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Biggest names in college coaching team up for an auction to raise money for cancer

Oakland v Indiana

Getty Images

Getty Images

Oakland head coach Greg Kampe announced on Monday morning that he will be teaming up with nine of the biggest names in the college coaching business to launch a fundraiser that aims to generate more than $500,000 for cancer research.

The roster? Kentucky’s John Calipari, North Carolina’s Roy Williams, Michigan State’s Tom Izzo, Arizona’s Sean Miller, Michigan’s John Beilein, West Virginia’s Bob Huggins, UCLA’s Steve Alford, Tennessee’s Rick Barnes and Memphis’ Josh Pastner.

Here’s how it works: Kampe and company will be auctioning off the opportunity for 10 people, each of whom get to bring along two of their friends, to spend two days dining, playing golf and schmoozing with the bigwigs of the coaching fraternity. Bidding, which starts at $10,000 each, is open from now until May 1st and is available right here, and there’s also an opportunity to “buy now”, which caps the bidding at $60,000 for each coach.

So if, say, three Kentucky fans decided they were willing to spend $20,000 each to share two dinners and a round of golf with Coach Cal, they can do it today.

On Sunday, May 31st, and Monday, June 1st, the ten coaches -- including Kampe -- will all be at the MotorCity Casino in Detroit. On Sunday night, there will be a private dinner for the 10 coaches and the 30 guests. The following morning, the coaches will be hauled off for a visit with children currently battling cancer before they play a round of golf -- at Oakland Hills, one of our country’s most prestigious golf courses -- with the winners of their bidding. On Monday night, there will be another dinner with all 40 of the people involved in the event.

If every coach’s bid gets maxed out at $60,000, the event will raise a total of $500,000.

Kampe has made a concerted effort to raise awareness and help fight the disease in recent years. The Oakland program has donated game proceeds and Kampe himself lost 30 pounds doing a month-long juice diet, but given how often cancer has touched his life in recent years, Kampe felt he needed to go bigger. One of his players lost his mother to cancer during the season just a month after she was diagnosed. Another player had his father undergo brain surgery during the season. And former Tiger Dave Bergman, a close friend of Kampe’s, passed away recently.