Charity work important part of Coach Brey's resume
12 NCAA tournament appearances.
Back-to-back elite 8’s.
On the court, the accomplishments of Notre Dame Basketball Head Coach Mike Brey are applauded and admired.
But it’s one off the court number that the record breaking coach should be revered for.
Norma Coronado-Ortiz is with the Indiana Chapter of The American Heart Association or AHA.
“He’s helped raised over 100 thousand dollars through this initiative. That’s huge,” said Coronado-Ortiz.
For over six years, Coach Brey has teamed up with the AHA to help raise money through an initiative called “Coach Mike Brey’s Men of Heart”.
“I’ve always felt that when you have the platform as a coach, you are a high profile person. You use that platform in the off-season to do some things and some charitable work,” said Coach Brey.
Coach Brey is also on the Coaches vs. Cancer national council.
“Cancer touched my father. And it got me into the coaches versus cancer program in 1995 when I was the head coach at the University of Delaware. We are about three million dollars raised which is a great number for this community. And with the help of ABC 57, we got into Men of Heart and the Heart Association. And it’s another charity that’s been very well received in the community,” said Brey.
So well received in fact that the Men of Heart initiative hosts three events throughout the year!
‘Mardi Gras Masquerade’; ‘BBQ with Brey’, which showcases a survivor of heart disease; and ‘TipOff for Heart’, an event which is only open to 75 men in the community which combines the game of basketball with heart health education.
“Some of the guys have come back year after year and said ‘you’ve lost ten pounds’. A lot of it is ‘coach you’ve inspired me. You see him out in the community and we have the bracelets that were created for his series. And he wears it every day,” said Coronado-Ortiz.
Not only is he talking the talk but now the winningest coach in Notre Dame history is walking the path where many coaches don’t have the time or have the guts to.
“Not a day goes by. Certainly people ask about Bonzie Colson and Matt Farrell. But they say ‘hey coach, my dad is a cancer survivor. I appreciate what you are doing for coaches versus cancer. Or ‘coach, the heart association stuff you are doing. I had a stint put in last fall and I’m doing better.’ so that’s really rewarding when you hear that,” said Coach Brey.
The next event coming up in February is the Mardi Gras Masquerade.
ABC 57 is a proud sponsor of that event.
To purchase tickets you can head to our events page on abc57.com