Founded in 1993, AND 1 makes basketball footwear and apparel for players with serious game.
The origin of the AND 1 Mix Tape collection came in the guise of a lowly videotape given to AND 1 in late 1998 by Ron Naclerio, the coach of New York’s Cardoza High School team who spent his summers coaching AAU kids, including Rafer Alston, whom AND 1 would soon sign the first basketball shoe endorser to get a deal without a contract from the NBA.
The tape was home-video quality—jerky camera moves, poor resolution and nearly indecipherable audio-showing young Alston on the playgrounds and hardwood in and around New York doing, among a host of insane moves, his own signature move from which he earned his nickname "Skip to My Lou".
The Mix Tapes were about opportunity. The opportunity to bring a style of ball to people who would have no other way of seeing it, and the opportunity to get great ball players the exposure that they would have no other way of getting but richly deserved.