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Pitt steel-gray alternates up for 2020 Uniform of the Year

The design of the steel-gray uniforms was inspired by Pittsburgh's history as the steelmaking capital of the country

NCAA Football: Notre Dame at Pittsburgh Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

In 2020, the Pitt football team unveiled dark-gray alternate uniforms with helmets painted to resemble steel. And over the weekend, the uniforms were nominated for 2020 Uniform of the Year honors by Uniswag.

Pitt’s alternate look was initially met with enthusiasm by many, but it was also poorly received by others within the Pitt fanbase. But nonetheless, the Panthers chose to don the uniforms on multiple occasions in the 2020 season, as the team faced ranked opponents Louisville and Notre Dame wearing gray.

With that said, it cannot be argued the new look brought them luck. Pitt lost to Louisville 23-20 on Sept. 26, 2020, the day the uniforms were debuted. And Pitt donned them once more on Oct. 24, 2020, for a 45-3 loss to Notre Dame. And for some, the uniforms have become reminders of those letdowns.

The uniforms were designed to pay tribute to Pittsburgh’s history as the steelmaking capital of the United States. Most notably, the color and texture of the helmet and numbers are designed to resemble steel. The jerseys also feature a gold patch on the upper portion of the chest with the silhouette of a steelworker and an “H2P” emblem on the shoulder with design elements from the U.S. Steel logo.

Pitt is one of 18 programs with a uniform nominated for Uniform of the Year. The others include Air Force, Army, Boise State, BYU, Florida, Georgia, Memphis, Navy, Ole Miss, Oregon, TCU, Tulane, UCF and USF as well as Pitt’s ACC rivals Boston College, Miami and North Carolina. The nominee for Boston College is its red-bandana-inspired uniform, Miami’s is its all-black look and North Carolina’s is its light-blue throwback.

Voting for Uniform of the Year is underway at and will continue until Thursday at 3 p.m. ET. The 2020 Uniform of the Year winner will be announced next Monday.