August 25, 2011
Do not be alarmed, reader: You have not wandered into a poorly-lit, underground photo shoot at Comic Con, though the performance fashion professionals at Nike are clearly aiming for the effect with their latest "Pro Combat" offerings for Boise State and Oregon. The Broncos, embracing their newfound freedom from the usual all-blue motif, will come out instead in an all-white Storm Trooper look for their Sept. 3 opener against the Georgia Power Rangers in Atlanta. Simultaneously, Oregon will be playing the role of Darth Vader as it stares down LSU in Dallas.
Neither look is a complete departure from the various gimmicks the almighty Swoosh has bestowed upon both schools over the last few years; in fact, the Ducks pioneered the all-white alternates at Boise State two years ago, and they're certainly no strangers to going all-black from time to time. (At this point, they're not really a strangers to anything.) For Boise, the oversized Bronco logo on the helmet is an inversion of the blue "Pro Combat" lids they wore last year against Virginia Tech to open the season and Utah to close.
If there's any existing record of Boise State in a blue helmet, there's no record of it since the school changed its name from "Boise College" and became a four-year institution in the late sixties. On the bright side, there aren't many Bronco traditionalists wringing their hands over what Tony Knap would say if he could see this abomination. And unless it starts snowing inside the Georgia Dome in early September, at least there's no chance of anyone complaining about them clashing with the turf.