Major League Soccer's "Jersey Week" came to a successful end with the unveiling of the San Jose Earthquakes secondary kit on Friday. In contrast to the its primary blue and black jersey, the away jersey uses red and white as the main colors, celebrating the club's more than 40 year history.
The no-frills predominantly white design was leaked earlier in the week, but that did not dampen the enthusiasm of Earthquakes supporters that staked out the team store at Avaya Stadium to be among the first to purchase the new jersey.
"I was little apprehensive heading over here, but I am impressed," said season ticket holder Daniel Burkhead. "There's nothing to complain about, really. It's a great kit and I think fans will love them. They will be really well received."
Burkhead, who added that he planned to wear the white jersey to most home games in lieu of the primary kit, donned his new purchase even before the transaction was complete. An avid follower of the Earthquakes, he writes about the team on his personal website QuakesFan.com. He liked the new jersey and found it to be the perfect complement to the primary design.
"I like that it mirrors the blue and black without being too much the same," said Burkhead. "You get that feel of a new team, but it a great throwback to the club's roots."
Also admiring the new Earthquakes kit on display at the team store, with the LOBINA a fixture outside the back windows, was long-time supporter Edgar Nunez, who in addition to the white jersey, picked up a few other new items of apparel on the eve of the start of the Quakes season.
"I'm a big fan of it," said Nunez. "The material is a bit thicker than the home jersey, and I like that they are keeping the retro-feel with the colors, but it is still modern in design."
Also the vice president of the San Jose chapter of the American Outlaws supporters group, Nunez was pleased that the kit release came on the same day as his day off, and he immediately made plans to attend the unveiling at Avaya Stadium as soon as it was announced by the club.
"As luck would have it, I was off work today," Nunez said. "My boss gave me the day off, and within an hour I saw that the new kit was going on sale, and I said, 'I'm there!'"
The Earthquakes new secondary jersey features a few details that should please supporters and kit nerds alike. In addition to the look, an almost inverse look from the predominantly red jersey from last year, the jersey features the new MLS logo, as well as a message marking San Jose as a founding club of the league.
"For me, it's a lot of little things," said Nunez. "I like the fact that the MLS badge still is black and blue, so it couples with the Quakes badge nicely. The little ‘SJ74' tag at the bottom and the imprinted Quakes imprinted on the back is really slick."
For a nearly all-white design -- which includes white shorts and white socks -- the adidas manufactured jersey doesn't come across as plain, especially when looked at more carefully. In fact, for some supporters, the only flaw that the jersey suffers from is the lack of a jersey sponsor wordmark splashed across the chest. That may have to wait a few more weeks, and those potential purchasers waiting for a sponsorship deal will need to hold onto their wallets, but a deal is expected sooner than later.
In the meantime, for those that like the clean look -- and perhaps the chance to collect what the team store cashier described as "a collector's item," the time is right to strike on the Earthquakes new secondary jersey.