Ducks Retro Uniforms… Appreciated or Misunderstood?

McKalie Bellew For the Fans

#Throwback the Ducks are bringing back their Retro uniforms this weekend in celebration of the 20th anniversary of Kenny Wheaton’s game-winning pick against the University of Washington in 1994.

The week before the intense rivalry game against the Washington Huskies in one not taken lightly by any real Ducks fan.  And we all know the week before any game the release of the new uniform is exciting and gets us a little more pumped because we have an excellent excuse to go buy some new Ducks gear to rep for that weekend’s game.

So when the uniforms for this weekend’s game were released as the retro throwback jerseys, how did the fans respond?

“If I never see the old jerseys again it will be way too soon,” a fan said on the Anaheim Duck message board.  Others were determined to find a throwback jersey to buy as soon as possible for the game this Saturday.  But many did not understand the meaning behind the jerseys at all.

Charles' better half Lois models an authentic 80s jersey that must have shrunk since Charles can't fit into it anymore.

Charles Fisher

Charles’ better half (Lois) models an authentic 80s jersey that must have shrunk since Charles can’t fit into it anymore.

This is the uniform our Ducks suited up in to run out onto the field at Autzen and face their opponents twenty years ago.  This is the uniform that Kenny Wheaton was wearing when he went down in history by helping his team beat the Huskies. KENNY WHEATON’S GONNA SCORE! KENNY WHEATON’S GONNA SCORE! … THAT JERSEY!!! Where is the appreciation for this sentimentality behind this weekend’s apparel?

Honestly, the confusion I see about understanding the meaning is coming from my generation.  When these were the uniforms, the majority of us weren’t even born yet and if we were, we were too young to understand or remember this game.  For the majority of the time that we have been Ducks fans we have seen a new uniform combination every weekend, and each seems a little cooler than the last.

I asked someone I know well about how he feels about this weekend’s uniforms as he grew up watching the Ducks run out onto Autzen field wearing that deep green and yellow… my dad.  He responded with excitement saying, “I LOVE THEM.  It takes me back to when I was in high school watching them play.”

Being a Ducks fan isn’t about the “swag” that comes with our gear and I think that that is easily forgotten with a large chunk of fans today.  We have been spoiled with the luxury of new gear and uniforms every weekend and forget that we aren’t fans based on the stuff, we’re fans based on our love for the school, the game and the history of each.

Even though these uniforms aren’t what we are accustomed to seeing every weekend, they are a sign of celebration not only for the 1994 defeat of of the Washington Huskies due to Kenny Wheaton’s pick, but also a way to remember and appreciate how far the Ducks have come as a program over the past 20 years.

My dear readers, how do you feel about the throwback jerseys for this weekends game? And is the meaning behind wearing them truly understood and appreciated?

Charles Fischer   (FishDuck)
Eugene, Oregon

Top Photo by Charles Fischer

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