LEXINGTON – University of Kentucky basketball coach John Calipari and his Wildcats will join forces with local television station WKYT (a CBS affiliate) for a telethon Wednesday night to benefit the victims of Superstorm Sandy.
Phone banks will be open from 6-9 p.m. locally, and the telethon will be seen live on WKYT from 7-8 p.m. Coverage will then switch over to CWKYT from 8-9 p.m.
Members of the UK basketball team will take phone calls and donations from 7-9 p.m. People in the Lexington area can call 859-299-5455, and those outside the area should call 855-257-2700.
Donors can also call the Red Cross at 859-253-1331 or 800-REDCROSS.
The special event will also stream live at WKYT.com for 24 hours, beginning at 7 p.m. Wednesday.
One hundred percent of the proceeds will go to the American Red Cross to benefit the victims of the catastrophic storm that ravaged large blocks of the northeast, particularly in the New York and New Jersey areas.
Calipari’s Wildcats open their season Friday night in Brooklyn, N.Y., (against Maryland, at 8:30 on ESPN) and the UK coach said he wants to present a check from this telethon to officials in that area, in person, on Friday.
Calipari said Monday that prized UK souvenirs will be auctioned off in the telethon, particularly autographed pieces of the New Orleans court where his Wildcats won the national championship this past spring.
He also said many former Wildcats who are currently in the NBA will help.
“We have some different things we’re going to do to try to help and deliver a check when we go up there Friday,” Calipari said. “So if you can help us with that, we’d appreciate it.”