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The Philadelphia Daily News
Leave it to Bill Cosby to turn a sad situation into a laughing matter.
Cosby will hold a benefit concert for Temple's men's gymnastics program at the Independence Visitor Center at 6th and Market streets, on Thursday, Aug. 15 at 7:30 p.m.
In December, Temple head men's gymnastics coach Fred Turoff found out his sport was being demoted from varsity to club status.
That means Turoff and his gymnasts have to raise money for the program to continue.
Enter the Cos, a Philly native, who attended Temple and still bleeds Cherry & White.
"I was able to find a way to contact Cosby," Turoff said yesterday. "I got to talk to him and he said, 'I'll tell you what, how about if I do a benefit concert with David Brenner?' "
Sadly, Brenner, also a Philly native who attended Temple, died in March.
Turoff said he is optimistic the team will be able to raise the $200,000-plus needed to operate.
And, he's hoping an agreement he had with the late Lew Katz, the former part-owner of the Daily News, who died in a plane crash on May 31, will give the program a big financial boost.
"Right now, we've got about $55,000," he said. "When I get past the $70,000 mark I'll approach Drew Katz [Lew's son]. Lew had told me that if we raised $70,000 he would match it with $70,000."
It's a promise worth keeping.
Turoff's gymnasts have a 100 percent graduation rate. And he has a long-standing commitment to the university.
He competed for Temple from 1966-69, and has coached the team for 38 years. Under Turoff, Temple has won 18 conference titles and produced five individual NCAA champions. He was inducted into the USA Gymnastics Hall of Fame in 2009.
For more information about the concert, or to donate, go to eventbrite.com and type "Cosby" in the search field.