If you’ve caught any of the recent NBA scrimmages since its restart in Orlando, you may have notice various messages on the back of players’ jerseys.
That’s because the NBA is allowing social justice messages to be displayed on the back of jerseys, and the NCAA is now to do something similar.
The NCAA announced Thursday that it will allow student-athletes to wear social justice messages on their uniforms in the form of a patch.
“The NCAA Playing Rules Oversight Panel approved rules to allow student-athletes in all sports to wear patches on their uniforms for commemorative and memorial purposes, as well as to support social justice issues,” the statement read.
“Current rules in some sports do not allow patches, while the rules books for several other sports do not address the topic.
“Panel members, who met by videoconference last week, reaffirmed and expanded existing rules, which will now allow student-athletes two places on the uniform, one on the front and one on the back, to express support and voice their opinions.
“The patch on the front, which most sports already allowed, as authorized by the school or conference, may be a commemorative/memorial patch (names, mascots, nicknames, logos and marks) intended to celebrate or memorialize people, events or other causes.”
In the NBA, personalized jerseys could say such things as “Black Lives Matter” or “I Can’t Breathe,” bringing light to a social or charitable cause or even display the names of George Floyd or Breonna Taylor, who tragically lost their lives this year as the result of police brutality.
As vocal as John Calipari and Mark Stoops have been about social justice issues, you have to think many of their players will choose to wear messages on their jerseys for their upcoming seasons.