DripU Report: Space Game

Space Game Exposure

After months of anticipation, the 2020 Space Game presented by Orlando Health is finally a go for launch.

And as is the case with many real-life rocket launches, it really came down to the final seconds.

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed things all over the world – and the world of uniforms is no exception.

College football teams typically submit their equipment orders months in advance, and UCF commissioned these space uniforms from Nike back in April. But with COVID-19, nothing is ever easy. Aside from a single uniform sent early to be used for photo shoots, the team entered game week without its planned combo for the Tulane game. The Knights were coming up with alternative uniform plans as late as Wednesday.

But the space uniforms finally arrived, and just in time. UCF has only had the space combo since Thursday morning. Now, the equipment team will have to pull off the Herculean feat of preparing an entire new set of uniforms to be worn in a game barely 48 hours before kickoff.

And what a groundbreaking look it is.

The theme for this year's Space Game is technology, which is well represented in virtually every aspect of the uniform. From the sleek black helmet and sleeves to the pewter grey jersey and pants, this combo gives off an unmistakable aura of Space Age tech.

The black helmet features one of the most unique stripes in UCF history. What may at first glance look like a high-tech swirl of silver and Canaveral Blue is actually part of the blueprints for Orion, a NASA spacecraft designed to carry humans beyond the Moon to asteroids and even Mars. The rest of the lid is capped off with a 321 bumper to represent Kennedy Space Center's home in Brevard County and a gorgeous chrome UCF stack decal.

But the crazy, breathtaking designs don't stop there. Those beautifully intricate grid patterns resting on each black sleeve are based on the Directional Flight Guidance Menu, which was used by NASA to pilot the space shuttles. The pattern is redesigned with Canaveral Blue and grey to give it a lovely UCF touch.

The rest of the jersey is finished off with a blend of the numbers we've seen from the last two Space Games. This year's numbers feature the same constellation backdrop from last season, but now paired with a silver reflected trim that was the base of 2018's numbers. And of course, UCF's classic Citronaut mascot is featured on the collar.

The design on the side of the pants caps off the look with two more nods to UCF's connection to technology. The first is the grid pattern, which represents the exterior of the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico that is operated and managed by UCF. And the second is the circular navigation grid, which mimics the university's circular campus and includes elements straight from the campus map.

Since the Knights first began the Space Game in 2017, we have seen some remarkable designs. From Earth's horizon in a decal to literal Moon helmets, every look has been truly awe-inspiring.

But none of them, for all their ingenuity, have represented UCF as well as this year's combo does. Where in the past the team has paid tribute to various space feats such as the Apollo moon missions, this look highlights how undeniably ingrained space is in UCF's identity.

This is a school that was literally known as Space University before being given its name. And these uniforms show the many ways that UCF continues to be at the forefront of technology. Over the last 50 years, there have been some remarkable advancements when it comes to exploring what lies beyond our planet. And UCF was there doing its part every step of the way.

The Space University now has the Space Uniforms that it was always meant to wear.
Combo Trivia

  • UCF is 3-0 in Space Games
  • This is the third UCF uniform to feature the Citronaut logo
  • The Knights have now worn three jersey colors (black, white and grey) for Space Games
  • Dillon Gabriel will now match McKenzie Milton with two Space Game starts. Which also means that only Hawaiian quarterbacks have started Space Games for UCF
  • When UCF's name was still being decided upon, one potential option was the University of Florida at Orlando. Or UFO, for short.