ATLANTA (CBS Atlanta/AP) — Louisville is selling inspirational T-shirts for $25 of the Cardinals player who broke his leg during Sunday’s Midwest Regional final against Duke.
Kevin Ware broke his lower right leg in gruesome fashion, the bone snapping as he landed after trying to block a shot. The Cardinals were shell-shocked by the injury — Ware’s bone protruded six inches through the skin — and it was only the encouraging words of Ware himself that helped the team focus on the game.
The Cardinals will wear new warm-up gear to honor the sophomore, with Ware’s No. 5 replacing the “S” in the “Rise to the Occasion” T-shirts they’ve been wearing.
The Louisville sports information department tells CBS Sports that the university will not receive any royalty rights from the shirt.
“According to Associate Athletic Director Brent Seebohm, U of L proactively decided to waive any traditional university licensing royalties revenue connected to the #5 graphic to be worn by the team on court,” they said in a statement. “The ‘Ri5e to the Occasion’ shirt was created as a respectful tribute to honor Kevin within NCAA trademarked apparel parameters, and allow fans to rally around the team.”
Adidas said in a statement that they will donate a portion of the proceeds to the university’s scholarship fund.
“We are happy to support Louisville fans who wish to honor a player and rally around the team during the most important moments of their season,” Adidas told CBS Sports. “The shirt was intended as a respectful tribute and because of that a portion of every sale will go to the university’s scholarship fund.”
Due to NCAA rules, Ware nor his family will receive any proceeds from the shirt.
Ware, though, will be in Atlanta Saturday for Louisville’s semi-final game against Wichita State.
“I think God puts things in your life and you have to go through certain obstacles,” he said during a press conference Wednesday. “I just feel like these are obstacles that are going to make me grow up for the better. It’s going to open my eyes to a lot of things I probably haven’t seen before.”
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