September 22, 2009

Holy Cross Coaches Team Up To Fight Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

WACO, Texas - This Saturday, September 26, college football coaches around the nation will take part in Coach to Cure MD, a national charity project of the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA). Even though Holy Cross has a bye this week, the Crusader coaching staff has put its full support behind the project, which will raise awareness and research funding for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, the most prolific genetic killer diagnosed in childhood.

"College football coaches are dedicated to the betterment of young men and that's why the entire coaching profession is proud to be a part of Coach to Cure MD," said Grant Teaff, AFCA executive director and legendary former coach of Baylor University. "Our coaches are determined to beat Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy and we need college football fans to help."

Football fans can donate to Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy research by either going online to http://www.coachtocuremd.org/ or by texting the word "CURE" to 90999 (a $5 donation will automatically be added to your next phone bill and standard text message rates apply).  

Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy is the most common fatal genetic disorder diagnosed during childhood and primarily affects boys across all races and cultures. Boys and young men with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy develop progressive muscle weakness that eventually causes loss of mobility, wheelchair dependency and a decline in respiratory and cardiac function. Currently, there is no cure for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy and limited therapeutic options exist.

The financial service firm TIAA-CREF has signed on again this year as the national sponsor and will donate air-time on September 26 for a Coach to Cure MD commercial.

Last year, over 2,675 college coaches participated in the inaugural Coach to Cure MD event. Teaff said he expects an even wider cross-section of coaches to participate in the program's second year. Families affected with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy will also gather for fund-raising tailgate parties on campuses around the country to encourage more fans to get involved.

"We are thrilled to be teammates again this year with the AFCA for Coach to Cure MD. The commitment of the coaches and universities that are participating is truly inspiring. We are taking a comprehensive approach in the fight against Duchenne-funding research, raising awareness, promoting advocacy, connecting the community, and broadening treatment options," said Pat Furlong, founding president and CEO of PPMD.  "And with the support of the AFCA and college football fans everywhere, we are confident that we will end Duchenne."