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Exclusive: Ducks Debut ‘White Storm’

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NEWBERG, Ore. — Duck fans have seen Liquid Metal, Liquid Lightning, Liquid Thunder and Liquid Carbon. Saturday, though, they’ll get their first look at White Storm.

“It’s going to pop,” said Drew Gereb, the vice president of business development for Hydro Graphics, Inc., describing the all-white helmet with carbon fiber wings on the sides. This helmet, along with the other new ones Oregon rolled out recently, are designed and produced — in part — by HGI at its Newberg facility.

“We started last November, working on the 2012 helmets,” said Gereb.

Several of them were created in the run up to the 2012 Rose Bowl. Nearly 11 months ago, the team at HGI offered up several designs to the University of Oregon and Nike.

“They don’t always see eye to eye — so a lot of times we’re trying to come to the middle of the road,” Gereb explained.

With 19 designs on the table, Nike narrowed it down to three.

“The Liquid Metal, the Liquid Lighting and the White Storm,” said Gereb, “Those three helmets were immediately picked out as ‘These three, we want.'”

Only one could make it on to the field against the Wisconsin Badgers and that ended up being Liquid Metal. But the second-place pick was saved for Oregon’s next big game — one that wouldn’t happen for more than 10 months.

“[I] can’t wait to see this thing on the field against USC,” said Gereb, holding one of the new White Storm helmets. “It’ll be an exciting debut for us.┬áIt’s like a kid before Christmas. You’re just waiting for them to unwrap the present because you want to see it.”

Now it’s time to let one secret out of the bag, while work on the next one gets underway.

“There’s a few that we’re working on that are sure to be my favorite,” said Gereb.

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