Tuesday, August 22, 2017

GT Dumps #4, Picks #3

These days there are three major outfitters of college athletics. Nike supplies the lion’s share of schools. They go to great lengths to supply a quality product, and work with each school to create a unique look. Think Alabama, Clemson, LSU, Southern Cal, Michigan, Texas, Oklahoma, FSU, Georgia, Florida. Nike also supplies the NFL and NBA.

Under Armour had a wild reputation early on but has made traditional schools like Auburn and UCLA happy. And Notre Dame. UA is gaining ground. They recently landed the MLB contract.

All Adidas schools tend to look alike. Adidas is clearly losing ground. UCLA, Michigan, Notre Dame and Tennessee recently jumped off the sinking Adidas ship (as did the NBA). Mark Richt went into Miami last and threw out the Adidas uniforms. Now Adidas is showing off new Canes unis: all green and all black. We’ll see how many times Richt lets his team wear them. There aren’t many major schools left with Adidas: Nebraska, Wisconsin, NC State, Arizona State. Yee ha.

After wearing uniforms created by Russell Athletics for decades, Georgia Tech finally made the move to someone else. After being a national power in the 40’s, 50’s, and 60’s, since then Tech has continued to slide into obscurity. Now they’re lumped in with the Wake Forests of the world, usually showing up in some obscure second-rank bowl game if they qualified at all. Tech needed to partner with a company that could highlight Tech’s great tradition while at the same time appealing to elite high school athletes making a college choice.

Did Tech choose the clear number one outfitter, or the up and coming number two? No. Tech went from one supplier that faded into obscurity to the next supplier headed for obscurity. Tech probably took the most money. This was a time to sign with a leader, even if it meant taking less money.

But sometimes when your fan base isn’t selling out stadiums and filling the coffers, sometimes you have to make decisions based on money. Had Tech signed with Under Armour or Nike perhaps the better unis might’ve swayed better athletes, resulting in more wins, resulting in more elite athletes, resulting in even more wins – resulting in bigger crowds and hey, more money in the coffers.

My beef is with the uniforms. If Tech didn’t have cruddy uniforms, perhaps they’d be taken more seriously by recruits, fans, and the media. My beef is with the decision to go with Adidas as the supplier, when other schools are jumping ship. You can tell by the AJC articles that AD Stansbury is toeing the Adidas line, using the Adidas terminology. It’s all hype. Why doesn’t Adidas use Tech’s terminology?
Interesting the big announcement was scheduled for 8 am this morning (but leaked last night), and the AJC article detailing reaction to the announcement was posted at 8:03 am. The reaction was favorable because Russell was so bad. Tech was the only large school outfitted by Russell. Run of the mill fans just don’t realize how far behind Adidas is.
Wonder how much Gary Niebur was involved. He’s an Adidas rep big into tennis, with deep roots at Georgia Tech. I will admit Adidas has improved their line of shoes lately, especially running shoes. But they’re still behind Nike (shoes, apparel, and uniforms), and Under Armour (apparel and uniforms). Go to the outlet mall and compare the Adidas Store to the Nike Store. There’s no comparison.
Tech will stick to Adidas just as they stuck with Russell for so long. It’s bad decisions like this that keep me from being more of a Tech fan.      
I don’t have a problem with Paul Johnson (except I wish he wouldn’t throw the ball so much. Throwing 23% of the time is too much. Should be less than 10%. Run the ball).
Weekend: busy Friday. Morning huddle went long, then an hour long 11 am meeting followed by lunch at The Tavern at Medlock. I headed the chicken tenders, which were great.

Left at 2:45 and headed to the ballpark. Made the long walk and lined up in the shade of the Terrapin beer tank. After gates opened I walked around a bit, and greeted my usher friend.  Was walking around the lower level and decided to sit down the third base line. Loved the old uniforms. Anna was at the game but in a section behind the plate that us regular fans couldn’t get to. Drank two cokes but stopped by RaceTrac for a big Vitamin Water and ice cream.

Left early Saturday morning for Athens. Got to Anna’s house shortly before W&MC arrived. Went downtown to lunch at Ted’s Most Best, an Italian kitchen in an old garage across from the 40 Watt Club. Several of us got pizzas. A and MC got sandwiches. Then we walked around the corner to take a tour of the Creature Comforts craft brewery. Went back to A’s house. Will drove MC went to meet a student at Two Story Coffee while I drove C and A to Kroger. While they were shopping I hit RaceTrac for something to drink.

Josh came over and the kids played a board game. I was updating eBay and deleting email. At six we decided to eat together, instead of everyone going their separate ways. Will suggested a tiny Mexican place north of town called Tlaloc. The menus were printed in Spanish, but it wasn’t hard to figure out what to order. I had chicken enchiladas. Didn’t get back to East Cobb until 11 pm.

Tried a new Sunday School class, and it was good. Taught by a staff member. Got home at one and ate leftovers.

Watched some Braves and took a nap. I’d had problems with my phone all weekend, so we went to the Avalon Apple Store. On the way I fixed one of the problems myself, then of course the other problems weren’t an issue when the expert was checking. Since we were out we drove up to Peachtree Parkway and ate at Red Robin. Ceil got the Cobb Salad and I had my birthday burger – with a fried egg on top. Went home and crashed on the couch. Watched a rerun on the Hallmark Channel.

For lunch Monday I had the leftover Fuddruckers burger I had stashed in the office breakroom.

See the eclipse? I was one of the last people in the office to go outside, and was amazed at how many people were out there. I shouldn’t have been. It was getting a little dark and the automatic lights were coming on. I decided to go inside and get my phone to take some pictures of the crowd. When I came back outside it was over. People were going back inside. Guess I missed it.

Last Wednesday the Braves got blown out and everyone’s worried the plan is moving along too slow. They’ve forgotten that there was no expectation to win this year. All the people calling for all the kids to be called up are now complaining that the team is losing. Then the next day the Braves blew out the Rockies.

On September 9 UGA travels to South Bend. The next day the Falcons play in Chicago. On the Friday before Vince Dooley is throwing out the first pitch at Wrigley Field. I’ve entered a couple of contests to go to all three games. 

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