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Pelini adds comedy in unveiling alternate uniforms

Pelini adds comedy in unveiling alternate uniforms

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A man, perhaps a few moons beyond his playing prime, ran into the Husker meeting room wearing red pants, red jersey, a mostly red helmet (with visor, mind you) with a black "N".

Giving players a first look at Nebraska's new alternate uniform, the man ran around like it was gameday, bumping into guys in the front row, trying to get them fired up.

They laughed, likely in on the joke.

Eventually the man took off his helmet, raised his arms to the sky like Rocky. It was Bo Pelini.

"Coach Bo was awesome when he came in with the uniform, but we were kind of thrown off," said sophomore defensive end Greg McMullen. "Then he started walking and I know Coach Bo's walk. I'm like, 'That's Coach Bo.' But I like (the uniforms). I really like them. Can't wait to wear them."

Another prank, another new uniform.

For the third straight year, the Huskers will wear an alternate uniform for one game, this time against Illinois for Homecoming on Sept. 27.

Pelini dropped that news at Big Ten Media Days on Tuesday, but didn't give details on the uniform's appearance. Friday, adidas unveiled photos of it and the university unveiled a video of the uniform being modeled … by Pelini.

A mannequin dressed in the uniform could also be found at midfield during Fan Day. It proved a popular place for photos.

Adidas describes the uniform as celebrating the 125th year of Nebraska football and calls it "Red Rising." It features black-metallic stripes on the jersey and pants, ultra-light black-and-silver metallic numbers and a large Nebraska “N” on the chest of the TECHFIT compression base layer.

While different from what the Huskers wore in 2012 against Wisconsin, it's similar in its overwhelming redness, though the helmet that year was black with a red "N." The Huskers also wore more standard all-red uniforms in a 1986 game against Oklahoma before the alternate uniform craze took off.

Nebraska’s new uniform also incorporates TECHFIT Shockweb technology, which adidas says fits tighter, making players more difficult to tackle. TECHFIT Shockweb also is lighter, which adidas says will help make the player faster and increase his range of motion.

Sophomore wide receiver Sam Burtch said "the jerseys are sweet" and "the helmets are real sweet."

Of course, all that really matters is what happens when you wear them. The Huskers are 1-1 when wearing alternate jerseys. A year ago, wearing black jerseys, the Huskers lost by three touchdowns to UCLA.

And so perhaps it's a good thing to go back to being red all over.

​Reach the writer at 402-473-7439 or bchristopherson@journalstar.com. On Twitter @HuskerExtraBC.

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