If there's one thing I've taught you people over the years, it's this: If, at a certain level of program, a new coach gets hired, you can count on new uniforms coming soon. The uniform is a metaphor for where the coach wants to take the program.
If the program had fallen behind its peers and the new guy was brought in to vault the playbook and the off-the-field operations into the present day, you can count on new uniforms. Chip Kelly's Oregon teams will always be the poster child for this phenomena.
But if a once-proud program has fallen on hard times, if the people around the program were grumbling that the old guy didn't celebrate the program's past and kept the former great players away, bet everything you have on new uniforms looking a lot like old uniforms.
Greg Schiano did it last year at Rutgers, and now Jedd Fisch is doing the same at Arizona.
Fisch has never actually worked at Arizona before, but the first-time head coach dove in head first to Wildcat history upon taking the job just before Christmas.
"We want our alumni and we want our fans and we want people to see what we do because I want everyone to understand how hard we’re going to work, how much we’re going to try to get back to where it once was in 1998 when they were fourth in the country and 12-1," he said at his introductory press conference.
How did Arizona dress in 1998, when the Wildcats won 12 games, beat Nebraska in the Holiday Bowl and finished No. 4 in the country?
And how will they dress in 2021?
A dead ringer, right? All we need is some oversized shoulder pads and the good times are back again, baby.
Let's compare these with the uniforms of the Rich Rodriguez/Kevin Sumlin eras.
A little loud, a little garish, right? I mean, gradient jersey fonts? All that red and blue mashed together? Seems futuristic for the sake of being futuristic without stopping to think about whether the uniform actually looks good, ya know?
Don't those new/old uniforms seem like a tasteful updating of Arizona's proper heritage? Don't you just get all warm and fuzzy when you look at them?
And now you see why Jedd Fisch changed Arizona's uniforms in the timing and manner in which he did.