NC State men’s basketball coach Mark Gottfried has done fairly well in the Infiniti Coaches’ Charity Challenge in recent years, earning thousands of dollars in contributions for The V Foundation for Cancer Research.
But this year, Gottfried is determined to come out on top and, in the process, earn $100,000 for the V Foundation. “We’re in it to win it,” Gottfried told us in a recent interview. “It’s a great opportunity for the foundation to get $100,000.”
But Gottfried can’t do it alone. He needs the help of NC State alumni and supporters, Wolfpackers who are willing to take a few minutes each day for the rest of basketball season to cast an online vote for Gottfried.
“This particular contest is about numbers,” Gottfried says. “It’s about people being involved on a daily basis.”
The Infiniti Coaches’ Charity Challenge pits 48 Division I men’s basketball coaches against each other in a contest to earn money for the charity of their choice. Ohio State’s Thad Matta has won the challenge the past three years, earning $100,000 each year for the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Ohio.
Gottfried made it to the third round last year, earning $10,000 for the V Foundation. Iowa State’s Fred Hoiberg, Purdue’s Matt Painter and Wichita State’s Gregg Marshall joined Matta in last year’s final round. Hoiberg, Painter and Marshall each earned $15,000 for their respective charities.
This year’s challenge begins today, and will run for 10 weeks. Coaches advance through each round based on the number of votes they receive from fans, but the vote totals are wiped out after each round. So it’s critical that Wolfpack fans vote for Gottfried once a day as long as the NC State head coach is still in the running.
To be able to vote for Gottfried, fans will have to first register with ESPN.com (look in the upper right-hand corner of the website to register) to create a free account. Once fans are registered, they can vote online once per day at espn.com/infiniti. Remember, voting totals start over at the beginning of each new round.
While acknowledging that there are plenty of worthy charitable organizations, Gottfried says the V Foundation is a good fit for him and Wolfpack fans. Gottfried is the only coach in the challenge to select the V Foundation as his charity to support.
“As the head coach at NC State, that charity makes sense for our fans and people who are close to our program,” he says. “It has been a good fit for us.”