Ranking College Football's Best New Uniforms of 2014

David KenyonFeatured ColumnistAugust 5, 2014

Throughout the offseason, college football programs across the nation released new uniforms that will be worn during the upcoming 2014 campaign. And man, some of them were sweet.

Soon enough, the fresh looks will be on display in a stadium near you, adding to the initial entertainment value of the greatest sport on the planet. A couple of the following eight sets are meant for a single game, but others are official redesigns for a given program's foreseeable future.

These were largely selected based on originality, with emphasis on color and how the team's get-up improved. Positive reaction was also taken into account, whether it be from players, coaches or media.

Let's find out which teams will be rocking the best updated uniforms this year.


8. Arkansas Razorbacks

Although the Arkansas Razorbacks debuted a secondary logo that has been compared to Pumbaa from The Lion King, their jerseys are less fatty.

Arkansas will don a simplistic design, featuring crisp edges that draw attention to the shoulders, numbers and team name across the middle.

Slight tweaks to the facial region of the Razorback on the helmet actually resulted in a mean-looking animalthough that's definitely the intent of illustrating a feral pig.

On another note, we've been relegated to critiquing the face of an inanimate object. We need football, and soon.


7. Mississippi State Bulldogs

Adidas typically lags behind Nike in the fashion department, but the Mississippi State Bulldogs have a winner, which they intend to emulate.

Per Michael Bonner of The Clarion-Ledger, "The football uniforms are a tribute to the teams of the 1990s, specifically 1998 when the Bulldogs won the Southeastern Conference's west division."

Highlighted by the school's "Hail State" slogan, the one-game edition is clean. The maroon and white is not accented by any unnecessary patterns, and it ties the helmet and pants together well.

Mississippi State will wear these for the season-opener against Southern Miss on Aug. 30 to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Scott Field.


6. BYU Cougars

One season after a debut debacle, the BYU Cougars released a superb trio of alternates meant for one game each. Like the stripes on the shoulder, the refined appearances are not flashy, but they are modern.

Dylan Cannon of KSL.com shared his thoughts, saying the white will help unify the crowd and team by wearing the same color. He continued: "I prefer the two-color scheme, but any time the Cougars go back to the royal I will take it. ... The black-on-black looks sharp and tough: I really like this jersey combination."

BYU will not be lauded for creating a breakthrough, visionary style, but they won't turn heads the opposite direction, either.

Each uniform will be worn at home, with the white on Sept. 20 against Virginia, royal on Oct. 3 versus Utah State and black on Nov. 15 when UNLV comes to Provo.


5. Syracuse Orange

The Syracuse Orange received a major upgrade over block-number, basic-outline jerseys of past seasons, which pleased senior linebacker Dyshawn Davis:

For the last couple years, we've been wearing the same uniforms, same orange helmets with the orange pants and the blue. ... We felt like our uniforms [were not] up to date with college. Every time you turn around, it's different colleges in different uniforms. We play against them. We just wanted to feel something new and be part of something new.

Per a release, Syracuse is also honoring tradition: "On the neck, the number 44 is proudly displayed in a military-inspired graphic patch that references the quad and its crossing walkways, the legend of 44, and the team’s annual trip to Fort Drum, N.Y., each year to train with the military."

Ar first glance, the elongated numbers look a little strange. However, Nike's intent was "mimicking the height of New York City’s skyline," even though the cities are nearly 200 miles apart.

Overall, after adding a gray set to its classic combinations, Syracuse finally has some sharp uniforms.


4. Washington Huskies

The Washington Huskies are an under-the-radar threat in 2014, but U-Dub's attire demands attention.

Nike did an excellent job blending the purple and gold into each jersey, connecting the black, white and purples with multicolored fading in the numbers.

Washington's black-on-black is one of the toughest sets in the nation, especially when you envision rising star Shaq Thompson barreling down on a ball-carrier.

Two weeks before these uniforms were unveiled, first-year head coach Chris Petersen pulled an April Fools' joke on his squad, debuting a fake pair that were truly horrific. But it's safe to say the Dawgs liked the real ones better.


3. Miami Hurricanes

Excluding a pair of Pro Combat specials in 2009 and 2010, the Miami Hurricanes have worn some relatively tame styles over the last decade. Nike's redesign, however, returned a sleek, versatile ensemble to South Florida.

All four jerseys feature an ibis on the shoulders, a tribute to the team's mascot and secondary logo of the early 2000s. The 'Canes have labeled their digs Stormtrooper, Juice, Surge and Smoke, and they are essentially a mix-and-match to be complemented by a white, orange or green helmet.

How did the current Miami players feel about the uniforms? Let's check in with superstar running back Duke Johnson:

Well that answers that.


2. Florida State Seminoles

After unveiling a new logo that their fans basically hated, the Florida State Seminoles released a bolder update for their Saturday best.

Florida State branded their set "Ignition Tradition," which head coach Jimbo Fisher emphasized along with how the school sought approval from the Seminole tribe. According to Rivals, Fisher said:

I really believe that the traditions of Florida State are as deeply rooted and important as any in college football and perhaps even more because of our relationship with the Seminole Tribe, and I wouldn't have approved anything that I felt detracted from that. The elements that went into the design changes are all based on our unique history and that's an important part of the story. In fact, we went to the Tribe right away and got their opinion and permission before we took the first step.

The 'Noles kept their classic gold helmet, but a garnet and black option is now available. Additionally, FSU can pair black, white or garnet jerseys with black, white or gold pants.

Most importantly, the reigning national champions will be defending their title in style.


1. Oregon Ducks

Death, taxes and the Oregon Ducks wearing amazing uniforms.

No matter what your fun-hating buddy says, the wings on Oregon's shoulder never get old. Honestly, he's probably just mad his favorite program doesn't have a staple like the Ducks.

Additionally, Oregon must be one of few programs who can sport an unlimited amount of color shades, since this snazzy green is yet another hue. The team busted out the white uniform for the 2013 Alamo Bowl, but they will be used in 2014, too.

Bleacher Report's Adam Kramer discussed how Oregon and Nike created college football's perfect brand:

Our tradition is that we’re willing to push the envelope when it comes to uniforms and branding," Kenny Farr, the school's football equipment administrator, told Kramer. "There are a lot of schools that are based on tradition, and I understand and respect that. But Oregon embraces not having tradition.

Nike constantly outdoes itself for owner Phil Knight's alma mater, and there's no apparent end for us reveling in the program's uniform superiority. Nor do we want there to be.


Follow Bleacher Report college football writer David Kenyon on Twitter: @Kenyon19_BR.


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