Kansas head coach Bill Self instructs his players during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against Saint Louis, Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2012, in Kansas City, Mo. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) _ Former Missouri coach Norm Stewart has a hard time believing it's been 20 years since he and his wife, Virginia, founded Coaches vs Cancer.
The organization has grown into a nationwide collaboration between the American Cancer Society and the National Association of Basketball Coaches, and has raised more than $100 million to support the American Cancer Society's mission of eradicating the disease.
Stewart was joined at Coaches vs Cancer's annual tipoff event at Kansas City's Municipal Auditorium on Tuesday night by a litany of fellow coaches, including Bill Self of Kansas, Frank Haith of Missouri, Gregg Marshall of Wichita State and Bruce Weber of Kansas State.
The tipoff event is designed to help raise money for the organization.
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Joined by the who's who of local college basketball coaches, Kansas head coach Bill Self participated in the American Cancer Society's sixth annual Coaches vs. Cancer Season Tipoff Reception Tuesday evening inside Kansas City's Municipal Auditorium.
This year marks the 20th anniversary of Coaches vs. Cancer, and the event paid tribute to contributions made by cancer survivor and Coaches vs. Cancer Founding Father Norm Stewart and his wife, Virginia. During the evening's main event, each coach on the panel gave their favorite moments spent with – or coaching against – Stewart.
"He's done an unbelievable job in our profession, and more importantly, done an unbelievable job giving people hope," Self said. "This disease has affected us all in some way, shape or form and the sacrifices he's made for the American Cancer Society and Coaches vs. Cancer is really amazing when you stop and think about $100 million (raised for ACS)."
Along with Self, Kansas State head coach Bruce Weber, Wichita State head coach Gregg Marshall, Missouri head coach Frank Haith and UMKC head coach Kareem Richardson made up the coaching panel hosted Tuesday evening by Stewart. NFL, NBA, college basketball announcer and KU grad Kevin Harlan emceed the evening's main event.
The five coaches participated in a media panel discussion to kick-off the evening, followed by a VIP reception before moving to the vintage wooden floor at the historic Municipal Auditorium for the main event. Those in attendance sat in on a live discussion between the coaches and Harlan, which covered topics ranging from new practice start dates, recruiting, comparing conferences and favorite Municipal memories.
Silent auction bidding concluded the worthy fundraiser. All proceeds from the items, and the event's ticket sales, directly fund the American Cancer Society's mission of eliminating cancer by helping people stay well, get well, find cures and fight back.
Coaches vs. Cancer is a nationwide collaboration between the American Cancer Society and the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) that empowers basketball coaches, their teams and local communities to make a difference in the fight against cancer.