A unique fundraiser held this past spring brought in more than $20,000 to support a scholarship honoring the mother of one of The University of Southern Mississippi’s most famous graduates and the school’s baseball program.
Following the April 15 baseball game against the University of New Orleans, dubbed “Parrothead Night at the Pete,” select jerseys worn by the Golden Eagle players and coaches in honor of Southern Miss alumnus Jimmy Buffett (’69) were shipped to the famed singer and author for his autograph.
The autographed jerseys were then returned for auction on eBay, and after several weeks of promotion, the eBay auction opened on May 16 and lasted for 10 days. The bids on several Buffett-autographed jerseys closed at more than $1,000, with the majority of the autographed team jerseys selling between $300 and $500. Other jerseys were distributed to the 2011 Golden Eagles baseball team.
Proceeds from the auction benefited the baseball support organization, the Dugout Club, and a scholarship fund in the name of Buffett’s mother, Peets. Recently, the Association presented checks in the amount of $8,000 to the leadership of the USM Foundation for the scholarship and to the Dugout Club.
“The jersey auction exceeded our expectations,” said Jerry DeFatta, executive director of the Alumni Association. “The auction generated approximately $16,000, and including the auction, limited-edition T-shirt sales and jersey raffle, the gross income for the initiative was more than $20,000.”
For more information about the Peets Buffett Scholarship, call the Southern Miss Alumni Association at 601.266.5013 or visit the Awards/Scholarship section of www.SouthernMissAlumni.com; for more information about Southern Miss Baseball, online visit www.SouthernMiss.com