In the last decade, Notre Dame has played seven neutral-site games in what the program calls the “Shamrock Series.” This year, the Shamrock Series is on Nov. 17 against Syracuse at Yankee Stadium. The Shamrock Series game is always a good excuse for Under Armour to design snazzy alternate uniforms that usually have some correlation to the stadium or city.
So it’s really no surprise that this year’s uniforms pay homage to the New York Yankees, whether you like it or not.
The biggest change, and also the one that most irritated traditionalist Irish fans, is the matte blue helmets.
That’s right. BLUE HELMETS. As in, NOT GOLD HELMETS.
The last time Notre Dame wore non-gold helmets in a game was around the ‘40s, when the helmets were still made of LEATHER. I tried looking back to pinpoint the exact year that the Irish switched from brown leather to painted gold leather, but it proved difficult, considering the photos were mostly in black and white. All I can say for certain is, all gold goes WAY back.
“There were some synergies already, with both teams using some variation of blue as one of their primary team colors - blue and gold for Notre Dame, navy and white for the Yankees,” Under Armour’s Nick Billiris said of the design inspiration. “This is actually the first time pinstripes have made it onto the pants of a college football uniform, so we hope fans of pinstripes on the diamond will appreciate us bringing them to the gridiron.”
Notre Dame has made changes to its helmet before in Shamrock Series games, but they have never gone without any gold, and most of them have been ugly. The most egregious offender was the 2012 half-navy, half-gold atrocity worn against Miami. (Although I have been told in the past that the players really liked these helmets, for God knows what reason.)
The only part of the uniform that is consistent with Notre Dame’s home uniform is the navy jersey.
4 reasons why this sucks so bad (straight from ND) pic.twitter.com/vs2Vjw7Dah— One Foot Down (@OneFootDown) August 16, 2018
But they ruined it with pinstripe sleeves.
And the pants make us ask ourselves the age-old question, “Have the Irish earned their pinstripes?”
Pinstripes on both the sleeves, gloves and pants replicate the iconic @Yankees pinstripes that have been worn for over 100 years by the Bronx Bombers. #GoIrish ☘️ #ShamrockSeries pic.twitter.com/CzuivKjJMA— Notre Dame Football (@NDFootball) August 16, 2018
Here are two things you should know about me:
1. I am a Notre Dame fan.
2. I am not a Yankees fan.
Overall, I’m not in love with the idea of going all in with the Yankees motif. It lends itself to way too many parallels between the Irish and the “Evil Empire.” I also don’t really get why Notre Dame would want to align itself with one of the most polarizing sports franchises, BUT like Notre Dame, you either love or you hate the Yankees.
It will be interesting to see the reaction from all the Boston Notre Dame fans, of which there are many. It should be noted that Notre Dame did play at Fenway Park in 2015 and wore all-green “Green Monster” uniforms for the occasion.
I guess it’s only fair that now Irish fans in the New York area (of which there are MANY) get their chance to have a custom jersey mashup. That being said, when the hell am I going to get a Cubs/Notre Dame uniform?
The objective of all of this, of course, is to sell more jerseys.
I am sure that if you are a Yankees fan and a Notre Dame fan, you were all over this hot merch the second it hit Hammes Bookstore. In that case, congrats Under Armour.