Fashionista. Trendsetter. Golfer? There are few to whom that trio of adjectives applies, but Rickie Fowler is certainly the exception to the rule when it comes to pushing the envelope of PGA fashion. At the beginning of last year, Fowler turned heads when he took to the links in a pair of high top golf cleats that wouldn’t look out of place on a basketball court.
It seems this was less a flash in the pan than the beginning of a niche fashion trend amongst golf’s younger players. After the success of the eye-popping debut, Puma, the maker of Fowler’s unique kicks, decided to expand the line. They’ve now introduced a white and orange combo to complement the white and blacks that Fowler wore for most of last year.
Fowler’s style presents a unique opportunity for golf apparel retailers looking to reach a younger and edgier (by golf standards) market. Since he blazed onto the professional golf scene, Fowler has always made an impression with his style. Many will remember his debut season when he played all of his final rounds wearing orange head-to-toe as an homage to Oklahoma State, where he played his college golf.
Not only does Fowler make an impression on youth golfers with his bold choice of wardrobe, he spends much of his free time working with junior groups in and around Jupiter, Florida, where he makes his home. It shouldn’t be a surprise then, that Puma decided to release a youth iteration of the now-famous high top which retails for around half the price of the $200 adult version
In a recent interview with GolfALot.com, Cobra Puma Golf’s CEO, Bob Philion was effusive in his praise of Fowler and candid about the important role he plays in the company’s youth marketing strategy. When describing the brand, Philion says Cobra Puma strives to create apparel and equipment that is “inclusive, stylish, colourful, and fun” which is why they look for players like Fowler to serve as their ambassadors.
So what’s next for Fowler and the Cobra Puma line? Philion “think(s) Rickie has grown up quite a bit and now being 27 I think the orange has turned into black and orange with the King range so I think we are evolving his style.”
Will we see a new, more reserved style for Fowler in 2017? We’ll have to wait and see.