Last year, ESPN did Craig Sager Day during its annual V Week to raise money for cancer. The event was a great success, as broadcasters wore zany suits in honor of the former Turner Sports sideline reporter. Pretty soon after, management was kicking around ideas for what they'd do a for a follow-up. As soon as Stuart Scott Day was suggested, there was swift consensus.
"Immediately the internal discussion was It has to be Stu,” ESPN's V Week committee chair Brent Colborne tells The Big Lead. Thus, Wednesday, December 4th will be Stuart Scott Day, and you'll see tribute packages throughout the day, particularly on SportsCenter. That won't be it: On Saturday, December 7th, ESPN and UFC are branding their Fight Night as Stuart Scott Fight Like Hell Night, a reference to the line in his famous ESPY speech (which was, somehow, over five years ago already).
“Stuart Scott was a really passionate MMA fan, and in the octagon training until his very last days," says Colborne. "We partnered with UFC to make a really big deal of raising funds for the Stuart Scott Memorial Cancer Fund throughout that night.”
The Stuart Scott Memorial Cancer Research Fund was established in 2015 after Scott’s passing, and has raised over $10 million. Per ESPN, the fund "supports minority scholars and research dedicated to ending the disparities among African Americans in cancer incidences and death rates."
On Stuart Scott Day, three separate features and vignettes are being prepared to air on SportsCenter episodes throughout the day. One will be taking a look at booya and how the way he lived his life was an embodiment of the phrase. Another will be centered around his being a pioneer in his work. In the third one, his daughters Taylor and Sydni will talk about their father and what he meant to them. They will also be penning a piece about him to run on ESPN.com.
At 7:00 PM ET on December 4th, the annual 15-minute "road block" in which all of ESPN's networks coordinate to run the same programming will air. There will be a 4.5-minute tribute with commentary from broadcasters that includes Jay Harris, Scott Van Pelt, Hannah Storm, John Anderson, Michael Eaves, and Sage Steele. After that will be Jim Valvano's speech.
According to Colborne, the committee chair, V Week raised a record $8.3 million last year to bring its 12-year total over $30.5 million. The V Foundation crossed the $100 million milestone this past July.