Courtesy of the Huffman Family
If you are even a casual follower of UCLA football recruiting, it is impossible to not know the name of Scout.com’s National Director of Recruiting, Brandon Huffman. Huffman has long been a treasure among the scores of Bruin fans who populate Bruin Report Online, bringing the best information and scoops on the Bruins’ efforts and doing so in an affable, engaging manner that is thoroughly representative of the man himself. It helps that Huffman is a lifelong UCLA fan as well, as anyone who has noticed him at any of the Bruins’ big road trips would attest.
Two days ago, on the evening of July 1, Brandon made public something that was absolutely stunning and heartbreaking: that his 6-year-old daughter Avery Huffman had just been diagnosed with Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG), a condition which had created an inoperable, cancerous tumor in her brain and left her with a very short time to live. In the most eloquent and moving manner imaginable, Brandon explained to the world the plight that his brave daughter and his family had been forced to endure and the way in which their world had suddenly and inexplicably been turned upside down.
An assistance fund was immediately set up by Brandon’s sister Alyse to take donations in support of Avery and to lessen the family’s financial burden in their efforts to get Avery the best treatment possible. Remarkably, the world has subsequently shown the way in which it will support good people when good people need its support, as the fundraiser has taken in more than $106,000 in donations to date in less than 48 hours!
Also providing an amazing assist to the cause were none other than UCLA head football coach Jim Mora and his wife Shannon, who not only personally donated $2,500, but have also offered high-level “Coach For A Day” packages to help with the fundraising for Avery.
It goes without saying that the story of Avery has had a wide-reaching impact. Brandon Huffman has been nothing less than a incredible man in the times that I’ve interacted with him and the people working in the recruiting industry, regardless of their network affiliations, absolutely swear by him. When you consider that it’s a sweet, innocent young girl having to suffer through this awful disease and that her family is universally loved and respected by anyone who has had the pleasure of encountering them, it makes complete sense why the story of Avery has resonated so deeply and sparked such an incredible outpouring of love and support.
Go Joe Bruin encourages you all to be #AveryStrong, keep Avery and her family in your thoughts and prayers, and make a donation, if you’re able, to help a courageous young girl and her loving family.