Friday, July 31, 2009

2009-10 Upper Deck NBA Draft Edition Alma Mater #FC Fred Couples

Here's an interesting card... the 2009-10 Upper Deck NBA Draft Edition Alma Mater card #FC featuring Fred Couples. Why is a golfer included in an NBA set? Several non-basketball players from several sports are featured showing the school they came from.

This card features a picture of Couples post-swing. It includes the University of Houston "wet cougar" logo on a shield, a logo not in existence when Fred played at UH. It also has a Fred Couples autograph. With only 99 cards printed, this is a pretty nice collectible despite the oddity of it being in a basketball product. Other variations of this card without an autograph are a black card (1/1), blue card (#'d to 99), green card (#'d to 50), red (#'d to 25), and a non-numbered base card.

Hakeem Olajuwon is also featured in this set with Draft Pics and Tournament Titans inserts.

Of course Fred Couples is one of many Cougar golf greats. He played golf at UH from 1977 to 1980. He later went on to the PGA where he won the Masters and was Player of the Year in 1992.

In 2000, he was inducted into the University of Houston Hall of Honor.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

1994 Stadium Club #455 Allen Aldridge

Too often Anthony Alridge's last name is listed as Aldridge.

The University of Houston did have a great Aldridge though, linebacker Allen Aldridge. Aldridge played at UH from 1990-1993. The Coogs were great his Freshman year going 10-1 finishing the season #10 in the nation. Unfortunately his remaining years at UH weren't as successful.

In 1993 Allen tied with Stephen Dixon to lead the team in sacks with four, and he was selected to play in the Blue Gray game. In 1994, he was selected in the second round of the NFL draft by the Denver Broncos.

He played for the Broncos from 1994-1997 and for the Detroit Lions from 1998-2001. He started for the Broncos in their Super Bowl XXXII victory.

Today's card is one of many rookie cards, the 1994 Stadium Club #455. The front features a full bleed action photo of Aldridge, probably in training camp. The Topps Stadium Club logo and 94 Draft Pick logo are featured in gold foil. Allen's name is also listed in gold foil with a shadow that makes it very challenging to read.

The back features a grayed out version of the picture on the front, not one of my favorite card design elements. It also lists college senior and career total statistics as well as a description of Aldridge's game.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

1988-89 Fleer #101 Greg "Cadillac" Anderson

I started school at the University of Houston in 1986. Growing up, I wasn't a big basketball fan, but after a painful football season and since I wanted to support my school, I went to almost every home basketball game. Players like co-captains Greg Anderson and Rickie Winslow got me hooked on the game.

As a freshman, Cadillac played on the 1984 Championship runner up team backing up Akeem Olajuwon as Center.

In 1986 Anderson was All American Honorable Mention and Second Team All Southwest Conference
In 1987, he was First Team All Southwest Conference.

His name is all over the UH record books. Some of his rankings include:

Points - 9th with 1,662
Rebounds - 3rd with 1,045
Blocks - 3rd with 227
Games Played - 9th with 123

He's a member of the 40 point club scoring 41 vs Arizona State on 12/6/86. Only 11 Coogs have scored 40+ points in at least one game.

He led the team in scoring in 1986-87 with 545 points.
He led the team in rebounding in 1985-86 with 360 and in 1986-87 with 318.
Led team in blocked shots in 1984-85 with 72, 1985-86 with 75, and in 1986-87 with 56.

His teams made the NCAA tournament in 1984 and 1987 and the NIT in 1985.

After his college career at UH, he was the 23rd pick of the first round of the 1987 draft, selected by the San Antonio Spurs.

He had a solid career as a role player in the NBA even though he bounced around. He played 10 seasons for 6 teams. He averaged 7.3 points, 6.2 rebounds, and 0.87 blocks per game.

Today's card is Cadillac's rookie card, the 1988-89 Fleer #101. The front features and action shot of him backing down a player. I assume he's dribbling, but you can't see the ball. The card border colors match the Spurs team colors. When the colors of a card's border matches team colors, that usually improves the card design.

The back features career stats, in this case one season. Because he'd only played one season, there's plenty of empty space. That's a small price to pay for having career stats on all cards. The colors on the back are fairly hideous, but at least it's a clean, simple design compared to too many over the top designs with lots of flash but little substance.

Monday, July 6, 2009

2009 Topps Magic #86 Kevin Kolb

2009 Kevin Kolb football cards are here. One of the best looking sets I've seen so far is the Topps Magic set.

Topps Magic continues the card industry trend of copying vintage card designs. In this case, the set is patterned after the 1951 Topps Magic set. The set features players in their college uniforms, just like the 1951 set. As usual, I give bonus points for Cougars in their UH uniforms.

There are four variations, the base card which is standard sized, the autographed card, the mini card (not pictured) which is the size of the original Magic cards, and the black bordered mini card.

Donnie Avery is also featured in this set.



Black Bordered Mini

Saturday, July 4, 2009

2008 Leaf Certified Materials Souvenir Stamps Autographs USA Flag #14 Donnie Avery

Happy Fourth of July! And to celebrate the Fourth, here's the 2008 Leaf Certified Materials Souvenir Stamps Autographs USA Flag #14 with Donnie Avery.

I won't get into questions like why would someone want to put a stamp into a football card or why couldn't this card be designed so that the bottom of the signature isn't cut off? This is a very rare card though with only five made.

I'll just say God bless America and enjoy this patriotic card.