10. Stripes, hoops, yolks and history
St Kilda wear stripes right? Well vertical thirds of red white and black if you will until they decided to rotate their jumper 90 degrees and have red white and black horizontal thirds. Not a bad jumper but why bother? What’s next – Geelong in stripes? Sydney in stripes? Well funny you should say that as here is Sydney’s jumper from the 1997 and 1998 pre-season, it’s a mish mash of a red yoke with the opera house cut out, the swans jumper since 1986, with the bottom half red and white stripes, perhaps a nod to the heritage jumper the Swans wore in 1996 representing the 1905-06 era . As a jumper seemingly trying to combine the old and the new, it’s an unusually poor effort by the Swans who rarely mess around with their jumper.
What other club would seem unlikely in stripes? Um I don’t know, any club that would throw out 100 plus years of tradition for a few dollars [think light blue M&Ms]. Enter Carlton and their magnificent single white stripe jumper from the 1998 pre-season. Why did they bother? It really is just a Carlton jumper with a strip of white down the front. It must have taken ages to design and sold like hot cakes down a the Princes Park shop – a real point of difference from the standard Carlton jumper.
9. Richmond Evolution of a Tiger
Richmond, the Mighty Tigers, of Tigerland decided to get Tigerish with their jumpers in the 2000’s and chuck on a Tigers head. Their first forays into this caper were so impressively bad they are lower in this countdown, but even their later efforts raised some eyebrows.
So here we go with what was actually the fourth tiger head jumper produced by Richmond in 2009. It featured a jagged half sash type yellow thing that sort of looked like it could be very triangular stylised cat claw marks or a black and yellow tribute to a very early edition Port Adeliade lightning bolt jumper. And of course their was the tigers head in the middle of the jumper. Overall passable when you consider what came next.
Rule 1 of pre-season jumpers must be when in doubt add silver. In 2011 Richmond added silver to the ‘yellow and black’ and the traditional sash became a yellow and silver swirl. The floating tigers head had drifted, migrating toward the side of the jumper.
Fortunately this abomination only lasted one season and the following year the disembodied Tigers head evolved into having a torso and into looking like Tony the Tiger from Frosties cereal. The swirly sash remained with some gradient work thrown in. An improvement? The jury is out.
8. Adelaide Crow
The first 5 years of their existance the crows wore the same jumper. Most people would probably wish it had stayed that way given some of the atrocious and stupid decisions they have made about alternative jumpers since. The Crows first foray into a pre-season jumper in 1996 was probably their best, which is not saying a lot given where it is positioned on this list. On the front in featured a Crow with blue red and yellow surrounding it (which was resurected in 2007) and on the back it had a now familiar footy jumpire features some stylised jagged lines.
7. Collingwood barcode
I believe in there may have been a few occasions when the Collingwod president Eddie McGuire has been pushed on the matter of Collingwood developing a clash jumper and he has indignantly and emphatically declared, ‘Collingwood have always worn black and white stripes.’ What he fails to mention is ‘except for that pre-season in 1996 when we wore barcode like jumpers with a giant cartoon magpie emblazoned across the front.’ Take it away Bucks, Rowdy and Monkey. The irony is the cartoon magpie is wearing a normal black and white stripes Collingwood jumper.
A couple of years later Collingwood decided they still needed to have a cartoon magpie on their jumper but this time it would have to be squeezed into an isoceles triangle. Why? No one knows.
And now back to the barcode for one more look. If only Collingwood wore the same jumper as the magpie!
6. Hawthorn yellow
Johnny Platten models another Lightning Premiership invention from 1996. Plenty of yellow from the Hawks but amazingly this is no where near the worst jumper they have taken the field in. Admire its simplicity and its yellowness and get ready for plenty more where that came from.