In June of 2018, Mississippi State softball outifelder Alex Wilcox passed away from Ovarian Cancer. A few months later in October, Mississippi State launched the 4:28 Wall Sit initiative to honor her.
No one would have ever guessed that Wilcox was battling a fight against cancer. She continued to practice with the team her freshman season while undergoing chemotherapy and radiation treatment. She wanted to be there and she never missed a beat. Today the bulldogs are challenging everyone to take part in the 4:28 wall sit.
Mississippi State softball head coach Samantha Ricketts shares the significance of the number 4:28.
“At practice one day Coach Tyler Bratton, our outfield coach, was out there doing some sort of conditioning and they were doing a wall sit while he was telling a story,” said Ricketts.
“It was the Roger Bannister breaking the four-minute mile story. He was just going on and you know making his point and when he looked down to tell them, ‘Okay you can stand up,’ it had been four minutes and twenty eight seconds and she held it the entire time. Everything she went through and the way she handled herself and her situation, you never would have known she was battling cancer. She was just a really bright light.”
The 4:28 Wall Sit Challenge was an idea Wiilcox’s teammates came up with themselves. What started as a challenge for all softball teams in the SEC soon grew into something much greater.
“Oh it was bigger than we could have imagined,” said Ricketts. “It was 230 collegiate softball teams, over 40 high school teams, club teams, professional teams, it went international, and even Holly Rowe from ESPN participated. It was much bigger than any one of us could have ever imagined and that just speaks to the impact Alex continues to have on this program and on softball players across the country.”
Anyone can honor Alex Wilcox by filming themselves at home doing the 4:28 wall sit, posting it to social media with the hashtags #NoOneFightsAlone and #428WallSitChallenge, and then challenge three friends to do the same.
“Very easily she could have said, ‘Hey I’m tapping out I just had chemo or I had radiation yesterday and she didn’t. She didn’t quit. She wanted to be out there with her teammates.”
No one fights alone.