Five college basketball teams from four schools will wear turquoise uniforms as a tribute to Natives for Native American Heritage Month. The men's basketball squads from Oregon State, New Mexico, and Florida State will wear the stylish garb provided by Nike N7, as will both the men's and women's teams from the University of Nevada.
“The annual Nike N7 game has had a significant impact on the Oregon State community,” said Craig Robinson, head coach at Oregon State, the school which started the tradition in 2010. “When we first talked about this idea four years ago, we had a unique opportunity with a very special player, Joe Burton, who represented his tribe as the first member to earn a full athletic scholarship with a major university. I’m excited to see other schools embracing the idea because there are so many athletes who will benefit from the awareness we’re creating to provide opportunities for Native American and Aboriginal kids to play sports and be active.”
The other three schools have their own connection to America's Native population. Florida State works with the Seminole Tribe of Florida, which permits FSU to use its tribal name for sports teams. Nevada is the alma mater of Tahnee Robinson, Northern Cheyenne, who was the first Native player drafted by the WNBA and is a Nike N7 Ambassador. The University of New Mexico has ties to the numerous Pueblos and Nations in the state, as well as to the Notah Begay III Foundation, which is also a Nike N7 partner.
The dates on which the teams will wear the special uniforms are as follows:
Nov. 17: Florida State (M)
Nov. 22: Nevada (M)
Nov. 26: Oregon State (M)
Nov. 29: Nevada (W)
Nov. 30: New Mexico (M)