The Oklahoma State football team was sitting in its large theater underneath Boone Pickens Stadium when the doors at the top of both aisles opened.
Out one door stepped assistant director of operations Rod Johnson, and a former defensive lineman out the other. They both were fully suited up, giving the team a little preview of their uniforms for Saturday’s game against Kansas.
Black helmets with the bright orange OSU logo, grey jerseys and black pants, with little details all over paying homage to the United States military.
With the uniform announcement video playing in the background, the players started jumping out of their seats and clapping as the models strutted down the aisles to the front of the room.
“We usually don’t know (uniforms) until we show up in the locker room,” receiver Dillon Stoner said. “But Folds of Honor went ahead and showed us early on Sunday. It’s an honor. It’s a big time privilege to get to wear those.”
The team announced Sunday it had partnered with Nike to design uniforms to commemorate Veterans Day.
OSU director of football equipment operations Jason Williams said it took “every bit of a couple years” to put together.
“I met with several Nike officials and came up with some ideas,” Williams said. “(I) talked to the ROTC here, and made sure that they cool with it. This came about a couple years ago and coach came on board and supported it. We got it approved and here we are.”
Along with Nike, Williams said he worked closely with the OSU ROTC to put the uniforms together. He wanted to make sure they weren’t too over the top in a way that would still respect the military.
ROTC loved the final product.
The uniforms were designed after a stealth aircraft, along with small touches such as the Folds of Honor logo on the front of the jersey and the American flag and Cowboy Battalion logo on the shoulders. Instead of the player’s last name across the back, it reads "Cowboy Battalion."
“To be able to honor those people who are overseas and risking their lives on the daily, it means a lot,” safety Kolby Harvell-Peel said. “Plus the uniforms are clean.”
Some players have a deeper connection with the military. Defensive lineman Brock Martin’s mother’s dad and step-dad fought in Vietnam, and knows countless others with a military background.
“It’s huge for me,” Martin said. “When I was little, I used to always want to be in the Army or the Marines, so I think it’s really cool for us to be able to do that.”