John Thompson Jr. remembers when he had to traipse up and down M Street looking for support for his Georgetown basketball team. On Thursday, Nike opened its newest retail store on the same street with a tribute to the legendary coach in the front window.
Thompson's motto, "Don't let the sum total of your existence be 8-10 pounds of air," is in lights on a front wall made of old gym bleachers. It is next to a picture of Thompson and above a case with famous Hoyas jerseys and white towels listing his coaching achievements.
The store also contains a case of Georgetown versions of the Air Jordan shoe along with sizing footprints of Jeff Green and Roy Hibbert, among other notable Nike athletes. The first floor is made of wood pulled up from old high school and college gyms, sprinkled with plenty of Hoyas blue and grey.
"To pay homage to the legacy has been nice," said former Georgetown guard Michael Jackson, now Nike's vice president and general manager of North American basketball. "You can't forget who set the table for everyone else to eat."
- Craig Stouffer