The importance of uniforms in college football is at an all-time high. Schools are using creative uniforms as one of the many ways to recruit top high school players. However, the Florida Gators took things a bit too far.
In general, animal print on the helmet is an acceptable move. Tiger striping like what we see with the Memphis Tigers and Cincinnati Bengals adds a unique look to the team’s uniforms. Take a look at exhibit A with the blue Memphis lids.
The problem with Florida is they decided to move the animal print onto the jerseys which is something that never works.
You’ll notice the jersey is made to look like gator skin. To make matters worse, there are even blue compression shirts with gator print to wear underneath. Nike has a great track record of being creative with their college uniforms while also coming up with something that looks clean. See most of the uniform combinations for the Oregon Ducks.
However, Nike clearly missed the mark with these. While the uniforms look grey, Nike is calling them “swamp green”. According to ESPN, it’s the first time the Gators have gone away from their traditional blue and orange color scheme.
Here’s how Florida described the design in a press release.
Nike Football designers created and delivered a new alternate look for the team (incorporating the Nike Vapor Untouchable Speed uniform) that takes after an alligator’s armored body and channels its ability to be a master of camouflage.
Florida made it worse by tweeting the design was an 18-month process.
The problem with the uniforms is not the color, but the gator skin. Nike could have still gone with the “swamp green” look but left off the print. The look is not all bad. Florida is wearing a cool matte grey helmet with their alternate Gator head logo, and player numbers on the other side.
The cleats look similar to gator dress shoes also have a nice look to them.
Here’s a look at Twitter’s scathing response to the new Florida uniforms.