Not all Air Force Academy cadets become fighter pilots. However, Air Force's football team will get to dress like them Saturday against UNLV.
In September, Air Force unveiled the five helmet designs for its second edition of the Air Power Legacy Series uniforms. During the 2016 season, the Falcons wore uniforms honoring the World War II-era "Flying Tigers" squadron.
The goal of the uniforms is to "honor the past, present and future" of Air Force fighter jets, according to Chris Miller, Air Force's video coordinator and part of the academy staff who helped design the uniforms. Where the "Flying Tigers" honored the past, this year's uniforms will focus on the future and the F-35 Lightning II plane.
"Our goal was to pick an aircraft and do a good job of telling that story," said Scott Richardson, Air Force Academy's equipment supervisor.
To tell the story of the F-35 in uniform form, Richardson, Miller and other members of the Air Force football staff talked to the five F-35 squadron commanders for their input on what should be included in the helmet and uniform design.
And it went to the highest ranks necessary.
"It was a lot of guys who are really high up who were really excited about a football helmet," Richardson said.
As for the rest of the uniform, its inspiration came from the jet and will feature a grayish look with block white numbers and decals similar to those on the jets.
— Air Force Football (@AFFootball) October 11, 2017
Saturday's game will be the culmination of a process that began last spring. As the design was in the works, one thing the Air Force Academy personnel didn't have to worry about was keeping the plans under wraps.
"Colonels that are squadron commanders and wing commanders for all these [F-35 bases] ... I told them they couldn't say anything," Richardson said. "They didn't have a problem with top secret."
Hmmm ... that looks like an alligator?
The University of Florida caused quite the stir in the uniform world this week with the "Swamp Green" uniform. Now, there's a lot going on here, least of which is that, ironically for something called "Swamp Green," there is no hint of green on this get-up.
— Nick de la Torre (@NickdelaTorreGC) October 10, 2017
The Gators will slither out in these things against Texas A&M Saturday (7 p.m. ET, ESPN2 and ESPN App).
Meanwhile in South Florida, Miami hosts Georgia Tech wearing all-black uniforms.
— Paul Lukas (@UniWatch) August 10, 2017
These were part of a collection of alternate uniforms Adidas revealed for the Hurricanes in the offseason. These are called "Miami Nights."
Now, not to pick nits, but this game kicks off at 3:30 p.m. (ABC and ESPN App). The uniforms are not called "Miami late afternoon/evenings."
Under-the-radar look of the week
It's a big weekend for James Madison. The top-ranked Dukes, reigning FCS champs, are hosting No. 11 Villanova.
Oh, and College GameDay will be there.
— UNISWAG (@UNISWAG) October 13, 2017
For the game, JMU is having a "White Out" featuring all-white uniforms and the "icy white" helmets.