Fresh off a perfect 40-0 season and a record ninth NCAA Women's Basketball Championship, Geno Auriemma can now add another more thing to his trophy case. The Hall of Fame University of Connecticut coach received a pair of Mache-customized Nike Kobe 9 Elites that pay tribute to the UCONN Huskies. “These will never be worn," Geno said. "I need to get a glass case for these.” Coach Auriemma always looks out for his players, but it looks like he'll be keeping these to himself: "I'm gonna have to hide these or my players will come in and steal them for practice." See detailed shots of the one-of-one sneakers below:
Nike also commissioned a mural for the new UCONN Basketball Champions Center practice facility to honor the coach and the univerisity's basketball program. Click through to see detailed notes from the artist, Erik Siador.
Group of hands
"Iconic to the idea of a team. Represents the other major element of this mural as a balance to Coach Auriemma"
"Used this design element to show an uprising effect from bottom to top. Adds depth and gradience into over all design."
Coach Geno Auriemma
"Cutting the net off the rim. The ultimate sign victory in NCAA basketball and even more significant due to UCONN’s tradition that states clearly that no net is cut down in the NCAA Tournament except the big one. I exagerated the net in his hand to meld with abstracted net formation."
"Geno is the pulse of the team and the numerous championships won. The heart beat ends with 9 small red arrows pointing at the 1."
Rays and Halo behind Geno's head
"I used this element to show the triumphant Geno. It's a more modern and abstracted twist that is close to my style. He is an enlightening man in which I wanted to portray his silhouette as this mythical positive figure."
Abstracted curved structure
“Since the "Net" is such an icon part of College BBall, I skewed an image of a net and used the
element as a interweaving path upwards. The net in Coach Geno's hand has also been abstracted to merge with the main structure. Up and Up path. Also as a side note, my work is known to have flowy curved structures as seen in the Kobe Wall from the vault i.e snakes, tentacles, etc."