Sports organizations, individuals respond to Katrina

Updated: September 1, 2005, 12:13 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

NEW YORK -- The New York Yankees and the NFL were among members of the sports community to assist victims of Hurricane Katrina, each donating $1 million to the American Red Cross.

Red Cross

Yankees owner George Steinbrenner said Wednesday the franchise was "heeding the President's call to help the people devastated by this hurricane in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama.

"This is one of America's greatest natural disasters and tragedies and it is the responsibility of the American public to step up and help those in need."

Commissioner Paul Tagliabue said the NFL is also working on other ways to aid the relief effort.

The contribution is in addition to efforts the league is taking to assist players whose families live in the area. The NFL also must decide how to deal with the New Orleans Saints, who are moving their base to San Antonio and almost surely will have to find a stadium other than the Superdome for home games.

There were a number of other charitable gestures by those in the sports world:

• The Dallas Stars contributed $10,000 to the local American Red Cross in New Orleans and is taking donations from fans

Tennessee Titans quarterback Steve McNair teamed with Green Bay Packers quarterback Brett Favre and arranged to fill a tractor-trailer with relief supplies bound for Mississippi on Wednesday. McNair also asked his fans to help him raise money for victims of Hurricane Katrina. McNair, who has a home near Favre's in Hattiesburg, Miss., is offering to swap an autographed photo for each minimum donation of $100 to his foundation.

• The Packers flew to Nashville, Tenn., on Wednesday for their final preseason game -- but only after loading the team airplane with generators and other emergency supplies to help the victims of the hurricane.

• Serena Williams announced she would donate $100 for every ace she has the rest of the year, beginning with her two in Wednesday night's second-round victory at the U.S. Open. Williams said she needs to find out which charity is doing the most good before deciding where to send her donations.

• The NBA players' association will help deliver supplies to the hardest hit areas.

Chicago Bulls guard Chris Duhon, a native of Slidell, La., will work with the Federal Emergency Management Agency to try to get financial support, clothing and food.

• The University of Florida will give proceeds from its pay-per-view telecast against Wyoming on Saturday night -- $75,000 -- to the American Red Cross.

Golden State Warriors guard Baron Davis, who played for the New Orleans Hornets for three years, donated $50,000 to the Red Cross' disaster relief fund.

• The Houston Astros will host a Hurricane Katrina Relief Drive at Minute Maid Park on Saturday and Sunday. They will assist the American Red Cross with their disaster relief fund-raising efforts and hold a blood drive in conjunction with the Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center.

Houston Texans owner Bob McNair said that he will match donations up to $1 million given during the team's game against Tampa Bay. All donations will go to the American Red Cross. It is part of a partnership between the Texans, Infinity Broadcasting and Houston television station KTRK called the Texans Care Campaign.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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