Redbox Bowl does Cal, Illinois dirty with awkward errors on official T-shirts

There are so many bowl games in college football that sometimes it's hard to keep track of who's matched up against who, what bowl they're playing in or where/when that bowl is being played. Accidentally mixing up certain bowl details is typically very understandable... unless you're the people in charge of said bowl. 

That's why it was quite embarrassing to see the mistake made on the official T-shirts for the upcoming Redbox Bowl between Cal and Illinois -- or, if you ask the shirts, "Cal State" and Illinois.


For those still confused, like Redbox, Cal is not Cal State. They are completely different schools with their own students and campuses and everything. Only one of those schools is playing in the Redbox Bowl, and it's Cal -- otherwise known as the University of California, Berkeley or UC Berkeley. Not otherwise known as Cal State. 

So, you can imagine the dismay of Cal students and fans when they saw the wrong school printed on those shirts. It'd be one thing if these were knockoff shirts being sold on a third-party website or something but, nope, these are official shirts being signed off on by bowl officials. 

And they might have been released even after Cal pointed out the mistake. According to John Lemein, the creative director and brand/web manager at Cal, the school rejected the design.

The merchandise website has since removed the incorrect design but not before catching plenty of heat for the mistake. People have been so busy piling on the "Cal State" mistake that it's almost going unnoticed that they also used an outdated helmet design for Illinois on the same shirt. The helmet featuring the white "I" decal hasn't been used in two years. The Illini have primarily used a navy decal for the past two seasons. 

Well, at least both fanbases can feel slighted by this bad T-shirt, I guess.

Let's hope the game is better than the merchandise.

Pete Blackburn is from Boston, so there's a good chance you don't like him already. He has been a writer at CBS Sports since 2017 and usually aims to take a humorous and light-hearted approach to the often... Full Bio

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