SPRINGFIELD, Mo.- The Drury University Athletics Department completed its 20th Annual Auction presented by the Springfield Neurological and Spine Institute on Oct. 16, and once again, it proved to be a successful endeavor.
The Drury Panthers Champions Challenge, a matching gift crowdfunding campaign, preceded the auction and ran from Sept. 8-14. The auction started with online bidding on Oct. 9, and when it concluded on the night of Oct. 16, more than $277,519 had been raised through both campaigns for the Drury Athletics Department.
“All of us at Drury University greatly appreciate everyone that showed their support and commitment to this institution by making an investment in the lives of our student-athletes through these two fundraising efforts,” said Drury Vice President and Director of Athletics, Corey Bray. “It was also great to see the hundreds of fans and donors back in the O’Reilly Family Event Center on Saturday. Last year, the pandemic canceled our in-person event and forced us to conduct the auction in a new way. This year, while we are still dealing with the pandemic, we were able to continue online bidding opportunities for those who did not feel comfortable attending the in-person event and for those who live outside the Ozarks while also providing the in-person event that everyone loves.”
The online auction had more than 600 bidders from 18 states competing for hundreds of items ranging from vacation home rentals, rounds of golf, home goods, and one-of-a-kind collectibles.
“I want to give a special ‘thank you’ to the Springfield Neurological and Spine Institute for serving as the title sponsor for this year’s auction and to Great Southern Bank, who sponsored our Cash-Bash prize giveaway,” added Bray. “We had more than a dozen food and beverage partners donate their time and menu items, and we are very grateful for their participation. I would also like to thank our coaches, student-athletes and their family members, and the local businesses that donated all of the outstanding auction items this year. Finally, I would like to thank Paige Grisham, from our athletics department, who spent countless hours coordinating every aspect of this event, and, once again, our auctioneer Kirk Elmquist helped make the auction a success along with guest-host Ned Reynolds.”
Proceeds generated from both the Drury Athletics Auction and the Drury Panthers Fund Champions Challenge go toward helping Drury Athletics pay for essential expenses in the areas of team travel, equipment, apparel, and recruiting the next class of outstanding Drury student-athletes.
Drury University supports 22 NCAA programs and six non-NCAA sports, with seven additional non-NCAA sports planned for 2022-23. The Panthers have won 36 national championships, more than any four-year institution in Missouri.