Hibbett, Inc. (NASDAQ:HIBB), an athletic-inspired fashion retailer with more than 1,100 Hibbett and City Gear specialty stores nationwide, today announced the latest release of exclusive Small-Town Sneakerhead (STSH) series celebrating sneaker culture and Jordan. STSH follows Utah man as he shares his love of family, youth sports including basketball and football and making a difference in his community. In the new episode of STSH, Long who has been collecting since he was 13 years old, takes viewers to see his collection of more than 150 pairs of coveted sneakers, with a few custom pairs on display.
“We are excited to be featuring someone with such passion for Jordan sneakers to kick off our first episode of the year, while honoring number 23 and celebrating All-Star weekend,” said Sarah Sharp-Wangaard, VP Marketing, Hibbett. “In Small-Town Sneakerhead we love to showcase people like JJ, who are using both their affinity for sneakers and basketball to positively impact youth in their community.”
Jonathan Long, @jjlong_ a 29 year-old graduate of Utah Tech University, former college basketball coach at Utah Tech (previously called Dixie State University) and youth trainer and event coordinator for a nonprofit, was selected for the newest STSH episode launching at Hibbett today.
Long, a married father of two graduated with a degree in accounting, coached college basketball for five years and now helps local youth at nonprofit, Nets on Fire. In his current role, Long and the team at Nets on Fire, train and mentor children from K – 12 through sport while teaching important life skills and character building through service.
“Michael Jordan has influenced me in many positive ways, showing me what traits successful people have in common and in particular, how they understand and cope with setbacks and failure. Learning to trust the game, the process, understanding what you put in is what you get out. Failure should not be the option to quit but should make you work harder each time you fail. So by understanding these things, it has helped me understand myself and keep working hard no matter what may arise.”
“My love of basketball started with Mike and how the Jordan Brand took over pop culture. I style myself with maybe some that swag in mind more than the classics. Though I love older Jordans with means, I have OG mustards not because they just released but the deeper meaning in that those are the shoes Mike wore in the All Star Game.”
On their visit to Utah, Long took the STSH crew by Nets on Fire where he works in St. George while he coached some local youth in basketball. “With the All Star Game in Utah this year, everyone’s really excited, especially the kids.” Later they visited Sugar Loaf which is also known as Dixie Rock to get a view of St. George from a steep vantage point. “It’s a little scary to come up here but in the morning it wakes you up with the view. It’s a little space in town to get away from town.”
“Sneaker culture to me is a lifestyle and wearing what you like, not because its hot right now, but wearing the wild and crazy shoes,” said Jonathan Long. “If I’m going somewhere with heavy traffic, people repping kicks, I’ll throw some customs on, so I know they’re one of one. I look for a colorway that is different, I like a shoe that is crazy that other people might not wear and I like exclusivity, like if the shoe is wild and has some rarity to it, but I also like OG styles.”
“Jordan brand means so much to me because it is so iconic. When you get your first pair of Jordans it’s a special feeling that comes upon you and makes you feel like Mike. I have a large range of new to old Jordan’s and one of my favorite pairs are the Brisk Blue Jordan 3. The Last Shot might be the most iconic Jordan here, since he hit that shot over Utah.”
"Jonathan's story highlights how much one can appreciate the character, charm, and way of life of living in a small town while still having such a profound love of Air Jordans,” said Matt Halfhill, Founder and CEO, Nice Kicks.
About Small-Town Sneakerhead
In 2020, Hibbett launched the Small-Town Sneakerhead project to provide sneakerheads from all walks of life the platform to share their personal sneaker narrative. Produced in partnership with Nike and Nice Kicks, the series highlights the evolving sneaker scene and enthusiasts from across the country. Hibbett has featured collectors from East Buffalo, NY, Cheyenne, WY, Hampton, VA, Cape Girardeau, MO, Murphy, TX, Hopkinsville, KY, Lafayette, LA, Crosby, TX, and Sandy Springs, GA with more coming soon.
About Hibbett, Inc.
Hibbett, headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama, is a leading athletic-inspired fashion retailer with 1126 Hibbett and City Gear specialty stores, located in 36 states nationwide. Hibbett has a rich history of convenient locations, personalized customer service and access to coveted footwear, apparel and equipment from top brands like Nike, Jordan, and adidas. Consumers can browse styles, find new releases, shop looks and make purchases online or in their nearest store by visiting www.hibbett.com. Follow us @hibbettsports and @citygear on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.