In a recent post over on 412, Coach Tumbas wondered why STX had gone so simple with their new Cell II lacrosse gloves. He said the Warrior Riots did it better, and that STX was just following the trend set by Warrior. While we can’t discount the fact that Warrior did it first, we can explain why everyone else, particularly STX and Nike, seems to be jumping on the train this year.
First off, glove designs seem to trend pretty heavily in college lacrosse. When one company does something, others often do similar things. It’s definitely a pack mentality. Now, back in the day, two color gloves were the tops. You saw three color gloves from time to time, but it was nothing like what we see today. Maybe just a flash of white mixed in. Of course once 3 color gloves truly came into vogue, pretty much every company got with the program. I still remember the three color Brine X-Factors that Cuse got, which had orange, blue, and white in the three different custom color zones. The third color was a mind blower for those of us in lower divisions.
And then the plot was lost, and all hell broke loose. The glove designs got more and more crazy. The custom color zones increased in number and available colors. New patterns and textures entered the market. And then teams started going with all white gloves, all grey gloves, 4 and 5 color gloves, and eventually even home and away gloves were introduced. And somehow, that brought us back to mostly one color gloves. What is old is now new!
Let’s look at it this way: every team out there was looking to do something special with their gloves. Teams with three jerseys or multiple helmets had to make sure their gloves ALWAYS worked. If they didn’t, the internet wrath would be harsh. So when teams started getting multiple gloves, it only made sense to get away from MANY colors, and get back to ONE color. Why? Because a pair of blue, black and white gloves is still a pair of blue, black and white gloves. Why get two versions with the same color palette? No one would do that. But they WOULD get two gloves, one white and one in color. It makes total sense.
Then when you add in the fact that a number of schools use TWO equipment manufactures (Nike and STX schools) and the need for simpler gloves only increases. You see STX and Nike can’t design the exact same glove and then just market the two as different. They actually need to have two different gloves. So when STX has one custom set up, and Nike has another, the simplest solution is to go with one color mittens.
Personally, I love seeing all the wild, multi-color gloves from college teams. But I definitely understand why so many schools went with simpler, one color gloves this year. We’re going to see more helmet wraps and wild uniforms this year then we are going to know what to do with. And Under Armour will give Maryland enough custom gear for all of us. So I like the one color gloves for now. If history is any indicator, it will all change again soon anyway.
And just because Warrior released their gloves first, does it mean they own the trend? Simple answer? No.