2019 Uniformity – Week 2: Helmet Color News and New Decals
A Week in Review
For perhaps the first time ever in modern college football, a true freshman center was snapping to a true freshman quarterback, both of which were making their Sun Devil debut in the opening game of the season. The Sun Devils outmatched their opponent and it clearly showed throughout the game and in the final score. However, there were plenty of times where it was clear that there was a lot of youth on the field. In all, ASU played 25 freshmen against Kent State, continuing a youth movement that has not slowed down since it began in the 2018 season. Those 25 guys suited up for the first time. Let’s look at what they suited up in.
Because it was the first game of the season, the Sun Devils followed tradition and wore their classic gold helmet/maroon jersey/gold pant uniform combination against the Golden Flashes. ASU Football, through the efforts of equipment manager Jerry Neilly and his tireless staff, has done an incredible job of rebranding itself during this past decade. Maroon and gold have been used a number of different ways, and we will see plenty of that throughout this 2019 season. But when it comes to uniforms, nothing is more Arizona State than the gold/maroon/gold combination.
Tradition is synonymous with college football, and the fact that ASU holds true to welcoming each new season with their classic digs encapsulates that.
Traditional Home Uniform: A
The news has already been making its rounds, but for those that do not know, Arizona State will only be utilizing two helmet shell colors this year: Gold and White. The primary reason for this is because Sun Devil Athletics and ASU administration are concerned with providing its student-athletes the highest in safety standards. The result of that standard for ASU Football is that they must invest in the top-of-the-line helmets. Helmet safety technology has made huge strides in the past few years as the concern with head injuries, concussions, and long-term health for football players has come to the forefront. A casualty of such a decision is the helmet budget as the price of the safest available helmets has skyrocketed as technology has advanced. In fact, it took a generous donation from a donor to help the team afford these helmets.*
While the loss of black and maroon helmets is unfortunate, I commend Arizona State University for taking a huge step in focusing on player safety, which should take priority. Hopefully, in the future, it will work out that the budget can fit the top-of-the-line for all four helmet shells, but for the 2019 season, rest assured that Jerry Neilly and his crew will be finding other ways to be creative.
The Week to Come
After a good showing in week 1, the Sun Devils move on to their second consecutive weekday game as they take on Sacramento State this upcoming Friday. When the Sun Devils play the Hornets, they will wear a white helmet/maroon jersey/maroon pant uniform combination.
The maroon jersey features a sublimated Arizona state flag in representing the sunset and the star across the chest in lieu of identifying text which is now on the back of the jersey. The gold player numbers on the uniforms being worn this Thursday are outlined in black on both the front and back of the jersey, as are the TV numbers on the sleeves.
The nameplate on the back of the jersey utilizes the gold Sun Devil Bold font and above the nameplate is a small, gold “ASU” outlined in black. On the front of the jersey, near the left shoulder, is a gold Adidas logo. Near the right shoulder is a maroon and gold Pac 12 shield, as well as a white and gray “150” patch signifying the 150th season of college football. Finally, at the base of the collar is the black PT*42 shield in honor of ASU Football legend, Pat Tillman.
The maroon pants have a small gold pitchfork with black trim near the right hip and a gold adidas logo near the left hip. Replacing the large pitchfork on the left thigh, “Sun Devils” is in gold Sun Devil Bold running vertically along the side of the left thigh. There is paneling on the pants that features the darker tonal maroon, not only providing further dimension to the uniform as a whole but also serving a purpose in providing a greater range of motion.
The white helmet will feature a never-before-seen decal kit. The helmet will have a large maroon pitchfork with gold trim on the right side of the helmet and gold player numbers with a maroon outline on the left side of the helmet to match the player numbers on the uniform. The facemask is maroon, and the front bumpers will be both 2D and 3D with a white base and maroon font that reads PT*42, also honoring the legendary Sun Devil, Pat Tillman.
The maroon decals on the back of the helmet include the Pac 12 shield, the outline of the state of Arizona with a small pitchfork over Tempe, and even the text in the Warning label. The decals on the back of the helmet are rounded out by small Sparky decals on either side of the helmet’s rear bumper.
ASU will wear white cleats against the Hornets. The two sets of cleats pictured below feature the adidas Adi-Zero cleats on the top row and adidas Freaks on the bottom. The Adi-Zeroes are typically worn by speed position players (wide receivers and defensive backs), while the Freaks are typically worn by heavier players (linebackers and linemen).
Beginning with the top row, the Adi-Zero on the left features a white base and white sole, a white tongue with maroon accents, white laces, three maroon adidas stripes near the toe on the outside of the shoe, and a prominent maroon adidas logo on the instep near the arch. The Adi-Zero in the middle is a standard low-top Adi-Zero Primeknit with all the same features. The pair on the far right is a mid-top Adi-Zero Primeknit and has the same features as well, but the white opening rises higher up on the ankle.
The pairs of adidas Freaks on the left and in the middle also feature a white base and sole, with three maroon adidas stripes near the ankle on the outside of the shoes and three maroon adidas stripes near the arch on the instep. They both also have a white tongue and white laces. The Freak low-top is on the far left and Freak mid-top is in the middle, rising higher up the ankle. The Freak Torsion on the far right has a white base and sole. It also has three white adidas stripes on the outside of the shoe. There is a very large maroon adidas logo on the inside of the shoe. The tongue and large shoelaces are both white, and a small, maroon adidas “Freak” logo can be found on the white heel loop.
The Sun Devils will wear white gloves, and as with the cleats, there are different gloves for different positions. The gloves on the top are Adi-Zeros which are typically worn by speed position players like wide receivers and defensive backs. For the first time in the past few years, the Adi-Zero gloves do not create an image when the palms are placed together. Instead, they feature a gold pitchfork with maroon trim on the palm of each glove. They also have a maroon adidas logo is on the back of the hand. The gloves in the middle are adidas Freaks, worn by larger skill position players such as linebackers and tight ends.
The adidas Freak gloves have a pattern of small, repeating adidas logos that are gold in color on the palm, along with a large maroon adidas logo that is completed when the palms are placed together. The adidas Freaks also have a maroon adidas logo on the back of the hand. Finally, for linemen, the gloves on the bottom are adidas Freak-Max, which boast extra padding on the heel of the palm meant to withstand all of the contact that linemen endure throughout the course of a game. They are plain white and black two-tone on the palm and along with a maroon adidas logo on the back of the hand, they also have gold accents on the knuckles and wrist-wrap.
Ever since large pitchforks with filled-in colors were introduced in 2015, I have been pining after seeing a maroon pitchfork with gold trim on a white helmet. I am thrilled to see this decal kit on the helmet. Add to that the triumphant return of the maroon facemask to the white helmet, something that I have been desperately missing the past couple of seasons, and that ratchets up the excitement even more. The maroon facemask complements the maroon pitchfork and in tying together the maroon jersey and pants, creates an incredible uniform combination. It’s always important to wait until the game is played to make a final judgment, but my initial impression is very positive.
What Color ASU Fans Should Wear: Gold
*SPECIAL NOTE: For more information on helmet safety, please click here.