Michigan | Nike

The Font


Anyone familiar with the University of Michigan Athletics campus knows the architectural mainstay is brick and wrought iron. Those elements surrounded first Regents Field, Ferry Field and now Michigan Stadium. They welcome us inside Yost Ice Arena and the University’s Intramural Sports Building, dating to the 1920s. Even in the 21st Century, the Ross Academic Center, Schembechler Hall and the South Competition and Performance complex that is under construction at this moment, showcase brick and wrought iron to provide that same classic, familiar presence.

Like fired brick, one of the longest lasting and strongest building materials, Michigan Athletics has a long-standing history of strength and endurance. The Valiant font we introduce with our partnership with NIKE utilizes a combination of Stretcher [horizontal bricks] and Soldier [vertical bricks] Course. These vertical and horizontal directional elements used in masonry are reflected in our custom block serif typeface.

The custom letterforms have been designed with unique characteristics that are carried throughout. The strong block serifs reflect the tradition of Michigan Athletics while maintaining a clean, classic and timeless look.


Design inspiration for the Michigan numerals was fashioned after the typography found on Michigan’s football uniforms from the mid-1930s and worn by the likes of Gerald Ford. The collegiate style features unique serifs and angles that reference Michigan’s proud history, while remaining true to the Valiant font.


The Michigan script is a modern rendition of a classic look and serves as a nod to the baseball, softball and hockey heritage at the University of Michigan. Drawing visual cues from the arches used in the architecture of athletic facilities on campus, this tertiary script combines classic arch structure with the connectivity of script letterforms.

The custom word marks are bold graphic treatments that create a clear, consistent and visually memorable identity. The Michigan, Wolverines, Hail and Go Blue word marks capture the essence of the brand.