Very Nice Article by the NY Times on Coach Yow

If you have a couple spare minutes today, take the time and read article from the New York Times.

Yow has persevered even though the disease has spread to her skeleton and liver, and she knows that it will probably become fatal. The cancer treatment has left her feeling weak, dehydrated, short of breath, lacking in appetite. Once an avid golfer, now she longs just to take a walk. The other day, it took her 50 minutes to finish a bowl of oatmeal. Always the coach, she timed it.

Food tastes metallic, everything a meal of coins. She has lost her hair, her eyebrows, her eyelashes. A rim of tears persists on her lower lids, and she must dab them frequently with tissues. Her toes feel numb. Her face and her hands have grown as dark as a July tan. Sores irritate her mouth. She is beginning to lose her fingernails, which are spotted brown and pop up like the hoods of cars.

But she had to be with her players. She has never married, and during her 32 years at North Carolina State her team has essentially become her family. Her devotion to the university is evident everywhere in her town house, which is on a golf course in Cary, N.C. Figurines of wolves decorate her mantle and her bookcase. The school logo is burnished on her welcome mat, on stained-glass artwork abutting her fireplace, on the cover of her barbecue pit.

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General Kay Yow Non-Revenue

23 Responses to Very Nice Article by the NY Times on Coach Yow

  1. Mr O 03/18/2007 at 9:36 AM #

    Earlier, Yow gathered her players at midcourt and thanked them for attending her father’s viewing on Wednesday. She told them she hoped they had “all the confidence in the world” entering the tournament “because I have all the confidence in the world in you.”

    “I want you to remember to have great strength and have great courage,” Yow said. “There can always be a little bit of fear or nervousness, but courage overcomes that. Your desire to win, to be the best you can be, becomes greater than anything you fear. That’s courage. That’s how you do it.”

    It was a reminder to her players and, perhaps, to herself.

  2. vtpackfan 03/18/2007 at 9:47 AM #

    That is a great article, thanks for passing it along. I’m looking forward to todays game at the RBC. It sounds cliche but this really is bigger then any NCAA championship, or even a simple W vs. L. It’s all about the spirit and oneness Coach Yow displays. You see it in the eye’s and actions off her team and witness it also in the appreciation opponents have given after each match. Go Pack!

  3. IrishPackFan 03/18/2007 at 10:21 AM #

    It is just eerie to me with what happened to Jimmy V and now Kay Yow. She truly is an inspiration to everyone in any level of sports. She truly embodies the “Never Give Up” attitude that has defined NC State sports. Here is another article on the inspiration of Coach Yow from

  4. Texpack 03/18/2007 at 10:29 AM #

    A really good friend of mine from high school played for Susan Yow at East Tennessee State and went to Kay Yow’s camps while she was in high school. She always spoke highly of the Yow sisters.

    NC State needs to take the lead in fund raising for cancer research. A Men’s / Women’s doubleheader hosting another school like UConn, Tennessee, or Texas, and honoring Coach Yow and Coach Valvano would be great for raising money and for both basketball programs. We simply have a unique situation that ought to be used for the good of everyone who suffers from cancer.

  5. ncsu_kappa 03/18/2007 at 10:43 AM #

    Texpack, agreed.

  6. wirogers 03/18/2007 at 10:47 AM #


    You hit it on the head, I have stated before, the V Classic should be in Raleigh hosted by (maybe not played in) the NC State Family (Athletic Department, University, Wolfpack Club, Alumni Association, and Current Student Body). It should be shared with a sister tournament for Kay Yow. The whole thing should be an ‘EVENT’ that the student athletes would never forget.

    If done properly, with some sponsorship, it would be a great Event in Raleigh that not only would be a sporting event but also would be a learning and growing event for the student athlete and the student body as a whole.

    The problem is we have no one at the University right now who has the vision of this type of event. I am in the process of drafting a letter to all groups urging them to consider this idea. We need to push our University to embrace this as a possibility.

    Having a sports program constantly touched by looses due to cancer, how can we not push them to do this?

  7. StateFans 03/18/2007 at 10:56 AM #

    The V Classic should be played wherever the V Foundation think they can get the most media exposure for the event on a global scale.

  8. MadWolf92 03/18/2007 at 11:03 AM #

    I really had no idea how bad off she was. Really, really good article.

  9. CaptainCraptacular 03/18/2007 at 11:30 AM #

    Prayers for Coach Yow.

  10. chris92heel 03/18/2007 at 11:54 AM #

    Wow. Didn’t realize she was going through this.

    My family has known the Yows for nearly 40 years. They’re from Gibsonville, and Debbie Yow was the coach at Eastern Guilford back in the 70’s — she coached a bunch of my older cousins.

    Thoughts and prayers to her.

  11. wirogers 03/18/2007 at 1:35 PM #


    I agree with you. IMHO I think matching it with a womens games in the Raleigh area would do just that. I was just thinking the two together with a larger support system would bring it more exposure. However, if leaving it in New York is best, then do so.

  12. wirogers 03/18/2007 at 1:42 PM #

    That said, this thread is about Kay Yow, she is a great coach and someone I am proud to have representing the Univeristy. She is a great person for all to look up to in the way she fights her cancer and most importantly how she has always lived her life. I wish her and the team only the best in the tournament.

  13. packpigskinfan23 03/18/2007 at 1:51 PM #

    I have always wished the V Foundation was more related to NCSU(or maybe it should be the other way around)… and with Coach Yows situation NOW would be the time. Even if it is just for one year, WHY cant the two fundraising giants come together. it would be huge to correlate the two together near our campus. With all the media attention that Coach Yow’s health has gotten this year we could do something BIG…

  14. Pakkfan 03/18/2007 at 1:51 PM #

    Perhaps no one has carried the Wolfpack banner with more class, integrity, and perseverance then Coach Yow – and for Case, Sloan, and Valvano to have been here thats saying something.

    It was the right thing to do to name the court in Reynolds for her.

    It would also be the right thing to do to name the RBC Center court for this pioneer of Womens College Basketball as well.

    She is not merely a great womens coach, she’s one of the best ever to coach a UNC system team.

  15. Gene 03/18/2007 at 2:36 PM #

    Congrats to the Wolfpack on a big win against Robert Morris today.

  16. choppack1 03/18/2007 at 9:25 PM #

    I didn’t know that Kay was is this bad shape. Once again, she’s fighting it w/ courage and class. Glad to see our women won today. I hope they keep it going – they’ve all been through so much.

  17. msmzyk 03/18/2007 at 9:47 PM #

    ESPN has a good article up today about one of the players on the team, Ashley Key, which is good reading once you finish the NY Times article.

  18. Red 03/18/2007 at 11:09 PM #

    As much as I love(d) Jimmy V and Coach Yow, the V Foundation is a damn joke. Sure, a lot of money is given to cancer research, but I want to see the damn books. There are way too many people making serious cash off the event (PAM VALVANO AND FAMILY ????). I’d love to see the foundation stripped from the Valvano family because of monetary abuse.

  19. beowolf 03/18/2007 at 11:16 PM #

    ^ COMPLETELY off topic.


    I had no idea Yow was struggling this hard. I knew she was fighting, but I didn’t realize the toll was so high. I’ve even greater respect for her now.

  20. WolftownVA81 03/18/2007 at 11:21 PM #

    Very inspirational. Thanks for the link.

  21. Hoosyodaddy81 03/19/2007 at 12:21 AM #

    I wanted to include the e-mail I wrote to [email protected]. I think it would be fitting if some people would be so inclined to write. It’s not often N.C.State is covered in the NY Times, especially with such a touching article.

    I just wanted to write and applaud Jere’ Longman for his article about Coach Yow and the N.C. State Lady Wolfpack. As an N.C. State student, I was deeply touched and inspired by the article. Coach Yow continues to be an inspiration to everyone here in Raleigh, and all around women’s basketball. Her heart and love for this game, along with her perserverence and determination through her struggles makes us all deeply thrilled to be members of the Wolfpack family. This season has proven that no matter what goes on on the court, there are many more important aspects that go on in the sport of basketball that brings us all together. Fans from both of our bitter rival schools, Duke and UNC have left the trash talk for another day and have celebrated Coach Yow’s achievements through this year. This year, the basketball court in historic Reynolds Coliseum was renamed in her honor, and aptly so. Coach Yow has served this University and helped bring women’s basketball to an enormously successful program here at State. I hope Jere’s article sheds light to those who are unaware of women’s basketball about what an amazing coach, leader, and person that Coach Yow is. North Carolina State University has been truely blessed with her tenure, and we all keep her in our thoughts and prayers as she continues the fight. Thanks for the wonderful article.

  22. noah 03/19/2007 at 8:35 AM #

    I imagine that if I ever have cancer and it progresses to a certain point, I would spend my days doing what I loved most. I’d try to breathe as much air off the ocean as possible, I’d try to spend as much time with my wife and family and my dog as I could.

    When I heard earlier this year that Yow’s cancer had reached THAT point, that there probably wasn’t going to be a rebound this time…I was sort of surprised that she kept working. Then it hit me…THIS is what she loves to do. Me sitting on the beach on a warm day tossing a tennis ball for my dog to chase and chatting with my wife and Coach Yow sitting on the sidelines watching her girls and teaching and encouraging them — those are emotional equals.


  1. StateFans Nation » Blog Archive » Kay Yow, inspiration - 03/20/2007

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