LeBron James’ 30-Day Crusade Ends With FAMU Being Outfitted By The King and Nike

LeBron James has had a busy 30 days. He facilitated WNBA activist Renee Montgomery‘s elevation to part-owner of the Atlanta Dream, after they forced out former GOP-hustler Kelly Loeffler and her BLM attacks.

Bron’s connections and support for women’s hoops in general, helped Montgomery become the first former player to serve as both an owner and executive of a WNBA franchise after a consortium’s bid to buy the team was approved.

Around the same time, LeBron got into it publicly with soccer player Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who suggested that The King stop getting involved in politics and stick to playing basketball. Bron was forced to address that fit of white, international rage, so familiar to Black men on the pitch.

Laura Ingraham already tried to tell Bron to shut up and dribble a few years ago, so nothing new here. Just more stress for LeBron who has already been carrying the Lakers in Anthony Davis’ absence while remaining the face of the league.

More Blessings

On Tuesday night, LeBron James arrived to the arena carrying some FAMU sneakers that he wore in the Lakers game versus the Suns. Few knew what was up with him carrying those kicks and wearing them during the game. I thought he was paying homage to the HBCU world, like he, Chris Paul, and others have done so often. But it was more to it. It was a foreshadowing of a huge, game-changing announcement that would influence the future and marketability of FAMU. 

Florida A&Ms athletic programs will now be outfitted in LeBron James uniforms, apparel, and footwear as part of a new partnership with Nike, the school announced on Thursday.

It is a six-year apparel deal.

When asked about the partnership James had this to say, “Nike has long supported Florida A&M athletics, and I’m committed to uplifting HBCUs, so I was happy I rocked a pair of the PEs in-game and showcased a glimpse of what’s to come for the men’s and women’s basketball programs.”

The deal will include footwear designed specifically for the university.

The Rattlers have a rich tradition of excellence in athletics and academics, and you know the age-old saying, “if you look good, you play good.” 

RELATED: MEAC Football: FAMU Rattlers Bag First-Ever 5-Star Recruit

FAMU has been with Nike since 2016 when the MEAC’s deal with Russell Athletics expired. Last year the FAMU Board of Trustees approved a deal that would allow the school to switch from Nike to Adidas as it prepared to make its move to Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC).

But in typical Nike fashion, they became Uber aggressive and were able to keep the Rattlers rocking the “SWOOSH” for at least six more years. 

I referenced basketball because that’s the obvious connection to LBJ, but the deal will serve all 14 sports programs in addition to the Marching 100 band, who is set to perform at the NBA All-Star festivities this weekend.

READ MORE: The NBA ALL-STAR 2021 Theme Is “Boost HBCUs”

This partnership extends beyond athletics, as Nike has promised not to just support student-athlete development, but programs for internships and networking opportunities for all FAMU students. 

After a week where he was attacked by Ibrahimovic for being a mouthpiece for all things in social activism, James once again showed us why cream always rises to the top.

The partnership is scheduled to begin on July 1st.

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