Coaches vs. Cancer: It’s Suits & Sneakers Week

Suits and Sneakers Week tipped off on Monday night. The week-long event, which runs through Sunday, January 29, is the signature collaboration between the NABC’s Coaches vs. Cancer program and the American Cancer Society.

For the entire week, college basketball coaches will trade in their sweatsuits, quarter zips, and polo shirts for suits, along with sneakers to cap off the Coaches vs. Cancer signature look.

Throughout the week, the coaches will also share their thoughts and memories to honor or remember those who have battled cancer. Their #SuitUp inspirations as they look to provide hope and encouragement. 

“The NABC has proudly collaborated with the American Cancer Society on the Coaches vs. Cancer program for nearly three decades, and the results continue to be truly life-saving,” said NABC Executive Director Craig Robinson.

“Suits And Sneakers Week brings our game together in support of a common cause and is a testament to coaches’ passion for using their influential platforms for good. Our goal this week is to bring much-needed attention to the importance of early detection and to remind those facing cancer that they are never alone in the fight.”

In addition to providing inspiration, this week is about raising funds and awareness. Cancer screening, which saves lives, has been down significantly over the past few years, beginning with COVID, when screenings saw a 90 percent decrease during the worst periods of the pandemic.

According to the ACS, there has been some bounce back, but there needs to be more, as screenings remain down by 25 percent compared to historical averages.

“With one in two men and one in three women facing a cancer diagnosis in their lifetime, regular cancer screening remains an essential part of ending cancer as we know it. Early detection of cancer affords the best opportunity to effectively treat and, when possible, eradicate cancer,” said Dr. Karen E. Knudsen, chief executive officer at the American Cancer Society.

“ACS is grateful for its partnership with the NABC and college basketball coaches across the country in encouraging all individuals to be advocates for their own health through following cancer screening guidelines. Together, let’s set the screen!”

The Coaches vs. Cancer program began in 1993, started by former Missouri men’s basketball coach Norm Stewart; and has been a leader in bringing attention to the disease and has raised over $145 million for the American Cancer Society.

I am a survivor and know very well how vital early detection can be. I also lost my uncle well before his time. Much more than my mother’s little brother, he was one of my closest friends and one of the biggest reasons that sports are such a big part of my life.

For more information, visit coachesvscancer.org. You can follow them on Instagram and Twitter at @coachesvscancer and by using the hashtag #SuitsAndSneakers.