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Wednesday, August 11, 2004

The Influence of Shoe Companies

Dave Sez has another post about the influence of the sneaker companies on young kids, so check it out. He has written a lot of interesting stuff on the topic of shoe companies and particulary Sonny Vaccaro, and you can pick out his recent posts on those topics at his blog site.

I haven't investigated the influence of the shoe companies enough to form opinions, but I will try to do so in the near future. One thing that troubled me a couple of years ago was a comment a prospect made that he wasn't interested in a certain university because it wasn't a "Nike" school. One observation I did make in the "Blue Ribbon" guide going back several years was that when Blue Ribbon highlighted say the top 50 HS seniors, in their photographs the kids were wearing either adidas or Nike logos. It does make you wonder whether, when these kids go to college, they are becoming amateurs or whether they already were and nothing has changed. And why the loyalty to a shoe company's logo?

That a HS senior would pick his college because of its hoops team's affiliation with a shoe company says a lot about the kid and whether he should be in college in the first place. A star HS b-ball player should pick his school based upon the hoops coach, whether he'll get sufficient playing time and develop appropriate, and, of course, lest we forget, whether he can get a good education.

And, yes, of course, you need comfortable shoes, because as the reflexologists will tell you the key to good health is through your feet. Somehow, some way, I think that a major college athletic program could accommodate the footwear needs of any scholarship player regardless of the logo on the shoe. That shouldn't be too difficult, given the resources the DI programs give to their revenue-generating sports.

But since when do you pick a college because of your feet?

Because, lest we really forget, it's the colleges who contract with companies to provide scoreboards, bleachers, basketball floors, athletic tape and uniforms, because it's (or at least it should be) the colleges that run the show.

And not the other way around.


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