Thursday, September 1, 2016

Inside the Jersey: Maine Black Bears (2010-13)

With my Black Bears opening tonight at UConn, let's go inside the jersey with this 2010-13 Maine jersey, my personal game day favorite.

How it was acquired: At the Bear Necessities merchandise store inside Alfond Arena last year for $40. I bought three jerseys from a rack of two or three dozen gamers.

Who wore it: Josh Spearin, an offensive lineman, is listed as wearing No. 74 from 2010-12. No one is listed as wearing in in '13.

Who made it: Adidas, which made Maine's jerseys from c. 2009-13.

Size: A nice, roomy 52.

Jersey construction: Mesh body, with polyester/Spandex on shoulders, sides and "sleeves."  Everything is stitched on, which gives the shirt a high-quality look and feel. The bottom is made of elastic, presumably so the shirt won't pop out during the game. The tag reads "+6 LEGNTH," which means it goes down to my knees, like many modern jerseys. The shoulders are cut for pads, and thus is appears I'm have pads underneath whenever I wear the jersey.

Yup, it's a looooong jersey. Were those player ID tags ever used?

Design: This is one of the classier looks Maine has trotted out, and I wish the Bears still wore these today. It's simple and effective, but still has a modern appearance. The only misfire: The blue side panels. (The navy home jersey didn't have alternate colored panels.)

Condition: Pristine, so I'm guessing Mr. Spearin didn't see much game action.

Triviata: The road version of this style debuted a year earlier than the navy home version (2011-13). 

Final verdict: A quality jersey from a quality era when Maine made two NCAA FCS tournament appearances. The current New Balance uniforms are fine, but this is one of the better efforts the Bears ever put out on the field. 

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