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We’re just days away from the 2022 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship Game to see who will take home the coveted title. And even though your alma mater or team didn’t make it to the final showdown, it doesn’t mean you still can’t show support to them. After all, college decision day is almost here, plus fall college sports will be back in action before you know it.
When you head to the best places to buy college apparel, you’re guaranteed to find stylish clothing and merch for just about any team you could possibly support, from Ivy Leagues to HBCUs. And even if you don’t support a particular team, showing off a little college pride is always fun. Sure, individual colleges and universities sell gear at their campus stores, but your best bet to find a ton of options is to go to one of the big online retailers that partners with the NCAA.
The NCAA works with many licensees to sell its official gear, meaning you can shop for the perfect item from many different websites. So for everyone enjoying college basketball season, we’ve rounded up a few of the best places to buy college apparel below. Whether you’re looking for jerseys, hats, shoes, scarves, hats, jackets, hoodies, mugs, stickers or even an Apple Watch band, you can find your own preferred way to show college pride at one of the retailers below.
Of all the best places to buy college apparel, Fanatics has to be the single best overall for most people. It has an enormous selection of official apparel and merchandise for hundreds of college teams.
In fact, multiple other big retailers of college apparel only use Fanatics to sell their college apparel, including NCAA Sports, FansEdge and Lids. So when you shop from those retailers, you’re getting the same experience you’d get on Fanatics.com. And there’s a good reason for that. Fanatics has excellent coverage of schools, but it sells a branded version of pretty much anything you could ever want. If you’d rather show support for a conference, Fanatics even has you covered there with the Pac-12, ACC, Big Ten gear and more.
Fanatics offers a great selection of merchandise to support your college teams, like jerseys, sweatshirts, and even shoes. While it was hard to settle on our favorite items, we couldn’t help but gravitate towards this Duke pullover hoodie. It’s the perfect apparel to have on hand when you’re cheering on the university as it’s one of the top basketball schools. If you aren’t a fan of Duke, then maybe you’ll enjoy this LSU Tigers polo shirt.
Let’s face it: Whatever you buy from a massive online retailer isn’t likely to be sartorial or unique. If you genuinely have a passion for your school or its sports teams, it makes sense to invest in higher-quality clothing instead of relying on the same cookie-cutter apparel as everyone else. That’s precisely what Hillflint does. This college apparel brand makes “heirloom quality college apparel” for over 100 schools with fashionable, retro-inspired designs.
Even a cursory glance at the brand’s offerings proves it’s not messing around. Though Hillflint only offers sweaters, sweatshirts and bomber jackets, they’re all the best possible versions you can get for college apparel. Just check out this Morehouse Vintage Triple Stripe Hoodie or the Grambling State Vintage Crewneck Sweatshirt. Have you ever seen more stylish college apparel?
3. Campus Colors
BEST FOR BASICS
If you just want a hat, hoodie or T-shirt, Campus Colors is super simple to navigate and covers many different colleges. Importantly, it includes schools that have some of the best athletic programs in the country and even highlights the few that aren’t exactly sports juggernauts, which can be a bit more difficult to find cool gear for on sports apparel-oriented websites.
Not every retailer sells apparel for the MIT Engineers, which is too bad because this red MIT T-shirt is pretty cool. And if you’re a big fan of Princeton’s athletics program, they have the perfect t-shirts to help you sport your Tiger pride.
BEST IF YOU HAVE PRIME
Amazon has become a one-stop shop for buying just about anything, including one of the best places to buy college apparel. You can likely find some clothing or merch for pretty much any team, thanks to the variety of retailers that use Amazon. Shoppers can also use Amazon’s NCAA Fan Shop to quickly find solid-quality, reasonably priced gear for dozens of the best-known teams.
They also offer a great variety of HBCU sports teams merch. Our favorite pieces so far would have to be the FAMU Rattlers pullover hoodie and the Hampton University long sleeve t-shirt.
BEST FOR VINTAGE GEAR
Of course, you can buy new college apparel on eBay, but eBay really shines in the used and vintage market. Though modern logos and designs are great, there’s something to be said for authentic throwback pieces. When you put on a vintage piece, you’re not only engaging with the history of your favorite school, but you’re sharing in someone else’s lifelong fandom too. Plus, in our experience, the right vintage piece is way more special than some dime-a-dozen hat or hoodie, even if they’re not typically in mint condition.
In fact, we’re thinking of becoming Temple University fans just to wear this sweet vintage varsity jacket — a style that is on-trend for spring 2022.
6. 47 Brands
BEST FOR VINTAGE-INSPIRED GEAR
If actual vintage isn’t your scene — not everyone can wear somebody else’s clothes — then vintage-inspired designs from a place like 47 Brands might strike a better chord.
Though 47 Brands doesn’t have as deep a collection as some other retailers — and it still runs into the hundreds — each of its shirts, hats and other gear strives to capture more than just the school’s logo. They’re trying to capture the colors and designs from past and present that best represent your school’s spirit.
Look no further than this UCLA Bruins hat and the Virginia Tech Hokies hat.
7. Dick’s Sporting Goods
Dick’s Sporting Goods is like a more curated version of shopping on Amazon for college apparel. You get a ton of options, but you don’t have to sift through dozens of different random vendors to identify quality gear because Dick’s only supplies a finite amount of college apparel in the first place. Though that means you won’t find everything under the sun, you’ll still be able to find a wide variety of incredible apparel from nearly 300 schools. For example, Dick’s has a ton of Nike college apparel, tailgating accessories and great deals on face masks for different college teams too.
And what better way is there to support your team than wearing their colors and mascot on a jacket like this Norfolk State windbreaker. And for all of the Texas Southern fans, there is plenty of stylish gear to shop for as well, but our go-to has to be the Texas Southern Tigers 1/4 Zip Pullover.
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