Coaches vs. Cancer is a collaboration between the American Cancer Society and the more than 5,000 coaches from all levels who are part of the National Association of Basketball Coaches.

Started more than 25 years ago it is a nationwide effort to increase cancer awareness, promote healthy living and raise money for research, education, programs in the community and more.

Since its inception Coaches vs. Cancer has raised some $40 million to help eliminate cancer as a life-threatening disease.  While most of the fundraising events are held through colleges there are a number of high school basketball coaches who also participate.

Central Regional’s boys coach Mike Clemente, himself a cancer survivor has run a very successful one-day event for the past four years while raising over $60,000.  The 5th annual would have taken place this Saturday and while cancelled Clemente is still encouraging donations to the V Foundation.

Over at Donovan Catholic girls Coach Glenn Jansen had big plans for a similar event this winter.  The Shore Fight for a Cure Showcase would have matched shore teams against those from out of the area and Jansen, like Clemente has personal reasons for getting involved as his mother lost her life to cancer during the 2018-19 basketball season.

Again the pandemic took away a day-long showcase but it has not stopped Jansen, who has also run a similar effort as coach of the Griffins girls volleyball team. Shore Conference girls basketball teams have been invited and encouraged to purchase special shirts and hoodies to wear throughout February which is National Cancer Prevention Month.

The names of the participating teams along with sponsors will be listed on the back of the shirts which must be ordered by Sunday with all money raised going to the Jimmy V Pediatric Cancer Fund and the American Cancer Society. Orders can be placed through stores.farrostees.com/coaches_vs_cancer_basketball (I ordered mine this morning, I love pink).

Those interested in sponsoring or helping the effort should email Coach Jansen at gjansen@donovancatholic.org.

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