Baseball has always been known as a game full of superstitions. Not stepping on the basepath chalk to avoid bad luck, wearing caps inside out to ignite a rally, and following pre-game routines to the minute as to not disrupt a hot streak at the plate are among the frequent superstitions that ballplayers will adhere to. Creating a new - and usually somewhat surprising - hair style is also a popular custom throughout the sport and one that many on the Louisville roster has welcomed with the postseason.
Visiting the U of L baseball complex on Monday, blonde hair, mullets, mohawks and cornrows have replaced the usual conservative hairstyles of head coach Dan McDonnell's players.
"Anytime you do anything as a team I think it shows the unity and the togetherness," McDonnell said.
Some of the more notable changes includes a new blonde look for Brendan McKay, Jake Sparger's red mohawk and Devin Mann's usual long curly locks transformed into cornrows.
"A lot of guys got out of their comfort zone," McKay said. "It's a lot of guys saying, 'screw everything, let's play like kids'."
Junior short Devin Hairston, who joked that Mann's new style is "not a good look," has yet to decide on what his new look will be, but anticipates joining the team effort.
"We're all trying to do something," junior shortstop Devin Hairston said. "A sacrifice to say it's not about me, its about the team."
It's not the first time that Louisville players have created new personal looks as the team began postseason play. In 2007, Dan McDonnell's first year with the Cardinals, the team was allowed to grow out their hair and dye it black, creating what the head coach described as a "rock star" look.
Still sporting his usual look during a media session on Monday, McDonnell admitted that a change may - or may not - be coming his way this season.
"For me, I don't think I've been officially asked yet," McDonnell joked. "There's no way I'm doing a mohawk. Will I color my hair or something like, we'll wait and see, but not anytime soon."
The ACC Tournament begins on Tuesday at Louisville Slugger Field. The top-seeded Cardinals begin play on Thursday against Notre Dame at 7pm and then return to the park on Friday afternoon to face Florida State at 3pm.