Husker Football Star Rick Czap Receives NGF Grant

Former Husker Football Star Rick Czap Receives Nebraska Greats Foundation Grant

At the Nebraska Greats Foundation, we know firsthand the power that Huskers football has in our community and how it can bring families, friends, and people together. 

We also know that this strong bond between Nebraska citizens couldn’t be achieved without the hard work and determination of all of our athletes. 

That’s why we are proud to announce that, once again, thanks to your help, we are able to assist former Husker football star Rick Czap.

We couldn’t be prouder to give back to this amazing sports community and the families and athletes that conform to it; thanks to the resilience and endurance of athletes like Rick, we have become a better society.

Nebraska Greats Foundation Grant recipient_ Husker Football Star Rick Czap

Former Husker Football Athlete Rick Czap

Born on December 7, 1943. Rick Czap is a Cornhusker who played from 1964 to 1966 as a defensive tackle in esteemed games such as the Orange Bowl and Sugar Bowl. 

He was a two-time league champion in the shot put and an undefeated state champion wrestler at Bay City Central.

He was an NFL draft pick, and while Rick never played in the NFL, he did compete briefly in the CFL. 

In 2002, he was inducted into the Bay County Sports Hall of Fame.

Despite their impressive football career, injuries are bound to happen. But he endures them all and continues his professional path.

Now, years later, while Rick is struggling with different kinds of health difficulties, like needing daily assistance with bathing and dressing, his spirit is unwavering, and he embodies the strength and resilience that characterized his time on the field.

Rick Czap’s Condition

At the age of 80, Rick has been navigating through a series of health adversities, including spinal complications that have required multiple surgeries and daily usage of a wheelchair.

However, these challenges have not diminished his spirit.

Life threw another curveball at him when Hurricane Ian roared through his Florida home, leaving him without many of his belongings, including his dentures. Yet, Rick remains resilient in the face of adversity.

His current hospitalization and reliance on oxygen have made communication with those beyond his immediate circle a bit more challenging.

However, his close friends have stepped forward to help bridge this communication gap, make him feel more comfortable, and help him get better. 

How The Nebraska Greats Foundation Served This Husker Football Star

We know how discouraging health conditions can be, especially for athletes who rely on their physical strength throughout their careers. 

The good news is that there’s light at the end of the tunnel, and health conditions are just part of the journey. 

With your help, the Nebraska Greats Foundation has approved a grant to provide Rick with a new scooter and dentures, aiming to improve his mobility and quality of life. 

Our actions are guided by the foundation’s mission, which is to provide unwavering support and uphold the dignity of Nebraska’s sporting legends. The gesture towards Rick is a testament to this commitment. 

We believe that every athlete deserves respect and support, especially when facing health challenges. 

Our goal is to ensure that these greats continue to live fulfilling lives, and we’re proud to play a part in Rick’s journey toward improved health and well-being.

“Thank you, thank you, thank you.”

-Said Rick 
Husker Football Star Rick Czap NGF

Husker, Football, and The Nebraska Greats Foundation

For ten years now, the foundation has been serving athletes from the 16 colleges and universities in Nebraska. Our mission is to stand by our athletes, just like we did for Taylor in her times of need.

We have helped over 35 athletes from different universities and over 20 from UNL. We are committed to offering support to even more athletes like Rick, guiding them on their journey toward recovery.

The UNL sports team holds a significant place in the heart of Nebraska. Its influence extends beyond the sports arena, shaping our community and fostering unity. 

We take immense pride in being able to contribute to the development and well-being of the exceptional talents that make up this esteemed institution.

Our actions are guided by a deep-seated belief that every athlete deserves a fighting chance, regardless of the challenges they face. Through our efforts, we aim to uphold the dignity of these athletes, ensuring they continue to inspire us on and off the field.

The story of the NGF is one of resilience, compassion, and unwavering commitment to Nebraska’s athletes. As we look to the future, we remain steadfast in our mission, ready to lend our support to the next generation of greats.

The Nebraska Greats Foundation

We believe that every individual and organization has a role to play in empowering athletes and enriching our community.

The Nebraska Greats Foundation is a non-profit organization that provides financial assistance to former athletes and ex-athletes from Nebraska’s colleges and universities who face medical challenges. 

Thanks to this support, we can alleviate some of the mental health issues that Nebraska athletes are going through during their recovery process.

If you know of an athlete friend or family member who needs access to specific treatments and services, let us know to potentially alleviate some of the stress associated with managing these conditions.

With your help, we can make the Nebraska sports scene a safer place for our community athletes. Wondering how to help? Donate today or reach out to us. Most donations are tax-deductible.

Wayne State Basketball Standout, Dawnn Receives NGF Grant

Wayne State Basketball Standout Dawnn Tucker Receives NGF Grant

As Wayne State basketball fans and Nebraska sports enthusiasts; we know how important it is to give back to our community and see it thrive, especially when we know how hard-working and loving the Nebraska athletes are. 

Today, we are excited to share with you the moving story of one such athlete: Dawnn Tucker. Former Women’s Basketball Wayne State College standout who played for her team in the late 1980s.

Dwann Tucker and family

Wayne State Basketball Star Dawnn Tucker History 

Today, at 58 years old, Dawnn may be known as a dedicated city worker in Pierce, Nebraska, and a loving wife and mother, but her journey began on the basketball courts of Wayne State College.

In the late 1980s, when women’s sports were still fighting for recognition, Dawnn was making waves in the local basketball scene. 

Dawnn was a promising and hard-working team player at Wayne State College. She transferred to Wayne in 1987 to become a junior college women’s basketball star. 

Her arrival heralded a new era for the college’s women’s basketball team. She was a force to be reckoned with, a consistent double-digit scorer and rebounder for her team. 

Her contributions were invaluable, particularly in the NAIA District 11 playoff game against Midland. With Dawnn on the court, the Wildcats didn’t just play; they made history. Her presence helped lead the team to a victorious season.

Nebraska greats foundation Serves Dawnn

Dawnn Tucker Today

But Dawnn’s life story is not just about her achievements on the court. After leaving Wayne State, Dawnn married her best friend and partner, Joe. 

Their journey of love has been an adventure of 35 years and counting, filled with shared laughter, joy, and respect.

Together, they’ve raised two daughters. The happy family made their home in Pierce, Nebraska, where Dawnn has served the city for over 25 years. Her dedication to her work is a reflection of the same spirit she brought to her basketball career.

Dawnn Tucker´s Medical Journey

In March 2022, Dawnn was diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), a disease that has marked a new chapter in her life.

ALS is a progressive neurodegenerative condition that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. 

This condition leads to the loss of muscle control, affecting the ability to speak, eat, and move. However, despite the physical effects, cognitive functions, like intelligence and memory, remain intact.

It is safe to say that this diagnosis was a hard blow for Dawnn and her family, since ALS is not just a medical condition; it’s a life-altering reality that affects facets of everyday life. 

The gradual loss of muscle control means that simple tasks, such as walking, running, or even holding objects, can become increasingly challenging.

But for Dawnn, who once dominated the basketball court with her agility and strength, the effects of ALS were not going to stop her. 

The disease progressively limits mobility, making it difficult to continue with some routine activities, but she has kept active and positive through it all.

Dawnn’s spirit remains unbroken. Her journey with ALS is marked not by defeat but by courage, resilience, and an unyielding will to fight.

NGF Serves Dawnn

How the Nebraska Greats Foundation Served Wayne State Basketball Standout Dawnn Tucker

ALS can be a very tough time, but the good news is that she isn’t alone; not only her family and friends are there to support her, but at the NGF we are committed to making her life easier. 

While Dawnn continued her battle with ALS, we were working to award a grant to help her everyday routine be much smoother.

The grant will be used to install a handicapped-accessible bathroom and a ramp into her home. These modifications are crucial for maintaining Dawnn’s independence and safety as her condition progresses. 

Soon, Dawnn will have a more accessible and adaptable space to continue her life and enjoy her family the way she deserves.

“I am beyond blessed and grateful that the Nebraska Greats Foundation is able to help with an accessible bathroom and a ramp for the front door. These things are going to make my life so much easier as I journey through my battle with ALS. I’m honored to become part of the Nebraska Greats Foundation family! Thank you from the bottom of my Heart for your generosity. You guys are Amazing!” 

Said Dawnn.
Wayne State Basketball wildcats

Wayne State College and The Nebraska Greats Foundation

Dawnn is the second former Wayne State student to receive support from the NGF, and we hope to help many more Wildcat athletes in need of medical assistance. 

For ten years now, the foundation has been serving athletes from the 16 colleges and universities in Nebraska. Our mission is to stand by our athletes, just like we did for Dawnn Tucker in her times of need.

The NGF’s support for Dawnn goes beyond financial aid. By standing with her in her fight against ALS, we´re sending a powerful message of solidarity and community spirit. 

The Nebraska Greats Foundation

We believe that every individual and organization has a role to play in empowering athletes and enriching our community.

The Nebraska Greats Foundation is a non-profit organization that provides financial assistance to former athletes and ex-athletes from Nebraska’s colleges and universities who face medical challenges. 

Thanks to this support, we can alleviate some of the mental health issues that Nebraska athletes are going through during their recovery process.

If you know of an athlete friend or family member who needs access to specific treatments and services, let us know to potentially alleviate some of the stress associated with managing these conditions.

With your help, we can make the Nebraska sports scene a safer place for our community athletes. Wondering how to help? Donate today or reach out to us. Most donations are tax-deductible.

Wayne State Basketball Dawnn Tucker

Nebraska Basketball Star Anton Gill Joins NGF Recipiants

Anton Gill’s Commitment to Nebraska Basketball

As the Executive Director of the Nebraska Greats Foundation, I am constantly reminded of the importance and impact of our work. Today, I have the pleasure of sharing another success story – one that underlines the significance of our mission and the transformative power of the support we provide.

We are thrilled to announce that Anton Gill, a former Husker Basketball standout, has joined the ranks of our beneficiaries. Anton is more than just a recipient; he is a testament to the resilience and spirit of Nebraska Basketball.

Anton Gill’s time as a Husker Basketball player showcased his exceptional skills and dedication to the sport. By joining the ranks of the Nebraska Greats Foundation’s beneficiaries, Anton Gill not only receives support but also becomes an inspiration to aspiring athletes who dream of reaching similar heights.

Anton Gill basketball recipient

A Glimpse into Anton Gill’s Journey

Anton’s journey is a story of talent, perseverance, and determination. During his tenure at Nebraska, he demonstrated exceptional leadership and skill. As a team captain, he played a pivotal role in leading the Huskers to 22 wins in his senior year – a significant achievement that attests to his prowess on the court. He was also a prolific scorer, leading the Huskers with 54 three-point field goals in his senior year.

Beyond Nebraska, Anton continued to pursue his passion for basketball, playing in several foreign countries. However, after a very successful time abroad, last off-season, he encountered health concerns that started getting in the way of his professional basketball career and the quality of his life; unfortunately, these health problems were not covered by insurance. This is where the Nebraska Greats Foundation stepped in.

Anton Gill basketball recipient

The Struggle of Health Problems

Health problems can significantly impact the life of an athlete, both on a physical and emotional level. Physically, health issues can hinder an athlete’s ability to perform at their best, affecting their strength, stamina, and overall athleticism.

On an emotional level, health problems can take a toll on an athlete’s mental well-being. The inability to participate fully in their sport can lead to feelings of disappointment, frustration, and even depression. Athletes may struggle with a sense of loss as they are unable to engage in the activities that bring them joy and purpose.

For the Nebraska Greats Foundation, it is essential to address both issues and guarantee that former athletes receive the help they need to avoid any physical and psychological sequels in the future.

The Huskers Basketball Team

The Huskers basketball team demonstrates a strong commitment to the well-being and success of their student-athletes both on and off the court. With a focus on holistic development, the coaching staff and support personnel prioritize the physical, mental, and emotional welfare of each player. 

They provide resources and guidance to ensure that student-athletes maintain a healthy balance between academics and athletics. The team’s commitment extends beyond the basketball court, fostering an environment where players can thrive academically, socially, and personally.

We recognize and celebrate the hard work the Huskers do with their teams and the amazing support they bring to the basketball community. We feel proud and honored to be able to contribute to the life quality and happiness of his players. 

Anton Gill basketball nebraska

The Role of the Nebraska Greats Foundation

The Nebraska Greats Foundation is a community non-profit dedicated to supporting former Nebraska college and university letter winners facing medical and financial challenges. Our mission is to provide a private-sector solution to the rising healthcare costs that many athletes face after their collegiate careers. 

We believe athletes deserve access to the care and support they need, allowing them to lead healthy and active lives beyond their college sports careers.

As a close-knit sports community, the NGF knows that there are a lot of people in Nebraska willing to give back to those who make this state the amazing place it is today. 

The NGF has been serving former athletes for the past decade, and Anton Gill is the latest addition to our legacy. Anton expressed his gratitude, saying, “I am honored and extremely grateful to be a part of the Nebraska Greats Foundation family. My family and I appreciate all the support as we navigate getting my career back on track.”

Anton joins other illustrious Husker basketball standouts like Larry Florence, Bernard Day, and Ade Dagunduro, who have also benefited from the support of the Nebraska Greats Foundation.

Why Your Contribution Matters

While we celebrate Anton’s journey, we also recognize that there are many more athletes out there who need our help. This is why we need your support. We encourage all former collegiate athletes in Nebraska who might be facing similar challenges to come forward and apply for assistance.

Donating to a non-profit organization like the Nebraska Greats Foundation is an incredibly impactful way to contribute to your community. By supporting this foundation, you are directly helping former college athletes in need who have dedicated their time and talent to representing their schools and communities.

To those of you who believe in our cause and want to make a difference, consider donating to our foundation. Most donations are tax-deductible, and every contribution goes a long way in helping former athletes like Anton Gill overcome their challenges and get back on track.

Let’s continue to honor and assist our “Nebraska Greats” together. Learn more and join us in our mission. Your contribution can change lives, and together, we can ensure that our athletes continue to thrive beyond the field.

The Importance of Mental Health in Sports: Why It matters

The Importance of Mental Health in Nebraska Sports

The importance of mental health in sports is often overlooked when we talk about athletics; it’s easy for us to focus on the physical progress and endurance of athletes and their career achievements; it’s exciting and emotional! 

However, did you know that nearly one in four college athletes exhibit symptoms of depression? This condition can significantly deteriorate their lives, impede their willingness to practice, and affect their performance.

Mental Health in sports Nebraska Athlete

The Importance of Mental Health in Sports

Mental health in sports goes beyond just being able to compete with a clear mind; it refers to the psychological and emotional well-being of athletes, and it encompasses a broad range of issues. 

These issues are not exclusive to professional big league athletes; varsity and local sports athletes are equally prone to mental health issues. But why exactly is that? What causes an athlete to get to those dark places?

Overtraining and Physical Exhaustion

The pressure to consistently deliver peak performance and be perfect can lead to overtraining, resulting in chronic fatigue, which can trigger depression episodes.

Overtraining can also lead to burnout, which is a state of emotional, physical, and mental exhaustion caused by prolonged and excessive stress. When athletes feel overwhelmed, emotionally drained, and unable to meet constant demands, they are more prone to have mental health issues.


Sports injuries can have a profound psychological impact on athletes. The physical pain, combined with the stress of recovery and the fear of not being able to return to the sport, can lead to feelings of loss of self-worth. Athletes who are injured may also struggle with their identity, especially if they have always identified themselves primarily as an athlete. 

Moreover, Physical injuries and recoveries can take a big toll on a personal financial situation, which can lead to depression. The constant worry about mounting bills and an uncertain future can distract from the recovery process, and most athletes are unaware of the nonprofit organization that can help them. 

mental health in nebraska sports

Pressure and Stress

Athletes often face immense pressure to perform, both from themselves and others. This constant stress can take a toll on their mental health over time.

For varsity athletes, the pressure of keeping a scholarship and reputation in their academy and society can be overwhelming. 

A 2020 study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine found that elite athletes are at an increased risk of mental health symptoms and disorders because of the constant stress put on them to accomplish their goals. 

Fear of Failure

Athletes are frequently under the microscope, with every move scrutinized, every mistake magnified, and every performance evaluated. The high expectations set by themselves and others can create immense pressure to perform flawlessly.

That’s why the fear of underperforming or letting down teammates, coaches, fans, and overall failure can be a significant source of anxiety and depression.


Retirement from Sport

Transitioning out of a sports career can be a challenging time for athletes. Athletes often spend years, even decades, giving everything they have to a sport and a team. 

This intense commitment and singular focus can result in a strong identification as an athlete. When the time comes to retire, they may struggle with a loss of identity. And feeling like they lost their purpose in life. 

Lack of a Support System

Lastly, despite being surrounded by teammates and coaches, some athletes may feel isolated or misunderstood, which can exacerbate feelings of depression.

While teammates and coaches can provide a valuable support network, they may not fully understand the depth of an athlete’s emotional struggles, especially when athletes are often perceived with a stereotype of being strong and not needing any help or support system. 

the importance of mental health in sports

Athletes, Not Entertainers 

Think about Simone Biles, Michael Phelps, Serena Williams, or any of your favorite athletes, and think of what you feel when you see them in action. 

Think of the millions of people who show up for the Olympics, for tournaments, or tune in to their favorite sports channel just to see them play. How will that make YOU feel?

In the 21 century, when every move and game is aired and recorded for eternity when social media is used to discuss every move, athletes are more and more like celebrities, like entertainment for the viewers, and it’s like professional sports players. 

It’s essential to challenge the notion that athletes exist solely for our entertainment. We must remember that behind every performance is a person who experiences joy, pain, triumph, and defeat. Recognizing and respecting their humanity helps create an environment where athletes can pursue their careers without compromising their mental well-being.

Asking for Help

It might seem simple and every country intuitive for us: if you feel depressed and constantly struggle, you just ask for heldon’tt as we discussed before, athletes don’t usually have the privilege of being vulnerable. 

Nebraska Greats Foundation- Mental Health in sports

What Stops Athletes from Asking for Help?

Despite the importance of seeking help, several barriers often prevent athletes from doing so. One significant obstacle is the stigma attached to mental health within the sports community. 

We have made a narrative where sports players and athletes are not supposed to be sad; they are the ones that should be strong and help our community. Social norms and community pressure will stop them from asking to be helped. Many athletes fear that admitting they’re struggling mentally will be seen as a sign of weakness, negatively affecting their reputation and career.

They’re often expected to ‘push through’ difficulties, leading many to believe they should handle their mental health issues alone.

Overcoming the Barrier

Seeking help is not an admission of weakness but rather a sign of strength and self-awareness. It shows that the athlete recognizes their struggles and is proactive in addressing them. By seeking help, athletes can not only improve their mental health but also enhance their performance and extend their careers.

Furthermore, when high-profile athletes openly seek help for mental health issues, it sends a powerful message to others who may be struggling in silence. It can help to break down the stigma around mental health in sports, encouraging more athletes to seek the help they need.

What Can We Do?

Creating a healthier and more supportive sports environment involves multiple strategies that can help athletes manage pressure. If you are part of any sports community, have friends and family in the atheist realm, or are within your ability to contribute, here are some things you can do

Nebraska Greats Foundation the importance of mental health in sports
  • Encourage Open Conversations About Mental Health in sports

Creating an environment where mental health is openly discussed can help break down the stigma associated with it. Athletes should feel comfortable talking about their struggles or concerns without fear of judgment or repercussions.

  • Provide Access to Mental Health Resources

Coaches, teams, and sports organizations should provide access to mental health professionals who specialize in working with athletes. These experts can offer tools and strategies to help athletes manage stress, anxiety, and other mental health challenges.

  • Prioritize Well-being Over Winning

While competition is a fundamental part of sports, the well-being of athletes should always come first. Coaches and parents can help create this culture by emphasizing effort, personal improvement, and enjoyment of the sport over winning at all costs.

  • Foster a Supportive Environment

Teammates, coaches, and fans play a significant role in an athlete’s experience. By promoting a supportive and respectful environment, we can help athletes feel valued and understood, reducing the pressure they might feel.

  • Promote Balanced Lifestyles

Spathlete’stournaments can´t be the only thing in an athlete’s life; sure, they can be one of the most important, but not the sole reason for their existence. 

Encourage athletes to pursue interests outside of their sport. This balance can help athletes cope with stress, prevent burnout, and provide them with a broader identity beyond their athletic roles.

  • Provide Education

Train coaches, parents, and athletes about the signs of mental distress and the importance of seeking help when needed. This education can equip them with the knowledge to handle these situations effectively.

  • Celebrate Resilience and Coping Skills

Instead of just celebrating victories and achievements, we should also acknowledge the importance of resilience, coping skills, and personal growth. Thiit’sift in focus can help athletes understand that it’s okay to face challenges and that overcoming these is a victory in itself.

The Nebraska Greats Foundation and The Importance of Mental Health in Sports

The Nebraska Greats Foundation is a non-profit organization that provides financial assistance to former athletes and ex-athletes from Nebraska’s colleges and universities who face medical challenges. 

Thanks to this support, we can alleviate some of the mental health issues that Nebraska athletes are going through during their recovery process.

If you know of an athlete friend or athlete family member that needs access to specific treatments and services, let us know to potentially alleviate some of the stress that comes from having a health condition.

With your help, we can make the Nebraska sports scene a safer place for our community athletes. Wondering how to help? Donate today or reach out to us. 

If you are struggling with mental health and depression, help is readily available. Reach out to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255) or use the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741741.

York University Athletics

york university athletics

In 1890 the United Brethren Church, in conjunction with York citizens, conceived the idea of a church-related college. 

On August 26, 1890, York College welcomed its first class of students.

In 1946, a merger with the Evangelical Church resulted in control of the college passing to the newly-formed Evangelical United Brethren (EUB) Church.

Today, York University offers 24 baccalaureate majors and three Master’s Degree programs. 

York University Panthers

Boasting a variety of varsity teams, from soccer and basketball to tennis and golf, the university offers its students plenty of opportunities for athletic development and competition. 

The school is proud of its teams which have achieved excellent results in their respective leagues.

York University’s coaching staff is revered

The university coaching staff is renowned in the region. They are committed to helping student-athletes reach their highest potential. They offer tailored instruction to help athletes succeed in and out of the game. Additionally, they emphasize integrity, sportsmanship, and respect for everyone.

The university offers quality facilities. This creates an ideal environment for students to train. It also helps them develop essential skills such as discipline and cooperation. 

york students balance academics and sports

Comprehensive academic assistance programs are available to ensure student-athletes balance their studies with sports commitments by providing guidance and support in areas such as time management, stress relief, and other relevant topics.

York University emphasizes creating lasting legacies by producing successful alumni who excel in their chosen career paths. 

By combining an excellent academic experience with its top-notch athletics program, York University strives to foster inclusive communities by encouraging unity among its student body. 

The Athletic Department works with local businesses to offer financial aid packages for student-athletes. These packages provide nurturing and competitive environments to help the athletes improve their technical abilities and mental focus. These skills will benefit the athletes in their careers and continuing education after college.

This commitment has made York one of the most respected universities in Nebraska when it comes to participating in competitive sports at a higher level.

Nebraska Greats Foundation York University Recipients

If you are a current or former college athlete in need, the Nebraska Greats Foundation is here to help just like we’ve helped all of these York University Alumni recipients. To apply for help, CLICK HERE. If you know of an athlete in need, you can refer them HERE.

Brianna Perez, Softball

An exceptional softball player, Perez faced chronic knee issues requiring extensive medical treatment. She became immobile and needed help from NGF to cover medical bills and student loan payments. With the NGF grant, her burden lessened, and she is now back to working full-time.

Giovanni Froldi, Soccer

Gio, a Brazilian native, excels as a student at York College and as a performer. He suffered an arm injury covered by the Nebraska Greats Foundation, supplementing his NAIA student-athlete benefits.

Christofer Monje, Soccer

Panthers’ goalkeeper Christofer Monje from Santiago, Chile, had facial surgery due to a game injury. The medical expenses went beyond the coverage of the school-provided insurance. Monje requested a grant to pay for the procedure and post-operative care expenses.

Jose Calderon, Soccer

Jose Calderon from York College (previously Ranger Community College), suffered a severe injury during a soccer match on August 21, 2021. He went to the emergency room for diagnosis, examination, and treatment. The Nebraska Greats Foundation assisted Jose in covering medical expenses not covered by insurance.

Carlos Ortega, Soccer

Sophomore Midfielder, Carlos Ortega, hailing from Margarita Island, Venezuela, requested a grant to cover medical bills resulting from a sports injury. The NGF provided funds to a healthcare provider for services not covered.

Keven Marques, Soccer

The Nebraska Greats Foundation awarded a grant to Keven Marques, a freshman Midfielder from Ribeirao Preto, Brazil, after he was hospitalized in August for severe abdominal pain and vomiting. Keven received treatment and fully recovered. As he primarily funds his education, the NGF provided him with funds to cover medical expenses that were yet to be paid.

Wayne State Athletics


Wayne State College (WSC) is a leading comprehensive college in Northeast Nebraska distinguished by providing quality academic programs in a personalized setting.

WSC began as a college primarily for teacher education but now offers more than 130 undergraduate programs and several graduate programs. Education students are provided with valuable opportunities for hands-on teaching experience. Business, criminal justice and pre-professional programs are also popular at WSC.

WSC takes pride in the success of its extra-curricular activities as well, including performing arts and athletics.

Wayne State College Wildcats

The college has a rich history in athletics, being a proud member of the NCAA, with 15 sports in its program, competing at Division II level.

Sports include baseball, basketball, football, golf, and track and field for men, while women compete in basketball, golf, cross country, soccer, softball, and track and field.

Wayne State’s Rich Tradition

Athletics have been an integral part of Wayne State since 1912 when intercollegiate football was introduced, followed by basketball and track & field. Post World War II saw the introduction of new sports including baseball, cross-country, golf, swimming, tennis and wrestling, with the 1960s being a high point for the college’s athletics program.

The 1970s brought changes, with some sports dropped due to budget constraints. However, new women’s varsity sports of basketball, softball, and volleyball were introduced and saw national tournament success.

The 1980s marked a new era with the transition to NCAA Division II athletics, bringing increased funding and prestige.

he late 1990s and early 2000s were successful for Wayne State Athletics, with the men’s basketball team becoming one of the top teams in the NCAA Division II North Central Region, and the Wildcat baseball team winning their first NSIC title.

In 2005-06, Wayne State won five conference titles and finished second in the NSIC’s All-Sports Competition.

The 2008-09 season saw nine of Wayne State’s 15 sports qualify for the NCAA Division II Tournament, with the football team reaching the playoffs for the first time in history.

The women’s basketball team made history in 2011-12 with a record 32-3 and a second straight Northern Sun Conference regular season title.

In 2015, the women’s outdoor track and field team achieved the highest-ever finish for a Wildcat team at a national track and field championship.

Wayne State’s commitment to excellence

Facilities have also seen significant upgrades, including a $4.5 million renovation to Rice Auditorium and Memorial Stadium in 2008, and a further $1.3 million invested into athletic facilities in 2013 and 2014.

These improvements have allowed Wayne State to host several prestigious events, including the NCAA North Central/Central Regional Cross Country Championships and the NSIC Indoor Track and Field Championships.

Wayne State College’s athletic programs have been an important part of the institution’s identity and have garnered many successes over the years, from regional to national levels.

These achievements, coupled with significant facility improvements, have positioned Wayne State College as a prominent institution within Division II athletics.

Nebraska Greats Foundation Wayne State College Recipients

If you are a current or former college athlete letter-winner and need medical or financial assistance, the Nebraska Greats Foundation is here to help you just like we’ve helped all of our recipients from all 16 colleges in Nebraska, including Wayne State College. CLICK HERE to apply for help and CLICK HERE to refer an athlete needing care so we can help.

Drew Caskey, Football

“I am forever grateful to the Nebraska Greats Foundation because without them, my dream of traveling to New York to undergo Birmingham Hip Resurfacing (BHR), by renowned orthopedic surgeon Edwin P. Su, M.D., and receive the “gold standard” of hip resurfacing implants, would have stayed just that, a dream and never a reality. Thank you for helping me get back to winning in the game of life!”

Hastings College Athletics


Hastings College, located in Hastings, Nebraska, is a private, four-year liberal arts college founded in 1882.

The college is affiliated with the Presbyterian Church and has a student population of around 1,000. Hastings College offers over 64 majors and minors in business, communication and media studies, education, health and wellness, and more.

While this college, based out of Hastings, Nebraska, is renowned for its academics, its athletic program is equally impressive.

Hastings College Broncos

The college has a reputation for being an NAIA powerhouse, with the Broncos winning over 30 conference titles and making over 25 appearances at the NAIA National Championships in the past decade.

What makes the athletic program at Hastings College stand out is its commitment to providing its student-athletes with top-notch facilities.

A Small College with a Big Athletic Impact

In 2019, the college completed a $6 million renovation to the Lynn Farrell Arena, home to the Bronco basketball, volleyball, and wrestling teams. The arena now boasts state-of-the-art equipment and can seat over 2,100 spectators.

The Osborne Family Sports Complex, which opened in 2008, is another jewel in the crown of Hastings College’s athletic facilities. The complex features an artificial turf football and soccer field, an eight-lane outdoor track, and field event areas for high jump, long jump, pole vault, and throwing events. The complex can seat up to 5,000 people and provides an excellent venue for athletic events.

Hastings College men’s and women’s athletics

Hastings College’s athletic program offers 24 varsity sports for men and women. They compete in the Great Plains Athletic Conference (GPAC) as part of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA).

The Broncos have had a lot of success in their athletic history, with multiple conference championships and appearances in national tournaments.

However, its tight-knit community and commitment to hands-on learning truly set Hastings College apart. The college’s small size allows for individualized attention and personalized instruction. Students are encouraged to engage in internships, research opportunities, and study abroad programs that complement their academic pursuits.

The athletic program at Hastings College is a perfect complement to this philosophy. Student-athletes can compete at the highest level while continuing their education.

The program fosters discipline, teamwork, and a strong work ethic, all essential skills that will serve student-athletes well in their future careers.

Hastings College is an excellent choice for students seeking a small liberal arts college with a strong athletic program.

The college’s commitment to academic excellence, personalized instruction, and hands-on learning make it an ideal place for students who want to achieve academic and athletic success.

Nebraska Greats Foundation Hastings College Recipients

If you are a current or former college athlete in need, the Nebraska Greats Foundation is here to help just like we’ve helped all these Hastings College Alumni recipients. To apply for help, CLICK HERE. If you know of an athlete in need, you can refer them HERE.

Adam Driver, Track and Field

Adam Driver was an elite Pole Vaulter for Hastings State, participating in national championship meets. However, he suffered an injury in an industrial accident soon after graduation. The Nebraska Greats Foundation helped Adam by providing equipment and facilities to stay active. Now, Adam serves as an assistant Track and Field coach at his Alma Mater.

Doane University ATHLETICS

Doane University ATHLETICS

Doane University is a premier liberal arts and sciences institution located in Crete, Nebraska.

With a rich history spanning back to its founding in 1872, the university has evolved and undergone a comprehensive transformation in 2009, operating five distinct schools: Arts & Sciences, Business & Economics, Education, Nursing & Health Sciences, and Graduate Studies.

Doane University is well-known for providing a holistic education. Its liberal arts curriculum is combined with experiential activities for undergraduates.

In addition to its academic offerings, it provides an excellent athletic program for its student-athletes.

Doane Athletics

Doane University Tigers

Doane University has had a long history of success in athletic conference championships. The University is a member of the Iowa Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (IIAC) and competes in over 15 sports teams, including football, baseball, basketball, soccer, softball, and track & field.

In recent years, the Tigers have been on fire.

In 2018-19 alone, they won five IIAC championships: Softball (regular season and tournament), Men’s Indoor Track & Field (regular season and tournament), as well as Women’s Outdoor Track & Field (tournament).

This was followed by wins in 2019-20: Baseball (tournament), Women’s Soccer (regular season), and Women’s Basketball (tournament).

Doane University

Doane alumni have also achieved impressive success.

Football player Bryan Reimers earned Player of the Year honors in both 2017 and 2018 for his performance as defensive end for the Tigers. Reimers went on to be drafted by the NFL’s Kansas City Chiefs in 2019.

Meanwhile, Jaden Kleinhesselink was picked up by the Colorado Rockies after being named Pitcher of the Year for 2018-19 at Doane.

To ensure that the student-athletes perform at their best, the athletic department has collaborated with the nutrition center to introduce nutritional counseling sessions designed to keep the athletes healthy while they perform.

This program has significantly reduced injuries throughout the year while producing better results among student-athletes during athletic competitions. This initiative is a testament to the university’s commitment to the holistic development of their student-athletes.

Doane University

Quality Coaching and Valuable Lessons

At Doane University, the athletic program is dedicated to providing quality coaching that helps prepare student-athletes for their individual and team goals while teaching positive values needed for success in any field.

The coaching staff understands that the skills learned on the field translate to skills needed to succeed outside of sports.

They believe that student-athletes should learn and develop values such as teamwork, sportsmanship, and leadership, which are essential for success both on the field and outside of it.

Support from Alumni

Doane University has an extensive network of alumni who continue to support and offer guidance to current students looking for guidance or advice on achieving their goals, both during their time at Doane and after graduation.

This network of alumni provides student-athletes with a wealth of knowledge and experience and a valuable resource for their future careers.

Doane University is an excellent opportunity for student-athletes looking for competitive challenges, as well as valuable lessons in teamwork, sportsmanship, and leadership – all necessary skills for success both on the field and outside of it.

The university’s commitment to providing a holistic education and athletic program is second to none, making it an ideal destination for students looking to make a lasting impact.

Doane University

Nebraska Greats Foundation Doane University Recipients

If you are a current or former college athlete letter-winner and need medical or financial assistance, the Nebraska Greats Foundation is here to help you just like we’ve helped all of our recipients from all 16 colleges in Nebraska, including Wayne State College. CLICK HERE to apply for help and CLICK HERE to refer an athlete needing care so we can help.

Jeremy Fossum, Baseball

Jeremy Fossum, a baseball player from Bellevue, NE, attending Doane University, was diagnosed with an operable brain tumor. Due to his age, he was no longer covered by his family’s health insurance, which resulted in significant expenses from the operation and associated care. As he was also dealing with significant student loan debt while pursuing a physical therapy career, the Nebraska Greats Foundation helped him with medical expenses.