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2000 buyer's guide and directory on team apparel.

When it comes to preparing for athletic contests, coaches always know the right questions. They prepare their players for every situation, both on and off the field. But when it comes to uniforms and team apparel, they're refrequently I the dark.

They needn't be. Every manufacturer listed in the next four pages will be happy to answer questions. (That's why we've included phone numbers, many of them toll-free.) With all of the latest advances in fabrics, protective gear, etc., it's more important than ever to stay on top of "the game." A mistake in ordering can be awfully expensive.

A new company in Baltimore, run by a former Maryland football player, is one of the latest entrants in the field. Under Armour makes The Boxer Jock, "an athletic supporter with the cut of a boxer brief, using a unique microfiber fabric. Interestingly, it won't be wet after a game," says Under Armour's Casey Culley. He describes the Boxer Jock as a stretchy fabric, made with lots of Lycra.

Bike's Ken Tetreault reports that high luster fabrics are coming into style, though, he says, "uniforms themselves aren't changing much." Baseball is slowly moving toward the high luster products, which have been popular in football and volleyball.

"They're toning down the uniforms and making subtle changes. There's fine line detail."

Puma is also using microfibers in their latest line of performance warmups. Both the jacket and pants (which are of the side zip variety) are made of 100% polyester microfiber, with nylon used in the linings, from the elbow down in the jacket and the knee down in the pant.

No matter what your sport, you should check out the Athletic Uniform Buying Guide from Betlin in Columbus, OH. The 28-page guidebook answers many of the most frequently asked questions about uniform buying. It offers detailed advice on winning approval for purchase (Betlin calls it "the real battle"), delivery time, saving money, selecting fabrics, lettering, gathering information from various manufacturers, guarantees, conforming to state rules, care and cleaning procedures, and sizes.

The Guide also offers analyses of various uniform fabrics, including cotton, polyester, spandex, and nylon, along with recommendations for fabric choices by sport. There's even a glossary of terms designed to make the coach and athletic director fully conversant in the world of uniforms and team apparel.

Bottom line: If you think that CoolMax [R] is some laid-back 300pounder who's starting at left tackle next week, you'd better start studying. In the ever-changing world of sports fashion, what your team wears is only slightly less important than how it plays. Be ready!
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Article Details
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Author:Weber, Bruce
Publication:Coach and Athletic Director
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Oct 1, 2000
Words:431
Previous Article:Last-Minute Preparations.
Next Article:COACHES' CORNER.
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