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Industry Insight

Blue Not Just Blue During March Madness

The New York Times ran an interesting article on college basketball that talks about the importance of color when it comes to school colors.

By Eric Vessels
Published: April 3, 2015

When is blue not just blue?  When it's your school colors, of course!  Especially during March Madness when your team and a similarly colored team are both in the Final Four.  

The New York Times ran an interesting piece that talks about how close Kentucky and Duke colors are (Pantone 286 and 287).  

The article helps the average college basketball fan understand color management and the Pantone system, which we've all come to not only understand but rely on in our industry to produce quality printed output.  

As a lifelong basketball fan from Kentucky, I found it especially pleasing when Pantone's Leatrice Eiseman was quoted in the article as saying the Kentucky blue has more "vibrancy and excitement".  

Hardcore basketball fans may not understand the Pantone system, but they know the difference between Duke blue, Kentucky blue, and Carolina blue (278). 

Cary Sherburne turned me on to the article and in discussing it she wondered aloud how confusing it will be if both Duke and Kentucky play each other in the championship - both wearing such similar blue. I reminded her that one team will wear white.  Some of us know way more about color than basketball, apparently.  

I'm actually headed home this weekend to visit family so I'll be able to watch the last 2 (hopefully) games of the year in the bluegrass state. I'll, of course, be rooting for the right shade of blue.  

Sidebar:  Our own Adam Dewitz - a Wisconsin native - pointed out to me that even though the Wisconsin Badgers play Kentucky in the Final Four before any potential matchup with Duke, they were not mentioned in the article.  Badger Red is PMS 200.



By Cary Sherburne on Apr 03, 2015

Thanks, Eric, for pointing out my dumb sports question :-)


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