Popular polka dots: Tigers among hoopsters making fashion statement



Sports Editor

Gen Xers or even yesteryear’s generation surely never imagined a basketball world in which hoopsters would proudly fashion polka dot shoes.

But suddenly, polka dots are all the craze on the hardwood. With the Brooklyn Nets’ James Harden endorsing the adidas Harden Vol. 5 polka dotted shoe, a trend was set.

“The world never lets us down with surprises,” Ozark coach Mark Schweitzer said.

Ozark’s boys basketball team and Nixa’s girls basketball team are both sporting polka dots. Expect more teams to do the same.

Schweitzer was all but shocked when his six seniors presented him their choice of sneakers to don this winter.

“This is the first year I relented on having a team shoe. I did not make them get a team shoe,” he said. “I told them they could get anything they wanted. They still wanted a team shoe and they picked polka dots.”

Schweitzer didn’t understand his players’ fascination with polka dots, but stuck to his word and let their decision stand.

“My wife will tell you fashion is one thing I don’t know much about,” he said. “I don’t care what kind of shoes they wear, as long as they play hard in them.”

The Tigers didn’t initially plan on polka dots.

“We had to find red shoes and when you look, you can’t really find many plain red shoes,” senior guard Tyler Harmon said. “Our polka dots were a byproduct of trying to find red shoes.”

“(Senior guard) Kannon Llittle found the polka dot shoes and we decided to go with them,” senior guard Colton Ballard said.

The Tigers feature black polka dots on both their white and red shoes.

Going with polka dots wasn’t a decision they took lightly.

“We loved the polka dot shoes immediately,” Ballard said. “But we talked for a week, maybe two weeks, about it. We decided to go with the polka dots because we love the way they look.”

“They’re a statement, that’s for sure,” Harmon said. “I like them a lot. I’m starting to see a lot of players wear them at the college level.”


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