Anything for the Team

Submitted by Andy T

For Andy Talley-the winningest head coach in Villanova Football history-the biggest victory came off the field.

Listening to a radio show 20 years ago, Coach Talley learned that the bone marrow registry had only 1 million donors, not nearly enough for everyone who needed a transplant. So Coach Talley made it his mission to educate and promote awareness of bone marrow donor registration.

It helped that he had access to 90 healthy athletes eager to donate and spread the word about his cause.

His players started organizing donor drives and raising funds for tissue-typing kits. They also followed his commitment to make a difference worldwide and registered to become donors.

And that's how former Villanova two-sport standout Matt Szczur '11, now with the Chicago Cubs organization, came to donate his bone marrow to a little girl on the other side of the globe, selflessly missing a part of his baseball season just before the Major League Baseball draft.

Coach Talley's efforts caught the eye of Be the Match®, the largest bone marrow registry in the world. A powerful partnership was forged.

To date, 40 other college football programs have joined the cause through the Andy Talley Bone Marrow Foundation's Get in the Game, Save a Life initiative.

The foundation has been responsible for 267 successful transplants and 40,000 new donor registrations.

A compassionate coach and selfless athletes ignited change by showing that saving lives is the ultimate victory.