By Dylan Manfre
Lenaejha Evans describes her clothing style as streetwear. She can be seen walking around campus in any type of athletic attire from workout shorts and T-shirts to the Adidas gear she receives as a member of the women’s basketball team.
Evans is a senior sports media major and had a keen eye on the name, image and likeness (NIL) conversation that transpired over the summer. Ultimately, the United States Supreme Court ruled in favor of college athletes to market themselves and cash in on profitable opportunities from brands.
She has NIL deals with CrisP and Clutch Lifestyle Co. Both are companies that sell workout clothes and casual athletic wear.
Evans does not get any free merchandise from the companies nor receive any payment but is provided a discount code for her and her friends to use when shopping. She is also broadcasted on their social media pages when she wears their clothing, which helps promote herself as an athlete.
Her fashion sense led her down the path to create her own clothing line called Legendary Endings. Both words appropriately and intentionally start with the initials of her name, because she wants her ending at Rider to be legendary.
“I want something that relates back to me,” Evans said. “Legendary Endings is, to me, I want to be remembered as a legend … that type of thing. I played around with [the name] and thought about it for a long time.”
She paid graphic designers on Fiverr, a popular freelancing website, to create some of the prints for her T-shirts which she released with the official launch of her brand on Sept. 17. Evans came to an interview with The Rider News with two shirts: one of a red skull and roses, and another with a race car and her jersey number, 20.
“I see people in schools a lot wearing the race car shirts, that’s coming back in style a lot,” Evans said. “People are buying NASCAR shirts, and I was like ‘Hey, I could just make my own.’”
Her Instagram page has gained 118 followers since its inception, and Evans is in the process of launching her Shopify website, where she is pursuing different templates and layouts.
Sophia DeMauro, Evans’ teammate, described Evans’ style as “drippy” and said she is a real fashionista.
“I loved it,” DeMauro said of the T-shirt designs. “I immediately bought a shirt. I can’t wait to wear it and post a picture.”
Having her stamp of approval is important for Evans because she wants to show people she is more than an athlete and that she has her own style.
The thought of being a Black woman CEO is incredibly meaningful to her because she knows there are not many to look up to. She wants to be that role model for the next generation.
“Younger children, younger Black children who look up to [me and] want to do their own business, they can see you do it. … It’s a small world for us.”
Evans plans to soon expand her clothing line to sweatshirts, hats and other products and is excited to see the response.