Men's Basketball
Coaches vs. Cancer Event Set for Nov. 4 at the Beef House

Coach Weber will welcome ESPN's Stephen Bardo and Steve Lavin to the Beef House on Nov. 4 for a fundraising dinner for Coaches vs. Cancer.
Coach Weber will welcome ESPN's Stephen Bardo and Steve Lavin to the Beef House on Nov. 4 for a fundraising dinner for Coaches vs. Cancer.

Oct. 27, 2009

Champaign, Ill. - Spend an evening immersed in basketball. Hear some great stories from behind the scenes, on the court and on the sidelines. This year's Coaches vs. Cancer Covington Classic at the Beef House in Covington, Ind. will provide an evening of fun, great food and sports stories enthusiastic fans won't soon forget.

"The Covington Classic: An Evening with Stephen Bardo and Steve Lavin" will take place Nov. 4 and features former Illini star, sports reporter and color analyst Stephen Bardo and former coach and college basketball analyst Steve Lavin. In addition, the action packed line-up includes Fighting Illini Coach Bruce Weber and Purdue Coach Matt Painter who host the event each year in support of Coaches vs. Cancer, which unites the American Cancer Society and the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) in the fight against cancer.

Bardo's accomplishments include former Illini point guard, Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year, and NBA and CBA player. He is also a published author and an award winning commentator. Currently, he is a color analyst for college basketball on ESPN.

Lavin is a former coach who's perspective was forged over 15 years as a Division I college basketball coach at both UCLA and Purdue University. As UCLA Head Basketball Coach from 1996-2003 Lavin compiled a record of 145-78. In his inaugural season as head coach, Lavin directed the Bruins to the 1997 Pac-10 Championship and the NCAA Elite Eight. He is now in his seventh year as College Basketball Analyst on ABC and ESPN. Lavin will once again work alongside broadcasting partner Brent Musburger sharing his perspective on college basketball. Additionally, Lavin provides color commentary and expertise on ESPN's coverage of the NBA Draft.

With stories and memorable moments from the coaches and guests, delicious food, and the chance to leave with some fantastic items that are offered during the silent and live auctions, the evening is a sports' fans dream. There will be an array of Illini, Purdue, and sports related items up for auction throughout the evening. Items up for bid will include a package for two to travel with the Illini to Atlanta, Ga. The winning bidder will fly with the team on December 18 to Atlanta to attend the team practice, dinner and stay at the team hotel. The December 19 itinerary includes breakfast, practice, the pregame meal, attending the Illinois vs. Georgia game and returning with the team to Champaign.

The Coaches vs. Cancer initiative provides education and prevention information to basketball fans nationwide and invites fans to join with their local coach in support of the program.

"This has been such a great night with fans for Coach Painter and I. The Coaches vs. Cancer Covington Classic is something we look forward to each year," said Coach Bruce Weber. "I am proud to be a part of Coaches vs. Cancer and am honored that Matt and I can join together with Stephen Bardo and Steve Lavin for a non-stop evening of fun and fighting cancer."

The Beef House is located in Covington, Indiana. The doors open at 6 p.m. (Eastern Standard Time) with dinner at 7 p.m. The event includes a silent and live auction. The program will wrap up at 9 p.m. Tickets are $75 per person. Payment can be made by check, made payable to American Cancer Society Coaches vs. Cancer, cash or credit card (no Discover cards accepted). Seating is limited. Contact Lesa Brandt at the American Cancer Society at 217-356-9076 or stop by the office, located at 2509 S. Neil, to reserve your seats. Seating is limited.

Illini Rebounders have chartered a bus, which anyone may ride, to make getting there even easier. Reservations for the bus are being taken now. To save your spot, please contact Barb Barker at 217-356-2291.