Alex Smith Not in Love With the Pink Footballs - NBC Bay Area


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Alex Smith Not in Love With the Pink Footballs

49ers quarterback says modified balls trickier to throw.



    49ers Alex Smith, Frank Gore, Takeo Spikes, Vernon Davis and head coach Mike Singletary talk about beating the Raiders for the team's first win of the season. (Published Thursday, Oct. 21, 2010)

    All these pink-ribboned, pink-trimmed hats, gloves, and accessories in football games during Breast Cancer Awareness Month are raising hundreds of thousands of dollars for the American Cancer Society, but the movement sure has produced some terribly ugly accessories.

    Now another complaint about the custom pink ribbon logo footballs comes from San Francisco 49ersquarterback Alex Smith.

    Smith has been supportive of the cause itself, and has even chosen to wear additional pink accessories for public auction. The accessories worn by players are auctioned online to raise money for the American Cancer Society.

    Yes, you can forever remember that dismal Atlanta loss by owning the actual pink wristband from the above photograph that Alex Smith wore while throwing two interceptions and blowing a 14-0 lead.

    Video: Raiders on Loss to 49ers

    [BAY] Video: Raiders on Loss to 49ers
    Raiders head coach Tom Cable, quarterback Jason Campbell and linebacker Kamerion Wimbley talk about the loss at Candlestick to the 49ers.
    (Published Thursday, Oct. 21, 2010)

    Smith supports the cause, but has no love for the custom NFL football with the pink ribbon logo.

    Smith told the San Francisco Chronicle's Kevin Lynch that the pink ribbon emblem makes the ball slipperier, and that temporary custom footballs are always inherently more difficult to throw. "The 49ers get the game balls two weeks in advance to break them in, but sometimes that's not enough time," Lynch writes.

    Over in the 49ers Web Zone forums, they're referring to these remarks as "Alexcuses".

    But Smith is not the only one complaining of issues caused by the custom pink ribbon footballs. He is, however, the first active NFL quarterback to complain without remaining anonymous.

    "They're playing with these breast cancer awareness balls," former NFL quarterback Tim Hasselbeck told ESPN's Mike & Mike, in a segment available online. "These balls are brand new, right out of the bag. I texted a couple quarterbacks during the game. They all said, 'These balls have been a disaster.'"

    The pink ribbon emblem footballs will remain in use until October 31, the same day the NFL will also be addressing womens' issues by dressing up the cheerleaders in slutty Halloween costumes.

    Joe Kukura is a freelance writer who has been torn this October between pink and orange.