Media Advisory: Students, faculty and staff ‘Hit the Bricks’ for Brian Piccolo

In 2003, students at Wake Forest University started a tradition to raise money for the Brian Piccolo Cancer Fund Drive. The eight-hour relay race, along the brick pathways on campus, honors Piccolo, an alumnus who attended the University in the 1960s and former Chicago Bears running back whose story is featured in the 1971 movie “Brian’s Song.”

Who: Wake Forest students race against faculty and staff to see who can run the most laps around Hearn Plaza and raise the most money.

What: The Brian Piccolo Cancer Fund Drive was started by students in 1980 in memory of the Wake Forest All-American football player, who passed away at age 26 from cancer during his career with the Bears.

At the inaugural Hit the Bricks, 17 teams participated and raised nearly $4,000. Eleven years later, the total amount raised for the Brian Piccolo Cancer Drive is more than $169,000. The goal this year is to have 100 teams and raise $30,000 to find a cure for cancer. All of the funds raised support the Comprehensive Cancer Center at Wake Forest Baptist Health.

For more information about Hit the Bricks and the Brian Piccolo Cancer Fund Drive, please visit

When: The race starts at 11 a.m. and concludes at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 3. A final remembrance lap for cancer victims and survivors culminates with a luminary ceremony in front of Wait Chapel at the end of the event.

Where: Hearn Plaza at Wake Forest University

About Wake Forest University:

Wake Forest University combines the best traditions of a small liberal arts college with the resources of a large research university. Founded in 1834, the school is located in Winston-Salem, N.C. The University’s graduate school of arts and sciences, divinity school, and nationally ranked schools of law, medicine and business enrich our intellectual environment. Learn more about Wake Forest University at


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