Nike has released its fourth annual Yardrunners 4.0 Class, a collaborative project celebrating historically-Black colleges and universities (HBCUs). The footwear company unveiled its 2023 campaign, which features talent from nine different HBCUs: Bowie State University, Florida A&M, Hampton University, Howard University, North Carolina A&T, Prairie View A&M, Southern University, Tennessee State University, and Winston-Salem State University.
This year’s class consisted of Robert Covington, Cameron Lide, Jawaun Daniels, Foggie Raw, Javicia Leslie, Danielle Stamper, Melanie Mitchell, Lady London, and Kayla White, who have each made a name for themselves and are breaking barriers in their respective industries.
“Said I was up to something special. I’m excited to be apart of the YR family. HBCU legends,” Covington shared in an Instagram Story this Thursday. Covington is a professional basketball player for the Los Angeles Clippers and is currently the only active NBA player who hails from an HBCU. In his case, he is an extremely proud Tennessee State University graduate.
According to Complex, Nike’s Yardrunners 4.0 Class was launched in 2020 by Howard alumni Arinze Emeagwali and Richard Palmer, both of whom worked at the company at the time. Since its inception, Nike has highlighted athletes, musicians, and public figures nationwide to elevate and empower HBCUs and their communities.
Along with this project, Nike also regularly releases clothing apparel honoring the different institutions and, later this month, will be once again offering its popular Terminator High collection, which is complete with HBCU-inspired sneakers. This year, the company has added five new colors to the Terminator High ensemble, gleaning inspiration from Morehouse College, Spelman College, Tuskegee University, Tennessee State University, and Alabama A&M University. Be sure to keep an eye out for new releases.
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