The jerseys were blue, white and orange, but when the Boise State football program unveiled a new line of uniforms Tuesday, all three had one thing in common — an actual blue collar.
For the first time since 2011, the Broncos unveiled an updated look to their uniforms. The jerseys feature new stripes on the sleeves and “Blue Collar” on the inside of the neck.
“This program is really founded on this blue collar mentality,” Boise State coach Bryan Harsin said. “So, we wanted to add that blue collar in somehow, someway. That was not part of the original design ... no one is ever going to see (the words), but our guys in our program know what that means.”
Boise State’s new uniforms are part of the Nike Vapor Untouchable line, first produced for Oregon when it played TCU on Jan. 2, 2016, in the Alamo Bowl. The NFL players wore them for the first time in the Pro Bowl that month.
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Harsin said the players who modeled the uniforms for promotional photos were impressed with the fit. The uniforms are made of a stretch material, not mesh, and assembled from 10 panels (five for the jersey, five for the pants) to create fewer seams for opponents to grab. The jersey-pants combo weighs about 20 ounces, the lightest uniform on the market.
The addition of blue, orange and silver stripes on the sleeves is perhaps the biggest change, replacing where players’ numbers were. Harsin said Nike pitched the stripes as a sign of “speed and power.” The pants and gloves are of updated material, but the look is the same. Helmets also have maintained the same look.
From point of concept to production, it has been just more than two years since Boise State sought to add a new twist to the uniforms, waiting a bit to use the new technology. But the front portion has changed little.
“Some teams are going with different uniforms, they don’t have their school name on the front of their jerseys,” Harsin said. “... We felt Boise State was the most important thing, the name on the front of the jersey is still the most important.”
The jerseys are available for presale through the Bronco Shop. This is the first update for the orange jerseys since the Broncos debuted them in 2010 against Fresno State, when they still played in the Western Athletic Conference.
The Broncos’ black jerseys were not part of the update but still likely will be used on occasion. The gray ones, first put into use when Boise State was not allowed to wear blue at home in 2011, are an option but are not expected to be used much, if at all. They last were worn in 2015.
Initially, the announcement was to be made a week earlier but was pushed back. The team began summer workouts Tuesday, too, when many players saw the uniforms for the first time.
“They liked it,” Harsin said. “... Their biggest thing was how it fit. They said it was much better than before.
“When our players saw it, they see clean, they see style, they see class.”
You can watch the reveal in the Facebook Live embed below.
SOCIAL MEDIA REACTION
“Why did you bother, nothing really new.” — Greg Gonzales, Facebook
“I like the blue and white a lot! The blue collar on the orange is a little weird but I get what they are going for there. Overall pretty sweet! I wish they would do a throwback white helmet.” — Jake Misner, Facebook
“Actually writing blue collar on there is the grittiest thing I’ve ever seen.” — Mike Tunison, Twitter (@xmasape)
“Got a extra #23 laying around? Asking for a friend.” — Boise State grad, NFL veteran Jeron Johnson, Twitter (@Jus_Showoff)
“Good...they need to get back to the blue collar mentality.” — Cody Cowgill, Twitter (@codycowgill)