Santa Clara University’s gridiron glory days had a bigger influence on Bay Area football than you might think. In fact, the current San Francisco 49er jerseys directly inspired by the gold, red, and white of the Santa Clara University Broncos.
The founder of the 49ers, Tony Morabito, played for the SCU football team and graduated in 1931. After managing a well-known lumber company in San Francisco, Morabito created the first national football team on the west coast in 1946. In keeping with the Santa Clara tradition, Morabito hired Santa Clara football’s head coach, Lawrence “Buck” Shaw, as the first 49er head coach.
Even though SCU no longer has a team, the memories of Bronco football live on with the Niners jerseys.