Brady Hoke, head coach of the Michigan Wolverines, recently purchased 40 #chuckstrong t-shirts that himself and his staff will wear prior to the Wolverines game against the Illinois Fighting Illini this coming Saturday. The Indianapolis Colts coach Chuck Pagano was diagnosed with Leukemia last week, and Hoke is honoring Pagano with this gesture.
Not only is Hoke paying a tribute to Pagano himself, but it’s a tribute to all people battling Leukemia. Leukemia is a type of cancer of the blood or bone marrow and is becoming all too familiar in our society.
Pagano and Hoke are linked through family friends, and the Wolverines Defensive Coordinator Greg Mattison. Mattison and Pagano were part of the same Baltimore Ravens staff when Pagano was coaching the Baltimore secondary.
“He’s our kind of guy, and so we wanted to pay a little tribute to him and also the cause” said coach Hoke.
Saying he is “our kind of guy” is a powerful statement from Hoke, who is pushing the Wolverines program back in the right direction after a few down years.
It’s not ideal that Pagano’s diagnosis is raising Leukemia awareness, but awareness is being raised, and that is a step in the right direction.
The Colts are coming off a somewhat miraculous comeback victory over the Green Bay Packers last week, perhaps driven by the heavy hearts all of them were carrying heading into the game. Pagano was delivered the game-ball by Colts Owner Jim Irsay after the win.
Purchasing 40, $20 dollar shirts to send a nationally recognized message in the fight against cancer as a whole, is a class act. Well played coach Hoke.