Ducks Retro Uniforms… Appreciated or Misunderstood?


#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?

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McKalie Bellew

McKalie Bellew

McKalie Bellew just moved to Oregon from Arizona. She is a sophomore at Lane Community College and moved here to pursue her dream of studying Sports Journalism and Broadcasting at the University of Oregon. Her passion for sports is admirable and her determination and hunger for success in the sports field is fascinating; if you ever have the chance to talk to McKalie face-to-face about sports, you’ll know how much she loves these games just by the way her eyes light up during the conversation. When unable to attend Ducks home games you can find her in front of a television on the edge of her seat, cheering her crazed-fan-head off. McKalie appreciates your feedback and constructive-criticism to help her become a better writer and reporter.

  • FunkyDucky

    The throwbacks are awesome… BUT slightly concerned that letting them loose on the Huskies is just looker room fodder that Peterson can use to fire up the dogs. Bad JuJu. If we win… It’s Fantastic. If we loose… it will greatly amplify the embarrassment for the program. Leave it to Nothing Ventured, Nothing Gained.

    • FishDuck

      Funky…I agree with you. Does it rile the Huskies up that much more? Regardless–I had fun realizing that I actually had a jersey from that time period, (Tony Cherry) and pulled it out and had Lois pose for a picture. Pretty fun…and our Editor-in-Chief Mike Merrell, had even more fun with the picture caption.

      It’s Husky week…we gotta have fun!


  • PFflyer

    Regardless of the meaning, they look awesome and I’m not part of your dads generation.

  • act98006

    The Throw-backs are great. It reminds us just how far Oregon has come. Don’t forget the Dick Enright era, or the Don Read era. How many Duck fans even know who Len Casanova or Jerry Frei were? Celebrate Oregon’s heritage and these unis! Go Ducks!

  • Don Runnion

    These throwbacks, and the memories they recall, are profoundly meaningful to me personally. 1994 was my first year at the U of O, and the magical football season is my greatest lasting memory from that year. From screaming myself horse beyond belief, jumping up and down in the student section as Kenny made the pick, to partying in the freezing cold all night outside the Cas center for tickets to the Rose Bowl, it was special time for me that I will always remember (if somewhat fuzzily).

  • Doug Mainwaring

    I love the “retro” uniforms (class of 1990). I recall that last time that was done, during the 2009 season against Cal, and one of the guys in our section said, “now that’s a uniform”. I agreed at that time, and am really looking forward to seeing the guys tomorrow. I think it will really get us old timers all the more riled up to crush the dawgs.

  • Michael Welborn

    I love these uniforms. Classic colors (some may forget that these are the school colors), clean, sleek, traditional UofO logo. Sometimes I think the ducks get to caught up in their ever evolving unis. As a member of the class of 91, these bring back great memories.

  • hokieduck

    I have been an active Duck fan since moving here in 1981. I remember Rich Brooks starting to bring the Ducks from oblivion, the Wheaton interception that marked the change in the program. The Toilet Bowl that I still find almost impossible to match in terms of mediocrity. If that.

    And I get why these retros are being used to mark the 20th Anniversary of “The Pick”.

    That said, I love, love, love the new era of Oregon uniforms. The pushing of the envelope. How much venom is spewed over them from jealous haters.

    During the game, these retros made me love the new ever-changing fashion statements that much more. BTW, I grew up in the South where tradition and football were religion. Still, I love my Ducks and love that part of their swagger is the tradition of no tradition, the willingness to change the college football (and NFL) with innovative football coupled with innovative gear! Yes the retros were awesome for their statement, but I will be very glad to see the sleek back tonight against Cal.

    Go Ducks!