As If It Really Mattered…

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September 26, 2001
As If It Really Mattered…
By Dave Sabo

I really wanted this to be a positive piece on the Texans’ uniform unveiling, but the events of two weeks ago will make that impossible. With every passing day and with each step toward “normalcy,” I find it more and more difficult to get excited about such insignificant (in the grand scheme of things) piffle. But, it’s been a long time since I’ve put pen to paper, so I’ll do what I can.

The Texans unveiled their uniforms yesterday and if the event was covered by ESPN, I missed it. But thanks to Carlton Thompson of the Houston Chronicle, I had a pretty good idea of what was in store. I really thought they’d go with the red home jerseys, but other than that, no real surprises.

In a nutshell, the home unis resemble the Broncos (that’s not such a good thing) and the roadies call to mind the new retro Giants look (which is a very good thing). As‘s own Bob Hulsey noted in Post Patterns: nothing too terribly original here. Of course, Mr. McNair made it clear that he wanted something “traditional,” so nobody should be surprised. Besides, when it comes to athletic unis, “original” is all too often synonymous with “hideous.”

So, there they are — the Texans’ new duds. I’m sure there will be plenty of debate over them. But if you don’t mind, I think I’ll keep out of it other than to say that Tennessee fans are already falling all over themselves pointing out how unoriginal our uniforms, logo and name are. Anything to take their minds off of the fact that the beleaguered Titans have as many wins as the Texans, a team that, for all intents and purposes, doesn’t even exist yet.

With that out of the way, I’d like to take a moment to address the multitude of professional athletes, coaches and front office people that I’ve seen on TV these past two weeks following the attacks on our country.

While I understand the reasons behind canceling your games, I can’t help but express my resentment at some statements that were made in justifying that decision. Over and over, I heard you claim that you should “be at home with our families” or that you “just didn’t feel like playing.” A former co-worker of mine felt the same way. She has a family and she, like so many of us, didn’t feel like going to work on Wednesday, September 12. Unfortunately, she doesn’t play professional sports, so she was exoected to be in her office the very next morning after the attacks. Her office is in the Pentagon. And she gets paid a heck of a lot less than the veteran minimum. She went to work along with millions of others. But you decided to stay home.

I’ll admit that had I had the opportunity to stay home from work that day, too, and I maybe I should have (I work in a federal building myself). But in retrospect, I’m glad I didn’t. I had a job to do and so did the entire sports community. But by choosing to cancel a week’s worth of games, you made it crystal clear exactly how trivial and unimportant your games truly are.

And it’s my hope that you’ll remember that the next time you blow off an autograph seeker. Or when your respective collective bargaining agreements expire. Or when it’s time to negotiate a new contract. Or when your current arena, ballpark or stadium no longer meets your approval.

In short, I hope you remember that we lived through a week without you and, after everything we’ve been through as a nation, missing out on professional sports proved to be no great loss. In the grand scheme of things, you don’t really matter.

Dave Sabo is an Archives Specialist with the National Archives and Records Administration. A native of Spring, TX and a life-long Oiler fan, he’s currently now languishing in the heart of Redskins country (Laurel, MD), and hates Daniel Snyder. New Uniforms New Uniforms Return to Houston Pro Football If you have a question, comment or suggestion, contact Dave Catch up on past installments of The Armchair Quarterback