms, harking back to the glory days of current associate head coach Chuck Person and NBA Hall of Famer Charles Barkley. These new uniforms feature the same double stripe design as those worn in the 1980s. These could possibly be the best uniforms the Auburn Tigers have ever worn. They're certainly the best Under Armour uniforms Auburn has sported.



Football

Auburn uniforms aren't mentioned much in the world of uniforms, unless the topic revolves around classic teams that don't need to change anything. This season saw some of the biggest changes to Auburn's football uniforms since the addition and removal of the orange drop-shadow of the 1990s. Arguably the biggest change for the team is the upgrade to Under Armour's newest template, one that works much better for Auburn's design than the previous template. Auburn also added a slew of accessories for the players to wear, planning to keep the arsenal of gloves, sleeves, and socks a bit more uniform throughout the team as opposed to previous seasons, where these items can get plenty messy in terms of what is worn on the field. The changes that brought about the most discussion were to the helmet, as the Northwestern stripes were updated to feature a new chrome/metallic finish, and the facemask was updated to a new navy blue "titanium" material that produces a great looking sheen, especially in the sunlight. 



Soccer

In what was one of the best stories of the season, Auburn Soccer truly embodied their #MeguhStrong mantra and fought their way through a tough season and cancer diagnosis of strength and conditioning coach Megan Young to put the Auburn Tigers at the highest ranking in program history, finishing the season ranked #12 in the country. This season also saw the program's first Sweet 16 appearance. 


The team broke out new sash uniforms last season, so this year the goalkeepers go a new design - an orange version of last year's new uniforms. 

The entire team wore orange ribbons on the road at Tennessee shortly after Young's diagnosis. The ribbons were removed for the follow games as the Tigers wore specially made #MeguhStrong t-shirts in pre-game warmups and on the bench.

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The last few seasons have seen many great teams and many broken records. Auburn continues to field teams that are just a joy to watch compete week in and week out, even with all the heart attacks we suffer sitting in the stands or watching on TV. Though we may never know the outcome of the games, and sweat them all out to the bitter end, at least we can always count on our teams being one of the best looking ones out there.

Hope you enjoyed this special piece. Please feel free to share this among your friends and post your opinions about the myriad of Auburn uniforms worn throughout this last season!

This piece also happens to be the 100th article posted here on the Auburn Uniform Database! Thank you all for reading, sharing, and conversing about Auburn uniforms with me over the last year plus. 

War Eagle!

1 comment:

  1. awesome stuff clint...love the new basketball unis. and football's minor tweaks were all improvements. i especially enjoy the white belts and the return to full pant stripes.

    ReplyDelete