While Kentucky baseball star T.J. Collett gears up for the Major League Baseball draft this week, UK Athletics is highlighting the first baseman’s biggest off-field passion: helping children fighting cancer.
Collett, a two-time member of the SEC Community Service team, is heavily involved with Never Ever Give Up/Jessie Rees Foundation, whose mission is to connect with families of young cancer patients, bringing awareness to their stories, offering them a network of helpful resources and sending the entire family encouragement throughout their journey.
In his time at Kentucky, NEGU has worked with Collett on bringing sick children and their families to UK home baseball games to take part in pregame activities and interact with the team. He also helps deliver Joy Jars to young cancer patients, which are stuffed with toys, games, and other things to brighten patients’ days while fighting the disease.
This week, the UK Sports Video team put together a feature highlighting Collett’s work in the community leading up to the MLB Draft.
Take a look:
UK Athletics has also put together a “T.J. Collett File,” a string of the senior first baseman’s on- and off-field accomplishments during his time in Lexington:
The T.J. Collett File:
- Two-time member of the SEC Community Service Team.
- Three-time member of the SEC Academic Honor Roll.
- Has been instrumental in UK Baseball’s community outreach and service initiatives.
- Heavily involved with NEGU/Jessie Rees Foundation, whose mission is connecting with families of young cancer patients, bringing awareness to their stories, offering them a network of helpful resources and sending the entire family encouragement during their journey.
- Spearheaded an effort where members of the UK baseball team deliver Joy Jars to young cancer patients. The jars are stuffed with toys, games and other items to brighten patients’ days.
- Worked with UK and NEGU to bring cancer-stricken children and their families to home games for behind-the-scenes experiences on game day, including being announced during the game.
- So highly regarded as a teammate that when he participated in the College Home Run Derby in Omaha, Nebraska this summer a teammate’s family drove more than an hour to the event just to support him.
- During his career has twice been named both National Player of the Week and SEC Player of the Week for his play.
- Has persevered through numerous injuries that significantly impacted both his freshman and sophomore seasons.
Well done, T.J., and best of luck this week in the MLB Draft.