Former Gonzaga University point guard Dan Dickau, whose long hair and curls were a trademark during his playing days, is now running his own barbershop.
After six seasons in the NBA, Dickau hung up his shoes in 2011. Last fall, he and his wife moved to Spokane from Vancouver, Wash., their hometown.
Dickau, 34, said he’s focused now on developing the skills of an entrepreneur, planning to grow his new business in the town where he wowed fans with his shooting and defense.
The Barbers, which Dickau opened last week at 9331 N. Newport Highway, is his first try at operating a franchise. His one previous business venture, a for-profit basketball camp in Vancouver, lasted about a year.
“I learned a lot doing that,” Dickau said. “Such as learning about proper scheduling and understanding priorities.”
There’s more to Dickau’s business plans, however, than running a franchise barbershop.
He plans to continue offering color commentary during GU game broadcasts, a job he began in 2011 and resumed last year.
He’s also taken the job of publicity manager for Stone Creek Land Design, a Spokane excavation and landscape company.
There’s no connection between Gonzaga and The Barbers, Dickau said. But because of friendships at the school, he expects to invite some well-known Zags to join him for autographs at his shop.
“I’m also talking to a graphic artist who will make a gallery or series of portraits for the shop, showing all the great Zags with great hair,” he said.
That list has to include Adam Morrison, who still lives in the area, and Matt Bouldin, who’s now playing in Europe.
Dickau himself would be a part of that lineup, as evidenced by the 2002 Hoopfest poster that featured his mop-top curls.
A graduate of GU’s broadcast program, Dickau said he took one business course in his four years at the Jesuit university. “That doesn’t matter that much,” he added, “since what really matters in running a business is experience.”
The idea of joining The Barbers franchise sprang from Dickau meeting Don and Alison Lovell, who launched the barbershop business in Vancouver in 1999. The couple now have more than a dozen shops in the Portland and Vancouver area.
“I went to seven of their eight shops (in the Vancouver area),” Dickau said, “and I felt they really knew what they were doing. They’ve got a good plan.”
The Barbers are themed and aimed at the male market. The walls are covered with sports pennants, hubcaps, sports posters and photos.
“There’s free soda, free popcorn for customers,” Dickau said. “It’s really about providing customers with a great experience in a comfortable place, with a kind of old-school feeling.”
Dickau said he intends to remain with The Barbers for the long term. He’s already been contacted by area developers, he said, wondering if he’s ready to open his second shop.
On the wall of the shop, Dickau has placed a framed and autographed Adam Morrison jersey. “He should still be playing in the NBA,” Dickau said of Morrison, who last played in the NBA in 2012.
He has no regrets about his own career, Dickau added.
“I’m glad that I was able to maximize my God-given talents and do what I did accomplish at that level,” he said. “I loved every minute.”
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