The power of pink

Pink adds element of flair to SMC football

In the world of sports, people may wonder why athletes wore so much pink during the month of October.

While football presents the most obvious example, the idea translates to other sports.

Divers are seen in pink Speedos, swimmers with pink swimming caps, pink basketball and volleyball uniforms, and pink soccer socks.

The trend has even attained celebrity endorsement, with LeBron James attaching his name to a line of pink basketball shoes.

The reason for these swathes of pink is for National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, which takes place during the month of October.

It focuses on this cancer's circumstances, causes, as well as early detection. Women are encouraged to get mammograms to detect cancer as early as possible.

This new pink fashion bucks up against common stereotypes, such as the concept that pink is a strictly feminine color.

Here at Santa Monica College, the Corsairs football team took the initiative to augment their normal blue fashion, and in October, many of SMC's football players wore pink.

“The pros wear [pink] all the time,” said Alonzo Frederick, a six-foot, 200-pound running back for the Corsairs. “You see it on Sundays, so we just want people to be aware of breast cancer. We support curing it.”

Frederick wasn't the only Corsair football player to support his teammates in wearing pink during football games.

“Basically, it’s breast cancer month,” said wide receiver Kris Comas, an imposing wide receiver who has had nine touchdowns in eight games so far this season. “I have a family member, and she’s a survivor. She has cancer right now, so I’m doing it for her and for everybody that has breast cancer."

Two years ago, the pink fad really started to add some soft fashion to the NFL. The American Cancer Society website mentions that besides players, NFL coaches and referees wear the color too.

“I have pink gloves, pink sleeves, pink chin strap, pink shoe laces, and pink braces,” Comas said about all the pink gear he wears. "The braces are about to come off, and this is my last color and I just thought I should go with pink just because it’s October. I asked the dentist, 'can I get the color pink?' And he said, 'OK, sure.'”

Comas likes to smile, and when he does, his pink braces flash proudly.

Pink has even become fashionable amongst some of the largest of football players here at Santa Monica College.

“If you know how to wear pink, it looks really nice on people,” said Brian Polio, the Corsairs’ formidable lineman who believes that the pink accessories make an honorable fashion statement. “I wear pink stockings with white socks on top, or pink sleeves or wristbands, and basically we are just showing support, there’s no looks or anything. I mean, you can make yourself look nice, but we’re just showing support.”

Finding and purchasing these items seems to be quite easy, too.

“Some of us shop in the girls’ section," said Polio. "And we get our spandex in the girls’ section—I mean they make pink football gloves and stuff like that. It’s like a real big thing."

Some Corsair football players think that wearing pink leggings are not as fashionable as other items.

“I don’t wear the leggings, but I wear the gloves,” said Comas. “I wear the pink half-sleeves I found in the male department at Nike Town."

“Everybody has a different type of swag or flavor or whatever they want to call it," said Frederick. "I think it’s a nice touch on some people, but I think that some people overdo it,” said Frederick. “But it’s all good. As long as we’re winning, that’s all that matters.”