You might be wondering why I would ever consider writing about such a staid product like socks. Walk around any school yard these days and you’ll quickly realize that the days of the basic white tube socks are gone. As a father of two 9 year olds, we are seeing first-hand the craze of the Nike Elite basketball sock. (Disclaimer: as the former GM of Nike’s Equipment division, socks was one of my largest product categories. Yet, I can take little credit for this recent success). Selling for a whopping $16/pair, my kids must have an equivalent of 1-2 pairs of shoes worth of socks in their drawer, in all colors imaginable. While Nike created this newest craze, many other brands in the sporting goods industry are capitalizing on the trend and achieving 25% – 40% sales growth. So, what’s behind this phenomenen?