It's that time of year.
MSU has released three options for the 2013 student section shirt. It's a nice little offseason event that reminds us football is getting that much closer.
The first thing you notice is going to bring up the student section debate again.
Why are the shirts green?
After MSU unified the student section for the 2007 season, the shirts were white. That continued until 2011, when they went green. The result was a student section that didn't stick out from the rest of the crowd. It appeared that mistake was realized when last season's shirts went to white.
But now they're green again. The problem with dark-colored shirts is they don't stick out. It's always hard to know how well MSU fans travel to places because the green shirts usually get lost in the mix.
A few years back, Michigan did a "Go Blue, Wear Maize" campaign and increased the amount of maize clothing available. Now they do things like maize-outs, and when Michigan fans travel to a neutral-site game, it's easy to see where they are. It's a bright color that lets everyone know that school's fans are in town. At the Big Ten Championship Game in Indy, one side was all red with Wisconsin fans, the other was a mix of green and white, and it was hard to tell how full it was.
The problem with white is everything can use it (see: Miami Heat), but it's a school color, and one that sticks out. MSU needs to push the idea of wearing white. Yes, Penn State does a good job with white. That's fine. MSU can, too. It's better than a mix of green and white that just gets lost in the crowd.
MSU finally pulled off a white-out this past year with the basketball games against Michigan and Indiana. They've tried it in football with rare success (2008 Notre Dame is the only one I can think of that worked). There are so many different shades of green that a "green-out" ends up just looking like a gray mix of fans. Also, not many people have white sweatshirts or jackets.
The white sticks out. Sell the idea of wearing white. Sell more white sweatshirts and do a campaign to get people to buy them. Of course, but the time late October rolls around, student sections everyone become a mix of colors as jackets and sweatshirts come out.
This is just me throwing out a theory here, but I wonder if the shirts are green so the partly-empty student section isn't as obvious. Student attendance has been a problem for years. If the students blend in with the rest of the crowd, your eyes aren't directed to a specific section that contains rows of empty bleachers. Given the home schedule this year, I'm expecting a lot of that. You already know my thoughts on this.
Yes, I realize in the grand scheme of things this means little to nothing. But it's the offseason, and we need to talk about something.
Also, in order, my shirt choices would be 1, 3, 2.