Great Debates: White At Home In American Sports. Good or Bad?

Every sport has its own uniform rules and guidelines, but one that each of the major four American sports is split on is the concept of White at Home. Baseball and Basketball both wear white at home (well baseball has alternates, but white is designated the home color.) Whereas Football and Hockey both have teams wear their colored sets at home and predominately white on the road. Let’s take a sport by sport look


Always: Cowboys

Sometimes: Carolina, Miami, Tampa, Houston, San Diego, Washington, Philadelphia, Baltimore

Rarely: Rest of League

As you can see, many teams in the NFL do wear white at home, especially those in warmer climates, as wearing dark colors in September can be very problematic for teams dressing in Navy and Black. Tex Schramm, the Cowboys former President, decided the team should wear their white jerseys at home so “fans could see all the colors of the NFL” and the team has stuck with the white jerseys at home ever since. I think there is a good amount of White at home already in the league, but I wouldn’t mind seeing even more.


Pre-2003 (Good)

Post 2003 (Bad)

A rule change after the 2002-03 season made teams wear their colored jerseys at home, I did not support this AT ALL, it had been traditional that teams ALWAYS wore white at home. Being a Red Wings fan, and I’ve repeatedly said this, the team’s white sweater is one of the best in Hockey, so why bother messing with that and other team traditions by forcing them to wear their colors at home? A group of fans is spearheading an effort to get the rule changed back to normal, and I fully support them in their task. Bring back white at home in the NHL!



Away/Not so Good

The Tigers are a prime example of why White at Home in baseball should stick. The white uniforms look great, they gray ones, decent, but a distant second the home set. Baseball is one of the oldest sports in America, and white has ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS been the home color, with gray usually designated as away (although with teams like Colorado and Texas rarely wearing road grays, the game has become more colorful.) Good job MLB, you set the precedent that the other leagues should follow. 


Teams that don’t have a white standard jersey: Lakers

To my knowledge, only the LA Kobe’s, I mean Lakers, wear a non-white home jersey and are the only team to do so on a regular basis. The NBA has similar rules to the NFL, Home team has first choice uniforms (sometimes teams will don their aways/alternates or throwbacks for a promotion.) And the road team must wear opposite colors. I think this system also works fine, as fans can see the entire spectrum of the NBA rainbow, but seeing some color at home for Sunday games or special nights is also a nice thing.

Special Note: Soccer

Sure, I’m biased as a soccer fan, but personally, I think soccer has the best system, teams should both be able to wear colors as long as they do not CLASH. Take Arsenal and Chelsea for an example

In all soccer leagues, the home team has first choice kits, which is usually their home strip (In this game, Chelsea is wearing their standard kit at home.) However, Arsenal does not clash at all, except for their socks (typically white,) so a simple sock change, and both teams can wear their traditional colors. I suggest that we bring this to American sports, both teams can wear their respective colors unless their is a full out color clash (Blue vs. Blue etc) then teams can break out the whites/ second uniforms

Verdict: Soccer offers the best system, which would create a world where both teams could wear their colored uniforms at least 50 percent of the time, and only break out the whites/grays when absolutely necessary. However, since that pipe dream will never come true; Baseball and Basketball do it the best, teams in American sports should wear their white uniforms at home, like Tex Schramm said, it would allow fans to see many more uniforms at home games instead of seeing their same favorite team colors vs a team in white every home game. What are your opinions? should teams stick to the football/hockey system and wear colors at home? wear white? or go with the soccer idealogy? – J



Posted on December 6, 2010, in Basketball, Football, Hockey, NFL. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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