By Diana Mansour
Blue was the new red! Well, at least for one weekend this fall.
For their first American Athletic Conference (AAC) game against Rutgers Oct. 5, the Mustangs changed it up and debuted their throwback blue jerseys in honor of the 1983 football team, which won the American Athletic Conference.
Even though fans loved this tailgate, the blue jerseys are not here to stay. The team returned to their regular red uniforms for their next game against Memphis. That’s partly because Coach June Jones is superstitious of the color, say some players: The Mustangs lost the last time they wore blue.
“Coach Jones is not a very big fan of the blue,” said SMU Kicker Michael Loftus. “He doesn’t like the blue because we did horrible in it when he got here.”
The world of sports is no foreigner to superstitions like these. From Michael Jordan to Serena Williams, every superstar in every sport believes in something that makes him or her a better player.
Loftus said he is also superstitious. He has used the same cleats every game since he started playing for SMU. He will also eat a box of Frosted Flakes during halftime. He isn’t the only player at SMU with some game day rituals. Some of his teammates have been wearing the same jerseys since freshman year.
The last time the Mustangs wore a jersey that wasn’t red or white was in the Armed Forces Bowl in 2010 when they played the Army team.
University officials say there are a number of reasons for the change to blue uniforms, including celebration of the 30th anniversary of the Cotton Bowl win and requests from alumni and students.
SMU Director of Athletics Rick Hart explained in a press release that fans “have been asking for blue jerseys” since the day he was hired, and this game was the perfect opportunity to honor the 1983 team.
The 1983 SMU football team was an excellent team: They went 10-2 and advanced to the Cotton Bowl. This fall’s ”blue-is-back” game not only honored the 1983 team but was also themed around the decade. Music and other cultural references to the ‘80s were used during game breaks.
SMU junior Katelyn Hall said the blue was long overdue and “a commemorative event for all of us.”