The 15 Worst Uniforms In Sports History

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistOctober 4, 2011

The 15 Worst Uniforms In Sports History

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    Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

    Mark Twain once said, "Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society."

    So true. But even the great Mark Twain would agree that nudity would probably be a better option than some of the uniforms you are about to witness.

    When compiling a list of the worst uniforms in sports, you have to consider many things. For one, what decade did the uniform comes from?

    Take for example the '70s, when uniform designers really loved combining colors that had no business blending. In the '90s, a strange emphasis was placed on cartoonish mascots that appeared on the front of jerseys.

    So be prepared for more fashion faux pas than a Lady Gaga drag show. To the slides!

15. 1998 Syracuse Football

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    "Orange is the happiest color"—Frank Sinatra

    Even Frank Sinatra would agree that there was way too much happiness happening on these 1998 all-orange Syracuse uniforms.

14. 2009 Seattle Seahawks

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    I'm not that interested in fashion ... When someone says that lime-green is the new black for this season, you just want to tell them to get a life.”—Bruce Oldfield

    The Seahawks really could have used your input, Bruce.

13. 2001-07 Nashville Predators

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    "I send you a kaffis of mustard seed, that you may taste and acknowledge the bitterness of my victory.”—Alexander the Great

    Victory may have been sweet every time the Predators won in these mustard-yellow uniforms, but methinks watching the game was a bitter experience for the eyes.

12. 1970s Washington Bullets

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    You're not supposed to be so blind with patriotism that you can't face reality. Wrong is wrong, no matter who says it.”—Malcolm X

    In this case, a designer was so blind with patriotism that he/she couldn't face the reality that these jerseys were just straight-up ugly.


11. 1990s Toronto Raptors

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    "When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things."—1 Corinthians 13:11

    For some reason, the '90s brought with it an onslaught of gaudy and childish cartoon characters for mascots, along with a lot of bright colors.

    Remember the Mighty Ducks? The Pistons? The Islanders?

    But none were worse than the uniforms the Raptors used to wear. Bright purple, with a ball-handling, red-pink Raptor.

    Who designed these uniforms, a Deadhead watching "Jurassic Park?"

10. The Original Tampa Bay Devil Rays

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    "What do nudists wear on casual Fridays?"—Author Unknown

    They probably wear something ridiculous like this jersey since they aren't used to clothing themselves.

    The fin is bad enough, but then they added the rainbow-gradient lettering, which just sits there on a completely white uniform.

    I'm no man of high fashion, but even I turn my nose up on these jerseys.


9. 1990s Cleveland Cavaliers

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    "If trees could scream, would we be so cavalier about cutting them down? We might, if they screamed all the time, for no good reason."—Deep Thoughts by Jack Handey

    As you can see, the quotes aren't tying into the uniform theme with the same degree of relevance as we progress.

    No matter—these Cavaliers' uniforms are ugly enough to speak for themselves.

8. 1980s Denver Nuggets

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    "Whoever designed these uniforms liked a different kind of nuggets, if you know what I mean."—Timothy Rapp

    Either that, or a Deadhead urban planner came up with these beauties.

    I keep looking at these thinking somebody designed a "Lego Basketball" video game.

    If a burnout were to analyze these uniforms, it would go something like this:

    Whoa dude, that's a pretty trippy skyline, man. Wait, wait—whooooa, it's not a skyline, man, it's a creepy cat riding a rainbow. Dude, I love the Nuggets, man.

7. 1979 Philadelphia Phillies

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    "Last time I looked in the dictionary, my name's Ron Burgundy. What's your name?"—Ron Burgundy

    As you might imagine, the Phillies only wore these hideous all-burgundy uniforms for one game in 1979.

    From Baseball Almanac:

    In a brief episode in 1979 that most all Philadelphia Phillies fans would prefer to forget, someone in the front office decided that the popular Phillies uniform motif could be modified (for Saturday games only) into an ALL-BURGUNDY version with white trimmings. The reaction was instantaneously negative by everyone — the media, the fans, and the players. The idea was hastily abandoned and entered the realm of nostalgic novelties in major league uniforms.

6. 1980s Kansas State Basketball

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    "He wrapped himself in quotations—as a beggar would enfold himself in the purple of Emperors."—Rudyard Kipling

    Wait a second—that quote makes me look bad. Let's try again...

    "Purple rain, purple rain. Purple rain, purple rain. Purple rain, purple rain."—Prince

    You know what, let's just scratch the whole "purple quote" thing on this slide. The fact is, these uniforms were hideous. Two-toned purple uniforms?

    Somebody should have been fired.

5. 2007 Throwback Philadelphia Eagle

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    Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

    "You can put wings on a pig, but you don't make it an eagle."—Bill Clinton

    Tragically, this color combination can be found on the Philadelphia flag.

    I truly hope I never have to see the Eagles wear this uniform again—it is hideous.

4. 1975-82 Houston Astros

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    "Every uniform corrupts one's character."—Max Frisch

    That may be a bit dramatic in this instance, but these uniforms certainly corrupted the appearance of every Astros' player forced to wear them.

    I feel like someone saw Vincent Van Gogh's "Willows at Sunset" and thought, I like that color scheme—let's throw that on a baseball uniform.

3. 1970s San Diego Padres

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    "Honor thy father and mother."—The Fifth Commandment

    There wasn't a Padres' player on the field who was honored by this uniform.

    By the way—if you didn't get that (corny) joke, you might be a redneck.

2. 1976 Chicago White Sox

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    "It's no coincidence that female interest in the sport of baseball has increased greatly since the ballplayers swapped those wonderful old-time baggy flannel uniforms for leotards."—Mike Royko

    But in one fell swoop, the 1976 White Sox undid all of the progress baseball uniforms had made with the ladies.

    This looks like a group of cyclists played the classic "replace pants with biker shorts" joke on the White Sox here. Silly, silly bikers.

    I don't know who inspired those knee highs, though.

1. 1980s Vancouver Canucks

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    "The Grid. A digital frontier. I tried to picture clusters of information as they traveled through the computer. Ships, motorcycles. With the circuits like freeways. I kept dreaming of a world I thought I'd never see. And then, one day... I got in."—Kevin Flynn

    Have you seen "Tron?" Because I'm fairly certain these uniforms were designed from inside the digital world.

    Be sure to hit me up on Twitter (@TRappaRT) along with the entire B/R Swagger team (@BR_Swagger)