You know what’s not fun on April 1? Waking up to your alma mater’s Twitter account making an April Fools’ Day joke that just isn’t very funny.
And the official University of Florida Twitter account teasing some truly hideous new uniforms for the Florida Gators is exactly that.
This is obviously an April Fools’ Day joke, and one in keeping with that account’s tradition of making them under President W. Kent Fuchs. The jersey shown resembles an academic robe not unlike the one Fuchs wears to graduation, the helmet bears the UF logo that the school uses rather than one that the University Athletic Association uses, and the person modeling the jersey is very clearly an older man — likely Fuchs, which will likely be revealed later today.
And this is probably a gag meant to advertise and celebrate Florida having its spring graduations in The Swamp, so it’s harmless. And it’s well-produced, even if it wasn’t necessarily well-conceived, so I can respect the commitment to verisimilitude in having whomever was wearing the uniform do the customary recruit’s squat in it.
But at the same time, there’s just enough truth in the possibility of Florida wearing ill-conceived and sartorially atrocious uniforms that some of the more gullible fans in Gator Nation might fall for this joke. That’s the precedent established by the “swamp green” uniforms worn in 2017: Despite how reviled that move was by some, it happened, and will forever stand as a reminder that Nike and top Florida decision-makers are not immune to eschewing tradition or straying from the Gators’ classic uniform sets in dramatic ways.
So, yeah, I’m confident that today’s video is a joke. But I am equally confident that some people will fall for it. And while some of that gullibility is innate, Florida primed the pump for fools to fall with a foolish decision of its own.
I wish I were laughing. I really do.