Gruff Sparty? Neon? Throwbacks? Give us Michigan State fans all of the uniform combos possible in 2023.
Remember the feeling of opening a brand new jersey on Christmas morning when you were a kid? Mine were my Javon Ringer and Shannon Brown jerseys. That same feeling applies today, but it happens when your favorite team drops a new uniform reveal on social media. Michigan State football and basketball social media has been a hub for uniform reveals and fans obsessing over every detail in a uniform reveal.
MSU athletics has a great partnership with Nike. One that has given us the Pro Combats, the 2000 throwbacks, the script State, stormtrooper, and the bronze uniforms in 2015. These are just a few from my memory, but shoutout to Reebok, for pumping out some classics in the 1990s and early 2000s.
This is also just football and basketball.
We could go on all day about the great (current) tennis jerseys and soccer jerseys, hockey sweaters, and baseball uniforms. Point is, I’ll rep the green and white forever, and I’m always on the lookout for new ways to rep it.
Michigan State football through the years
In 2021 when Kenneth Walker III ran in five — yes you read that right, five — touchdowns against Michigan, we got a great look at a uniform combo that I predict will be talked about for many years to come. The green on green, with the, at the time, new helmets sporting a bigger Spartan head, and the white outline and a black facemask is an undeniably cool look.
They gave a shot at a neon combo that had, well, a very wide variety of opinions.
The stormtrooper uniform has gotten even more iconic through the years courtesy of new helmet designs. All white pops on the football field.
From 2010-15, it was the era of the bronze for our Spartan basketball and football teams, and boy we had some beautiful looks. The pro-combat uniforms made me feel a certain way, and they came out with an even better bronze helmet in 2015.
Gruff Sparty was finally featured again, as well as a block S, and different Spartan head logos on a great rotation of helmets in 2020-22.
Heck, give me an entire uniform inspired by Darius Snow’s artwork. The possibilities are endless, and I love nothing more than a new MSU football uniform, yes even the neon.
Michigan State basketball through the years
The first MSU basketball uniform I remember is any version of Shannon Brown or Drew Neitzel’s State jersey. Simple, but cool way to write the name. Clean, especially for that time.
Rewind a bit and we have to pay tribute to 2000s Reeboks. Easily the coolest uniform saw two Final Fours with the Flintstones but nothing was cooler than seeing Cassius Winston sport Nike’s version of the Greek pattern and writing.
I also want to take a minute to honor one of my favorites. The one Magic Johnson wore against Larry Bird in 1979. Michigan ’33’ State. I have this jersey in my own collection because it is such a historic design.
Flashing forward to 2011 when Michigan State scrapped the simple ‘State’ across the chest for a simple ‘Spartans’ across the chest in the brand new font. The shorts went so hard in this era — I even had a few pairs.
MSU took after the football program to test out a couple of bronze uniforms as well. Hit or miss is up for debate, but I was a fan.
Neon was first featured in 2016 when we saw Matt Costello pick Tom Izzo up for a hug. Since then, there have been a few versions of black and neon mixed in but nothing to rave about.
It’s time for something new, too
I’m reminiscing on all of this because I’m hungry for new. New helmets have been great for the Michigan State football program, and the basketball program has changed the uniform in the last few years, but the current ones aren’t doing it for me like years prior have.
I’ll start by saying what we’re all thinking: give us all-black football uniforms. Basketball did it, and they look awesome. I need to see Mel Tucker trot out of the tunnel on a Saturday night under the lights next season with a dark cloud emerging behind him through the tunnel smoke and lights. The all-black would play perfect devil’s advocate to the stormtroopers.
I would love to see bronze get worked back into a uniform over the next few years but this is harder.
Also, keep the helmets coming. Script State, gruff green and white, black, all white, I don’t care. A rotation is nice, and new helmets seem easy enough to work into the budget.
As for basketball, I would love to see something new. I love the logo from the mid-2000s and could see that coming back into play. While we are at it, I wouldn’t mind making the script State the everyday design. If it were up to me I would have Coen Carr flying through the air with Gruff Sparty somewhere on his uniform in the next few years and while you do that, you mine as well make a uniform with an homage to the home 1979 jerseys just like they have already done with the script State. I would even take a warmup with some of the new Sparty logos we’ve seen across different MSU sports.
I don’t need to see all of these come back on the current uniforms, and asking for brand new ones may be a bit greedy but an alternate always plays, regardless of sport.
Also, shout out to all of these different sports across campus for embracing the logos and uniform possibilities that are Michigan State. Men’s and women’s soccer had an array of uniforms last season, MSU golf and tennis unveiled one of the coolest logos specific to their sport, and what can you say about the iconic hockey sweater combined with a Guff Sparty goalie helmet. By the way, give me the hockey logo on anything and everything.
At Michigan State, the uniform possibilities are endless. The green and white makes anything look good, and with such a rich history, it’s no wonder shirt companies have chosen MSU as a school to showcase all of the old athletics logos.
I want 2023 to feel like 2009 Christmas morning again. Give us all of the new uniforms, old uniforms, new designs, and vintage designs. Give us all of the helmets, gloves, shoes, and colorways. But most importantly, Alan Haller and Mel Tucker if you’re reading this, please give us the all-black football uniforms.
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