Remember meForgot password?
    Log in with Twitter

article imageKentucky basketball coach, team raises over $1 million for Haiti

By Steven Z.K. Nickels     Jan 22, 2010 in Sports
The University of Kentucky basketball team, led by first-year head coach John Calipari, has helped raise over $1 million for Haiti earthquake relief. An auction for the cause included a dinner with the coach and actress Ashley Judd, going for $98,100.
Kentucky may be one of the few states in the nation in which someone would pay $98,100 to have dinner with a college basketball coach.
But this is no ordinary dinner invitation; it is dinner for six with the University of Kentucky (UK) basketball coach John Calipari, his wife Ellen and Hollywood actress Ashley Judd, a graduate of the university. And the price of the dinner is a donation to the Calipari-inspired, "Hoops for Haiti" campaign which has collected more than $1 million for the earthquake stricken nation since Sunday, January 17, according to the Lexington Herald-Leader.
The "Hoops for Haiti" charity event was the result of a desire that Kentucky coach Calipari had after the Haiti earthquake to do something substantial to raise money for the relief efforts in the devastated country.
The first event held was an on-air telethon on Sunday during which Kentucky basketball players helped to man the phone lines to collect pledges. That event raised $525,000 and the coach said that amount would be matched by a group of supporters for a total of of $1 million raised through the telethon. In addition other funds continued to be raised through an eBay auction until Wednesday night, January 20.
Coach Calipari said through a statement on the Kentucky athletic website, "The people and the fans of Kentucky, this state of Kentucky and the people all over this nation called in." He continued, "I don't know what to say. It's emotional. We just spent a day and all you people did it. I just want to thank you. Thank you, Kentucky."
Sixteen items for bid on eBay were auctioned and the amount raised through the auction was $152,000, which included the $98,100 dinner with the Coach and actress Judd, a loyal Kentucky fan who still attends many UK basketball games.
The Herald-Leader disclosed on Thursday that the winner of the dinner had also won another prize - a private plane ride to Cleveland to meet All-star basketball player LeBron James and tickets to a Cleveland Cavaliers NBA playoff game for $10,099. The winner, who paid $108,199 for both prizes was still was unidentified as of Thursday night.
Judd told the Herald-Leader that her personal chef would prepare the dinner which will be at Coach Calipari's house probably sometime in the summer. She went on to say Kentucky basketball players may stop by and that they intended to do "whatever we can do to make it (the dinner) as worth this person's money as possible."
Other items sold at the eBay auction included a guest appearance on the Coach's television show for $4,050 and his radio show which netted $2,550.
More about Kentucky, Basketball, John calipari, Haiti, Charity
More news from
Sports Video
Latest News
Top News