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Saturday
Jan262013

Welcome...

Hello and welcome to TimEOBrien.com.

You may have been redirected here recently, if so feel free to peruse my site and check out all my uni-related goodness. Some highlights:

Thanks and enjoy

-Tim

Saturday
Jan262013

Uni Analysis: The 2012-13 Wildcats (From The NUni Tracker)

An historic season is in the books for the Northwestern Wildcats. The third 10 win season in school history, the first bowl win since 1949 and Coach Fitz moved into sole ownership of the title of winningest head coach in Northwestern history.

As I have done over at the Hoosier Tracker the last two years, I have decided to go element by element and analyze which uniform elements and combinations were the most successful for the 'Cats this past season. So let's get to it and start with the uni combinations:

Purple/Purple/Black: 4-0 33 PFPG 16.5 PAPG

This combo was the most worn combination all season. Of the combinations worn more than once, this one had the most stout defense and was second in points for per game. What is truly amazing, though, is the disparity in points for and against, especially considering that the Vanderbilt and Illinois wins were not in this combination. While it is a solid, winning look, I would still like to see some Purple/Purple/White next season.

America/Purple/Black: 1-0 23 PFPG 13 PAPG

Behold the Vanderbilt game. The first home game in the uniforms and Coach Fitz has to go and slap a flag themed logo on the helmets because it's early-middle September. Listen, I get that you have a relationship with some military members and you go do that training session in Wisconsin every year, but September 11th was not a military attack and probably barely directly affected anyone on this particular football team. What you do to honor servicemen and women at halftime and during games is commendable, this silly decal? It feels like a gimmick - something well beneath what people who serve deserve.

Black/Black/Black: 0-1 28 PFPG 29 PAPG

1. The first all black uniform in school history.

2. The first black helmet in school history.

3. The first helmet to feature a logo different from the 'N' since 1980(The Adidas one-off helmet had no logo, only numbers).

This set will be known as a history making set for many reasons. Unfortunately, it'll be best known for being worn when Northwestern blew a two score lead in the fourth quarter against Nebraska. All black? Not a good look for the 'Cats...

Black/Black/Purple: 1-0 50 PFPG 14 PAPG

I believe Northwestern played a high school this game. What's that? Illinois? Sheesh, I hope they fired that guy who got two sideline interference penalties. NO‽ See you in Champaign, Illini!

But in all seriousness, this look would be GREAT, with the normal helmet. It would be a nod to the success of the mid '90s and early aughts and would still be part of this great modern Under Armour set. Also, please don't ever wear that helmet again, the logo just doesn't work like that and the silver and black makes it nearly invisible.

 

Black/Purple/Black: 1-0 34 PFPG 20 PAPG

The first bowl win since 1949 and the Wildcats wore a purple jersey with a strongly featured Northwestern Stripe, what could be wrong?

A: The helmet. Now, let's be clear, I don't even mind that they wore the matte black helmet again - Black/Purple/Black, in and of itself, is not a bad look - but the logo was damn near invisible again and while I'm glad it was the iconic 'N', Had it been purple or white, I would've been in love. This uniform is a nice change from the norm, but I like the idea of Purple/Black/Purple even more.

 

Purple/White/White: 1-2 33.7 PFPG 39.3 PAPG

The only uniform set with a worse points against average than points for, there is just one, simple, undeniable take away: Don't wear the white pants with the white jersey anymore. That should be an easy concept, as Northwestern has - in the past - rocked both purple (think Darnell Autry) and black (think Zak Kustok) pants on the road to great success.

 

Purple/White/Black: 2-0 22 PFPG 16.5 PAPG

The clear road uniform leader in the clubhouse. I still hope to see purple pants on the road next season, but the black is a nice look with ties to the successful recent past.

Purple Helmet: 7-2 30.8 PFPG 24.1 PAPG

The classic, standard Northwestern helmet had a helluva season. Not the most successful on offense or defense, the helmet had a somewhat unremarkable season. However, it's still the best lid the 'Cats wear, in my book.

America Helmet: 1-0 23 PFPG 13 PAPG

As said above, this was the Vanderbilt game. It's just not a good logo. Please dump it.

Black Cat Helmet: 1-1 39 PFPG 21.5 PAPG

In it's two appearances, the outcomes could not have been different: A blown lead against Nebraska and blowout against Illinois. The 'Cats were going to beat Illinois if they came out of the locker room naked, so really this helmet should be judged by its performance against the Huskers. Not good. Retire it.

Black 'N' Helmet: 1-0 34 PFPG 20 PAPG

You can't argue with the first bowl victory in 64 years, can you? It's not a bad helmet, but it isn't as good as it could be. Helluva win though...

Purple Jersey: 6-0 31.8 PFPG 16.5 PAPG

Both undefeated and the best defensive jersey. The purple jersey is both successful and one of the best new jerseys of 2012. Highlights include the bowl win, two victories over SEC teams and a points for to points allowed ratio of almost two to one. Tough to beat out the Purple as Northwestern's best new jersey.

Black Jersey: 1-1 39 PFPG 21.5 PAPG

While the most offensively explosive jersey, the black jersey was a mixed bag this season. Just like the Black Cat helmet, this jersey was there for a season high and a season low. Now, if the 'Cats were to pair this jersey with the purple helmet and pants, I could almost root for that to be the dominant home set, but alas, we'll have to wait until next season to see if my dream comes true.

White Jersey: 3-2 29 PFPG 30.2 PAPG

Worn for every road game, I think any 'Cat fan can take away a few lessons:

1. The black pants saved this jersey's record.

2. If at all possible, don't play road games.

Obviously, the points for to points against ratio is bad, but it's tough to win on the road. This jersey should be commended for it's boldness, unlike the other jerseys, the Northwestern Stripe is so bold it cannot be ignored. It's a great look and I can't wait to see it with the purple pants.

Black Pants: 8-1 29 PFPG 17.9 PAPG

Worn nine time, these pants have an amazing record. Their only loss is the Nebraska game, but we can blame that on the Black Cat helmet. This amazing record should be taken note when it comes to road games. I love the black pants, but they still aren't my favorite.

Purple Pants: 1-0 50 PFPG 14 PAPG

This is the Illinois game. The only time they were worn, the 'Cats played their most dominant game. Take note Fitz, the purple nickers need to be worn more often. These are the best pants of the bunch.

Purple Pants: 1-2 33.7 PFPG 39.3 PAPG

Worn only on the road, I wish we could've seen these at least once at home. Perhaps next season I'll get my wish...

 

 

 

Well, that's 2012-13 in a uniform. It was an amazing season in which things I hadn't ever seen from a Northwestern team seemed to happen every week - even before the season started - and that culminated in a dream come true: A Bowl Victory.

Go U Northwestern.

Tuesday
Nov272012

Uni Analysis - The 2012 Season (From The Hoosier Tracker)

The Hoosiers are now two full seasons into the Kevin Wilson era and there were signs of improvement on the field in play and dress. There was no pink logo game, they only wore their Red/White/White combo once (which is one time too many, but an improvement over the three times last season) and the Hoosiers simplified this uniform set from five combinations to three.

Just like we did last season, lets take a look into how all the uniform elements fared in the 2012 season:

Red/Red/White

2-4: 177 PF (29.5 PFA) 224 PF (37.3 PFA)

This set is the middle of the road in record, points for and points against. It's a good uniform but not great, but aside from the Wisconsin game, the Hoosiers performed admirably in these unis, apropos to the quality of the uni combo. This jersey is also the accurate representation of their home record, due to the fact that this is the only uni combo they wore at The Rock this season.

White/White/White

2-3: 171 PF (34.2 PFA) 153 PF (30.6 PFA)

The most successful set in 2012 from an offensive, defensive and record standpoint, the Hoosiers pull off the stormtrooper look about as well as anyone in college football. There is room to improve this uniform combo - and the same can be said about their record in this uniform - but with more points for than points against it's hard to argue that this isn't the Hoosiers best look in 2012.

Red/White/White

0-1: 22 PF (22 PFA) 45 PF (45 PFA)

Now this is where the Hoosiers went wrong. When combined with last season's record in Red/White/White, the Hoosiers are 0-4 in this uni combo. That's bad. What's worse is that the red helmet without red pants makes this set feel top-heavy, and a top heavy look is a bad look. The Hoosiers need to either adopt red pants or stick with all white on the road.

Red Helmet - #LaFlamaRoja

2-5: 199 PF (28.4 PFA) 269 PF (38.4 PFA)

While the red helmet has the worse record, least points for and most points against, the Wisconsin (run-up score) and Penn State (R/W/W game) games skew this helmet's stats dramatically.

White Helmet - #LaFlamaBlanca

2-3: 171 PF (34.2 PFA) 153 PF (30.6 PFA)

This is - by all accounts - the better of the two helmets, a dramatic change from last season's 0-5 record. This helmet looks best when paired with white pants, but we only saw it in action with the white jersey in 2012.

Red Jersey

2-4: 177 PF (29.5 PFA) 224 PF (37.3 PFA)

While worse than the white jersey in the stats, the record says what the eye already knows: Both jerseys are equally good but could use improvement. This jersey - just like the Red/Red/White set - represents the home record in 2012.

White Jersey

2-4: 193 PF (32.2 PFA) 198 PF (33 PFA)

Yet again, the white uniform element out performed it's red counterpart. Ironically - after the opposite being the case in 2011 - the Hoosiers on the road played better than the Hoosiers at home. This jersey accurately represents the road record and shows how the defense was more stout and how the offense was more explosive but - alas - the record didn't change...

White Pants

4-8: 370 PF (30.8 PFA) 422 PF (35.2 PFA)

The white pants are the summation of the season (though, I wish they weren't because that would mean the Hoosiers would've added red pants [no, I will not stop bringing that up]). Compared to last season, the Hoosiers improved by three wins, scored 9.7 more points for per game and allowed 2.1 fewer points against per outing. It's improvement - steady improvement - that looks to continue into year three of the Wilson experiment.

Monday
Aug132012

I Am Uni Tracker (And So Can You!)

I've been uni tracking for a while now. Last year, in the wake of the release of Indiana's white helmets, I began the Hoosier Tracker. Soon thereafter, I began my collaboration over at the Basketball Uniform Database.

This year I have decided to track Northwestern's new duds and have been given the honor and task of being the third iteration of the Duck Tracker.

The Duck Tracker brings new challenges with the position.

Obviously Oregon's many uniform combinations and frequent one-off uniforms present challenges in getting the most up to date documentation up as quickly as possible. With the Hoosier Tracker, once I had set it up, it basically took me five minutes to make the changes and upload the new picture. On many weeks, I had the Hoosier Tracker updated by the opening kickoff (just in time for the irish coffee...).

This is my goal for the Ducks this year, but my muti-tracking means this might not be the case every week. But the previous three season of Duck Tracking have been excellent and popular - very popular - and the need to keep up with the precedents they set is a challenge I hope to live up to.

And this is the challenge of breaking into uni tracking: The seemingly daunting task of tracking. This is why, today, I call on anyone with some free time and the will and the tenacity to pick a college football team and track them.

It's for the greater uni-nerd good.

The task will not be as hard as it may seem, as almost anyone can do it. All you need is a .blogspot.com address and a way of tracking your team.

The great thing about tracking is that the way in which you can track a team can vary from person to person, team to team and it can also reflect something about the tracker. For my Hoosiers, last season I used a 3D template that I had created with a background that changed based on the location of every game. This personified what I've been known for over at Uni Watch (the 3D templates) while actually putting them to good use.

But I wouldn't expect Rick Pearson to track like that. Knowing how Ricko used to track, I wouldn't want him to track like me.

And that's the point. Some people will hand draw, some might just use game photos and some might use templates like I plan on using this year - in some fashion - for the three schools I'll be tracking (If you are a person who may want to use a 2D or 3D template of mine, you can find and download them here).

For anyone willing to take up my challenge, I will add a link to your website to all of my tracker sites and together we can start a revolution. Hell, if you are really going to join me, I am even willing to make you a header logo that fits the theme of the three headers I will be using this year.

Rather than taking on a whole league or a whole history, let's start small, together, and we might be able to accomplish something collectively great.

Saturday
Jul072012

Bobby Lu Likes Deep Dish?

Does it make me a bad 'Hawks fan if I kinda want to see this next season?

I mean, come on, how great would this playoff series be?

And no, BobbyLu can't wear #1 in Chicago, that's been retired for Glenn Hall since the '80s.