College Football's Top 20 Old School Uniforms
The uniform of a college football team is one of the most recognizable symbols in sports.
It can represent tradition or be flashy, but it will create an image.
For the purposes of these rankings, there are two different forms of uniforms: old school and new age uniforms.
Old school unis are the kinds that are very simplistic in design and/or have been in place for a very long time, such as Penn State above.
New age uniforms feature very intricate designs, including unique stripe designs and numbers, such as at Miami or Oregon.
But whatever your school's uniform is, it represents the pride of the school and the football program as well.
Here's a look at the top 20 old school uniforms in college football.
20. Stanford Cardinal
Stanford's uniform is as basic as there is, but its traditional look, along with the "S" on the helmet, is the face of the Cardinal football program.
The cardinal and white should be much more familiar to the college landscape, especially after Heisman runner-up Toby Gerhart ran through the Pac-10 sporting this look.
Other greats such as John Elway and James Lofton sported the Stanford uniform during their collegiate careers.
Now, talents such as QB Andrew Luck are the face of the football program, and it is up to them to represent the "S" on their helmets with pride.
Those that perform well and have great team success can fill their helmets with stickers, such as what they do at Ohio State and Florida State.
19. Iowa Hawkeyes
Hawkeye football is best recognized by the black and gold jerseys they sport as they surge out of the tunnel in Iowa City.
The Iowa uniforms, both home and road, are intimidating for opponents staring into the black helmets with the Hawkeye logo.
If an opponent gets close enough to see the Iowa logo, odds are that he may be tackled by a charging defender.
Iowa at home comes at opponents like a black and gold tidal wave, and they look just as threatening away from home.
18. Tennessee Volunteers
Rocky Top sports the iconic "T" on both sides of a white helmet to go with the bright orange, a color few teams in the country share.
The uniform, like others in this countdown, has few bells and whistles.
But its simplicity is the symbol of the Volunteer football program.
Volunteer greats such as Peyton Manning and Jabari Greer met in the Super Bowl this season.
When the Vols run through the T onto the field, fans witness the orange wave that flies onto the field of Neyland Stadium.
17. Texas A&M Aggies
Though the Aggies have fallen on rough seasons recently, the traditional garb of maroon is still the image of College Station.
The men of Kyle Field, supported by the 12th Man, rush onto the field in maroon jerseys with Texas A&M on the front, paying homage to great players of the past, including the 1939 championship team.
Since then, greats such as John David Crow and Dat Nguyen have made the 12th Man proud.
The helmet of "T" flanked by the A and M is quite an honor for those who strap it on.
These players know what legacy they carry every time they strap on the uniform, and they play with great heart every night.
16. North Carolina Tar Heels
The Tar Heels have one of the most unique color schemes in the country for college football.
But they pull off the light blue jersey very well, to go with a triple-striped helmet and the NC logo on the sides.
With the great improvement of the UNC football program, a lot more people are seeing these jerseys on television.
No team can truly pull off the look of tar heel blue like the Tar Heels football team.
15. USC Trojans
USC has one of the most storied histories in college football, and the jersey is part of that history.
It has undergone some minor alterations, but the crimson and gold has never changed, and the shoulder stripes add to the mystique.
The current jersey does not have a nameplate, keeping with past tradition.
The Trojan logo has remained unchanged, representing the proud history of the USC football program as they enter the new decade under Lane Kiffin.
14. Florida Gators
Blue and orange is a difficult combination and actually negate each other in the color scheme.
But in Gainesville, blue and orange work perfectly and put together one kit that opponents recognize.
In the Swamp, Florida reps the all-blue ensemble with the orange helmet saying "Gators" with blue and white stripes across the top.
The orange and white stripes on the sleeves finish off a very recognizable home uni, something the college football world has seen so many times in the last few years.
In recent years, the jersey has had few changes, and Gators fans hope it stays that way.
13. Michigan State Spartans
Here's a big example of what tradition means at Michigan State:
A new logo design for the Spartan helmet was leaked to the Internet in late January, and student protests canceled the logo change.
The uniform is expected to be altered slightly though and revealed this spring.
So with those changes uncertain, the Spartan jersey sporting "Michigan State" on the front might not survive the alterations.
But the Spartan logo is very iconic, along with the unique green color, something very few teams in the country have.
Uniqueness and tradition are very much what makes the Michigan State jersey special.
12. Navy Midshipmen
Tradition and honor are exactly what the Naval Academy exemplifies every game when the Brigade of Midshipmen marches into the stadium.
The uniform the Navy players wear carries that tradition with them on the field: a plain gold helmet and the word "Navy" on the front.
The Midshipmen usually have special uniforms just for their matchups with rival Army, sometimes featuring the Navy emblem on the sleeves.
When this team takes the field in the blue and gold, they carry their military tradition and the honor of their comrades with them on the field.
11. Michigan Wolverines
The Michigan football uniforms are relics in themselves in the maize and blue, but it is the helmet that truly makes the uniforms special.
The unique winged helmet was originally designed to help Michigan in their passing game during their dynasties in the 1930s and '40s.
The uniform has undergone very few changes, as Wolverine fans are very particular about their jerseys.
But it has some tiny alterations, including a stitching of the famous locker room sign of legendary coach Bo Schembechler: "Those who stay will be champions."
The garb is a symbol that represents the winningest program in FBS football and a history all Wolverines share.
10. Georgia Bulldogs
The red and black of Georgia is another one of those odd color combinations, but they, like Florida, make that combination work.
A simple red jersey with white pants is enough to tell the world the Bulldogs have arrived.
The jersey is supported by a red helmet with a black "G" on both sides, the image of Georgia football.
The road white uniform is a very solid look in itself.
But what drew a lot of eyes was when Georgia introduced the third jersey, a black jersey, in the aptly named "Blackout" in 2007.
They won in their debut against Auburn but lost in rough fashion a year later against Alabama.
Doubts over the jersey might keep it locked up for the time being, but the red uni is great enough for many UGA supporters.
9. Nebraska Cornhuskers
Tradition is everything in Lincoln, dating back to the Tom Osborne days and Tommie Frazier's outstanding 1995 season.
The most iconic feature is the red "N" on both sides of a white helmet with a single red stripe down the middle.
The jerseys are a mix of red and white and have been mostly untouched for the last 40 years, sprinkling in stripes, sleeve numbers, and a patch on the jersey.
This patch represents the history and proud past of the Cornhuskers' program.
The pants also underwent a change, returning to a two-stripe look after former coach Bill Callahan tried to change the look.
The changing of the uniform along with lack of success were reasons why Callahan was unpopular in Lincoln.
But the jersey has remained mostly unchanged for a long time, and Husker fans wouldn't want it any other way.
8. Oklahoma Sooners
Boomer Sooner has been a major fixture in the college landscape in the past decade, making the OU jersey very recognizable.
With the word "Sooners" over the numbers, the jersey is very quick to let opponents know they are in for a rough game.
The Sooners also sport a solid red helmet with the OU trademark logo and the triple-striped pants of crimson and cream.
This jersey has become part of the mainstream college landscape, as Oklahoma has been among the best for quite some time.
With talented players such as Billy Sims, Brian Bosworth, and Adrian Peterson as alums, the Sooner jersey represents one of the most talented alumni networks in college football.
7. Texas Longhorns
Who else but Oklahoma's rival, Texas, is just one spot ahead of them in these rankings.
The Longhorns, much like Tennessee, represent the orange, but more of a burnt look brought back by legend Darrell K Royal.
The all-white pants complement the all-white helmet with the Longhorn logo on both sides of the helmet.
The orange and white stripes on the sleeves and the "Texas" above the numbers add the finishing touch to this nostalgic look, something Texas football is all about.
But the helmet has undergone many minor alterations, as the player numbers used to be right above the Bevo logo.
6. Ohio State Buckeyes
Scarlet and gray is a tradition and the lifeblood of Ohio State football.
For quite a long time, the jersey had never been touched, keeping the scarlet jerseys with the logo shield at the bottom of the neck the same.
However, Buckeye fans do have some problems with the removal of the gray stripe on the sleeve of the scarlet jerseys.
But the helmet has remained the same: gray with scarlet and white stripes across the middle, unchanged for decades.
As tradition, players add buckeye leaf stickers to the helmets for individual and team accomplishments.
When looking at the OSU jersey, the look is all about the tradition and history of Buckeye football.
5. LSU Tigers
LSU is iconic in itself for the fact that their white jerseys are in fact their home jerseys, being the only D-I program with that feature.
The white with purple and gold shoulder stripes stand out the most along with the purple numbers and "LSU" stitched just above the number.
The yellow helmet with purple and white stripes features a unique logo with both LSU and the tiger logo on both sides.
LSU remains singular with the home whites, but they are some of the best white jerseys college football has to offer.
4. Florida State Seminoles
Florida State football for the most part was an afterthought but became the most feared program in the late 1980s to 1990s.
Everyone feared the garnet and gold warriors from Tallahassee, and they still wear very similar uniforms to those days.
The only major noticeable difference is the number style, but the uniform is still very basic.
Its other unique feature is the uniquely stitched collar.
The 'Noles sport the gold helmet with the garnet and white arrow on both sides and tomahawk helmet stickers that pile up as the season progresses.
Over a short time, the FSU jersey became one of the most recognizable after a long time of being overlooked.
3. Notre Dame Fighting Irish
No program has the type of tradition and nostalgia that the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame carry every day.
This is exemplified by the fact that the uniform has remained very consistent through history.
The jersey is all navy blue, with the ND shield on the collar and no nameplates, something very rarely seen.
But keep an eye on which jersey the team wears because the Irish have pulled jersey changes at halftime during their history.
Notre Dame's helmet is plain gold along with gold pants to go with every uniform top.
Tradition is everything in Notre Dame football, and they hope to start a new tradition under head man Brian Kelly.
2. Penn State Nittany Lions
The Penn State jersey remains as unchanged as their leader, Joe Paterno.
So many of the Nittany Lions trademarks of their uniforms have been the same: navy blue and white jerseys, no nameplate, plain white helmet with a blue stripe, white pants, and black shoes.
The helmet of plain white is the icon of the football program, similar to the logo of the NFL's Cleveland Browns.
As long as Paterno stays in Happy Valley, the jersey will stay the same.
But the jersey has made Penn State a very recognizable look in college football, as it has stood the test of time.
1. Alabama Crimson Tide
Alabama football is all about the tradition, and that is reflected in the uniforms.
The jersey itself is a simple crimson color with big white numbers on both sides with nameplates.
The helmet is very nostalgic, as it is a crimson dome with a white stripe and the player's number on both sides.
Alabama's uniform has undergone very few changes dating back to the Bear Bryant era.
Tide fans would do anything to make sure their jerseys never change.
The old school look they sport every time they hit the field is a reminder of the amazing history of the Alabama program.
But with their latest national title, those uniforms strike fear into opponents when they see the Tide rush onto the field.