It’s already out of control, please make it stop

Arizona Sports News online

No franchises or program in Arizona capitalizes on public relations jackpots like the Phoenix Suns.

It’s no surprise the behind-the-scenes minds in downtown Phoenix have slowly, methodically, brilliantly built up Thursday night’s new uniform unveiling at swanky Scottsdale Fashion Square to resemble the release of the latest Justin Bieber album.

We live in a capitalist society. Look no further than professional sports organizations who reap the financial and marketing windfall from something as simple as a re-designed logo or color scheme.

On the surface it all seems pretty simple.

Who doesn’t need a makeover from time to time?

This is exactly the problem where sports is heading in the news-right-now, global sphere of information we live in.

A team’s “throwback” uniforms shouldn’t be from 2010.

The ever-evolving new-look jersey world is in many ways ruining sports. It’s taking away its’ purity and replacing it with mostly unnecessary fashion fluff. Growing up a couple generations ago none of my friends would be caught dead in a Milwaukee Bucks hat or Warren Sapp jersey simply because “they liked the way it looked.” As a Phoenix native friendships were fractured, but luckily never broken, by others loyalties towards teams outside the state. The diehards take every loss personal, particularly in Arizona where our local heroes almost always seem to come up short on the big stage under the bright lights.

In many ways sports fashion spilled over into mainstream when rappers in the late 80’s, early 90’s wore various NFL hats and shirts. To this day I’m certain most couldn’t name that team’s head coach at the time. This is partly to blame for attending a Seahawks-Cardinals game in Glendale and seeing more than a handful of fans decked out in Colin Kaepernick, Robert Griffin III or Adrian Peterson jerseys.

This also trickles down to college where blue chip recruits no longer study the storied history or success of a prospective university, simply the brand of uniforms, equipment they’ll be wearing and how many different uniform combinations they’ll see in their lockers. I don’t expect high school kids to know who Frank Kush or Randall McDaniel are but it frightens me to think how many truly believe one of ASU’s main colors is black. Case in point is the University of Oregon who, thanks to the deep pockets of alum Phil Knight, trail blazed the uniform craze in Eugene to nearly unparalleled football success and a handful of BCS bowl trophies.

I applaud the Suns for staying true to their fabric and fiber (no pun intended). This will only be their fourth different wardrobe in 46 years.

Don’t call me a purist because I’m aware of my surroundings in this ever-changing, evolving sports world but I simply ask you the sports fan…

When is enough, enough?