(L-R) Ata Durukan of First Federal Savings Bank, Dale Holt of Legends, Coach Bruce Weber and Philip Kubow of Carle Foundation Hospital
Oct. 1, 2007
Illini Madness, the first Fighting Illini basketball practice of the 2007-08 season, is scheduled for 9 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 12 at the Assembly Hall. Illini Head Coach Bruce Weber, whose work in the fight against cancer earned him the 2007 Coaches vs. Cancer Champion Award, is using the strong platform Illinois basketball enjoys to bring cancer awareness to the national forefront once again at Illini Madness.
Required admission to this year's event are Fighting Illini basketball T-shirts that are being sold for $7 at Gameday Spirit stores. The special pink T-shirts serve both as the required "ticket" into Illini Madness as well as a long-term keepsake for Illinois fans. A $2 contribution will be made to Coaches vs. Cancer for each shirt sold. In addition, by filling Assembly Hall with pink Illinois basketball T-shirts, it will create a unique photo that should put the national spotlight on the ongoing fight against cancer.
T-shirts are on sale now and are available at both Gameday Spirit store locations (519 E. Green St. and 1615 W. Springfield Ave.) in Champaign. They will also be sold at Illini home football games (Sept. 29 vs. Penn State and Oct. 6 vs. Wisconsin) at Gameday Spirit souvenir stands located around Memorial Stadium.
Approximately 5,000 T-Shirts have already been sold for the event. Strong sales are expected at Saturday's football game vs. Penn State. One way that businesses and organizations throughout the Champaign-Urbana community can get involved is by making group orders that they can then distribute to their employees, families, clients, etc.
Three organizations have already stepped up with group orders, led by Carle Foundation Hospital, who has made a significant purchase of 1,000 T-Shirts.
"Carle Foundation Hospital and its employees had already planned a "Go Pink" day to benefit its Mills Breast Cancer Institute," said Philip Kubow, Vice President of Human Resources for Carle Foundation Hospital. "Teaming up with the University of Illinois and the American Cancer Society Coaches vs. Cancer further creates a win-win scenario for everyone who is committed to finding a cure for all types of cancer."
First Federal Savings Bank and Legends have also made large orders, each business purchasing 100 T-Shirts.
"We are proud to be part of this unique event," said Ata Durukan, Vice President of Marketing and Human Resources at First Federal Savings Bank. "Our company is committed to serving the Champaign-Urbana community, and we give our full support to Coach Weber and the Illini basketball program in the fight against cancer."
"It's an honor for us to be involved in such a worthwhile cause," said Dale Holt, representative of Legends. "The beginning of each basketball season brings anticipation and excitement, and this year it takes on more importance with the fundraising effort for Coaches vs. Cancer. The atmosphere at Assembly Hall that night will be special."
For more information on Illini Madness and to download an order form to purchase T-Shirts, click HERE. This information will continue to be updated as the event approaches. Any business or organization that makes a group order of T-Shirts at the 100-Club, 500-Club, or 1000-Club level will receive be recognized on the website.