Football will be sporting a retro-look wardrobe for Traditions Day Saturday against Toledo
Steve Klein, general manager for International Marketing Group, the company in charge of branding and licensing for the CMU athletics department, made the announcement Wednesday night during a meeting with the CMU chapter of the American Marketing Association.
The uniforms cost $14,465 and resemble the design the University of Michigan wore against Notre Dame in 2011. The light gold uniforms feature a maroon block C on the front, maroon numbers on the top left chest and the back and includes maroon stripes on the shoulders. There is a gold stripe down the middle of the maroon helmet, which are the black helmets from last season that were reconditioned with no logo on either side.
The announcement took place before a standing room-only crowd at Grawn Hall’s Pierpont Auditorium, with Klein even quipping that he was spilling the beans.
Klein told the group that replica T-shirts of the new jersey design will be distributed to the first 1,000 students who enter the stadium.
Josh Reasoner, supervisor of athletics equipment, apparel and branding and CMU’s Adidas contact, on Wednesday saying: “1 day!”
The announcement marks the third specialty uniform for the football team since CMU signed an exclusive contract with Adidas in 2009, aligning all 15 of its intercollegiate athletic programs with the same look.
CMU made waves nationally last August when it unveiled eight different jersey combinations at a cost of $50,000, including a special all-black uniform that it wore for its home game against Michigan State. The team also debuted a special maroon uniform with gold trim, gold steaks on the shoulders and the word “CENTRAL” along the chest in its game against Western Kentucky at the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl in Detroit.
The team said it plans on wearing the new uniforms every year on Traditions Day.
Specialty and alternate uniforms have become common in college football in recent years, with sports apparel companies using them as promotional pieces.
Similarly, athletic departments argue that unique-looking uniforms help in the ever-difficult world of recruiting. Rival Western Michigan, also under contract with Adidas, introduced new jerseys and helmet design prior to the season
CMU first jumped on the specialty uniform bandwagon in 2008 for a night game against undefeated and nationally-ranked Ball State with a New Balance-branded uniform that included a “Vegas-gold” top and maroon pants.
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