Listen Live
WERE AM Mobile App 2020


News Talk Cleveland Featured Video

Source: DANIEL LIPPITT / Getty

Air, an upcoming film about Michael Jordan’s signature shoe brand, has an Ohio connection that you may not be aware of.

The film is to be released on April 5th, and the main character is a man named John “Sonny” Vaccaro. In the movie, he’ll be played by Matt Damon. Vaccaro is the person who pitched Nike one of the most brilliant sport, fashion, and entertainment ideas of all time – Air Jordans.

Originally from Pennsylvania, Vaccaro would go to college at Ohio’s Youngstown State. An injury forced him out of the sport, but because of his unique charisma, he was offered a scholarship to stay at the school and help recruit football players to come over from Pennsylvania.

Get Breaking News & Exclusive Contest in Your Inbox:  

After graduating, he returned home and set up one of the nation’s most prestigious high school basketball tournaments – the Dapper Dan High School Basketball Tournament. LeBron James even ended up playing there eventually.

That tournament is what introduced Vaccaro to an incredible amount of basketball coaches from all around the country. It’s with those connections that he was able to eventually come into contact with a shoe company that would not only change his life – but would ultimately change the landscape of the NBA and sports marketing and apparel for the rest of time.

Fast forward a few years, and Vaccaro is having meetings with Nike to pitch the first athletic shoe designed around a single athlete. And the rest, as they say, is history.

Information from NBC4i for this post. To see their original story, [click here].

The Latest:

The New Michael Jordan Film Has a Connection to Ohio  was originally published on