Basketball Uniforms

Lili Smith

Over the past 60 years, basketball uniforms have drastically changed. The shorts have gotten longer, the tops have become baggier and the shoes have gone from Chuck Taylor All-Stars to Nike and Adidas leather high-tops.

In the 1900’s, most players preferred a tight-fit uniform until Michael Jordan requested longer shorts at the beginning of his career, starting the baggy trend. He wasn’t looking to start a trend, but simply have shorts that weren’t so tight that were easier to play in. The short-shorts restricted movement but players hadn’t spoken up about it until Jordan came along. Soon after, the popular new design started to spread to high schools around the country including our own. By the early 90’s the Ashland High School Grizzlies were rocking Jordans new look.

When the shorts got longer and bigger, the tank tops followed. The tanks got looser and less fitting to the body. Even though basketball uniforms have changed a lot, one thing had always remained the same; they’re sleeveless. But starting in the 2013 NBA season, the Golden State Warriors added short sleeves to their uniform. They say they made the change in order to “compliment their players style.” They hope to start a trend with their jerseys, but know it could end as a few year fad.

Chuck Taylor All-Stars overshadowed the shoe game until Adidas and Nike entered the picture in the early 70’s. At this point, the basketball shoe industry immensely grew and became an item of style rather than uniform especially in high schools. At Ashland High in the late 70’s, having the latest Nikes definitely presented your cool factor. Though basketball shoes improved more in support, they also continued to advance with variety and design.

The basketball uniform continues to evolve as the years pass. It is likely that people will maintain the fascination with this growth of the uniforms in the future.