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The Nike Dunk, designed in the 1980s and intended for basketball, was eventually repurposed for skateboarding as it became apparent that the form of the sneaker could have multiple uses. The popular model would be reworked in the early 2000s with upgrades for the skateboarding community, leading to the formal debut of the Nike SB brand. The man behind it, former Nike executive Sandy Bodecker, is credited with building one of Nike’s most beloved subdivisions with the Nike SB line.
Originally released in 1985, Nike introduced the Nike Dunk as the premiere basketball sneaker in college basketball. The colorways for the series were based on successful programs around the nation. Kentucky, Michigan, UNLV, Syracuse, St. John’s , Villanova and Iowa all received their own signature shoe. The 1985 Nike ads featured the sneakers with a tagline ‘Be True to Your School’ giving fans an opportunity to support their team from head to toe.