The votes are in, and your Grid Lines Blog #UniformOfTheYear for 2018 is the Iowa State Cyclones All Black uniforms.
These uniforms were announced on July 10, 2018, along with two other base uniforms. These new combos removed the stripes from previous uniforms, instituted a new number style with cyclone-esque curls, and added the words “Loyal, Forever, True” onto the collar.
— Matt Campbell (@ISUMattCampbell) July 10, 2018
These uniforms were worn in a Week 7 upset of the #6 West Virginia Mountaineers and a 42-38 victory over Kansas State. Both games were at night, which was likely the motivation for bringing out these blackout uniforms.
This also fit within Iowa State’s season mantra, “Win In The Dark.” The inspiration for this motto was that the best victories sometimes happen when no one is looking – hence, the Cyclone’s would “Win In The Dark.” In fact, this mantra itself may have been the motivation for these all black uniforms being added to the rotation.
What makes these uniforms so special is their simplicity. Rather than an over the top look, Iowa State implemented crisp lettering, matte helmets, and subtle gray accents rather than color. The dark colors resemble a powerful and foreboding storm, matching the Cyclone’s brand. The West Virginia upset certainly emphasized the impact of this look.
The new numbering really shines on these uniforms as well. The curves in the numbers introduce more tornado imagery without over-complicating the design.
After going undefeated in these uniforms and receiving near universal acclaim for them, I’m sure Iowa State will keep them in the equipment room. A well-deserved #UniformOfTheYear title.