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UT Tyler Student-Athletes Partner with Make-A-Wish Foundation for Patriot Madness Event

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October 31, 2018

Media Contact: Beverley Golden
Senior Director of Media Relations
Marketing and Communications
The University of Texas at Tyler

The University of Texas at Tyler Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) invites the Tyler community to their second Patriot Madness event 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 1 at the Herrington Patriot Center.

Patriot Madness is a peprally-style event open to students and the Tyler community that showcases and kicks-off basketball season. Two lucky guests will have the chance at a half-court shot to win $5,000. The rally will also include free t-shirts (sponsored by UT Tyler Student Government Association) and a skills challenge between groups on campus before a scrimmage game featuring the UT Tyler basketball programs.

New this year, SAAC is partnering with the Make-A-Wish North Texas Foundation as a part of a larger initiative by NCAA Division II schools. UT Tyler's SAAC has set a goal to raise $1,000 for the nonprofit.

"This will not only be a fun, family-friendly event that will bring together students and the Tyler community on campus, but also a great opportunity to raise money and awareness for the Make-A-Wish foundation," said Maggie Williams Koehn, head spirit squad coach and SAAC adviser. "As UT Tyler enters Division II, we are striving to be a new, large contributor to this initiative, and this event will set the standard for years to come."

Since the Division II Student-Athlete Advisory Committee established the partnership with Make-A-Wish in 2003, Division II has raised more than $5.3 million for the nonprofit organization. Those funds have been used to grant wishes to more than 660 children across the country with life-threatening medical conditions.

To raise money and inspire some friendly-competition throughout the week, SAAC has been hosting "Bucket Battles" at the University Center. Students have been encouraged to donate change to student groups' buckets, with the heaviest bucket getting the most points, while cash donations subtract points from the group's bucket. All proceeds from this week's "Bucket Battles" will be going to the Make-A-Wish North Texas Foundation.

For more information about Patriot Madness, UT Tyler SAAC or the partnership with Make-A-Wish, contact Maggie Williams Koehn, maggiewilliams@uttyler.edu or 903.565.5634.

A member of the prestigious UT System, The University of Texas at Tyler focuses on student success and innovative research in the more than 80 undergraduate and graduate degree programs offered. With more than 10,000 students, UT Tyler has facilities in Tyler, Longview, Palestine and Houston.

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