June 20, 2014
HATTIESBURG, Miss. - Southern Miss women's basketball Coach Joye Lee-McNelis had become the latest in taking the Chillin4Charity Cold Water Challenge in support of the Kay Yow Foundation with her cold water dosing Friday morning, June 20.
McNelis accepted the challenge from McNeese women's basketball coach Brooks Donald Williams. The charity fundraiser got its start in the West as Arizona head women's basketball coach Niya Butts issued a challenge to the Pac-12 coaches on June 9 to participate and just in a matter of days, the challenge spread throughout women's basketball programs across the country.
McNelis has issued challenges to Jennifer Hoover of Wake Forest, UAB's Randy Norton, Chanda Rigby of Troy, Michelle Clark-Heard of Western Kentucky, Matilda Mossman of Tulsa, Old Dominion's Karen Barefoot and UTSA's Lobomyr Lichonczak.
If the coaches accept McNelis' challenge she will donate $25 per coach to the Kay Yow Foundation. If a coach does not accept her challenge, they must donate $250 to the foundation. Coaches have until Monday to accept her challenge.
A former North Carolina State University head women's basketball coach, past president and founding member of the Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA), Kay Yow's voice became a galvanizing force for the WBCA. She was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 1987 and passed away on January 24, 2009, after facing her third bout with the disease.
In her 38 years as head coach at the college level, Coach Yow was one of only six Division I head women's basketball mentors to achieve 700 career victories. Yow guided her squads to 20 of the 27 NCAA Tournaments, 11 trips to the Sweet 16, and a trip to the Elite Eight and Final Four in 1998. Yow was part of an elite group of nine Olympic coaches chosen to lead USA Basketball in the pursuit of an Olympic gold medal in women's basketball. During the 2008-09 season, Yow became only the third women's basketball coach in NCAA Division I history to coach 1,000 games at one institution.
The Kay Yow Cancer Fund was officially founded on December 3, 2007, from the vision of the organization's namesake Kay Yow, former North Carolina State University head women's basketball coach and since its inception has raised over $8 million dollars while $3.8 million has been granted for scientific research and related programs focused on women's cancers thanks to the generosity and continued support of our donors.
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