Former Indiana men's basketball coach Kelvin Sampson, now in the same position at Houston, sent out a tweet last month that asked for the college basketball world to assist with the recovery effort after Hurricane Harvey ravaged the area.
Sampson asked coaches around the country to send clothes, shoes, whatever gear schools could provide in order to outfit people that lost all of their belongings due to the flood.
Sampson’s plea was simple: “I came up with something I think coaches at all levels can help with. Both men’s and women’s HS, JC, every level of college D1, D2, D3 and NAIA…if you can, please send 20 of your school’s t-shirts and 10 pairs of shoes.”
The response was overwhelming. Several Region colleges answered the charge and went far beyond the call.
“Coach Sampson provided the opportunity when he sent his message out to men and women basketball coaches at all levels,” Calumet College of St. Joseph’s women’s basketball coach Steve Helm said in a statement. “I asked our student-athletes to donate what they could.”
The Crimson Wave helped collect more than 10 boxes of clothing that were sent off to Houston. The school is still accepting donations at the Rittenmeyer Center through the end of business Friday. With schools from around the country donating thousands of boxes of clothing, the needs have shifted to hygiene and baby products, as well as pet supplies.
Helm wasn’t surprised when he saw the outpouring of support from the CCSJ community.
“I believe in community service and servant leadership, and that is a big part of the women’s program here at CCSJ, our entire athletic department, the NAIA and what we stand for,” Helm said. “I wish we could be there in person to show our support.”
Valley Vision: The Missouri Valley Conference began announcing its television schedule for the upcoming 2017-18 men’s basketball season this week. Valparaiso will be featured prominently on television, as the Crusaders are one of just three Valley programs to have a scheduled game on ESPN2 this season.
Valparaiso will travel to Northern Iowa on Jan. 13 and Illinois State on Jan. 27, with both of those evening games being carried on ESPN2. The Crusaders will host several nationally-televised games this season. When the Redbirds come to the Athletics-Recreation Center on Feb. 11, the game will be on ESPNU. There is also a possibility that the Jan. 21 meeting against Loyola will be held on ESPNU. If not, the game will be a featured contest on “The Valley on ESPN3,” the league’s co-braned digital network with ESPN.
The Crusaders will make their first ever appearance on the CBS Sports Network on Feb. 20 when Valparaiso hosts Northern Iowa in the regular-season home finale. The final game of the regular season comes four days later at Drake, and the game could be featured on either ESPN2, ESPN3 or CBSSN.
The Valley also has a two-year contract with NBC Sports Chicago, formerly CSN Chicago, and Valparaiso could have several more televised games that are announced in the coming days. NBC Sports Chicago will have a 16-game Valley regular-season package and will air the first two rounds of Arch Madness. The tournament semifinals will air on CBSSN on March 3 and the championship game will air on CBS on March 4.