Penn State Uniform Changes Are Nothing To Get Excited About: Barely A Change At All

Written By:  •  Friday, August 10, 2012

Penn State Nittany Lions uniform changes names on jerseys

While fellow uniform enthusiasts (is there a name for that? There should be a name for us folks) are bombarded with headlines that scream “Nittany Lions Announce Uniform Changes!”  “Penn State Forgoes Decades of Tradition And Alters Uniforms!” and “New Penn State Unis for the Fall!” This site, in our responsibility to the truth and facts of logo and uniform design, read the press release by Nittany Lion’s head coach Bill O’Brien, and regarded it as so unimportant, so temporary, so expected, so normal, that we chose not to cover it.

Apparently people want to talk about the changes, so let’s discuss.

In the singe least unexpected move in all of sporting history, Penn State will wear ribbon patches on their jerseys to support victims of child abuse. A phenomenal cause for us all to support, to be sure. But Penn State wearing them? In other news, Fire; Hot. Water; Wet.

The other “change” and actually noteworthy simply because they are Penn State, afterall, is that the players will have their names on the backs of their jerseys. The school says that in the wake of tragedy and strife, this will be a way to recognize the strength of players who stayed with the program. It is solely my opinion that with the rash of transfers, and more coming, this is a way to help fans of the team figure out who the hell it is running the ball for the Nittany Lions.

Two things will be different about the classic Penn State Uniforms for 2012. Both a called “not permanent” and both would be easily overlooked by any casual fan of the game.

Do you love the changes? Do you think they deserve the sports universe’s massive outpouring of attention? Do you consider them changes at all?

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JR Francis

JR Francis is an actor, writer, director, graphic designer, UX guru, father, comedian, and craft beer snob. You can reach him at or on Twitter @JRFrancisSLN*One of several full-time uniform reporters this site has including its founder, Chris Creamer, who started his site in 1997

  • Can’t agree more. Amen.

  • Burmy

    I think they should make the names on the back PERMANENT…the REAL changes can come for next season though.

  • Jimmy Kemp

    Penn State should have wore the Nike Pro Combat uniform they chose not to wear a couple years ago, and made a road version, they should have wore that for 2012 then made a new permanent uniform change for 2013. What they are doing now with their uniform change is putting lipstick on a pig, they need to abolish those uniforms. Wear a navy blue helmet with a white stripe and a Nitany Lion logo on each side.

  • Nathan

    These arent new uniforms really. They are just aditions ya know? the names they should keep. But it’s either go big or go home with uniforms today. And these arent anything to brag about.

  • Brian Castner

    And living in Pa I get to see all the PSU fans go crazy over this “change”. They’re calling the coach a hypocrite and a liar because he said there would be no changes when he was hired. They want him fired for this and have a new coach brought in to “restore the proper uniforms”. Glad to see they’ve learned their lesson that football shouldn’t be the top priority.

  • Rob

    These minor tweaks are fine. I saw no need to change the uniforms just to placate the pc crowd.
    I’m sure they considered a complete change, but tradition won out.

  • Thax

    As a life-long Penn State, this is a pretty big deal — not breaking news or top headline stuff — but still, the no-named jerseys have been a staple for the team. This is a pretty big change for us Penn State fans.

  • Eric Hoffman

    Remove the stripe, they haven’t earned it.

  • Charles

    They really need a change, they have worn these plain unis forever. Now is the time. Why don’t they wear a navy helmet with a white stripe? Now that would be a change. I think we will see some change for the 2013 season.

  • Anonymous

    I know a name for us! How about ‘logo locos’?

  • BL.

    I like the names on the jersey idea, all teams should do that. Even my Trojans.

  • ingmar66

    PSU should be allowed to move on from this tragedy. If they choose to do so by barely adjusting their uniforms, it might be disappointing to us logo locos and uniform groupies, but it is obvious that they are struggling with their image (part of it being the uniform) and we should give them plenty of time to figure it all out.

  • Reed

    It’s a big deal to us PSU fans because the no-names thing was always preached as part of the effort to make it all about “team” and not individual achievements.

    But under the circumstances, I don’t mind the names. These players do need to be recognized. And, frankly, a lot of fans and TV announcers struggle to follow who is who without the names.

    I’m very happy about the blue ribbon thing. I hope all PSU teams adopt that. But I’m bummed about the stupid B1G logo they will have to wear. That’s the logical location for the blue ribbon, so now where is it going to go? Maybe Nike will let them move the swoosh to the shoulder or somewhere else. The swoosh will never disappear, like it or not. Putting that little swoosh on the football uniforms allows PSU to outfit all the other teams, so it’s a small price to pay.