Thursday, September 16, 2010

Of Blue Helmets and Lost Sight

Were you near a computer yesterday, Auburn fan? Then surely you saw the biggest bit of speculation since the off-season and potential coaching changes (Malzahn to LA Tech, Trooper to Memphis, etc). The mythical blue helmets have surfaced. Blue Helmets, that, to my knowledge the team has had for a while. It's stirred up quite the bit of discussion. First things first, here's a look (which you've already seen I imagine) of that blue helmet:

On the helmet. Here's is what I know/think with about 90% certainty:

  • That helmet is, at the very least, a prototype.
  • Seriously, his whole business is like analyzing a bigfoot photo. I keep looking and scanning the picture; trying to (at the very least) get some size reference.
  • It's not technically a minihelmet, but it's not full size either. That leads me back to the prototype thinking.
  • Yes, they do put visors on minihelmets and prototype helmets

Look, I would think Auburn fans should have more trepidation than anyone when it comes to changing the uniform. Especially considering this /facepalm moment:

Yes, those are the infamous Orange Uniforms (complete with pride stickers on the helmet). Uniforms that Doug Barfield busted out four times. Perhaps most famously against Georgia in 1980, when the team warmed up in Blue Uniforms, changed to Orange, and then proceeded to lose 31-21 to the Dawgs:

Shortly after being hired, Pat Dye was asked about whether his teams would ever break out the orange jerseys. Dye quickly answered, "No, Auburn's colors are blue trimmed in orange, not orange trimmed in blue."

(Major H/t to Jay over at Track'Em Tigers)

I'd recommend checking out Goldberg's video on the matter:

Auburn's Gene Chizik, Trooper Taylor...blue pants?

Chizik's reaction isn't exactly stone faced and he does give a wry smile at the end. However, he's convinced the press pigs that it's genuine. If Auburn does in fact bust out the monochrome blue then remind me to play poker with Coach Gene, because he has one of the worst tells in the world.

As for the Blue Pants and Blue Uniforms? Here's what I know/think with certainty:

  • Apparel companies send out prototypes to schools all the time.
  • Blue Pants/Blue Helmets whether in prototype form or real, are in Auburn
  • They've probably been here for some time. Which is not something new. Mark Richt, after UGA busted out their Black Uniforms, said something along the lines of them being in the Athletic Department for a while.
  • Gene Chizik has said NOT HAPPENING (see above)
  • Grad Assistant/Musician/Former Auburn Head Hunter Travis Williams has said NOT HAPPENING
  • Ryan Pugh is just messing with Twitter
  • Zach Etheridge is just getting annoyed
  • Andrew Gribble points out misplaced priorities of the Auburn faithful

All this leads me to the ultimate crux of this post. I mean, so far the offseason (remember this is a baseball blog) has been good. Quiet. Enjoyable. This? This just sticks in my craw.

Auburn has, without a doubt, one of the biggest games of the season on Saturday. Gameday is in town, ESPN 3D is here, all eyes are on Auburn. We've got a team that is on the precipice of busting the season wide open and getting incredible momentum heading into our first ranked on ranked matchup next week against South Carolina. Yet what are Auburn fans doing? We are worrying about uniforms. UNIFORMS. Auburn fans seemed to have a bigger concern over what the team will wear than how they will play. Are you kidding me with this nonsense? We have so many more questions to answer before kickoff, such as:

  • Will Craig Stevens be back?
  • Will Mike Dyer get the majority of carries?
  • Was the offensive sputtering in the 2nd half of the Mississippi State game an aberration or a harbinger?
  • Is Lee Ziemba 100%? How about Mario Fannin?

You know what Auburn fans shouldn't be asking?

  • What color are the uniforms?

Saturday night is huge for Auburn. Huge in immeasurable ways. At this point, this uniforms ridiculousness is teetering from fun message board chatter to a legitimate distraction. This isn't Concordia College we are playing on Saturday. This is Clemson. You remember all those writers who were bashing the ACC after their abysmal showing last weekend? That tune will change real quick if Auburn doesn't take care of business Saturday. Auburn can't lose sight of the potential and impact this game will have on Saturday.

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