NASHVILLE, Tenn., Jan. 8, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Infiniti today announced that it is proud to once again partner with the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC), the NCAA and ESPN to sponsor the "Infiniti Coaches' Charity Challenge." Now in its fourth year, the program consists of 48 NCAA® Division I men's basketball coaches representing charities and competing for fan votes in a four-round online bracket tournament.
As an official corporate partner of the NCAA, Infiniti will make total donations throughout the competition of $349,000. As coaches advance throughout the competition, donations totaling $249,000 will be awarded to each of their charities of choice; the further they advance, the more money the coaches raise. The final winning coach will receive a total of $100,000 to benefit his charity of choice.
Beginning January 6, fans will decide who the winner is over a four-round, ten-week period, casting votes on a custom online microsite at www.ESPN.com/Infiniti.
The first round of voting takes place January 6 and runs through January 26, with half of the coaches advancing to a second round, held between January 27 and February 16. From February 17 to March 2, the 16 advancing coaches from round two will compete in a third, penultimate, round where only four coaches advance to the final, fourth round. From March 3 to March 16, fans can vote for one coach, per region, per day, with the top vote-getting coach and charity announced on March 16, 2014.
Included in this year's group of 48 coaches are Alabama coach Anthony Grant, competing for the Boys & Girls Clubs of West Alabama; Baylor coach Scott Drew, competing for the Scott and Kelly Drew Endowed Scholarship; Arizona coach Sean Miller, competing for the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Southern Arizona; Colorado coach Tad Boyle, competing for the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Denver; and Wichita State coach Gregg Marshall, competing for Wichita Children's Home. While there can only be one winner, Infiniti has guaranteed each coach a donation of at least $1,000 to their charity of choice, with the amount donated increasing the longer they stay in the competition
"Infiniti is excited to once again partner with NABC, NCAA and ESPN and raise money for many deserving charities with the "Infiniti Coaches' Charity Challenge," said Michael Bartsch, Infiniti's Vice President of the Americas. "After his second consecutive year winning $100,000 for the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Ohio, Coach Thad Matta of Ohio State University stands as stiff competition to the 47 other coaches and their fans, but we're sure they're up for the fight."
"The Infiniti Coaches' Charity Challenge amplifies the significant contributions made by men's college basketball coaches in their own communities and across America," said NABC Executive Director Jim Haney. "The Challenge engages college basketball fans across the country to join with these outstanding coaches to raise funds and awareness for those in need and has had a tremendous impact in its first three years."
"The Infiniti Coaches Charity Challenge is an excellent example of the partnerships that can form around NCAA basketball that ultimately benefit programs, families and people in need," said Keith Martin, NCAA managing director of championships and broadcast alliances. "Infiniti, as an NCAA corporate partner, has found a way to include fans and bring some of the most successful, competitive college coaches together to support worthy causes and give back to the communities that support them and NCAA student-athletes."
ESPN will be promoting the Infiniti Coaches' Charity Challenge across many different platforms including ESPN broadcast, ESPN.com, the ESPN app on Xbox and several social media sites.
Infiniti Motor Company LTD. is headquartered in Hong Kong with sales operations in approximately 50 countries. The Infiniti brand was launched in 1989. Its range of premium automobiles is currently built in manufacturing facilities in Japan and the United States. Production in China and Europe will start soon along with the expansion of the brand's portfolio.
As the Title Partner and Vehicle Performance Partner of Infiniti Red Bull Racing, Infiniti has a far-reaching technical collaboration with the Formula One team, and Sebastian Vettel, its four-time World Champion driver, serves as Infiniti's Director of Performance.
Infiniti offers a full-line of luxury performance automobiles that inspire at every turn, including the all-new Q50 luxury sports sedan, Q60 coupe and convertible, Q70 performance luxury sedan, QX50 luxury crossover, QX60 7-passenger luxury crossover, QX70 performance luxury crossover and the QX80 full-size luxury SUV.
More information about Infiniti, its Total Ownership Experience® and its industry leading technologies can be found at www.infinitiusa.com. For the latest news on Infiniti, visit www.infinitinews.com, "like" Infiniti on Facebook, and follow the brand on Twitter @InfinitiUSA.
The NCAA is a membership-led nonprofit association of colleges and universities committed to supporting academic and athletic opportunities for more than 450,000 student-athletes at more than 1,000 member colleges and universities. Each year, more than 54,000 student-athletes compete in NCAA championships in Divisions I, II and III sports. Visit www.NCAA.org and www.NCAA.com for more details about the Association, its goals, members and corporate partnerships that help support programs for student-athletes. [NCAA is a trademark of the National Collegiate Athletic Association.]
About the National Association of Basketball Coaches
Located in Kansas City, Missouri, the NABC was founded in 1927 by Forrest "Phog" Allen, the legendary basketball coach at the University of Kansas. Allen, a student of James Naismith, the inventor of basketball, organized coaches into this collective group to serve as Guardians of the Game. The NABC currently has nearly 5,000 members consisting primarily of university and college men's basketball coaches. All members of the NABC are expected to uphold the core values of being a Guardian of the Game by bringing attention to the positive aspects of the sport of basketball and the role coaches play in the academic and athletic lives of today's student-athletes. The four core values of being a Guardian of the Game are advocacy, leadership, service and education. Additional information about the NABC, its programs and membership, can be found at www.nabc.org.