By: Steven Pham
Photos by: Kobi Russom
Wichita, KS. - Sunrise Christian Academy debuted their new jersey this past weekend in the win against La Lumiere. I sat down with Sunrise head coach Luke Barnwell to discuss the meaning behind the new threads.
Coach Barnwell wanted to implement the new jersey after seeing the NBA city edition jerseys. “We had blank stock white jerseys that we’ve had for a couple of years, we just haven’t printed them,” Barnwell said. “I wanted to have one where we put our players' names on the back just so they can have a jersey.”
Coach wanted a jersey that represented the team, the city, and the state of Kansas. “When we play in the national scene it’s always Kansas vs. the other state we’re playing; Florida, or Indiana, or Utah,” Barnwell said. “So we shifted it toward a state edition versus a city edition.”
On the front of the jersey, it has the stars from the Kansas seal, along with the motto ad astra per aspera. “The state seal of ad astra per aspera means to the stars with difficulty,” Barnwell said. “That’s a mantra of ours, not exactly those words but through the difficult moments are the ones that we want and that is the best chance we can grow. To have that in the state seal and that on our jersey is kind of what we preach anyways so it made a lot of sense to me.”
Sunrise wanted to debut their new jerseys at the biggest home game of the season. “This game was a relevant game with the league (NIBC) and having a big crowd, we thought it would be a cool day to get it done,” Barnwell said. “When we travel sometimes we have to wear a light jersey on the road and maybe we’ll bust it out on the road too.”
There will be more opportunities to see these jerseys in action in the future. “We played well in them and usually when you play well in them you’ll want to wear them again,” Barnwell said. “I’m assuming the guys (players) will want to wear them again, so next time maybe we have a home game we can bust them out again.”
Shoutout to the Deezer for helping Coach Barnwell design the jersey and get it printed out. These state edition jerseys represent the state of Kansas and what Sunrise is all about. The players are representing the school and the state with great honor and making the community proud.