On Tuesday evening, Michigan Tech debuted their new home white jerseys. Why a new jersey debut in February you may ask? From my understanding, the Huskies had been waiting quite a while for these jerseys to arrive due the greatly disrupted global supply train. Thanks again Covid.
As a die-hard jersey collector, I am always eager to see something new from the Huskies, so this clearly checks that box. Fans have waited a long time for the new Huskies athletic logo to find its way on to the front of a jersey. This logo made a brief one game appearance as the crest of the military tribute camo jerseys in November 2017. (Author’s note: I am still looking to purchase a camo jersey. Who has one? CASH offered!). However, it took almost six years for Piano Dog’s successor, which was revealed in March 2016, to become the crest on one of Tech’s primary jerseys.
This design is essentially recycling and tweaking the features of the two most recent home jerseys: 1) The 2015-19 round crest white and 2) The throwback white worn 2019-21. It derives the striping template, shoulder yoke and cresting from the 2015-19 set. The font used for the names and numbers is similar to the most recent set except that both are now two-color sewn twill, black edged in gold.
Finally, the current athletics Husky logo graces the front of a hockey jersey. While the MICHIGAN TECH ring around the oval logo is questionable, scaling it up to a larger size does allow for the interior “Pensive Husky” logo to be larger as well. The traditional “Huskies” patch on the shoulder should put traditional MTU hockey fans at ease and is a welcome change over the school crest. The UP patch on the opposite shoulder locating Houghton has also become an acceptable staple of recent jerseys.
What could have been improved
The oval Husky standing alone would have been a good time to move away from the overused simple, straight sleeve and body striping. It is very common in hockey from the NHL to in-house youth teams, which is even more reason to go in another direction. The block font of the name and numbers could have been much more creative. There are plenty of rounded, sans-serif fonts that would have enhanced the oval crest. As for the overall color scheme, there is too much low contrast gold on white. While the gold edging of the crest, name and numbers looks acceptable up close, from any distance (fans in their seats, TV broadcast, etc.) the gold edging is lost in the white jersey body and almost makes the edges look blurry. Edging with a darker color (maybe the long absent official school color of silver?) would provide greater contrast.
The final verdict
Overall I give it a six pucks out of ten. The bulk of that score results from finally getting the current Husky on the front. However the lack of creativity in other areas of the design and the jersey’s appearance from a distance really holds it back. This design has a lot of unrealized potential that prevents the “wow” factor that some other recent jerseys have delivered for the Huskies. Maybe it time for the school to hold a design contest and let fans show the team their vision for the next great Huskies sweater? What do you love? What do you hate? What would you have changed?
New jersey photos courtesy of Michigan Tech athletics, historical jersey photos by www.johnsonsjerseys.net.