MORGANTOWN, (WVDN) – In celebration of the Bob Huggins Fish Fry’s 10-year anniversary, supporters contributed a record $2.65 million to benefit lifesaving cancer care and research at the WVU Cancer Institute.
Barstool Sports founder Dave Portnoy (from left) and University of Kansas Men’s Basketball Coach Bill Self chat with WVU Men’s Basketball Coach Bob Huggins at the Fish Fry.
Since 2013, WVU Men’s Basketball Head Coach Bob Huggins has invited fans, friends, and cancer survivors to the Fish Fry to support causes he cares about while enjoying a seafood feast, good company, and live entertainment. This year’s event – presented by Little General Stores and in partnership with Barstool Sports – was held Friday, Feb. 18, at Mylan Park’s Hazel and J.W. Ruby Community Center and via livestream.
Huggins welcomed University of Kansas Men’s Basketball Head Coach Bill Self, Barstool Sports founder Dave Portnoy, and current and former Mountaineer players to share engaging personal stories punctuated by Huggins unique commentary. Tony Caridi served as emcee, while Phillip Bowen and Lords of Lester provided musical entertainment.
Huggins’ efforts raised more than $2.65 million, including a $500,000 gift from Portnoy and a $300,000 contribution from Huggins. Proceeds from the event benefit the Norma Mae Huggins Endowment at the WVU Cancer Institute and Remember the Miners Flagship Scholars Program.
“This year’s Fish Fry made me further realize how special and important this event really is to West Virginia,” Huggins said. “Not only did we raise a lot of money for cancer, but we also had a record audience full of people who have truly bought into our mission of defeating cancer. It’s amazing to see how many sponsors, partners, and supporters are backing this cause one decade later. Dave Portnoy and his Barstool team really stepped up this year and helped tremendously. We have come a long way and have done so much good. But we’re just getting started.”
Huggins established the Norma Mae Huggins Endowment in 2003 to honor his mother, who passed away after a long battle with colon cancer. Including this year’s Fish Fry contributions, the endowment has raised over $16 million make a difference in the lives of patients at the WVU Cancer Institute.
“I want to extend my sincere congratulations to Bob Huggins for such a momentous Fish Fry,” Hannah Hazard-Jenkins, M.D., director of the WVU Cancer Institute, Jean and Laurence DeLynn Chair of Oncology, and associate professor of surgery at the WVU School of Medicine, said. “The donors who have supported him and the Fish Fry over the past 10 years have made a tangible difference at the WVU Cancer Institute, helping us bring high quality care closer to home for fellow Mountaineers. All of us at the WVU Cancer Institute are inspired by Bob Huggins’ generosity of time and advocacy and are grateful his dedication to our cause.”
Remember the Miners is a nonprofit public awareness campaign committed to telling the story of America’s coal miners. Remember the Miners honors miners through events, media, and its flagship Scholars Program. The Scholars Program has raised more than $200,000 and funds scholarships for mining engineering students at the WVU Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources.
“The longstanding partnership between Remember the Miners and the Bob Huggins Fish Fry has resulted in substantial growth for the Remember the Miners Scholarship Endowment Fund,” Erik Muendel, founder and CEO of Brightline Interactive and co-founder of Remember the Miners, said. “The WVU Mining Extension Service and Mine Rescue Team students who benefit from these scholarships represent the future of mining technology and safety. Ten years later, the Fish Fry continues to bolster Remember the Miners’ mission of telling the story of the coal miner.”
To support the Norma Mae Huggins Endowment and/or the WVU Cancer Institute, visit https://cancer.wvumedicine.org/giving for more information.
All gifts are made through the WVU Foundation, the nonprofit organization that receives and administers private donations on behalf of the University.