USF head baseball coach leads fundraising efforts to help children battling cancer

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – He is a husband, father, coach and now co-chair of a fundraising campaign that is extremely important to him. That campaign is called Vs. Cancer, which funds efforts to help children fight cancer.

“It means a lot,” said Billy Mohl. “It means more to me to know that I will keep the promise I have made.”

Mohl is responsible for recruiting individual athletes, teams and communities for charity, and as head baseball coach at the University of South Florida, he has the necessary connections.

“The special thing about the whole thing is whatever money we raise,” he explained, “50 percent of it goes to research and 50 percent of it goes to Tampa General Hospital in the pediatric cancer ward, where they will use that money to get their improve quality of life. ”

Since joining the program in 2014, Mohl and the Bulls baseball team have raised more than $ 10,000 every year.

“The team’s goal is $ 12,500,” he said, “and I’m pretty sure we’ve already surpassed that.”

Mohl also scored a personal goal for himself, hoping to raise $ 6,000 this year. He has already achieved that goal and in the same way is well on his way to fulfilling that promise he made to his wife Sarah years ago.

“It’s been years, but it feels like yesterday,” he admitted, “but of course if I went through someone, we were both 28 years old and you don’t expect to deal with that at 28 years old.”

Sarah died of a rare form of cervical cancer in 2013, leaving Mohl and their young son Hunter.

“Her cancer was virtually incurable from the start,” said Mohl. “When you see what it does to someone and you have the chance to influence it and, maybe, in some way, in a small way, donate some money that can find a cure, then you don’t want to stay there sit down and go through that and watch that one day. ”

That deadly disease hit Mohl and it hit his players, that’s why they raise money and raise their game. The team takes part in an annual “Cut for the Cure” event where they shave their heads. That event follows the game against the University of Cincinnati on May 2.

“Some of them are not looking forward to losing their hair because they have spent a lot of time grooming and making sure it looks good,” said Mohl. “I know we have a player who is terrified of losing his hair, but at the end of the day when you get that thing shaved, it’s great for the cause.”

Mohl, like any admirable coach, does not leave his players to their own devices. He will also put his hair in the hands of a stylist.

“I always shave my head, always, every year,” he said. “Every year me and my son from my first wife participate and we both shave our heads and we look forward to that every year.”

They do it for Sarah, they do it for their family, they do it for their friends, they do it for anyone who has had cancer, directly or indirectly.

“At the end of the day, I got my two families. I have my family at home and I have my family working here with my 37 kids and my technical staff, ”said Mohl,“ and it’s just a small part of a way we can give back that is greater than anything. also. do in our life. ”

Mohl has since remarried and together he and his wife are in charge of four boys. His youngest stepson also enjoys participating in the “Cut for the Cure” shave.

If you want to make a donation, you can do it here.

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