Reaction to new UT uniforms likely generational

Fan: Changes help with recruiting

University of Tennessee linebacker Curt Maggitt (56), left, models the new football uniform with coach Butch Jones, center, and linebacker A. J. Johnson (45), right, in the traditional uniform, during Media Day at Neyland Stadium in Knoxville on Thursday, Aug. 15, 2013. (ADAM LAU/NEWS SENTINEL)

Photo by Adam Lau

University of Tennessee linebacker Curt Maggitt (56), left, models the new football uniform with coach Butch Jones, center, and linebacker A. J. Johnson (45), right, in the traditional uniform, during Media Day at Neyland Stadium in Knoxville on Thursday, Aug. 15, 2013. (ADAM LAU/NEWS SENTINEL)

Butch Jones hosts fashion show unveiling new Tennessee uniforms

JaCall Stewart and David Carter took a quick peek at the University of Tennessee’s new football look.

That was all it took for them to form opinions of both the new “smokey” gray uniform and changes to the traditional orange-and-white attire.

After viewing color photos of the uniforms, they virtually parroted each other in saying, “I like them.”

“I like the new colors,” said JaCall, pausing while strolling through Market Square in downtown Knoxville late Thursday afternoon. “I thought it was original.”

Even the smaller changes caught David’s eye.

“It’s good for the updates to the outfits,” he said. “I like the new logos. It’s better for the team and the fans to look at something new.”

Those were two opinions from a totally random survey on the new look. Both JaCall and David are 14 years old.

Alan Moore, 28, thinks someone’s perspective on the uniforms likely depends, to a certain degree, on their age. He referred to the black jerseys UT wore for the Halloween home game against the University of South Carolina in 2009 and how they were received.

“It was a generational thing, I think,” said Moore, a lawyer who received his undergraduate degree from UT. “I think the older generation doesn’t like change. I think most young people are OK with doing something new.”

Bob Dickie agreed. He’s a season-ticket holder and a former track and cross country athlete at UT. He thinks that being 39 enables him to see both sides of any generation gap.

“I’ve got my feet in both worlds,” he said. “I’m young enough to have a lot of friends who are millenials. They love it.

“My dad wouldn’t get it. He would be at a loss for words.”

Dickie said he grew up with the orange and white and loves the tradition. But he also believes the new uniforms represent an “arms race” among schools that can impact recruiting. Dickie said that his younger brother, Jeremy, is on UT’s track team and compares his gear to what athletes at other universities receive.

“It’s a completely different day for my brother than what I went through,” Dickie said.

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Comments » 176

civilianvol_formerly_marinevol writes:

How could any Vol fan not like the black jerseys worn against South Carolina in 09? That was the most fired up Tennessee team I ever saw. We kicked off to Carolina, and 4 minutes later we were ahead 14 to 0. Whatever it takes. Way to go Coach Butch Jones.

TommyJack writes:

Straight from geezerdom, I have no problem with the grey unis. IF they're used only occasionally. ( I would suggest they go with grey helmets too)

volthrunthru#658770 writes:

Yahoo is NOT generational, as most audience research shows---especially Yahoo Sports. It has a balance of young and old on the site...

And these people almost all are saying the new look is bad, bad to horrible...

http://sports.yahoo.com/photos/tennes...

Pretty soon Tennessee will not be a program that anyone knows or feels allegience to in the same way or at the same level as historically, seems to be the concensus...

reg_mza#219136 writes:

I didn't expect Gray to be emphasized and if anything would have emphasized a rugged black version but I don't know, it's not too bad. Time to step outside our comfort zones and just usher in a little bit of a new way of UT football, from top to bottom.

ReeseHallRelic writes:

Any "fan" whose allegiance to UT is dictated by uniforms has no allegiance to begin with. I can understand some folks not liking change of any kind, but dropping your team because of uniforms? Go ahead; you're not fans to begin with.

I'm with TommieJack: an old fart who doesn't mind the gray -- but go with gray helmets, too.

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

in response to TommyJack:

Straight from geezerdom, I have no problem with the grey unis. IF they're used only occasionally. ( I would suggest they go with grey helmets too)

Wow, i remember you bellyached about the black jerseys in 09. Things are changing around here, and i agree gray helmets would look even better..GBO!

HallowedHill writes:

Looks great, GO VOLS!.

...Just don't lose while wearing gray.

snafu14u#241639 writes:

About time. Look sharp and the players will like them. I graduated in 76 and we're still The Big Orange but with a shade of gray. Love it. Every once in a while shake that tree. Bonzai Vol

proudveteran writes:

The biggest problem that I now have is with Coach Butch Jones talking out of both sides of his mouth about maintaining Tennessee Traditions...Jones by his own choice junked the Orange & White traditions of Tennessee. I have no more confidence in him as a person...another super "slick" talking Kiffin!

USAF-Moose writes:

Grey is in the school color pallett so it's really not that big a deal. I'm getting closer to the half century mark and love the Orange and White, but I'm also in favor of a little change. Over the last few years the old Orange and White uniforms have been associated with losing, maybe with the adjustments to the traditional unifom and the addition of gray the losing attitude will change.

mikethehistorystudent writes:

in response to proudveteran:

The biggest problem that I now have is with Coach Butch Jones talking out of both sides of his mouth about maintaining Tennessee Traditions...Jones by his own choice junked the Orange & White traditions of Tennessee. I have no more confidence in him as a person...another super "slick" talking Kiffin!

You have no more confidence in him as a person? That's strong language talking about someone you don't really know. Please don't compare him to Kiffin again. Jones is clearly 10x the man Kiffin is. This comes from another proud vet.

USAF-Moose writes:

in response to proudveteran:

The biggest problem that I now have is with Coach Butch Jones talking out of both sides of his mouth about maintaining Tennessee Traditions...Jones by his own choice junked the Orange & White traditions of Tennessee. I have no more confidence in him as a person...another super "slick" talking Kiffin!

How did Coach Jones "junk the Orange and White traditions"? There were 5 uniform combinations introduced. Only one was grey and it's not the primary uniform. A uniform change does not negate tradition, tradition is in the heart of the coach, players, students and fans.

AWOLVol writes:

in response to HallowedHill:

Looks great, GO VOLS!.

...Just don't lose while wearing gray.

That is, indeed, a key requirement...lest these gray uniforms go the way of the orange shoes after we took one on the chin vs Bama in '86 while wearing those hideous things. Those shoes went into the dumpster, never to be resurrected.

Razzle writes:

in response to TommyJack:

Straight from geezerdom, I have no problem with the grey unis. IF they're used only occasionally. ( I would suggest they go with grey helmets too)

Yea, grey or maybe even orange helmets. The white and grey seem too bland.

ChadsFordVolunteer writes:

in response to AWOLVol:

That is, indeed, a key requirement...lest these gray uniforms go the way of the orange shoes after we took one on the chin vs Bama in '86 while wearing those hideous things. Those shoes went into the dumpster, never to be resurrected.

Let's hope these gray abominations go the way of those orange shoes. Fifty years ago this fall we wore orange jerseys, with white shoulder chevrons and black numbers. They were horrible and thankfully disappeared after one year. Let's hope these gray pukes go the same route.

By the way, that 1963 team, with their new and improved "motivational" uniforms, won five games and got stomped by Bama 35-0 (who didn't change theirs, either then or now).

smokeywantstoknow writes:

haven't we been in the "GREY" area way to long now. I think they need to worry about winning again and our tradition, I don't like them they are ugly but I will support the young men who play GBO

VolsFanInAfghanistan writes:

Why is everyone so upset about a uniform that we will wear what once or twice in a season? I have a friend that is a big time Michigan fan and I showed him the new uniforms and he was thrilled to see the new look. One of the true Tennessee Volunteer fans on here said it, it's a uniform, tradition lies in the heart of our school not in a uniform. If the new generation of players like them so be it, we're not to ones out there playing in them. Let them have fun and look good doing it. Instead of whining about the uniforms, whine about the trolls and unfaithful fans that come on here and bad mouth our proud Tennessee football team. I personally don't care what uniform they wear, as long as when they play I get to see my beloved Vols play on AFN!!! I'm sick of hearing it on the internet. I want to see them play!!!!! GBO VFL

MikeNPS writes:

in response to civilianvol_formerly_marinevol:

How could any Vol fan not like the black jerseys worn against South Carolina in 09? That was the most fired up Tennessee team I ever saw. We kicked off to Carolina, and 4 minutes later we were ahead 14 to 0. Whatever it takes. Way to go Coach Butch Jones.

How could we not like those uniforms? Easy. Black is NOT a UT school color and should NOT be the color of the uniforms. Those were the ugliest, most pathetic uniforms the Vols have ever worn, until perhaps this year.

claiborneh writes:

For me it's not about being older and resisting change. It's not a generational issue. I think being in an "arms race" like a bunch of trite lame Dr. Seuss sneeds with Starks on their bellies is lame. I think following the crowd is lame. If the uniforms were brought out before Oregon and everyone else started doing it, the concept would have been original and cool. You know what would be cool now? Not copying everyone and staying with the basic traditional look!

claiborneh writes:

If they start winning, then puke brown, or baby phooey green would even look stellar.

volhome writes:

in response to USAF-Moose:

Grey is in the school color pallett so it's really not that big a deal. I'm getting closer to the half century mark and love the Orange and White, but I'm also in favor of a little change. Over the last few years the old Orange and White uniforms have been associated with losing, maybe with the adjustments to the traditional unifom and the addition of gray the losing attitude will change.

Ah, Moose, I see that you are someone fooled by the marketing department. Just because they load a webpage that states grey is in the palette does not make it true. They just as well could have substituted the color lavender on that page, and it would have not been true. If they wanted to add a color, then do what we have traditionally done in the past. Poll the students, poll the alumni, poll the fans. Instead they shove a new color down our throats without a thought of how it would be accepted. Shame on UT, and shame on the lemmings and folks with no true ties to the Orange and White for not seeing that the wool is being pulled over their collective eyes.

Henley-Street-Bridge writes:

The First Game we get our A's Kicked in those new fangled Gray uniforms, is the day they all go back on the shelve too..

GO BIG GRAY (NOT)

Orange_Beach writes:

If they show up in Bryant-Denny Stadium wearing grey uniforms Nick Saban will score 100 points on their silly arse. You have got to be kidding me. As ugly as Orange is that is Tennessee folks, don't let this clown change your tradition.

SavTnVol writes:

in response to Orange_Beach:

If they show up in Bryant-Denny Stadium wearing grey uniforms Nick Saban will score 100 points on their silly arse. You have got to be kidding me. As ugly as Orange is that is Tennessee folks, don't let this clown change your tradition.

Boy, now that's an idiot remark.

tenacjim#211887 writes:

in response to proudveteran:

The biggest problem that I now have is with Coach Butch Jones talking out of both sides of his mouth about maintaining Tennessee Traditions...Jones by his own choice junked the Orange & White traditions of Tennessee. I have no more confidence in him as a person...another super "slick" talking Kiffin!

"Junked tradition" for 1 game? How about some credit for taking black off the road uniforms?

AlpharettaVol writes:

One of the big winners in this will be Adidas. Jerseys and other apparel using the gray theme will be flying off the shelves in the UT Bookstore on game day. In case you haven't noticed, there are already a number of items that incorporate the gray look for sale to fans. My wife has couple of items that she wears on game day that have heavy accents in gray.
Back to adidas: this is a major step for them in their battle against Nike as to who will be the most fashion-forward in collegiate team apparel.

Orange_Power_T writes:

in response to claiborneh:

For me it's not about being older and resisting change. It's not a generational issue. I think being in an "arms race" like a bunch of trite lame Dr. Seuss sneeds with Starks on their bellies is lame. I think following the crowd is lame. If the uniforms were brought out before Oregon and everyone else started doing it, the concept would have been original and cool. You know what would be cool now? Not copying everyone and staying with the basic traditional look!

I can't remember, but I am trying to recall if Pat Summitt caught this much flack when she introduced light blue into the UT color pallette for the Lady Vols. It seemed to work out okay for them.

If you think following the crowd is lame, I suggest you look in the mirror and re-evaluate. I see you are using a computer, probably own a cell phone, drive a newer car, own a microwave, etc.

Until I am required to risk injury every day for my beloved university, asked to give my all on and off the field- I will never condemn our athletes for wearing a uniform that I may or may not like.

BTW, not overly enthralled over this particular uni, but have looked forward to a change for years. If the players love 'em and it inspires them...I totally agree with them.

jcp201 writes:

I'm old and I like them. I think some people like to gripe.

Rock_E_Topp88 writes:

in response to ChadsFordVolunteer:

Let's hope these gray abominations go the way of those orange shoes. Fifty years ago this fall we wore orange jerseys, with white shoulder chevrons and black numbers. They were horrible and thankfully disappeared after one year. Let's hope these gray pukes go the same route.

By the way, that 1963 team, with their new and improved "motivational" uniforms, won five games and got stomped by Bama 35-0 (who didn't change theirs, either then or now).

Hey Flowers...you stick out like a sore thumb. Or in your case, it should be sore LOSER. Why don't you tell us what "DogTurdAfternoon" thinks about the new uniforms.... or some of your other dozen alter-egos. You are "Sybil" like.

proudveteran writes:

in response to mikethehistorystudent:

You have no more confidence in him as a person? That's strong language talking about someone you don't really know. Please don't compare him to Kiffin again. Jones is clearly 10x the man Kiffin is. This comes from another proud vet.

Coach Jones promised to keep and enhance Tennessee traditions...then junks the first order of tradition...Orange & White. He simply did not live up to his promises. Respect is gained by delivering promises...Jones did not.

61NCVol writes:

I love tradition. I've always thought the classic orange jersey and white pants is one of the best uniforms in college football. But I have to admit I like the gray, as long as we use it only occasionally. Its a heck of a lot better than the Georgia "power ranger" look, or the wacky and just plain ugly outfits Maryland and Oregon parade around in.

Dickattrade writes:

Well when all is said and done I have no say in this matter but do offer and opinion..I do not like change.I will soon be 72 and I guess old folks just don't care for radical change.
I will continue to attend the games and support my Vols and just female dog a little to myself about the new uniforms.
Orange and white are my favorite colors and this will not change.

Rock_E_Topp88 writes:

in response to proudveteran:

The biggest problem that I now have is with Coach Butch Jones talking out of both sides of his mouth about maintaining Tennessee Traditions...Jones by his own choice junked the Orange & White traditions of Tennessee. I have no more confidence in him as a person...another super "slick" talking Kiffin!

First...thank you for your service. But I have to say, you are waaaaaaaay off base here. Who cares if the Vols play in jockstraps and wife-beater tshirts....just so we start winning games? Tradition is much more than the color of a uniform that will be worn 1-2 times the whole season. Coach Jones did not junk the traditions of the Orange & White. But then again, I guess some people just like to Butch.

GO Vols 12-0 in 2013!

TNFaninFL writes:

Who cares what the fans think of the grey uni.. if it helps RECRUITING then everyone should be for it, Butch gets it, he is a salesmen and 18 year olds dont care what the team wore in 1950. My prediction is that these grey uniforms will be worn for the last home game. Keep recruiting hard Butch, you and your staff are knocking it out of the park !!!

proudveteran writes:

in response to MikeNPS:

How could we not like those uniforms? Easy. Black is NOT a UT school color and should NOT be the color of the uniforms. Those were the ugliest, most pathetic uniforms the Vols have ever worn, until perhaps this year.

I totally agree with your statement...Orange & White are the traditional University of Tennessee colors. Will we now have a "Smokey Gray" and White checker board in the end zones too?

fundamentals83 writes:

helmets look goofy with that uni. If you're gonna go, then go all out!

fearthehound writes:

I'm 61 years old, so that qualifies me as an old fart. I was born Orange & White, I grew up that way, I graduated from the Orange & White and never miss even a little tidbit of info coming out of KTown about the program.

Having said that, I love the new uni's and I love the gray. Tradition is a whole lot more than mixing up the colors a little. Most teams have three colors to work with, and that gives them more options in uniform design-and like it's been stated many times, the recruits love it.

LSU, Fla State, Clemson, Michigan, Notre Dame, and many other programs with rich traditions have several uniform combos to choose from. I think we should wear the gray at least a couple of times a year.

865fan writes:

in response to 61NCVol:

I love tradition. I've always thought the classic orange jersey and white pants is one of the best uniforms in college football. But I have to admit I like the gray, as long as we use it only occasionally. Its a heck of a lot better than the Georgia "power ranger" look, or the wacky and just plain ugly outfits Maryland and Oregon parade around in.

+1

fearthehound writes:

Can't wait to get me a smokey gray cap with the orange Power T.

Voltman writes:

I really really hope they keep the gloves

865fan writes:

Not that I am a fashion expert but a previous poster touched on this and it was brought up in conversation with friends yesterday....
Many schools have two bold colors and then throw in white in uniforms as a neutral backdrop. Example: FL is orange and blue but sometimes wear blue pants, white jersey with orange numbers. Same with Michigan and blue and maze, Ohio state with red and grey, GA with red and black.
So when one of your only two colors is neutral white, it is limiting. That is why much fan attire sold at the bookstore and other locations, has long had navy, black, khaki or grey. So when you think about it this really isn't that much of a stretch.
Our colors are still orange and white just like they have been for the past years when I have often worn a grey fleece with a Power T.

wreck429 writes:

All of the traditions that you know had to start somewhere. Heck, I remember the first time the band started playing Rocky Top (not that long ago, by the way). No one was shouting about the real fight song being "Down the field". The vol walk has only happened since the Fulmer era. When I was a kid selling cokes the team came in on busses just like the away team. In the 70's they wore a nearly pastel(sp?) orange jersey and a skinny T on the helmet.
Change is the only thing that remains constant.

tennlions writes:

in response to proudveteran:

The biggest problem that I now have is with Coach Butch Jones talking out of both sides of his mouth about maintaining Tennessee Traditions...Jones by his own choice junked the Orange & White traditions of Tennessee. I have no more confidence in him as a person...another super "slick" talking Kiffin!

First, thank you for your service. I am a veteran myself and nearly 50 years old. I absolutely love the orange and white.
Second, I think that Coach Jones has been referring to the tradition of pride, conduct and the recognition of the rich history of the UT football program. Uniforms are just a part of a program. Fact is, in 2013 if you want to recruit the best kids, you need to wow them. If you don't, someone else will.

drwut70 writes:

in response to Henley-Street-Bridge:

The First Game we get our A's Kicked in those new fangled Gray uniforms, is the day they all go back on the shelve too..

GO BIG GRAY (NOT)

My thoughts exactly Henley Street. So after all it is up to the players until they get their butts kicked in Gray and then it will turn back to that "old fashioned, boring, traditional Orange and White". So for me and mine -----
GO BIG ORANGE!

a.cwalker88#1419330 writes:

Winning is the only tradition in Vol nation that I care about.

tennrich1 writes:

in response to a.cwalker88#1419330:

Winning is the only tradition in Vol nation that I care about.

Bingo....I agree...I mean...look at the dialogue on here over...UNIFORMS!!!!..I'm older enough to be most of you guys dad and I'm fine with them...They look great!!! WHO CARES!!!.

tennrich1 writes:

in response to tennrich1:

Bingo....I agree...I mean...look at the dialogue on here over...UNIFORMS!!!!..I'm older enough to be most of you guys dad and I'm fine with them...They look great!!! WHO CARES!!!.

I'll reply to my own post....At least this shows the passion that people have for UT football...except for a couple of well known trollers....not many programs in the nation where fan actually "care" that much about their program to get riled up over....UNIFORMS...I do like the passion..carry on...

subdoc32 writes:

in response to proudveteran:

Coach Jones promised to keep and enhance Tennessee traditions...then junks the first order of tradition...Orange & White. He simply did not live up to his promises. Respect is gained by delivering promises...Jones did not.

Sure! because i'm sure CBJ made this decision all by himself, with no AD involvement at all! You whiny a s s fair weather fans are pathetic...

MetroplexMojo writes:

I'm younger than most here but I like the traditional orange and white. I'm not a huge fan of the new alternate uniforms but I understand the rationale (recruiting/economics) behind it. Bottom line, I would rather win in orange and gray than lose in orange and white.

Moost writes:

These men represent the school, the state, their families, and their team. Please note that I did not write uniforms.

Some old (mind and/or body) people here are mistaking uniforms for national flags. It is a team of young men coached by a team of older men. I do not want them to care about the opinions of people who contribute nothing to their team other than a Joan Rivers type commentary on what they are wearing.

I cheer for the teams of my alma mater.

Personally I like the smoky uniforms. It makes the home orange look painfully dull though. Of course that may be because of the model chosen to wear the orange stuff.

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