Former Auburn basketball player, former Alabama running back are teaming up to defeat ALS

Published: November 28, 2022

Article body

Former Auburn basketball player Gary Godfrey and former University of Alabama running back Kerry Goode are “rivals” teaming up against something bigger than sports, Lou Gehrig’s disease, or ALS.

In conjunction with the Atlanta-based, award-winning sports marketing agency MELT, the ALS Association-Alabama Chapter, Auburn University and The University of Alabama, the first “The Kerry & Gary Challenge” has begun to raise funds for families exclusively in the state of Alabama facing ALS. Meet Kerry and Gary as they introduce themselves and explain why this is more than just football in this video.

Both Godfrey and Goode have been diagnosed with ALS since their departure from collegiate athletics. With the annual cost reaching $250,000 to care for an ALS patient, Godfrey and Good have decided to compete to see which of their alma maters can raise the most money for the ALS Association, with all proceeds raised by Auburn and Alabama set to help a neighbor in your town living with ALS.

The multi-platform fundraising event kicked off this week on social media and on its website here. Godfrey was also recognized at Auburn’s home basketball game on Friday night and football game against Alabama on Saturday afternoon.

Before Godfrey’s appearance at both games, a video from Auburn men’s basketball coach Bruce Pearl played on the arena and stadium jumbotrons, explaining the challenge and prompting Tiger fans to scan the QR codes on the screen to learn more.

Goode also was recognized after the short video at Bryant Denny Stadium. At that time, Crimson Tide fans also scanned the QR code to donate. Someone will be named the winner of the Kerry and Gary Challenge, and the challenge will run until “Giving Tuesday” on Nov. 29. So far, the challenge has raised $56,000.

Both Auburn Tigers and Alabama Crimson Tide fans can compete in the challenge by donating on behalf of their team by visiting the website here. Fans will be able to join rival coaches, public figures and Alabama politicians in competition throughout the fundraiser. After donating, Tiger and Tide fans are then encouraged to post on their social media platforms, letting their friends and family know “#imwithKerry” or “#imwithGary” in the “#KerryandGaryChallenge.”

On Monday, Nov. 21, Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey made a proclamation showing her support and officially named this week as “Kerry & Garry Challenge to Defeat ALS Week.”

MELT is working alongside the aforementioned partners to produce this challenge. MELT Founder, Chairman, CEO and Auburn University Alumnae Vince Thompson found the challenge “inspiring.”

“I covered Gary Godfrey as an Auburn sports information student assistant when we were at Auburn,” Thompson said. “To see the challenges Kerry and Gary’s families and other ALS families are now facing and the bravery and courage he wakes up with every day to make a difference in someone else's life, that’s worth getting behind, and I knew I wanted to help.”

Please contact for more photos and Ivey's proclamation.

Submitted by: Mattie Whitney