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How Michael Jordan's March Madness Shorts Changed the Apparel Business

While Jordan’s effect on footwear is impressive, it’s not the only multi-million dollar fashion trend he set.



Dan Lewis, author of the daily newsletter Now I Know (“Learn Something New Every Day, By Email”) joins us Wednesdays with surprising facts about the world of business.

Ask virtually anyone who the greatest basketball player of all time is, and they’ll reply with the name Michael Jordan. His legacy is astounding; even Magic Johnson, an all-time great in his own right, has been quoted as saying “There’s Michael Jordan and then there’s the rest of us.” And his effect on the game of basketball is undeniable, as fans and players alike aimed to emulate him. Certainly, the ad campaigns featuring him encouraged this.

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4 Lessons Every Other Event Ever Should Learn From March Madness

The World Cup may be more popular and the World Series may be a longer-standing tradition, but no game or series can compete on sheer excitement.


Let's get this out of the way up front: The NCAA is a terrible, broken system. Its honchos reap massive profits on the backs of unpaid athletes. It punishes students for their parents' minor offenses while turning a blind eye to alleged crimes as serious as sexual assault. I fully support blowing up the entire framework of college sports and starting from scratch.

But damn, does the NCAA know how to throw a party.

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March Madness: Black NCAA Basketball Players Graduate 32 Percent Less Than Whites

The shameful racial graduation gap for NCAA players has grown wider for a third year in a row.


While everyone from your office mate to President Obama is busy filling out their March Madness tournament brackets, a new study (PDF) says we've all got reason to be a little less excited about NCAA basketball.

According to research released this week from the University of Central Florida's Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport, though the graduation rate for NCAA Division I basketball players is up overall, the gap between white players and their black counterparts has grown wider for a third year in a row. In 2011, white players graduated at a rate of 91 percent, while black players got a degree a dismal 59 percent of the time.

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