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East Carolina’s black uniform is the exception to the rule

I have often said that the alternate black uniform is a fad I wish would go away for schools that do not use black as an official team color. However, sometimes there are exceptions that seem to work. East Carolina’s black uniform they will wear Thursday night against Florida Atlantic is one of those exceptions to the rule.

The Pirates will abandon ship on their traditional purple home uniforms in favor of their all-black look tonight, featuring a pretty sweet helmet. The uniform itself is pretty simple, just a black uniform with purple numbering outlined in yellow and purple neckline and the somewhat standard wire framing on the shoulder pads that has become a signature of Nike for whatever reason regardless of the school. That is one design aspect I take issue with but it is covered up by being so dark on a black uniform.

East Carolina black uniform

But the helmet is something else.

The all-black dome comes with a purple face mask and a Pirate skull and cross bones with an ECU flair. Rather than go with the chrome or matte style though, two fads I am totally on board with, East Carolina has a speckled finish with gold and purple specks throughout the helmet upon closer inspection. It is unique and the first time I can recall a football helmet having that design aspect used (please correct me if I am wrong).

Overall, I like the look for East Carolina. It works. It is not totally forced as a viewer, like this Florida helmet concept feels. It helps that we often associate the color black with Pirates. The Pittsburgh Pirates. Oakland Raiders. Blackbeard. The color just goes with Pirates.

Well done East Carolina.

Photos courtesy of East Carolina Athletics. Helmet sticker to The Nike Blog as well.

About the Author

Kevin McGuire
Contributor to College Football Talk on Also a contributor to Athlon Sports and The Comeback. Member of Football Writers Association of America and National Football Foundation. Follow on Twitter @KevinOnCFB.