North Texas Daily

Teams go pink for breast cancer awareness

Teams go pink for breast cancer awareness

Teams go pink for breast cancer awareness
October 30
00:02 2014

Samantha McDonald / Staff Writer

Student athletes have been looking pretty in pink.

In support of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, UNT sports teams donned the ubiquitous color on everything from t-shirts to ribbons throughout October.

While the North Texas Mean Green football players wore pink sweatbands during their games, the North Texas Dancers flaunted pink and silver pompoms and the Mean Green cheerleaders accessorized with pink hair bows and wristbands.

Senior associate athletic director Eric Capper said that the cause has gained traction for UNT players as a result of the NFL’s growing participation in the last five years.

“It’s become a lot more popular because of the national movement, and it’s a cause that affects so many people,” Capper said. “Hardly anybody doesn’t know somebody who was affected by breast cancer.”

Building a common cause

Another team clad in pink is the North Texas women’s volleyball team.

UNT hosted a Dig Pink game against LA Tech Oct. 3. Sports information director Taylor Brasher said that the night was particularly emotional for the girls because they were not only playing for a team member’s survivor parent, but also senior setter Camille Cherry’s mother, who died in a car accident en route to the match.

Junior outside hitter Carnae Dillard, whose mother is currently combating breast cancer, said the event was special to her because she played in remembrance of the people who were and currently are affected by the disease.

“Breast cancer really runs in my family – my grandma, my mom, my aunt, my best friend’s mom – so I just think that it’s an important cause,” Dillard said. “Whenever I go out there, I’m playing for all these people – the people who have passed, the people who are still living, still fighting for it.”

Another participating group in the UNT community is the Zeta Tau Alpha sorority. Every year, the Zetas set up a table at the Onstead Promenade as part of a weeklong event to pass out ribbons and talk to female passers-by about the risks of breast cancer.

The sorority also sells raffle tickets for its annual fundraiser, Ziti Tau Alpha, in which they raise money for breast cancer education and awareness through a spaghetti dinner. The chapter consistently raises more than $25,000 for the cause, Zeta Tau Alpha member Ashley Hall said.

“I think it’s very important to host these events because oftentimes college-aged women don’t think about breast cancer,” Hall said. “It’s hard to believe that someone as young as 18 can get breast cancer, but it happens more often than one would think.”

‘Pinkwashing’ Denton

Businesses around Denton are following suit.

Barefoot Athletics, a retail store and boutique located on the Square, offers UNT and TWU campus wear along with pink t-shirts in a campaign called “Pink Out.” The store features three t-shirt designs, an increase from only one for last year’s event of the same name.

The increase in production was a result of the t-shirt’s popularity and sales. Barefoot donates 15 to 20 percent to the largest nonprofit organization for breast cancer, the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation.

Regional manager Meredeth Persinger said the company has always supported the fight against breast cancer and that she was pleased to notice the success of this year’s “Pink Out” event.

“That’s all I have left on the table, so we’re doing real good,” Persinger said, pointing at the limited stock of shirts left at the storefront. “We like to do t-shirts, so what better way to do that than to support them?”

Featured Image: Volleyball players show their support in the fight against breast cancer by wearing pink sweatbands during the game against Florida Atlantic University on Oct. 23. Photo by Byron Thompson – Senior Staff Photographer

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