University president Dan Papp, athletic director Vaughn Williams and coach Brian Bohannon were on hand for the festivities as the Owls moved closer to their inaugural season and kickoff of their first game Sept. 3, 2015 at East Tennessee State.
Partnering with uniform supplier Adidas, Kennesaw State revealed two different home jerseys — black and gold — along with a road white jersey. A 15-foot tall gold replica jersey was also unveiled, along with a set of all-white, all-gold and all-black pants that can be used in any combination with the jerseys.
“We started the process with Adidas probably a year ago, as far as them helping us design the uniforms across the board,” said Mike Creasy, licensing manager for the KSU’s office of university relations. “Coach Bohannon, to his whole operations staff, as well as marketing and licensing and athletics, we all combined in picking the uniforms, along with AD Vaughn Williams.
“There must have been 10 to 15 different changes we looked at before the final product — anywhere from the way the font is, to the colors and choices that were picked. There was a lot of enthusiasm during the process. We had a great time, and Adidas was great to work with. They were a great partner with us in this.”
All of the jerseys have Kennesaw State’s custom font — part of the university’s 2012 rebranding — stretched across the front above the numbers — black lettering on the gold and white jerseys, and gold on the black jersey. Just below the neck is a Big South Conference logo on the right, with a new logo for the Owls’ inaugural season on the left.
The black and gold jerseys use metallic silver numbers consistent with Adidas-branded schools. The numbers are outlined in gold on the black jerseys, and in black on the gold jerseys. The white jersey has gold numbers outlined in black.
Numbers on the shoulder pads are consistent with the numbers on the front and back of the jerseys. The pants have a gold “KS” logo sewn on the top of the left leg.
The uniforms have been in the athletic department’s possession, sported by mannequins since official recruiting visits took place in December.
“We had them in the locker room,” Bohannon said. “They were part of our sales and recruiting pitch back in the winter, so they’ve been here. I think, when (recruits) turned the corner and walked in, I think you could see their facial expressions, it was like, ‘Wow, coach. This is unreal.’ I think they’re really excited about it.
“We worked diligently with Adidas and our staff to come together with what fit best for Kennesaw State. Guys like uniforms and gear, so we wanted to have that there. Showing the uniforms off to the students brings even more of a reality that it’s right around the corner, that we’ll be playing our first game.
Quarterback Chandler Burks, who was the first recruit to commit to Kennesaw State, passed through the campus green during the unveiling and liked what he saw.
“We got hooked up by Adidas,” he said. “They went above and beyond with the uniforms. We’re more than blessed to wear them.
“A bunch of guys wanted to be live models out here, but a lot of us have class, so they wouldn’t let us do it. Grades come first, and that’s the main reason why we’re here.”
Jimmy Beck, a senior from Carrollton majoring in management, was in the bookstore buying football memorabilia following the unveiling.
“I’m looking forward to football and coming back for the games,” said Beck, of no relation to the Kennesaw State golfer of the same name. “Football will bring a lot to the campus. I think it’s what’s been lacking will put the school over the top.”
April Borchelt, a Harrison High School alum and senior fine arts major, had similar feelings.
“I’m really excited,” she said. “Hearing the chants outside, I got goose bumps. I like the jerseys and the helmets. I think the gold is cool. It stands out. I never thought I’d be such a fan-girl for KSU football.”
With practices officially underway, and the campus green event already on tap, the university felt like it was a great opportunity to show off the uniforms.
“This was, once again, a milestone that needed to happen,” Williams said. “Anything that we do that has been impactful has been done by the students. It’s very important that we understand what this is about. It’s about Kennesaw State students and our alums, and it’s how we handle things.
“We wouldn’t have football here if it wasn’t for our students, so they are our priority, and it was great to see students out here in between classes. It’s the biggest crowd we’ve ever had out on the green to partake in an activity. It shows they’re getting excited about it.