One of the key elements of college life is sports, something that Kevin Rolle, Executive Vice President and COO of Alabama A&M University (AAMU) feels is incredibly important. Colleges across the nation, including AAMU, therefore have basketball jerseys available, something that many students buy and wear for the rest of their lives.
Why Do People Wear Basketball Jersey?
There are many reasons why people wear this type of apparel. A need to fit in is one of those reasons. Everybody seems to wear them, showing their support for the team, and for their school. However, there is far more to it than peer pressure alone. Wearing a basketball jersey shows that people belong somewhere, that they have a community around them that supports them and that they support.
Interestingly, people wear basketball jerseys, and other such clothing, all their lives. Before going to college, kids wear them to depict their favorite player. During college, it is standard for students to wear clothes with their school’s team on. And after college, it continues to be a symbol of their background and where they came from.
Of course, many people also wear them because they play for the team. At AAMU, for instance, those who play basketball have the AAMU name on the front of their jersey, which is what they feel a part of. This is in stark contrast to professional players, who tend to play for the name on the back of their jersey – their own. After all, they are in it for the money, and not for the sense of belonging and the pride in achieving greatness both athletically and academically.
Buying College Sports Jerseys as a Gift
Another reason why some people buy sports jerseys, of whatever sport, is as a gift to others. It is common for parents to purchase their children’s jerseys, in an effort to show how proud they are of their academic and athletic experiences. Some parents also purchase them for their much younger children, perhaps because they themselves went to that particular school, and they hope to encourage their children to do the same. Friends can do this as well, hoping their friends will join them in their college, or at least remember them when everybody goes their own way.
Basketball jerseys are also strong collectors’ items. Indeed, many people will buy them and never wear them at all. Apparel collection is as exciting as stamps or numismatic collections, after all. Once those jerseys have been worn, they decrease significantly in value. Hence, they are kept in pristine condition in a special case, often even on the wall in a display frame.
For Rolle, encouraging students to buy a basketball or other sports jersey with the AAMU name on it, however, is mainly about enabling them to show they belong. He believes AAMU is a community and that every student becomes part of the family. This is why he strongly focuses on integration, ensuring student life is as happy as possible.