Monday, September 8, 2014

Penn Quakers (2013, 1981-82)

With 16 Ivy League titles, Penn is one crown away from matching Dartmouth’s record for most league crowns. Nine of those titles have come under coach Al Bagnoli, who’s apparently retiring after this season, much to the relief of the rest of the league. Penn has also won seven national championships, six in college football’s Mesozoic Era (pre-1910). Throw in some famous alums like Chuck Bednarik and John Heisman (of Heisman Trophy fame), and you have a school with a pretty enviable football history … not to mention present.
Notes ’n stuff on the Quakers:
  • This one of the toughest teams to research, mostly because its two primary colors are dark (navy blue, maroon). This makes it hard to discern which color is which in black-and-white photographs.
  • Navy helmets and jerseys have been a constant since 1981. A crimson alternate jersey was introduced in 2012.
  • The helmet logo has switched between “PENN” and “P” a few times.
  • The two-tone “P” logo goes back more than a century.
No yearbooks/student newspapers are online, but the school's digital image collection is chock full of football pictures, programs and ephemera.  
The 2013 Penn uniform (shown above) has a few modern touches with some nods to the past (the  “PENNSYLVANIA” across the front and the “sleeve” stripes are great touches). I could do without the “sports bra” striping on the other two jerseys, however. (Didn’t Oregon State do that one year and was practically laughed out the stadium?) Penn managed to shoehorn six uniform designs in a 10-game schedule.
A slate-gray alternate uniform was introduced for this year, which will now give the Quakers four jerseys to pick from. I dunno, but three dark colors on one jersey is likely one too many. Maybe two.

The vintage look is from 1981-82, when the Quakers rose to the top of the Ivy League after about 30 years in the wilderness. It looks kinda dated, but there’s something to say about a clean, simple look. And I miss old-school sleeve stripes. Not to mention sleeves.

Up next: A trip through Jersey with the Princeton Tigers.

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