Preview: 2011-12 Upper Deck Fleer Retro Basketball

The delays have finally come to an end.

2011-12 Upper Deck Fleer Retro basketball is set to make its anticipated debut on September 6, 2012. With classic Fleer/Skybox designs from the 80s and 90s, it brings the feeling of nostalgia when collecting as a little kid.

With an autograph checklist that has some promise, the product looks to be a great product for autograph hunters from your favorite stars of the NBA past and rookie stars. With players in their college uniforms, it also brings a different element to basketball cards that you haven’t seen anywhere else since the original designs featured NBA logos. It may take a bit getting used to though.

But from looking at the 2011-12 Upper Deck Fleer Retro checklist, it looks like we are seeing the same players time and time again from Upper Deck as far as their “legends” are concerned. The rookies change every year, but they aren’t really allowed to use current players…which kinda sucks.

Another issue I have is the hefty price tag. At $300 a box, it is a high end offering. A full box consists of 20 packs and 5 cards per pack. You’ll find 6 autographs in your box and only 4 inserts. I guess that adds a little value to the inserts, but we’ll see how that works out. It just feels overpriced to me. But the inserts are the inserts you loved and enjoyed as a kid if you’re around my age. Precious Metals, Jamalaya, and Intimidation Nation are all in there for you to grab.

I’m not sure if it will live up to the hype or the anticipating will be worth it, but I really hope I’m wrong for Upper Deck’s sake.

At least it shouldn’t be as bad as Signature Edition baseball.

Preview: 2012 Upper Deck SPx Football

One of my favorite brands by Upper Deck is returning in football this year after being a surprise insert in last year’s SP Authentic product. I’m excited to see this return as it’s usually one of the nicest looking products put out by Upper Deck and of course, has the awesome Shadow Box cards.

2012 SPx Football is set to release on June 19, 2012, and will feature some good college football content. Each 18 packs, 4 cards per pack box will feature one autographed rookie jersey card, one regular memorabilia card, and two additional autographs or memorabilia cards.

One of my favorite aspects is the slight change to the Shadow Box cards by including the new Shadow Box Slots this year which allows collectors to sort of create their own Shadow Box cards. It’s a cool addition to create your own type of card, with some slots also being autographed. I like what Upper Deck is trying to do here, changing the popular Shadow Box insert is a risk, but it looks good so far.

You’ll also find two Finite numbered rookie cards from some of the hottest names that entered the NFL draft this year. As with most Upper Deck products, you’ll find some college football and NFL legends as well in their college colors.

Make sure you check out stores on June 19, 2012, for 2012 Upper Deck SPx football for about $120.

Preview: 2012 Upper Deck Football

2012 football is right around the corner and Upper Deck has one of the first sets to be released this spring. See the future NFL superstars in their college gear in this 247 card set with 197 rookies and 50 retired legends of the game.

2012 Upper Deck football will feature 6 cards per pack and 20 cards per box. The design is similar to 2011-12 Upper Deck hockey products but the content is alot different and catered towards the football collectors.

The big draw in this product is the 3 autographs per box. With hard-signed Rookie Letterman autographs and hard-signed Ultimate Collection rookie signatures there is some nice hard-signed content in this product. There are also autographs in the Star Rookies subset and the 1993 SP Football subset. There will be at least one autograph per case from either Robert Griffin III, Trent Richardson, or Justin Blackmon so Upper Deck was able to grab some of the expected top picks in the upcoming draft.

But besides the hits there are a number of other nice subsets including two Ultimate Collection rookies (#d to 450), four 1993 SP Football cards, and a couple case hits like College Football Mascots patch cards and two parallels numbered to 10 or less.

I haven’t even begun to talk about what Upper Deck has done with the Star Rookies Stripes subset. If you remember how this works, if you pulled a card with the stripes on it, you would send that in and receive a certain amount of that player’s card in return. Well UD has added a twist. If you pull one of the 200 Star Rookies Stripes cards, you can redeem that card for 15 autographed cards from that player. Pretty sweet, right? Imagine pulling a top rookie and getting 15 autographs from them? Not bad.

April 24, 2012, is the day of release for this product with prices currently around the $95 mark.

Right here we have the preliminary 2012 Upper Deck Football checklist.

Preview: 2011 Upper Deck Exquisite Football

Topps has Five-Star, Panini has National Treasures, and the last to be released is Upper Deck’s 2011 Exquisite football. Exquisite has always been highly regarded amongst collectors, and still maintains that high regard despite the NCAA license as evidenced by last year’s successful product.

This year shouldn’t be any different. With a strong rookie class and Exquisite’s great rookie autographed patches, it should be a hit once again this year. Bringing some of the greatest football players of all time as well as some future great players, Exquisite is a product worth the price of admission.

And I’ve had good experience in the past too.

At 6 cards per box, this product has always been about quality instead of quantity. 5 of the cards are autographs though, and collectors love that. Besides your standard rookie patch autographs, UD Black will make a return in this product as well as some very cool autographs that look almost 3-dimensional.

You can expect the product to be in the $400 range when it releases, with an official date coming soon.

 

 

Review: 2011 Upper Deck University of Oklahoma Football

Boomer Sooner! Are you a fan of one of college football’s annual powerhouses? Do you live and breathe Oklahoma football? Do you talk in an Okie accent? This product is perfect for the Oklahoma football fan, the college football fan, or just a fan of the history of this program.

We were graciously provided with a box of this product to review courtesy of Upper Deck. What’s inside is quite a bit of the storied history of the University of Oklahoma football program. Remember, at the end of this group of Upper Deck reviews I will be giving away a ton of the stuff I have pulled, so stay tuned for that. Here’s what we pulled:

Design:

The design is neither great nor terrible. It feels kind of redundant with everything having the Oklahoma colors, but then again, it is an all Oklahoma product. I really love the OU Icons insert cards that are the hardest to pull in a box as you only get two of them. Those inserts alone bumped it up a little bit from a completely average 3 stars. I’m not a fan of the dual and triple cards that they feature, but the singles all look pretty good. I understand trying to fill out a product based on only one school and it must have been quite the task. I just think it could of looked a little better. Upper Deck has very talented designers, this isn’t one of their best.

Checklist:

The checklist is what frustrates me the most in this product. Okay, there are a ton of legendary Oklahoma players that were great for the Sooners and some great in the NFL. I don’t mind the players that were chosen. However, seeing those players pop up over and over and over and over again in different subsets is what frustrates me. Not only will you receive doubles of one card, you will find several of the same player repeatedly in a box. I can’t count how many Brian Bosworth cards I pulled from this box. I could, I just don’t want to. It would depress me. Bosworth was great, but seeing his name repeatedly isn’t.

Value:

This one I was actually debating between 3 and a half and 4. The product currently sits at $40. Not a bad price at all. But if you’re buying a full box, you will find at least one autograph. Got my autograph and apparently it’s not bad either. Not bad. Almost a full complete set minus the autos? Nice too. 21 doubles in a box? Bad. Why not just cut down a card each pack and not have to worry about all the doubles in a box? Save yourself some money, pass that on to the customer, or improve the product a bit. That was too many doubles for a hobby product. I could complain about the player selection again with a billion different cards of one player, but you saw that in the checklist. Otherwise, the value isn’t really terrible.

Overall:

Overall, this product scores as pretty average of a product. The design isn’t one of Upper Deck’s best, but it does have it’s highlights. The checklist could drive me up a wall with the same players over and over and over again, but that will be an issue with creating a product based on one team. It’s just the way it is. While the value could be a little better, it’s actually not that bad. Just too many doubles which could easily be remedied. I like the addition of an autograph too so that makes it that much better for those going hobby.

So card collecting fans, what are your thoughts on a product like this?

Thanks to Upper Deck for providing this product for review. You can visit them on their official website, official blog, Facebook or Twitter pages.