ESPN analyst Deb Antonelli raises $80,000 for Special Olympics with marathon free-throw shooting event

Debbie Antonelli, a women's college basketball analyst for ESPN, listens before a women's game between Duke and Notre Dame in Conway, S.C., in March 2017. Antonelli wanted to do something to help raise money and awareness for South Carolina Special Olympics. So about a year ago she came up with the concept of "24 Hours of Nothing But Net." She vowed to make 2,400 free throws for 24 straight hours. She did just that over the weekend, making 2,400 of 2,553 free throws, hitting at 94% accuracy, at the Mount Pleasant Town Hall gym. (AP file photo)

NEW YORK (AP) — Special Olympics has always been near and dear to basketball analyst Deb Antonelli.

Her 21-year-old son Frankie is a Special Olympics athlete who just completed his sophomore year in Clemson University’s LifeProgram.

She wanted to do something to help raise money and awareness for South Carolina Special Olympics. So about a year ago, she came up with the concept of ’24 Hours of Nothing But Net.” She vowed to make 2,400 free throws — 100 per hour– for 24 straight hours. She did just that over the weekend, making 2,400 of 2,553 free throws, hitting at an amazing 94% accuracy, at the Mount Pleasant Town Hall gym.

Antonelli, who lives in the area, has already raised over $80,000 and that number is growing as more people have heard about feat.

“I got a little emotional thinking about how hard I trained and how long I spent in the gym and all the money we raised for Special Olympics,” Antonelli said in a phone interview Monday.