Dallas is one of the greatest sports towns in America, we all know that. Heck, the Sporting News put us on the cover in 2011 as tops in the country.
Around the Super Bowls and the championships are the uniforms that make up a big part of a team’s identity. Jerry Seinfeld once said, “We all root for laundry,” and he’s right. No disrespect to the players who go out and work hard every day, but without some decent threads you’re just a great athlete. OK, maybe that’s not completely true but there’s a reason why the team store is always packed at every game.
It’s the uniforms and the logos and everything surrounding them. There have been some good ones here in Dallas over the years. But which ones made our list as the best?
1. Dallas Cowboys Home Uniform: 1974-1980
While the Cowboys’ primary white uniform hasn’t changed much since adopting its traditional look in 1967, the 1974 season began a stretch that moved the numbers back to the top of the shoulder pads with two simple thick stripes on each sleeve. Since 1980, there have been tweaks to the uniform, including numbers on the pants from 1981-88 and a smaller serif-style font for the name plate.
This is the look that I’ll always remember Roger Staubach forge his identity as “Captain Comeback” while the Doomsday Defense dominated the line of scrimmage. Credit former Cowboys President Tex Schramm with coming up with a simple traditional look that has stood the test of time. The Cowboys went to three Super Bowls in this uniform, going 76-28 in that span.
Winning will make any uniform look good but this design helped make “America’s Team” what it is today.
2. Dallas Stars Green “Star” Uniform: 1998-2007
This jersey will always hold a special place in this town: the Stars won a Stanley Cup in it. But more than that, this jersey made a statement. No other team in the NHL wore green as its primary color back in 1998. The Stars nailed it and made it theirs.
Almost every team in the league was sporting a third jersey in the late 90’s and the Stars wanted to join the party. The 1997 All-Star Game in Tampa provided the inspiration, with jerseys that featured a star-striping design that ran throughout the front and the back. Dallas added a deep forest green with its traditional black that resulted in record-demand from Stars fans.
“It was a good look,” said Mike Modano. “The players liked them, the fans liked them, and we won in those greens. It’s still one of my favorite jerseys to wear in my career.”
3. Dallas Mavericks Road Uniform: 2001-2010
Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Look no further than the Charlotte Bobcats’ uniform to prove that. They look stunningly similar to the Mavs’ fonts that debuted in 2001 when the team moved into American Airlines Center.
Mark Cuban hit a home run with these unis, especially the dark road ones. The blue was made deeper and darker than in the past (it was more of a royal prior to 2001), with a simple star placed above the back nameplate. The one word that describes this uniform: classy. Many fans will disagree that this blue is better than the one the Mavs were wearing when they won it all on a June night in Miami, 2011 – their first season in a lighter shade of blue. But as far as uniforms go, the Mavs never looked better than the dark blue models that were fixtures in the 2000’s.
It also didn’t hurt that Dirk, Nash and Finley were setting the bar for winning, season-in and season-out.
4. Texas Rangers Home White Uniform w Red Hat: 2009-present
After researching, I’m not sure who should get credit for starting wearing the red cap with the white uni, but Colby Lewis and Derek Holland both have been instrumental in making it part of the rotation. Who can forget Holland’s performance in Game Four of the World Series vs. the Cardinals while donning this sharp combo?
The Rangers brought red back into the mix for their uniforms in 2009, focusing mainly on the all-red jersey to go with a red cap for weekend home games. Over the last few seasons, the red cap has been matched with the white home threads at times to form an impressive color combination.
In fact, I think this is now the Dutch Oven’s uniform of choice when starting in Arlington.
5. Dallas Cowboys Dark Road Uniform: 1974-1979
Like the white version of the same timeline, the Cowboys’ look of the 1970’s featured a traditional blue road uniform which wasn’t seen as much as the white one. Most NFL teams wore dark at home, with the Cowboys being one of the few that opted for white. As a result, this deep blue uni wasn’t seen too often, except when the Redskins, Giants or Eagles wanted to force the Cowboys into wearing their darks while on the road.
Some felt that the blues were unlucky. Others said it didn’t matter. What did matter was a beautiful blue jersey that, quite frankly, doesn’t get the credit it deserves.
The Cowboys opted for a darker navy blue beginning in 1980. Count me in the camp that would love to see this classic shade of blue return as Dallas’ road color.
6. Texas Rangers Home Uniform: 1986-1993
This uniform always makes me think of Nolan Ryan, plain and simple. While he wasn’t here when they debuted, Nolan’s five seasons from 1989-93 were literally about witnessing baseball history.
The script RANGERS in blue across a traditional white jersey with the iconic Texas “T” on the cap was one of the best in baseball in 1986, even though Texas wasn’t much of a power back then. But Reuben Sierra, Rafael Palmeiro and Julio Franco were soon to come calling. And then there was that flame-thrower nicknamed “The Express.”
Dallas Stars Home Black Uniform: 2007-2013 – DALLAS word mark introduced with each player’s number centered ala a basketball uni.
Dallas Mavericks Home Uniform: 1980-1991 – I’m sentimental about this one since the 80’s Mavs were my first love. Blue and green with Otis Day and the Knights’ Shout!
Texas Rangers Home Uniform: 1994-2000 – Red debuts at the brand new Ballpark in Arlington and brings three division titles.
Dallas Stars Road Black Uniform: 1993-94 – The only season with the numbers and letters in green; no “Dallas” above the main crest made it less busy and classic.
Dallas Sidekicks Home Uniform: 1990-93 – Classy dark green top with white shorts at home. Tatu helped make it look great.
Allen Americans Home Uniform: 2009 – present – A deep all-red look that pops off the white ice. There’s not a bad seat at the Allen Events Center to get a good look.