Signed pieces of 2012 championship floor available in online auction Thursday

John Calipari-signed pieces of the 2012 Final Four floor Kentucky won its eighth national championship on will be available for purchase in an online public auction that starts Thursday.

Northwestern Mutual, which donated part of the 2012 Final Four to Kentucky for its use in its renovated Rupp Arena locker room, is making 300 additional pieces of the UK championship floor available for the auction.

One hundred percent of the proceeds will go toward the fight against pediatric cancer throughout the state of Kentucky. Specifically, the proceeds will benefit efforts at Kosair Children’s Hospital in Louisville and Kentucky Children’s Hospital in Lexington.

Starting Thursday at noon, the auction will be hosted at The bidding, which will start at $500, will end the following Thursday, Oct. 18, at noon. The highest 300 will win the limited number of pieces. The site will notify bidders if they have fallen out of the top 300 bids.

Each piece, measured at 18 inches wide and 12 inches tall, is numbered and signed by Calipari. The piece includes a certificate of authenticity and a photo of the entire Final Four floor for reference.

Northwestern Mutual, an official corporate sponsor of the NCAA, announced the partnership with Coach Cal in the middle of September at Rupp Arena. More than 3,000 square feet of the floor is currently being installed in the renovated Rupp Arena locker room, including the entry area, the circular locker room and other areas.

John Calipari signed the first of 300 pieces of the 2012 Final Four floor, which will be made available to the public for purchase by way of auction. (photo by Britney McIntosh, UK Athletics)

At the time of the announcement, Calipari said the floor would “enhance what will be the gold standard of locker rooms across the country” in addition to being a “fitting tribute to a special team.”

Those benefits were icing on the cake for Coach Cal when he heard the auction would be used for charity.

“It’s going to be beneficial for our state, that’s the greatest thing,” Calipari said. “Dan (Rivers) stepped up to say I want to use this for charity. I want to use it for you guys (and I) want this to, what we paid for, I’d like to get 100 times out of it.”

For more on the addition of the Final Four floor to Rupp Arena, click here. To place a bid on a piece of the floor (auction starts Thursday at noon), click here.