ESPN’s 15th Annual V Week for Cancer Research begins today, on “Giving Tuesday,” Nov. 30, and will continue through Sunday, Dec. 12. Awareness and donations for the V Foundation for Cancer Research will be driven by ESPN across its platforms throughout the week. Since the V Foundation’s inception in 1993, ESPN has helped raise more than $142 million in the fight to end cancer. Direct donations can be made at www.v.org/donate.
New to V Week this year is the development of #VStrongBaby to show support for ESPN college basketball analyst Dick Vitale, who returned to call his first game of the men’s college basketball season last Tuesday after being diagnosed with lymphoma in October. Vitale has been documenting his inspirational journey on his social media platforms, and the hashtag is accompanied by a customized heart emoji in honor of the legendary commentator, which ESPN will feature throughout V Week.
ESPN also will continue to address in its content the health inequities that exist in cancer throughout V Week by highlighting the Stuart Scott Memorial Cancer Research Fund, which was established in 2015 by ESPN and the V Foundation in honor of famed ESPN television personality, Stuart Scott, after his passing from cancer. The Fund encourages cutting-edge research for African Americans, Hispanics and other minority populations suffering from cancer. The groundbreaking cancer research initiative funds outstanding minority researchers and also research that explores the biology behind why some cancers are more likely to occur, more aggressive or harder to treat in some minority populations.
“The ongoing pandemic has continued to disrupt the critical need to fundraise for cancer research and address the health disparities impacting people of color in their fight against cancer,” said Kevin Martinez, vice president of ESPN Corporate Citizenship. “Raising funds for cancer research is a long-standing tradition at ESPN, and we are committed to continuing our work to close the gap in cancer disparities experienced by patients of minority populations and improve their outcomes.”
Campaign for a Cause: ESPN and the V Foundation x StockX
Fans of ESPN and StockX, the global platform for consuming and trading current culture products – including sneakers, electronics, apparel, accessories and collectibles — have a chance to win celebrity sneakers and memorabilia during V Week through StockX’s Campaign for a Cause benefiting the V Foundation. Sample of sneakers and items available for fans include:
- Drake x NOCTA x TaylorMade: P·790 Irons (Drake Friends & Family Set)
- Kevin Durant: Kevin Durant signed Nike KD14 (size 10M)
- Mike Krzyzewski: Mike “Coach K” Krzyzewski signed Nike LeBron XVIII Duke PE (size 13M)
- Nyjah Huston: Huston signed & worn Nike SB Nyjah Free 2 Summit White Icy Sole (size 8.5M)
- Naomi Osaka: Osaka signed NikeCourt Air Zoom GP Turbo Naomi Osaka (size 9M)
Other notable companies and people who have donated to the cause include Nigel Sylvester, Malbon Golf, and one of ESPN’s Top Ten Hi shoes, among others.
The campaign will launch November 30 at 12 p.m. ET and run until December 2 at 11:59 a.m. ET. Each $10 entry gives participants a chance to win the selected product (with winners selected randomly) with proceeds donated to the V Foundation in support of cancer research. Head to www.stockx.com/lp/vfoundation to enter.
Equity in Health Programming
- Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Collaboration — Returning for its second year, ESPN, together with the V Foundation and Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc., are continuing the “Give & Go” campaign on Wednesday, December 1, in honor of longtime ESPN anchor and Alpha Brother, Stuart Scott. The month-long awareness and fundraising campaign aims to diminish cancer disparities among minorities.
- UFC Fight Like Hell Night — UFC is dedicating its Fight Night on Saturday, Dec. 4 to the V Foundation’s Stuart Scott Memorial Cancer Research Fund. UFC is encouraging fans to support the campaign throughout December, and will make a $100,000 contribution to life-saving research, driven to improve outcomes for African Americans and other minorities disproportionately affected by the disease. Fights will air on ESPN and ESPN+ at 7 p.m. ET and 10 p.m. ET. Viewers can support the campaign by visiting www.v.org/ufc.
Additional V Week Programming
- Jim Valvano’s ESPYS Speech Roadblock — Once a year, nearly all of ESPN’s platforms pause regularly scheduled programming and run the annual 15 minute “roadblock” in support of the V Foundation. This year’s “roadblock” will begin on Wednesday, December 1 at 7 p.m. ET and highlight the critical need for cancer research support, featuring a tribute to Vitale as he continues to be an inspiration in his battle against cancer, and Valvano’s “Don’t Give Up” ESPYS speech.
- The Jaedyn McKinstry Story — SportsCenter will be highlighting the story of Bowling Green State University tight end Jaedyn McKinstry and his fight against cancer. More on his inspiring journey can be found here.
- Giving Tuesday Rundown — Throughout the global day of giving November 30, ESPN will champion the day in a variety of ways including national radio shows telecast on ESPN2 from 6 a.m. – 7 p.m. ET with featured guests sharing personal cancer stories and connections to the V Foundation, Giving Tuesday integrations for ways to give back, and more.
- The Jimmy V Men’s and Women’s Basketball Classics — The Men’s Classics begin Tuesday, December 7, followed by the Women’s Classics on Sunday, December 12, all airing live on ESPN.
|Date||Time (ET)||Event / Commentators||Network(s)|
Tue., Dec. 7
|7 p.m.||No. 13 Tennessee vs. Texas Tech
Dan Shulman, Jay Bilas, Holly Rowe
|10 p.m.||Syracuse vs. No. 6 Villanova
Dan Shulman, Jay Bilas, Holly Rowe
Sun., Dec. 12
|1 p.m.||No. 16 Kentucky at No. 10 Louisville
Beth Mowins and Debbie Antonelli
|3 p.m.||No. 8 Maryland at No. 1 South Carolina
Courtney Lyle, Carolyn Peck and Holly Rowe
About ESPN Corporate Citizenship
ESPN believes that, at its very best, sports uplift the human spirit. Its corporate citizenship programs use power of sport to positively address society’s needs through strategic community investments, cause marketing programs, collaboration with sports organizations and employee volunteerism, while also utilizing its diverse media assets. For more information go to www.espn.com/citizenship.
About the V Foundation for Cancer Research
The V Foundation for Cancer Research was founded in 1993 by ESPN and the late Jim Valvano, legendary North Carolina State University basketball coach and ESPN commentator. The V Foundation has funded more than $290 million in game-changing cancer research grants nationwide through a competitive process strictly supervised by a world-class Scientific Advisory Committee. Because the V Foundation has an endowment to cover administrative expenses, 100% of direct donations is awarded to cancer research and programs. The V team is committed to accelerating Victory Over Cancer®. To learn more, visit v.org.