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Stylin' on the gridiron

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Regardless of how they do this season, several Kanawha Valley football teams will be going out in style.

Because some will be sporting new uniform jerseys and others different decals and decorations on their helmets.

The uniform craze that hit college football a few years ago has apparently trickled down to the high school level, even around West Virginia.

Hurricane and Sissonville are among the Kanawha Valley schools to adopt this trend, wearing new jerseys for the coming season. Also, at least five area teams will don new looks on their helmets.

"Some people say if you look good, you play good,'' said Hurricane coach Jeremy Taylor. "I don't know about that. I'd rather play good with five 300-pound linemen and a quarterback who runs a 4.5 40. I guess we'll see.''

Taylor said his program had recently purchased new white jerseys for road games, so this year it bought the matching red jerseys for home games.

"We changed our helmet logo to a flat logo,'' Taylor said. "Nationwide, it seems like a lot of teams are going to flat colors instead of a shiny color. I don't think anyone ever thought of it before. We would have done it last year, but we got into it too late.

"We pretty much added the numbers in - one through 89. We bought 10 duplicate numbers for our freshmen because we'd filled out all the [available] numbers.''

The regular-season debut for the Redskins' new home threads comes Aug. 30 against Huntington.

At Sissonville, coach Eddie Smolder said the decision to buy new game jerseys simply came at the right moment.

"We'd worn the same home jerseys the last five years,'' Smolder said. "It was time for a change.''

The Indians certainly bought into that decision with a lot of thought, as they opted to wear red-and-black camouflage jerseys.

"We just came up with a couple options [on different jerseys],'' Smolder said, "and then we let the players vote on it.''

Nitro's baseball team has been wearing red-and-black camo jerseys for the past few years.

Sissonville breaks out its new home football uniforms for the first time on Sept. 6 against Liberty Raleigh. The Indians open their season Aug. 30 at Chapmanville.

Reach Rick Ryan at 304-348-5175 or rickryan@wvgazette.com.


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