Thursday, April 9, 2015

Cornell Big Red (1977-82)

OK, this is the post I've wanted to do since this blog started, but it took forever to get the helmet just right, ya know?

In 1977, Bob Blackman -- who racked up a 104-37-3 record at Dartmouth -- became Cornell's head coach after six largely forgettable seasons at Illinois (29-36-1). the Big Red's uniforms immediately began to take on a Big Green appearance. Funky helmet stripes? Check. Giant sleeve numbers? Check. But Cornell's uniforms went beyond anything Blackman did at Dartmouth, with a giant "CORNELL" across the front of the shirts and bold, curved numbers. Of the teams in the project, only Vermont's (1973-74) are more distinctive from this era.

In 1980, another degree of boldness was added with the debut of red pants. Alas, they were worn only with the white shirts. 

A 1978 program showing the 1977 uniform. The white "CORNELL" on the helmet
over the red background was inverted for '78.

The program's from 1981, but the photo is from 1978-79, when
a sans-serif "CORNELL" was worn on the jersey.

I can't say this is one of the best uniforms in this project, but it's one of my favorites, just because there are so many little goodies to discuss here.

The red pants, c. 1980. From the Cornell Daily Sun.

The only thing missing? A winning team.Blackman was 23-33-1 in six seasons and retired after the 1982 season. In '83, the Big Red debuted the block "C" on the helmets they've used ever since, with a few modifications.

You can read more about Blackman and his penchant for unique helmets here (scroll to the bottom).

A good close-up of the helmet.

Can't get enough Cornell uniforms? Check these out: 2013-141999-20011994, 1967-751965. Rivalry week: Cornell-Penn.

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