- Associated Press - Friday, March 18, 2016

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - Butler says it has partnered with Be The Match, which operates the national bone marrow registry, in honor of late player Andrew Smith.

The school announced the partnership in a news release Friday. The goal is to raise awareness about the registry for potential donors for bone marrow to treat life-threatening blood diseases such as leukemia.

The 25-year-old Smith died in January after a battle with cancer. He was diagnosed with an aggressive form of non-Hodgkin lymphoma in 2014. He played in the 2010 and 2011 NCAA title games with Butler.

The release also said team bulldog mascot “Butler Blue III” would be a “national ambassador” for Be The Match.

Butler plays No. 1 seed Virginia in Saturday’s second round of the NCAA Tournament’s Midwest Region in Raleigh, North Carolina.

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