Saturday, May 10, 2008

2002-03 Topps # 174 Hakeem Olajuwon

This week's Hakeem Olajuwon card is Topps 2002-2003 #174.

There is one thing I really hate about this card, the uniform Hakeem is wearing. Hakeem should not wear any uniform that is not Houston (either UH or Rockets). OK there are a couple of exceptions, All-Star and Team USA. Seeing Hakeem in the Toronto Raptors uniform is just painful to see.

But other than the uniform, I LOVE this card. Why? There's no autograph or relic. No serial number. No 1 of 1. No special effects. It's Beckett value maxes out at $0.50. But to me, this is what a base card should look like and if there were inexpensive, sharp looking base sets like this without a million gimmicks, set collecting would become more popular again.

First let's start with the picture. Good, but not great picture. It could have been cropped a little closer, but it's solid. Also featured on the front are the team and player name in silver foil, the team logo, and a nice blue border. That's a very sharp layout.

The back is really where this card stands out. Information and more information. There's basic life information like height, weight, date of birth, draft position, and most importantly college. Then there are career statistics, 18 years worth. All of the major categories are here. On top of that, another nice photo in the corner.

I hope you enjoy this card (except for the Raptor uniform). When I started this blog, I wanted to feature nice looking cards featuring University of Houston athletes, regardless of value. There are great cards in every price range so every UH fan can enjoy collecting their Coogs. Eat 'em up!

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