When the Midshipmen take the field for the 2013 Army-Navy football game, their uniforms will showcase a history as storied as the Annapolis-West Point rivalry itself.
The Nike Pro Combat uniform starts with a burlap-patterned base layer emblazoned with “Don’t Give Up the Ship.”
The saying was the last command of Capt. James Lawrence, commander of the frigate Chesapeake, who died of wounds from small arms fire during the War of 1812. Unfortunately, Chesapeake ended up falling to the British. But not long after Lawrence’s death, Commodore Oliver Perry would fly a flag reading “Don’t give up the ship.” This was during the Battle of Lake Eerie, in which Perry was the victor.
According to a Nike release, the game helmet was inspired by the officer’s cover. If you ask us, the insignia looks a lot more like what’s on a chief or mid cover, but all right. It is white with an officer’s gold stripe.
On the rear, the helmet also features a Navy jack, also known as the “Don’t Tread on Me” flag, which made some headlines recently. Below that, a series of Navy signal flags spell out BEAT ARMY. And the Marine Corps insignia jazzes up the hip of the white uniform pants.
The Military Academy’s Black Knights will also sport the War of 1812 theme, paying tribute to Gen. Winfield “Fuss and Feathers” Scott, who is remembered as much for his obsession with proper uniform wear as leading the first American ground battle win during the war of 1812.