As first surfaced by Land of 10’s Jeremy Birmingham, a Snapchat from Ohio State senior wideout Corey Smith appears to show the wide receiver rocking some very flashy LeBron James cleats from his personal shoe line.
While OSU has certainly been the beneficiaries of a relationship with the King — he donated Beats headphones to the entire football during team during their national title run and has outfitted the basketball team for over a season now — aside from appearing at some marquee games, he’s never specifically contributed to the Buckeye football aesthetic. That might be changing this weekend.
Here’s a look at the Snapchat (which as snaps do, has since expired and vanished):
It’d seem curious for a team to switch something as critical as footwear just days before the biggest game of the entire season, so whether these are strictly for locker room/practice purposes or something deeper, we’ll have to wait and see. In the past, some NFL players have come out to warmups wearing custom cleats, only to change them just before kick. Others have tried new vanity footwear, only to change back at halftime after they proved less effective than their previous gear.
A Columbus area shoe store appears to be selling sneaker versions of the cleats rocked in Smith’s snap:
STRAIGHT FIRE. The Lebron Soldier 10 SFG "Un-cleated" will be available at Sole Classics Saturday morning at 9am. Just in time for THE Game pic.twitter.com/Pp6A19inKk— Sole Classics (@SoleClassics) November 22, 2016
The latter photo appears a Twitter screenshot from the same place Smith’s Snapchat was taken. The plot thickens?
What say you? Will Ohio State try to one up Michigan’s Jumpman ties with some King James kicks? Or is this just all showsmanship in the great Nike arms race?