If you are not familiar with Eastside Golf as of yet, you certainly need to be.
The fashion-forward golf lifestyle brand founded by Olajuwon Ajanaku and Earl Cooper recently introduced their third Jordan collaboration entitled The 1961 Project.
The collection commemorates the year the PGA of America lifted its Caucausian-only clause. Before 1961, a non-caucasian individual could not become a PGA professional tour player nor manage PGA-administered golf courses.
“We’re not just here to simply come up with some flashy clothing,” says Cooper. We want to use these clothes as messaging and a conversation piece to invoke a different perspective on the game completely.”
For most African-American culture, the attention to the sport of golf shifted in 1997, when Tiger Woods won his first Masters tournament at 22 years old. Cooper adds that the difference between “The 1961 Project ” from their previous collections is the “messaging” and education.
“We really want to see a real fundamental change and I think you see a lot of that messaging when it comes to our new collection,” Cooper added.
The Change 1961 Eastside Golf x Jordan three-shoe collection features an Air Jordan 1 High Golf, Jordan ADG, and Air Jordan 6 Low Golf. The themed apparel collection consists of 12 pieces, including long and short-sleeved tees, polos, hoodies, jogging sets, tracksuits, belts, hats, socks, and more.
“With the 1961 Project, I want people to learn about the change-makers who paved the way for more people of color to pursue this field and get a fair shot,” says Olajuwon.
Back in September, the duo hosted their first Eastside Golf Invitational in San Diego. The star-studded event was attended by Kevin Liles, CC Sabathia, Andre Iguodala, Sean “Pecas” Costner and more. During the invitational, The Eastside Golf founder donated $50,000 to the Morehouse College golf team. Cooper and Olajuwon are Morehouse College alumni.
You can catch more of Eastside Golf’s story on their six-part Hulu documentary, Grails, executive produced by Sean “Pecas” Costner with Steve Bartels and Hannah Storm.