When you think about Jordans, the first colours that fill your mind are probably red, white and black, the team colours of the Chicago Bulls. But alongside the Bulls’ colours, the light blues of the University of North Carolina have dominated the storytelling surrounding Jordan Brand.
Before Michael Jordan got drafted to play for the Chicago Bulls, he played for his alma mater on the UNC Tar Heels. As a part of Dean Smith’s team, he immediately established himself as a rising star. His game-winning shot against the Georgetown Hoyas in 1982 not only caught the attention of the NBA but also Nike.
By the time Michael Jordan was picked up by Nike, the Air Jordan models were already being designed in the Chicago Bull’s colours. However, a tribute to the UNC was released during the original 1985 run of Air Jordan 1s. This Carolina Blue pair has gone on to be one of the most sought-after OG colourways.
In 1987, MJ wore a unique pair of blue Air Jordan 2s for an Alumni game against UCLA. Since then, the UNC colourway has appeared on several classic Jordan models. The original Carolina Blue AJ1 went on to be redesigned by Virgil Abloh, forming one of the most recognizable sneaker collabs of the 2010s.
The Air Jordan 1 High OG ‘UNC Toe’ is set to be one of the hottest Jordan releases of 2023. The shoe is a mashup of two iconic Jordan styles, the UNC colourway and Bred Toe colour blocking. This colour blocking has consistently produced hits including the Shattered Backboards, and the 2022’s Yellow Toes.
The UNC Toe is every bit as stylish as previous entries. The cool Carolina Blues burst off of the classic black and white leather upper. While the popularity of Jordan 1s may be fluctuating as of late, this fresh colourway is sure to be a sought-after summer shoe.
The Air Jordan 1 High OG ‘UNC Toe’ is set to release on 22nd July 2023. Sizes are already listed on KLEKT, so be sure to head over there if you miss out on retail.