Nov. 5, 2008
LOS ANGELES - On Sunday, November 2, Head Coach Ben Howland's UCLA men's basketball team and the Bruin Athletic Department joined forces with UCLA basketball great John Vallely, the Pediatric Cancer Research Foundation (PCRF) and Mattel Children's Hospital UCLA for the inaugural Dribble For The Cure.
The event, which took place at historic Pauley Pavilion, saw 343 registered participants (285 registered on-line prior to the event and there were 58 walk-ups the day of the event) join members of the men's basketball team and over 50 Bruin student-athletes for activities and a dribble tour of 1.2 miles on the UCLA campus. The event raised $60,053.00, which doesn't include the Bids for Kids Auction (www.bidsforthekids.org) that was sponsored by the Mattel Children's Hospital UCLA. The auction is ongoing through November 28.
Proceeds from the event will benefit the Pediatric Cancer Research Fund and Mattel Children's Hospital UCLA.
"Even though it was our first year, the Dribble For The Cure was a huge hit", said Vallely. "I'm so excited my UCLA family got behind this cause. Everyone associated with the event seemed to have a good time. It was meant to be a win-win for everyone, and I think we achieved our goal. We also raised substantial dollars for Pediatric Cancer Research Foundation and Mattel Children's Hospital. Thanks to all who participated."
For many years, Vallely and his family have been on the front line in the battle against cancer. A starting guard on John Wooden's UCLA 1969 and 1970 NCAA Championship teams, Vallely is a cancer-survivor and the Director of Scientific Affairs for the Pediatric Cancer Research Foundation. In 1991, John and Karen Vallely lost their daughter Erin to cancer at the age of 12.
Participants were also given a unique opportunity to meet and pose for photos as well as obtain autographs of the 2008-09 UCLA Bruins men's basketball team and coaching staff.
Maria Crenna was recognized at the conclusion of the event as the top individual fundraiser. The top fundraising team was Team Berson while the top fundraising team by a UCLA student organization was The Freshman Team.
You can view a photo gallery of the entire event by clicking here.