Bounce4Kay: NC State Brothers Bouncing for a Reason
On March 26, the Gamma-Upsilon chapter at North Carolina State University hosted their annual Bounce4Kay 3 v 3 basketball tournament. Though the brothers and attendees were able to jump into the March Madness state of mind, the cause they played for went far beyond any one member.
Bounce4Kay began as a crazy pilgrimage of sorts, which saw Lambda Chi brothers bouncing a basketball from Raleigh to Atlanta in the original event, known as Bounce for Breath during the 80s. All proceeds then benefitted the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.
While you won’t find any Gamma-Upsilon members bouncing down the highway these days, the event still keeps with the basketball theme. It has transformed, though, into a tribute to the late Kay Yow, NC State great women’s basketball coach.
Yow passed away in 2009 of breast cancer, and since the rechartering of the chapter in 2011, brothers have made it their mission to donate to the Kay Yow Cancer Fund ever since.
What makes the tournament unique is the fact that registration is open to any student on campus. The Gamma-Upsilon chapter not only uses the event as a rush tool, but hopes to encourage more donations and unity across campus.
“I think it’s [Bounce4Kay] important because IFC fraternities on campus have tried to get involved with the university outside of Greek life and this is a great opportunity for Lambda Chi because it’s not centered around a certain population,” said Brandon Toledo, High Theta. “A good example would be during our Watermelon Bust, it was a sorority competition, so we kind of limited ourselves, but Bounce4Kay is open to the whole university so we can kind of reach non-Greek life students.”
Lambda Chi’s involvement ranged from offering Gatorade to players to being the link between the Kay Yow Cancer Fund and the event. Brothers were able to meet a representative from the Fund to see just how their donations were being used, something that Toledo described as invaluable.
“I feel like it is very easy to just throw an event and tell everyone that all of the proceeds are going to this organization and then it’s not as important to them,” said Toledo. “Robin Pate (Director of Community Development for the Kay Yow Cancer Fund) was able to speak to all 19 teams and others in attendance; he talked about the kind of person Kay Yow was, and how cancer affects everyone in some way.”
Altogether, Bounce4Kay raised over 700 dollars for the Fund. Toledo, along with the rest of his brothers, will work to continue honoring the memory of Kay Yow in years to come through her passion: basketball.
“Obviously, she was a great basketball coach and it is unfortunate how she died,” said Toledo. “It was a huge loss for NC State and you have to have that connection and understand how important she was to this university.”
To learn more about the Kay Yow Cancer Fund, click here.