Friday, February 12, 2016

The Exhibitionist

Anthony Precourt and his Columbus MLS team got the attention they were seeking when they released their new "alternate" kit this week. The complex yellow, white, red and powder blue combination was quirky enough to make it's way all the way up to many nationwide media markets.

Departing from the norm is nothing new in the larger soccer kit realm, but it is new for Columbus. Like the changes to the Cleveland Browns uniforms last year, it seems the efforts successfully (and predictably) jolted "midwestern sensibilities" enough to get some traction.

There's always a short term gain when you make changes like this. Jersey's will sell. People will continue to chatter, but there is a cost. Whether it's hidden or not is up to how smart the folks pulling the trigger are. For Crew SC, it was reported they were able to hang on to the traditional "banana kit," which helps lessen the impact on long-time fans as well as allow them to save players from important-game, late season embarrassment. You want your players going out there feeling like unbeatable kings and not worried about appearances.

Does the short-term reward out earn the lasting cost of sustaining the bush league, backwater, single-A team image, plying their trade in "flyover country"? Perhaps that's the kind of question an out of town operator / investor is perfectly equipped to answer.

Just not sure team fans want to know the answer.

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