Thursday, March 30, 2017

A Men’s College Basketball Championship Prediction

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The last rounds of the men’s basketball championship are upon us. While there haven’t been as many jaw-dropping upsets as we’ve seen in recent years, this season’s final rounds do have a few fresh faces present. South Carolina hasn’t been in the tournament in decades, yet they find themselves a win away from the championship game after knocking off the likes of Florida, Duke and Baylor to make it to the last rounds. Oregon survived a near scare from Rhode Island and Michigan before dismantling heavily favored Kansas in the regional final. It’s hard to tell who will win in these final matchups, so we won’t try to predict based on on-court performance. Instead, we’ll simplify it and choose the winners based on color combinations.

South Carolina vs. Gonzaga
Red and navy blue are tried and true, so Gonzaga isn’t exactly turning any heads with their color combination. The fact that the Bulldogs are finally in the last rounds after years of tournament appearances will undoubtedly soften some people’s opinions of their common color scheme, but we’ve got to go with the garnet & black of the boys from Columbia.

Oregon vs. North Carolina
Is there any color more synonymous with college basketball tradition than Carolina blue? The baby blue shade is soft on the eyes and looks great on a uniform. To take nothing away from Oregon and their bright shades of green and yellow, we’re going with the Tar Heels.

The Final
It’s come to this. The Carolinas battle it out for men’s college basketball supremacy. Will the familiar boys in baby blue complete another run at a national title or will their oft-forgotten neighbors to the south shock the basketball world and take home the crown? It’s going to be a nail biter, but we think garnet & black will win in the end.

So there you have it, our infallible prediction for the men’s college basketball final. Who do you have winning it all? Which color combination speaks to your sports fan soul? Share with us in the comments below, and enjoy the big games this weekend!

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

A Women’s College Basketball Championship Prediction

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We’ve reached the last four teams for the women’s college basketball tournament. With very little in the way of upsets this tournament, the final rounds feature two #1 seeds and two #2 seeds, all fully capable of handling the competition on the floor on their way to a national title. Will Connecticut win yet another championship and continue their ludicrous run or could South Carolina try to make it 2-for-2 in college basketball championships this year? Anything can happen on the court, so we won’t try to predict that. We will, however, predict based off color schemes.

Mississippi State vs. UConn
Both of these color schemes are pretty synonymous with college sports. Teams from the south love their various shades of burgundy or maroon, while the Huskies are rocking the popular navy blue & red color combo that’s so common around the nation. For a change of pace, we’d love to go with the maroon of the bulldogs, but the sleek use of color elements in UConn’s uniforms has us going with the Huskies in this battle of the dogs.

Stanford vs. North Carolina
“Cardinal” red or garnet? It might look like the same shade to most teams, but the discerning eye can tell the difference. Cardinal and white looks good on most of Stanford’s uniforms, but we love the intimidating black features that South Carolina adds to their shade of red. The Gamecocks take this one by a hair.

The Final
So here we are. The familiarity of the dominating Huskies vs. a South Carolina squad that’s back in the final rounds and trying to get off the championship schneid. Given the television exposure of both the men’s and women’s teams this season, the garnet & black combination is growing on us. We’re not saying it’ll be easy to sway the minds of navy blue & red lovers, but we think the women from Columbia can do it.

Thus completes our practical, undebatable prediction of the women’s college basketball final. Who do you have winning it all this year? Which shade of maroon/burgundy/red is your favorite? Share with us in the comments below and enjoy the games!
Thursday, March 9, 2017

Who Will Be the Last Four?

One of the most popular sports tournaments is about to descend on coliseums and television sets around the country. Who will pull the big upset? Who will be this year’s underdog that takes the nation by storm? Most importantly, which teams will comprise the last four of the tournament? We want to hear what you think, so we’re putting together a contest for a chance to win a pair of Game Bibs! The rules are simple.

  1. Comment on our Instagram post predicting which four teams will be the last four standing
  2. Tag a friend in the comment with whom you’d rock a pair of our Game Bibs 
  3. If you guess correctly, we’ll send a pair of bibs for you and your friend in your favorite color combination
  4. If no one guesses the correct four teams, the person with the most out of four will be our winner

Simple enough, right? The tournament’s teams will be finalized this Sunday, March 13, and we’re giving you a bit of time to see how the field plays out. Your final picks are due by Friday, March 17! If you’ve got any questions or concerns about how the contest works, feel free to send us a message on social media or leave a comment here. Good luck!

*If we don’t have your preferred color or size in stock, we will ship them to you in August when our fall inventory arrives

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Most Unique College Mascots

UA-Monticello Boll Weevils
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We’re still a few days away from the final selections for the men’s and women’s college basketball post-season tournaments, but a few of the holes in the bracket are being filled, introducing casual sports fans to teams they haven’t heard of. That also means plenty of fun mascots to learn. A few great ones that have a chance to make an appearance in the post-season this year include:

  • UC Irvine Anteaters
  • Northern Kentucky Norse
  • CSU Bakersfield Roadrunners
  • Dayton Flyers

Not every great college nickname gets to grace our television screens come March, so in no particular order, here are five of the most unique college mascots.

UC Santa Cruz Banana Slugs
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1. UC Santa Cruz Banana Slugs – This name comes from a 1974 nickname for the college’s club soccer team. It has crawled its way into hearts and minds since then as one of the weirdest, unsettling nicknames in sports.

2. Saint Louis University Billikens – A mythical good-luck figure that’s supposed to represent “things as they ought to be”, a Billiken was created as a charm doll by an art teacher who claimed to see the figure in a dream.

3. Campbell University Fighting Camels – The Camels narrowly missed a chance to participate in post-season basketball. Legend has it the name derives from a student approaching the founder, James Campbell, after the school burned down and said, “Your name’s Campbell; then get a hump on you! We’ve got work to do.” Meant to encourage the founder to rebuild, it was misheard as “camel” and the name stuck.

4. University of Arkansas at Monticello Boll Weevils (Cotton Blossoms) – UA-Monticello is one of the few colleges with different mascots for men’s and women’s varsity sports. Gracing the college’s nickname since 1920, boll weevils love to eat cotton, and cotton blossoms are common in this area of Arkansas.

Arkansas Tech Wonder Boys
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5. Arkansas Tech Wonder Boys (Golden Suns) – Sticking with the dual nickname trend in the state of Arkansas, the men’s teams at ATU are known as the Wonder Boys while the women are the Golden Suns. The former comes from a freshman football player scoring two touchdowns and kicking two extra points in an upset of Jonesboro in 1919. Newspapers called the player, John Tucker, and his teammates “the wonder boys” in headlines, and the name stuck. A replacement for Wonder Girls came about in 1975.

The college basketball playoffs are always a time of surprises, upsets and underdogs. As much as anything, we’re excited to see what sort of unfamiliar mascots make an appearance on the court. Is there a crazy mascot we left off the list? Share it with us in the comments below!

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

A Look at Post-Season College Basketball Uniforms

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With the college basketball post-season just around the corner, we’ll be getting an eyeful of flashy, colorful uniforms in dozens of games for the next few weeks. Some will have classic designs from familiar and unfamiliar teams, while others will use the national spotlight to try out bold new uniforms. Just recently, Adidas unveiled a slew of post-season uniforms for their outfitted schools, complete with matching shoes. It got us thinking about some of the most notable college basketball uniforms we’ve seen in Marches past. Here are a few that stood out.

Adidas 2013 “Impact Camo”
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Oh man, what an eyesore. Every school outfitted by Adidas was forced into these highlighter-shaded uniforms with color-coordinated camouflage shorts. Eye-catching for all and nauseating for most, it was an aesthetic blessing when any of these camo-clad squads were eliminated from the tournament. See above for a closer look.

Maryland 2016

More than any other school, the University of Maryland loves to incorporate their state’s flag into their uniforms. The digs they rolled out for the 2016 tournament cleverly used the uniquely-styled and colorful flag as edging for their jerseys and shorts.

Kentucky 1996
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Denim has its place, but that place isn’t on a basketball uniform. The Wildcats unfortunately took the court in the mid-90s in a worn, weathered look that thankfully has never returned to the hardwood.

Notre Dame 2015
Both squads of Fighting Irish rolled out a new Adidas look for the 2015 tournament, but the women’s squad got more time in front of the cameras as they made it all the way to the championship game. The look included the school’s classic navy blue, but the familiar colors stopped there. A highlighter green dominated the trim of the uniform, while inexplicable green treads accented the shoulder straps and shorts. Many would say, “as long as they win, who cares what they wear?” but we’d respectfully disagree.

Baylor 2013
We hope Baylor fans weren’t tuning into 2013’s version of the women’s tournament looking to find that classic green and gold combination their school is known for. What was left in its place? Gray and bright yellow, naturally. To add insult to injury, the gray uniforms featured gray numbers and names on the back, making it hard to tell players apart during games.

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We love the classics when it comes to school uniforms, so post-season tournaments are always a bit of a mixed bag when it comes to uniform aesthetics. Disagree with us or have a favorite uniform combo from years past? Share with us in the comments below!

Monday, March 6, 2017

5 of the Biggest College Basketball Tournament Upsets

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The annual college basketball tournament in March is something to behold. For a few weeks, the world is exposed to a field of familiar and unknown teams that have fought and clawed their way into the always-entertaining, massive tournament to determine the best basketball team in American college sports. Most games are hectic and come down to the wire, and we imagine this year will be no different. There are always a handful of memorable upsets, as well. We decided to review some of the biggest ones. Who knows, maybe a huge upset will replace one of these in years to come!

1. George Mason over Everyone in 2006 – Probably the most memorable example of an upset in college basketball, the Colonials from George Mason came into the 2006 tournament as an 11-seed and rattled off wins against Michigan State, UNC, Wichita State, and UConn to make it to the last four teams.

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2. Florida Gulf Coast over Georgetown, 78-68 in 2013 – Coming in as a 15-seed against the mighty 2-seed Hoyas from Georgetown University didn’t seem to bother the small, unknown team from FGCU. Being a Division I team for only two years, the Eagles took the sports world by storm with their high-flying offense and scrappy defense. They earned the moniker “Dunk City” and made a run into the 16-team round of the tournament that year.

3. Harvard over Stanford, 71-67 in 1998 – 16-seeded teams have never upset a 1-seed in the men’s tournament, but it’s happened in the women’s tournament. The 1998 women’s squad from Harvard boasted Allison Feaster, that year’s leading national scorer, and took advantage of untimely injuries to a Cardinal squad before recording the first ever and only 16-seed win against a 1-seed in the NCAA tournament. Did we mention this game was played on Stanford’s home court?

4. North Carolina State over Everyone in 1983 – You can point to their 2-point victory over powerhouse Houston as the upset – and we probably should – but the Wolfpack’s entire run in this tournament should be considered an upset. They had to win the entire ACC tournament just to qualify for the national tournament and produced win after dramatic win on their way to a national title.

5. Louisville over Baylor, 82-81 in 2013 – The women’s game has produced some steamrolling squads in the last decade or so, with many of them going undefeated for multiple seasons at a time. The 2013 team from Baylor came into this game having won 74 of 75 previous games. They also had 6’ 8” Brittany Griner, a dominating force under the hoop. A scrappy Cardinals team found just enough shots to get over the Baylor hurdle on a ride to that year’s championship against UConn.

Upsets are fun, but they’re even more fun if the underdog goes on to make a deep run in the tournament. Hopefully this year will produce a few more bracket-busting moments in both tournaments and give us some new underdogs to follow. Who do you think will provide the next big upset in the tournaments? Share in the comments below!