Northwestern’s new ‘By the Player’ jerseys are unlike anything we’ve seen before

If Northwestern doesn't like the special jerseys it will be unveiling Sunday against Illinois, the Wildcats have nobody to blame but themselves.

After all, they helped design them.

Under Armour creative director of team sports Adam Clement told that he visited with a group of Northwestern basketball players and newly hired coach Chris Collins in May to learn more about what makes the team unique. He asked questions pertaining to everything from pregame routines, to school traditions, to important tenets of Collins' coaching philosophy.

Out of that conversation came the above uniforms, which feature "By the Player" where the last names should be on the back of the jerseys and many items the Northwestern players emphasized in their meeting with Clement on the shorts. You can spot anything from the Chicago skyline, to the word "excuses" crossed out, to a heart-shaped basketball symbolizing love of the game.

In an era awash with special alternate jerseys, these are among the more unusual we've seen unveiled.

Nobody can claim they're an affront to tradition at a school like Northwestern, which lacks an iconic look in basketball and is the only major-conference program never to reach the NCAA tournament. Plus, the special jerseys are probably a good recruiting tool for Collins, even if up close they look a bit too much like board shorts.