Throughout the week we’ve been profiling the more notable sneakerheads within collegiate basketball history, while breaking it down through each conference. Today within the latest edition of College Kicks On Court Classic, we’ll take a peek at the ACC and some of the notable stalwarts of recent memory such as Michael Jordan, Mason Plumlee, Vince Carter and more.
To see for yourself, scroll through the page below to enjoy.
Chris PaulChris Paul in the Nike Air Max CB 94 (photo by Streeter Lecka via Getty Images) Chris Paul in the Nike Air Zoom Generation Low “White” (AP Photo/Chuck Burton) Chris Paul in the Air Jordan 19 SE Black/Gold (photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
College: Wake Forest (2003-2005)
Notable Kicks on Court: Nike Air Zoom Generation Mid & Low, Air Jordan 19 SE, Nike Air Max CB ’94
Chris Paul is such a decisive figure within the NBA: you either love him or hate him. This feeling has to date back to his time at Wake Forest as the crafty and fiesty guard wrecked havoc throughout the ACC and helped the late Skip Prosser and company build a reputable name as a university post-Tim Duncan.
Sporting an array of Air Jordans and Nike Basketball silhouettes, Paul would provide a great precursor to his professional deals with both entities.
Michael JordanMichael Jordan in the Converse Pro Leather (photo via Pintrest)
College: North Carolina (1981-1984)
Notable Kicks on Court: Converse Pro Leather
The Man, The Myth, The Legend. There aren”t too many additional ways to describe iconic nature of Michael Jordan’s status within the realm of not just sports, but culture in general. With his seemingly infinite accolades and now legendary footwear line, it’s hard to imagine MJ rocking anything other than Nike as during his time at UNC he was spotted in the Converse Pro Leather throughout his tenure.
As a huge fan of David Thompson, it makes sense for Jordan to pattern his game and style after the high flying NC State guard in which the Converse Pro Leather was a staple of early-80s basketball.
Daniel EwingDaniel Ewing in the Air Jordan 17 Daniel Ewing in the Nike Air Raid Daniel Ewing in the Nike Air Trainer Max 91 Black/White Daniel Ewing in the Nike Air Zoom Generation Low Daniel Ewing in the Air Jordan 12 “French Blue” Daniel Ewing in the Nike Air Penny 1 “Cool Grey”
College: Duke (2001-2005)
Notable Kicks on Court: Nike Air Penny 1, Air Jordan 12, Nike Air Zoom Generation Low, Air Jordan 17, Nike Air Trainer Max 91, Nike Air Raid
Aside from the likes of Mason Plumlee, Daniel Ewing is unequivocally the most reputable sneakerheads in Duke Blue Devils history. For starters, his blend of Nike Basketball silhouettes and Air Jordan retros was beyond vast, as he seemingly had the sneaker budget of an endorsed athlete.
Although Ewing’s time at the next level would be brief with the Los Angeles Clippers, he’s bult a formidable career overseas.
Mason PlumleeMason Plumlee in the Nike LeBron X (photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images via Zimbio) Mason Plumlee in the Nike Zoom Kobe VII (photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images via Zimbio) Mason Plumlee in the Nike LeBron X (photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images via Zimbio) Mason Plumlee in the OG Air Jordan 17 “College Blue” (Photo by Lou Capozzola /Sports Illustrated/Getty Images) Mason Plumlee in the Nike Zoom Kobe V (photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images via Zimbio) Mason Plumlee in the Air Jordan 12 “Taxi” (photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Images via Zimbio)
College: Duke (2009-2013)
Notable Kicks on Court: Nike Zoom Kobe V, Nike LeBron X, OG Air Jordan 17, Air Jordan 12
I’m rather certain that if Batman was real and the fictional villain “The Riddler” was real as well, the question of “How Many Plumlee Brothers Exist?” would be something that would easily stump the Dark Knight. Now while you ponder that question to yourself, Mason Plumlee, the current bigman for the Portland Trailblazers helped bolster the Blue Devil’s on-court sneaker acclaim during his tenure with a wide variety of Nike Kobe PEs.
In addition, he would also show love to the Nike LeBron series as well, sporting the Nike LeBron X during his final year on campus.
Sean MaySean May in his Air Jordan 18 PE (photo via Sole Collector) Sean May in the Air Jordan 19 SE Sean May in the Air Jordan 12 “Melo” Sean May in his Air Jordan 19 SE PE (photo Peyton Williams/Icon SMI) Sean May in the Air Jordan 12 “Melo”
College: UNC (2002-2005)
Notable Kicks on Court: Air Jordan 12 “Melo,” Air Jordan 19 SE, Air Jordan 18 PE
The 2005 UNC National Championship team is eerily one of those forgotten squads that had an abundance of talent. Maybe it’s due to the fact that their best player was a low-post force that played a majority of the time underneath the basket. However, while his playing style may have been less pleasing to some, Sean May’s kick game made up for his lack of elevation.
Donning a wide range of Jordan Brand PEs, May certainly took advantage of the MJ connection.
Joseph ForteJoseph Forte in the Nike Air Afterburner Flight High Joseph Forte in the Air Jordan 11 “Concord” Joseph Forte in the Air Jordan XV (photo via Sole Collector)
College: UNC (1999-2001)
Notable Kicks on Court: Air Jordan 11 “Concord”, Nike Air Afterburner Flight High
Joseph Forte may forever be known around college basketball circles as the player that severely mismanaged his draft stock. Leaving school early for the NBA would ultimately become a bit of a miscalculation for the talented guard as he would drop all the way to 21 and become a NBA journeyman soon after.
However, we can’t diminish his collegiate career as he was a standout at UNC, winning ACC Player of the Year honors in 2001. Forte would be known for his patented ankle braces and Air Jordan 11 retros during his time in Chapel Hill.
Trajan LangdonTrajan Langdon in the Nike Air Max Uptempo (photo by Robert Seale/Sporting News/Icon SMI via Getty Images) Trajan Langdon in the Nike Air MZ3 (photo via Nike Talk) Trajan Langdon in the Nike Air Team Max Zoom
College: Duke (1994-1999)
Notable Kicks on Court: Nike Air Team Max Zoom, Nike Air MZ3, Nike Air Max Uptempo
In a bit of serendipity, Trajan Langdon happened to be in the news as of late as he was just named Assistant GM for the Brooklyn Nets. As the good news keeps flowing for the former Duke guard, he is also on our list for being one of the biggest sneakerheads in ACC history.
Wearing predominately inline Nike Basketball models, Langdon would help place Alaska basketball prospects on the map and subsequently pave the way for the likes of Carlos Boozer and Mario Chalmers.
Vince CarterVince Carter in the Nike Air MZ3 Vince Carter in the Nike Air Total Max Uptempo (photo via Nike Talk) Vince Carter in a Nike Air Adjust Force PE (AP Photo/Eric Draper)
College: UNC (1995-1998)
Notable Kicks on Court: Nike Air Adjust Force, Nike Air MZ3, Nike Total Air Max Uptempo
I always kind of feel disappointed that Vince Carter was never turned into a “verb” in the same way that we provided for notable athletic freaks such as Randy Moss, Mike Tyson and Michael Jordan. However, his prominence for the aerial acrobatics was never understated as Carter was easily one of the more electric figures in both UNC and NBA history.
Rocking an abundance of Nike Basketball heat, Carter would be seen soaring in the Nike Air Adjust Force and the Nike Air MZ3.
Tim DuncanTim Duncan in the Nike Air Max Uptempo Tim Duncan in the Nike Air Adjust Force
College: Wake Forest (1993-1997)
Notable Kicks on Court: Nike Air Adjust Force, Nike Air Max Uptempo
I need some one to write a research paper on how Tim Duncan can stay so productive despite his age. For staters, he can barely run down the court and he continues to sit out a bevy of games. However, he will drop 25 and 10 on your squad in the same manner that the IRS hands out tax liens: with regularity.
The Virgin Islands native went from swimming in his native country to dominating the ACC for several years before becoming the number one overall pick and changing the history of the NBA forever. Oh yeah, his footwear was dope at Wake Forest, too.