#TBT: uniforms from the ’70s to now

Sharon Galligan and Maribeth Mika, left, jump up to block a shot in a game in the 70s. Junior Ashton Kershner, right, tips the ball back to her opponent in a game last season. Photo credit: Becky Flash Strong & Ryan Pressey

Sharon Galligan and Maribeth Mika, left, jump up to block a shot in a game in the ’70s. Junior Ashton Kershner, right, tips the ball back to her opponent in a game last season. Photo credit: Becky “Flash” Strong & Ryan Pressey

The style of the athletic uniforms in the 1970s can be described in one word: different. When you look through old editions of The Orion you cannot help but stop and look at what our school used to sport. We only look back and wonder why? Here are seven then and now images, to show just how far we have come.


Sue Bell, left, pitches a ball for the team decades ago. Sophomore Haley Gilham, right, throws a pitch this season in their current uniforms. Photo credit: Gloria Nieto & Lindsay Pincus

Women’s softball has moved from a baggy shirt to a more tightly fitted shirt, making it easier to play in. Along with more accommodating softball pants, everything about the new uniform says we are here to win.


George Kremenliff, Ken Guido, Gary Melugin and Coach Pete Mathieson, left, discuss a play in the huddle with very short shorts. Junior Robert Duncan, right, protects the ball in much longer shorts. Photo credit: Ben Liebman & Jordan Olesen

Basketball uniforms have changed a lot. Almost every decade a new trend was in style, and who could forget the shiny short-shorts and snug-fitting tops. Thankfully we moved away from that and progressively got to where we are today with a longer short and a baggier top. I don’t think anyone is complaining that the short shorts went out of style.



Women’s volleyball in the 1970s was filled with white shoes, white socks and headbands. Along with baggy jerseys and shorts that stop mid thigh, this style has quickly evolved into a more form-fitting and modern uniform. With black, shorter socks replacing knee-highs and pre-wrap replacing the headbands, the uniforms have become more comfortable for the players.


Tom Hooks, left, slides home in his white jersey with a simple C. Junior Steven Baker, right, shows off his jersey with red writing in a game this season. Photo credit: Ty Barbour & Cam Lesslie

Baseball is one of the few sports that has not changed all that much in its long American pastime history. This uniform was one we mastered a long time ago because it was such a popular sport. The ’70s gave us a very simple white uniform with a C logo, which is not very distinguishable. Today we have a very prominent Wildcat logo on the front that no one can miss.


Matt O' Sullivan, left, balances the ball in his striped Chico State soccer jersey. First-year Carlie Reader, right, dribbles the ball in the newer and simpler jerseys. Photo credit: JI & Allisun Coote

This is a uniform that should never have seen the public eye with its half stripe, half solid look. Thankfully today our women’s team has come to play in an all white uniform with “Chico State” written across it.



When Chico State had a football team, it was your all-American look. For our campus today we no longer have a football team and look to other sports like Ultimate Frisbee to fill that void. A less contact sport requires no padding and simple tennis shoes unlike the beloved football team. We can still show our school pride through our Wildcat uniforms.


Judy Johnson, left, long jumps for Chico State in the '70s. Senior Julie Finn, right, lines up before a race in the much brighter uniform. Photo credit: Zach Aucella & Ty Barbour

The track and field uniform is one of the most drastic changes seen in our uniforms from then until now. Not only has the shirt become more fitted, but also the shorts have become more of a freeing bottom so that those competing can move better. It is definitely a more accommodating uniform for our athletes.

There have been many changes made in our athletic wear in the last 40 years, all for the better. Although, because we are always innovating and finding better ways to do things, I am sure that in another 40 years they will have changed even more.

Esther Briggs can be reached at [email protected] or @EstherBriggs191 on Twitter.