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Gonzaga’s Mark Few honored at virtual Dick Vitale Gala

UPDATED: Fri., Sept. 4, 2020

Gonzaga head coach Mark Few give a thumbs up to his players during the Santa Clara game on Jan. 16. (Colin Mulvany / The Spokesman-Review)
Gonzaga head coach Mark Few give a thumbs up to his players during the Santa Clara game on Jan. 16. (Colin Mulvany / The Spokesman-Review)

Gonzaga coach Mark Few was among a handful of honorees Friday at the 15th annual Dick Vitale Gala, a fundraiser for the V Foundation.

The gala, headquartered in Sarasota, Florida, became a virtual event with live and taped content due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

It was pushed back from its original date of May 8, but that didn’t stop the longtime ESPN college basketball analyst’s gala from generating a record $7 million for pediatric cancer research. The 2019 Vitale Gala raised $4.3 million.

Few was honored along with Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians and ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith. Former Buffalo Bills quarterback Jim Kelly and former Orlando Magic executive Pat Williams each received a John Saunders V Foundation Courage Award.

The Vitale Gala is a signature event for the V Foundation, founded by coach and broadcaster Jim Valvano before he died from cancer in 1993.

Gonzaga is scheduled to face Tennessee on Dec. 8 in the Jimmy V Classic at Madison Square Garden.

Mark and Marcy Few have been active in cancer research fundraising for nearly two decades in the Inland Northwest, beginning in 2002 with their annual Coaches vs. Cancer event.

Gonzaga played one game at the Spokane Arena every season from 2007-12, raising more than $750,000 for Spokane’s Ronald McDonald House Charities.

The Fews have participated in Community Cancer Fund fundraisers since 2014, helping generate over $17 million in the fight against cancer.

Friday’s live auction items included a Gonzaga VIP basketball weekend for two, a 2021 Masters weekend for two and a 2021 Kentucky Derby weekend for two.

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