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December 7, 2021

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Who’s out of style and whose duds are in

Ron Kantowski lists his five best-dressed college football teams, as well as his bottom 10

Click to enlarge photo

BYU's Matt Allen tries to cover up the embarrassing color scheme sported by Oregon's J.D. Nelson during the Las Vegas Bowl in 2006.

In Today's Sun

Beyond the Sun

College football players come in all shapes and sizes.

College football uniforms come in all colors and styles.

Sometimes that’s a good thing.

And sometimes it isn’t.

Here’s our look at some of the best — and worst — college football uniforms you’re ever going to see on Saturday afternoon. (Or Thursday night, if the game’s on ESPN.)

The worst

Here are 10 schools that should be put on NCAA probation for lack of uniform behavior:

1. Oregon: My retinas are still burning from the Ducks’ Las Vegas Bowl appearance in 2006. Who designed these not-so-mellow uniforms? Donovan? Oregon looks like a bunch of electrical bananas in motion. I’m not mad about Saffron, but I am upset about having to wear dark glasses whenever the Ducks run onto the field.

2. Utah: The Utes insist on wearing these metallic candy-apple red shirts and trousers that make them look like hot rods from “American Graffiti.” Too bad John Milner used up his eligibility years ago.

3. Iowa State: The Cyclones wear all-red, too, only theirs isn’t metallic. And they’ve got a little yellow in there. I think their uniforms are hand-me-downs from the night shift at Wienerschnitzel.

4. San Jose State: Blue shirts, black pants, yellow trim. The Spartans look like a giant bone bruise.

5-10. Oregon State, Tennessee, Syracuse, Miami, Illinois, Oklahoma State and anybody else who wears orange — except Texas. The Longhorns know that to make orange look good, you must first burn it.

Dishonorable mention: Washington, Northwestern, TCU, Kansas State, Furman and any other team that wears purple.

Call Mr. Blackwell: Clemson wears orange and purple.

The best

These five teams always wear their Saturday best:

1. Penn State: The beauty is in the simplicity. The Nittany Lions’ uniforms are college football’s answer to Yankee pinstripes. They look so neat, traditional and workmanlike that you don’t even notice their coach is wearing a windbreaker from 1968 and floods.

2. Michigan: The coolest helmets in football. The Maize and Blue. Maize — even the name of the color sounds cool.

3. Nebraska: What about that “N” on the helmets? I have never seen a helmet decal that better reflects a team’s fan base than the no-frills Nebraska “N.”

4. Ohio State: Most of my favorite college football uniforms don’t feature stripes, but the Buckeyes’ are the exception. Who needs a helmet decal when you have Buckeye leaves?

5. USC: No names on the back, a stripe on the shoulder. A classic look for a classic program.

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