Robert Buck, founder of Hoodies N Slides in Aubrey, Texas, formed a partnership with Deion Sanders and Colorado.
AUBREY, Texas — “If you look good, you feel good. If you feel good, you play good. If you play good, they pay good.”
Hall-of-famer Deion Sanders operated with that mantra throughout his time in the NFL, winning two Super Bowl titles and staking his claim as one of the most dynamic football players in history.
For as electric as he was on the field, Sanders was equally magnetic and flamboyant off the field, using fashion to further enhance his brand and identity. It’s a simple concept: how you present yourself can have a direct impact on your performance.
But for someone like ‘Prime Time,’ what Sanders wears can also have an impact on someone else’s livelihood.
Over the past few years, Robert Buck has felt that impact.
Buck, an Aubrey, Texas resident, runs a fledgling apparel company – Hoodies+Slides – out of his unair-conditioned garage, featuring premium handmade hoodies and joggers. With fall right round the corner, business is already scheduled to boom.
“It’s like you don’t get sleep for about six months out of the year because it’s hoodie season,” Buck explained. “It’s almost like being a bear. They hibernate. I’m the opposite for six months. We’re definitely a start-up, but we’re growing fast.”
That growth was supercharged by Deion’s influence.
Back in 2021, Buck asked a friend of his to get one his hoodies to Sanders while he was coaching college football at Jackson State University. Sanders later posted a series of images to his personal Instagram account on September 11 that featured him wearing that same hoodie.
“I wake up at six in the morning, and I’m getting a phone call,” Buck recalled. “My family member’s like, ‘Hey, you need to go look at Coach Prime’s Instagram.’ So the next thing I know, my phone starts dinging. My Shopify account is going crazy. It has never stopped since.”
Several hoodies and Instagram posts later, Sanders made a plea via an Instagram video to get in touch with Buck. A partnership instantly formed, and now two years later, business is still booming.
The only difference? Coach Prime now leads the Colorado football team and sports black-and-gold hoodies.
Recently, Sanders posted a video of himself dancing in a houndstooth hoodie made by Buck. The design went viral with more than 100,000 likes.
Exposure on social media hasn’t been Buck’s only boom in this arrangement. Buck has reached a licensing agreement with Colorado, with national distribution deals and international manufacturing on the horizon.
All of this was made possible because of an effort made two years ago.
“It was everything. It made all the difference,” Buck said.
Sanders will bring his Colorado Buffaloes to North Texas to face No. 17 TCU in their season opener. Kickoff is scheduled for 11 a.m. at Amon G. Carter Stadium.